Sunday, July 31, 2011

Thoughts on a Sunday night


Last night I sat and typed out my 37 things list.

At one point I thought I'd never get to 30, let alone 37. But I ended up with 41 so some editing is needed before I post it on Saturday.

I also had a chance to look over my 36 things list and let's just say, I better go pay for someone's groceries or meal. Quick. I think I'll sneak up and pay for someone's lunch at work - that's going to be the easiest thing.

Otherwise, any ideas?

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We didn't go to church last Sunday because of D being sick. Our church is crazy big and there's a ginormous parking lot and lots of steps (clearly a non-mother designed the place :)) and I was not going to take the chance of one of my babies getting knocked down.

So today when we left them, Connor screamed blue murder.

He loves both of us but he screams for me in these situations.

Picture this - D & M running from the children's class as we hear, "Mummy! Mummmmmmyy!" echoing off the walls.

Oy!

Tonight he was EXHAUSTED and he was drinking his bottle in bed so I sat on his bed and was touching his face (or something).

He says, "Mummy, go. Please go" - if he wasn't so cute I'd feel terrible! But he's so earnest and I can see he just wants some time alone to think and be still :)

This pic was taken a few weeks ago - yes, he's cross because he was left alone while Nanny V bathed Kendra. Mandy, these are not the crying pics I was talking about. Wait - I'm going to do another Linky for crying/ tantruming babies in a week's time. :)


the blur is why I have to get someone to take proper pics of these two - I am missing out. Still, at least I have the memories and I can bribe him when he's bigger :)

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Okay, ad break K just screamed out in her sleep. D went to see her and she said, "where's milk?" D said, "it's the middle of the night - no milk" K then said, "but Connor's got milk" LOL These are the things that scare toddlers - being treated unfairly. Hahahha.

This is Kendra's new thing - the minute she sees me with a camera she hides her face. I've tried to say, "baby, do you know how cute you're being?" - doesn't make a bit of difference.


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I had a gooood shopping day today. Went past a bookshop to look for some stuff for the kids.

There's a particular brand of Christian book (too lazy to slink into the kids' bedroom to look it up - but email me if you want details) they love.

When they were just newborns, we bought Jonah, Noah, David and Daniel for them, and I got a couple extra for my nephew. My kids LOVE these books and we want to get all of them.

They run to me/ D and say, "read Jonah". I don't know if it's the whole "being swallowed by the big fish or the fact that the book goes, "God said go and Jonah said no (Connor loves that bit and then he says, "naughty" (too precious!)).

Kendra loves the David one. Good thing too.

Alas, the shop didn't have anymore of them but we will go back again (maybe on my birthday? :)) without kids and look through properly - you know there's no real browsing with these two trying to grab books.

Oh, the point of this story was there were some other good deals so I got some gifts for the fertility group ladies and of course some things for the kids, D, me and some other gifts to keep around for the random acts of kindness I like to do.

R950 worth! Somehow I just kept throwing things in.

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I had the best of intentions tonight.

I have a whole list of blogs to write. With pics and everything. And then Jayme and I emailed a bit and exchanged pinterest links. And that was the evening gone. I even went to get a BIG mug of tea and a cupcake to fully enjoy the experience.

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As we're on the brink of a new month, I'm determined to get my mojo back. Despite having only 2 full days in the office - Monday, Tues pm and Wed am. Oy.

I'm going back to my dance class on Wed (I've already prepped D) and I will keep a good attitude, listen to and obey God's voice, deal with things appropriately and make this a good week leading up to .... 37

What are you looking forward to this week?

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Show me your phone

I'm a girl who loves technology only in as much as it serves me.

I think long and hard about what something will not only add, but also subtract from my life (aside from money).

I'm also fortunate in that I have a "low need for affiliation" - this means I don't care what people think about me, so I'll have old cars, houses, clothes, etc.

I said "fortunate" because I see and hear a lot of people around me say "oh I couldn't possibly wear/ drive/ have that - what will people think?"

Anyway, onto my phone.

I'm not a phone person.

I was late to the cell phone craze. My first phone was a yellow Phillips Savvy - do any of you still remember that?!

Truth be told, I still am not wild about phones - I take it it's fairly rare these days to actually let your phone ring and choose not to answer.

My nanny still (after 20 months with us) looks horrified when I say, "oh, just let it ring, I'm busy right now".

I use a phone to make calls. And sometimes to text when I'm not being totally lazy.

I've said before if people text me and I'm at a computer, I'll email them back (if non-urgent - most things in life are not urgent) or phone, if urgent.

I know my phone can do the email and internet thing but I like being disconnected sometimes.

So... this phone.

I got it nearly 4 years ago (it will be 4 years in Dec). In South Africa, our contracts renew every 24 months.

You're clever, you've figured out I should have had an upgrade by now BUT... I didn't like the phone they sent me (I'm also one of those people who waits for the service provider to eventually phone me 2 - 3 months later to hound me and make me choose a new phone) so after giving it a go for about 6 weeks, I changed back and I'm happy again!

I'm also one of those people who never opens their phone once the SIM card is in.

But just for you I did.

:)

The casing tells me it's a Nokia 6300 and was released in Jan 2007.


for some perspective


I love this phone.

It feels good to the touch (I'm very tactile), is nice and slim, cold and has a nice weight. Easy buttons to press.

What more could I want? :)

Okay, tell us your phone story, or just post a pic of your phone and tell me why you like it or if you don't, why not.

Over to you - go!


Friday, July 29, 2011

Five on Friday

Before I officially start with today's post, tomorrow I'm going to hold a Link party. I want to see your phone and hear why you like it/ don't like it, etc.

Yes, you read right - your phone. I'm convinced I have the oldest phone around (I've had it for nearly 4 years and of course I never get the top-end option so it could be *gasp* 5 or 6 years old!) but MandyE may just give me a run for my money.

So are you in? Tomorrow.... I'll try and post earlier in the day when the kids nap.


1. Life as a stay-at-home mom even if only for a half day, is hectic.

I know that I would be thinner... or maybe not ... as I ran after these two the whole day, shovelling some popcorn in my mouth for lunch at 3:40.

I sat down for the first time when D got home around 6 pm.

!

We had about 3 time-outs for Connor. Kendra has responded beautifully to 123 magic.

One morning this week she ran away with my phone and I said, "that's 1". She whizzed around and as she was running toward me with the phone, said, "no, Mummy, stop counting" LOL

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2. Nanny V is supposed to arrive no later than 7:30 but has been arriving 7:45 - 7:55 most days for the last two months.

This sends D over the edge...

I asked her very nicely to please, PLEASE be on time on Wed as it was D's birthday.

She arrived at 7:55.

La la la...

D announced to me this morning that he just wants this weekend over with and then he is sitting her down and having a serious chat with her.

And of course at 7:55 I checked my phone and found 3 missed calls, all from 7:39 so not very much notice.

It was a male (her boyfriend/ father/ I don't know - she is verrrrrry private) telling me that she is sick and won't be coming to work.

Of course then the scrambling began.

We both decided we wouldn't again phone D's mom to come over (we don't want to impose) and that we'd split the duties.

I had two meetings this morning so I went to work first and then took a half day so I could come home to relieve D.

It all worked out well in the end.

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3. We're having some people over for our birthday party tomorrow and we'd originally booked V to come help with the kids. Of course she won't be well so it's going to be fun trying to host and eat and control the kids. Hmmm.

The birthday banner is up :), the cupcake toppers are ready and I want to get out all the paper plates, serviettes and cups now.

If V were here, I'd use real plates but there's already so much work with the kids. Gosh, they mess when they eat.

Actually, I may still use real plates. I'll let you know. What's your vote? Real or paper plates (they are nice paper plates - I bought the good stuff just in case)?

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4. In my meeting with my boss this morning, I said something like, "oh, my life is so hectic at the moment" and ended up telling him about the personal trainer (because I had to cancel today's session...).

He agrees with all of you that the attitude is not on. Surprising as he is usually very objective about these things.

I also told him that I'm loving my meetings where I get to take charge and control the agenda. He says, "that's not surprising, Marcia" Ha!

Seriously though, I participate more, I don't let things get off track and best of all, if we're finished ahead of time, we stop (the tendency in corporate is to just talk and talk and talk - drives me nuts).

However, since I'm more emotionally aware (since my course last week :)) I also noticed that when one particular person holds meetings, I totally just relax, shut down and don't say a thing. She is a VERRRRRRYY strong personality. That's my issue though. The boss said actually I need to give her that feedback. Um, heck no!



Photobucket

5. And then last but not least, what did I do for me this week?

(I really love participating in this challenge as it forces me to think about prioritising myself)


I took off Wed from working on the business. D and I had our supper, watched Friends reruns and nearly spat out our food it was so funny. I just love Phoebe, LOVE her. Of course Monica is the one I'm most like.... sadly. Which Friends character are you most like?

I sorted out my part of the lounge. We bought a new TV unit (with some of the free money :)) and my videos (yes, don't laugh), DVDs and photo albums are sorted. CDs are always sorted because that would make me crazy (okay, right there, I'm showing my Monica tendencies).

BTW, what is the best (and cheapest) way to get old-style prints scanned and jpged? I don't have a scanner so tell me where is best. I've also heard of a machine you can buy to do it for you - anyone???

I made appointments with the dentist and gynae, and tried to make one with the biokineticist but we're playing telephone tag and keep missing one another.

I also made an appointment to have one of these Brazilian blowout things done and lunch with a friend beforehand.

I feel so good that my lists are shorter as we go into August.

Next up I've got to update my 36 things list and make my next one. I also want to do a new list of accomplishments, something I saw on Laura's blog that inspired me.

What did you do for yourself this week?

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Dear Wordpress bloggers

I click through to your blogs, read your lovely posts but I am getting so frustrated trying to leave comments on your blogs.

They seem to go into the ether that is the internet ....

Sometimes I'm quite clever and copy the text first so I can repost it.

I then get a very lovely "WP has detected a duplicate comment" message. Grrrr.

I am very persistent/ stubborn so if there is a contact email, I take the time to email the blogger and tell them to check their spam folder and unspam me.

I did this with Louisa, Julia and with Celeste (AGES ago) and they all unspammed me and my comments were released.

I could almost hear the birds chirping I was that happy.

It's the small things in life, people.

But when there's no contact email or way to contact the blogger, I just give up.

Surely it shouldn't be this hard to give someone some validation and encourage them?!

Just a few blogs that quickly come to mind:
  • How do you do it - I am this close to deleting it from my reader because I can't interact and leave my pearls of wisdom (ha!) so what is the point?! I was so persistent on this one that I emailed a previous author who gave me an email, I emailed but no reply.
  • The new multiples and more blog is doing the same thing - my comment on Rebecca's recent post is also in the ether somewhere
  • Laura, the two bloggers you linked to in this post

What do you do? Do you care to mail the blogger or do you just click away?


If anyone knows these bloggers, please ask them to sort these things. I give up!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

D's birthday

It's D's birthday today.

Yes, within the space of less than a month, we celebrate all the birthdays in this house.

One crazy month and then it's all over til the half birthdays :)

I didn't do much due to this being the house of sick over the weekend.

However, I spied this idea for a card the other week.

If you don't feel like clicking, Allison's little boy (around my kids' age) got her some flowers and signed the card with some scribbles.

I am a sop and LOVE this idea!

So the kids wrote in a card for Daddy.

They each chose their own colour of gel pen (Nicole, they're the ones you got me - the kids LOVE them) - purple for Kendra and blue for Connor - and I let them scribble in the card, and then I held their hand and wrote their name underneath.

Let me tell you - it is taking some letting go to let babies scribble in a perfectly good card.

It was worth it though when D opened it.

That was it for this morning but this afternoon I hung some bunting in our dining room which I have to take a pic of because it is fabulous.

Each triangle says something positive (it's so me :)) like "you're fantastic, you're superb, you're fabulous" and then it repeats.

Connor then chose the colour candle for D's cupcake - green - and we lit the candle and sang properly.

These two love all the drama of the singing and blowing of candles.

As for me, I've cooked our current favourite (cashew nut chicken) and we're watching a Friends DVD after supper and spending some good quality time together.


How's your Wed been?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

So the personal trainer

I got home on Friday to find an email from the personal trainer.

She wanted to know if I was coming this week because she is a student and needs the money and I keep missing sessions and and and

I found it a bit cheeky because...

1. I pay her if I "flake"
2. The only times I legitimately missed I've been sick (twice) and I notify her as soon as I know I'm not going to be able to work out

Of course I had to calm down first because I was cross (there's that impulse control thing) so I mailed her back about an hour later.

I told her I was frustrated because I'm doing things the best way I know how but if she had other suggestions to manage our sessions, to please let me know.

Also, if my life was causing too many hassles in her life (because this is my crazy life!) and she'd prefer not to work with me, I would completely understand.

I was not being snarky; it's the truth.

Life is about choices and you don't have to work with everyone who wants to work with you.

I received an email back on Sunday to say there had just been miscommunication and yes, she wants to work with me to get to my goals.

So we worked out together today.

Seeing as there was a bit of tension, I decided to have a talk to her.

Is this killing you yet? (I know some people don't like confrontation)

Basically, I said that I don't feel like I'm making much progress because we're switching the format of the sessions too much.

Yes, I like the variety (I really do because I get bored far too quickly) but I want to feel like I'm actually getting stronger incrementally.

We agreed to do our normal thing for two weeks and every 5th session change things up (boot camp style) to infuse some energy.

Which all sounds lovely.

Today was lower body and abs which will be interesting tomorrow...

Do you like confrontations? How would you have dealt with this?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Two-year doctor's visit


perfect posture for Spanish dancing (yes, I did for 5 years) -
Lynette, I studied with Fiona Rodel in Bluewater Bay :)


Pure joy
(D listened and didn't include my morning self)

I read Mandy's blog earlier and was reminded that I hadn't yet posted on the babies' visit with Dr S earlier this month.

I thought I'd give them a break this year and take them a day later instead of on their actual birthday like last year LOL

Here is last year's doctor post.


So we were waiting in reception and the kids kept peeking (not peaking) around the corner, trying to check out things.

The doctor came in during one such session, caught Kendra checking out his office, said, "that's okay, you can come in", took her hand and off they toodled.

Too cute.

Of course she looks around at us just to check it's all okay first.

So the two of them start playing with all the blocks and whatnot while D and I chat to the doctor.

We were saying afterwards that we feel soooo different.

In the beginning (say, the first year), we had lists of questions on each baby.

Now we go with nothing except the wellness cards :)

All very strange for me.

The stats

Kendra

Height 85 cm
Weight 9.7 kg
HC 48 cm

Connor

Height 93 cm
Weight 12 kg
HC 50.5 cm

Do you know how these kids scream when they have to lie down on the bed?! Oh my word. Is a fear of doctors built in?!

He is happy with their weights and heights.

He was very impressed with both of their language skills (I remember Connor said something like, "Mummy! Orange chair/ block") and other developmental stuff (identifying colours, the way they interacted with us and with him, etc).

Fortunately I didn't have to put anyone in time out because they were listening but I have absolutely no shame - I will discipline anywhere.

He also asked if they'd been sick since the last visit (no) and if they go to school, etc.

I asked when he thinks they should go to pre-school and he said they really only play until they're 3 so there is no need to rush the process but if we want them to go, then he'd suggest a playgroup maybe 1 - 2 mornings a week from 2.5.

We're still in no hurry but that sounds like a good option for us. I'm just not sure that any of these schools do such a casual arrangement.

So looks like that's it for now.

Next appointment at age 3.

Feels like a long way away (especially after all the medical appointments from year 1) so D and I have decided to take them to wonderful Sister Carla at 2.5 just to make sure they're still on track developmentally.

This is how crazy this month has been - we have still not submitted the invoice to our medical aid to refund part of the payment.

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On another note, today was day 2 (and the last day) of the emotional intelligence course. I am verrrrry excited to start mentoring and feel so privileged to be able to express some of my passion at work.

Thanks for your very lovely comments on yesterday's post (and your email, se7en). I kind-of feel bad that all of this *wide outstretched arms* isn't enough but I have to be honest and it isn't. I know I'm capable of much more. I'm just praying God speaks nice and clear and tells me His plan. And soon :)

How has your Monday been?


PS I've done two party planning posts on the organising blog.
Party planning 1
Party planning 2

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A bit down/ 40th

It's very strange for me to feel so blah about life but I really, really, REALLY want July to be over.

I know I can just "shake things off" and yes, I'm trying but there's this pervasive feeling of stress and anxiety lurking in the background.

I really feel like my website being hacked "knocked me for a six" and more than that, wondering where my resilience is. This type of thing wouldn't even have shaken me before and look at me now.

Also I did the budgets last night (on time for a change) and while our personal budget is seriously looking good (and actually balances - no missing money!) the business one is terrible.

From a purely business perspective I could easily just stop the whole thing BUT and this is the thing... I know that God gave me a vision for speaking encouragement and inspiring action to hundreds and hundreds of women. If I take a moment, I can close my eyes and see it plain as day.

I know that is my destiny.

And there's nothing in life that scares me more than not fulfilling my potential. Nothing.

I am trying to be faithful with my gifts.

But yet the question is - am I really making a difference if no-one's being impacted? Of course not. So what's the point?

And I can't justify all the time, effort, energy and money if there's such a small return.

I think I'm doing all the things that people say to do. Marketing regularly, providing good content, etc.

I know a lot of this introspection is also because my birthday's coming up in a mere 13 days and it's a good chance to do some soul-searching, adjust goals and correct the course of my life.

When I turned 30, I had a party and sent around a book for people to write notes in. A friend wrote something like "only 30 and already you've done so much".

That was cute at the time but I now feel "nearly 37 and what have you done the last 7 years?"

(except for the babies, that is)

*sigh*

There is no point to this bit of the blog post except to say, if you pray, please pray for me. I could use some encouragement and/ or clarity/ wisdom.

Thanks.

Sometimes I feel like I'm the only one who thinks so much about fulfilling her potential and making a difference. I know I'm not, I just feel that way because not many people talk about this stuff.

Do you think about these things?

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D was still way too sick to take care of the kids by himself on Sat and wanted me to cancel my colleague's 40th but I just can't do that. I know how annoying it is when people RSVP yes and don't pitch, even with valid excuses, and I really wanted to just be there for her.

So I sent my MIL a text "from D" in his tone and language (no frills, just the facts :)) and of course she agreed to come "help him" with the babies.

While I was giving the kids their breakfast I realised we were totally out of bread (we ate my last two hot cross buns from the freezer) so I did a run to the shops. I thought I may be late for my 10:30 hair appt only to find out that it was a 10:00 appt and I was in Pick & Pay at 9:55.

I phoned and she said she could do me at 10:30 too so I whizzed around tossing food into the trolley, paid and raced to the hairdresser.

Raced home, dressed, raced to the venue.

About 5 minutes away from home I realised I'd forgotten my present so raced back, got present and again raced to the venue, our beautiful building at work.

I hope I'm still working there when I turn 40 because I am so having my 40th function there too.

It is just such a magnificent building.

Of course I was a little late and she made a comment which didn't land properly with me.

(a cute thing I learned on the course on Friday was the word "land" - how is that "landing" with you? :))

She does score low on the intrapersonal scale (I'm not fantastic on that scale either btw) but I sat and seethed a bit until I heard her say the same thing to the next 3 latecomers. Sadly, that made me feel better.

I had a lovely time even though I knew no-one at the table.

A did a lovely thing which was to write down something nice about EVERYONE there (similar to what Kirsten did at her baby shower) and she said these things out loud. To about 36 - 40 women.

Yes, some tears were shed. Not by me (my nice stuff was just about being so organised even after the twins were born - I say "I need to be organised otherwise I'd be crazier") though.

Food was good, speeches were lovely and I had a delightful conversation with the photographer, interestingly enough.

Gave her some advice but also learned a thing or two from her, not about photography but about ministry.

I was just ready to leave when I saw D'd sent me two texts asking me to pick up some things.

Do you know how I hate being sent for things? Especially random stuff.

But I tried and after trying two shops, just gave up on one and spent too much money on the other because I wanted to get home to the babies.

D was totally out of it but my MIL and the kids were having lots of fun playing outside.

I love arriving home and hearing their voices go "Mummy!" (K) and "Marcia!" (Connor - this is a new thing which I still find cute) with such happiness and excitement, so much so that I can't be a grouch.

Crazy times and we didn't even bath them last night.

I just felt like I was running right from the time I woke and I needed time out.

Anyway, I plan to have a party for my 40th and this will be one that my kids can come to (they'll be 5 years old!). I like the idea of a "come as you want to be in 5 years' time" - it is so "me" - but who knows how I'll feel closer to the time.

By the way, for me it's not about an expensive party but about the celebration of life.

Do you have plans for your 40th?


PS Kendra and I had some girl time this afternoon. We went to get my prescription filled and then spent a rewards voucher at Exclusive Books on some . She is so tiny that she sat in the little shopping trolley basket, charming everybody :)

PPS I am totally back to normal from the stomach bug, enjoying creams, butter, all sorts of food again :)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Impulse control and a scattered life


In the emotional intelligence assessment my lowest score is for impulse control.

Of course this is not news to me.

I'm impatient and make decisions very quickly.

Case in point.

Apparently I signed up to contribute to another book a few weeks ago.

The first book I wrote a piece for is this one.

I just received the author's submission guidelines and then I remembered, "oh yes, that deadline is FRIDAY" so that just got bumped to the top of my to-do list.

On the bright side, this lack of impulse control is also the reason I get a lot of things done because I first go with my gut and say yes, and then figure out the how later.

Ha!

Fun times.

Seriously though, I have enough awareness that I "sleep on things" or wait til I'm calm before dealing with most things so that I'm just a tad more level-headed.

The psychologist who is training us said I'm not a basket case (yet) because I have a high score for stress tolerance. If they were both low, then whoa - watch out!

Where are you with impulse control on a scale of 1 - 10?

I'd say I'm a 5 naturally, and I adapt to be about a 7 through my "coping" behaviours.

In other news...

Last night I finished a book, A Scattered Life, that I so, so, so enjoyed. One of the best fiction books I've read in a couple of months.

I don't want to give away the plot or the ending (hate it when people do that!) so those who are readers and are going to read it, tell me when you're done and we'll "chat" about it here.

And because I'm weird (yes, I am and not at all ashamed), I googled the author and found her blog. I left a nice comment because I think we could all use some validation.

I do love "meeting" authors through online media - it makes them so real and accessible and I love it! I'm off to get to know her some more now :)
Speaking of validation... I need to tell you all about an AHA moment I had on the emotional intelligence course. Will have to wait for next week!

Do you read any authors' blogs?

PS I read Mary DeMuth's blog because she gives great tips for the writer (as you all know, I like to consider myself one :)) and of course, Angie Smith's (but that one doesn't really count as I was reading her well before she ever thought about writing Audrey's story.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Five on Friday

Wow, thanks for all the comments on the security post. I love reading about how issues like this pan out all over the world.

  1. Well, I made it to my course today and it was goooood. *ahem* it's on Emotional Intelligence and is part of my training to be a mentor to others. Seems like it came in the nick of time as I had two issues in my inbox to deal with today - isn't life fun?!
  2. Connor and I are better. Let me clarify - we are both eating without V or D :) but my tummy is still doing some crazy noises after a meal so we hope and pray that all is indeed well. However, D is now not well. *sigh*
  3. I've just spent 3 hours sorting out my study - my new bookcase arrived today and I've packed everything in there so it's full. It actually still needs to be painted... I bought a raw pine one because I want it a funky colour... but since the house painters are gone (and I don't want them back - let's just say we didn't communicate very well), this will probably take another year. Hmmm, an item for my 37 things list :)
  4. There are 3 birthday presents wrapped and ready on the table next to me - it feels good to have that out of the way. I try to do most things by batching so thought as I was preparing tomorrow's gift, to do the other two too.
  5. So there's this friend. I invited her kids to the babies' party and she declined. No problem. Then I invited them to our party and I just hear nothing. I refuse to follow up (that's my new rule, by the way, after the babies' party). Do you think she's blowing us off?
On a scale of 1 - 10, my week's been about a 5 or 6, very good with the business, bad with the sick, and kind of average all round. I really could do with a good week next week.

How was your week?

P.S. 140 unread posts in GR = a very long time to catch up...

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Breaking 60

Today at about 5 pm I got on the scale.

Do you know what it said?

59.6

I've been trying to break 60 for about 6 weeks (the closest I got was 60.2) so I even took a picture.

Sadly that pic is not for public viewing since my toes look terrible with chipped polish, etc.

Even more sad is how I got to the 59s...

I've had a stomach bug and have been V and having D since 2 am this morning.

I felt a little ill last night but I thought it was because I didn't eat a full portion of food (good in retrospect).

And then just before 2 I woke and ran to our little bathroom.

I'm amazing - not one drop on the bathroom mat!

And that's pretty much what happened every 30 minutes til 4, at which time I fell into an exhausted sleep.

Felt terrible this morning and told them I'm not coming in.

Had an incident at 8 and then I fell asleep.

One apple and half a glass of water just before 10 am and I was out til 3:20.

And then Connor started.

I emerged from our bedroom and said to the kids, "let's go to the kitchen to get Mummy some food".

Suddenly I heard some disturbing noises behind me, turned around and there were little piles of vomit behind us.

Nanny V and I cleaned him up and he cheered right up when I offered him a toothbrush to brush his teeth.

My kids LOVE brushing their teeth.

Connor is so sweet when he's ill - he just gets quieter but is still so cute. I said, "how do you feel?" and he said, "warm" and "tummy sore".

The cuteness is too much!

He ate some dry bread and extremely watered down juice (1:4) and is now in bed.

I tried to tell him to come find us if his tummy gets sore during the night but he wasn't listening.

So we're all prayed up and not eating fatty foods or dairy and I so hope this ends soon as I'm on course tomorrow and Monday, a course I've been waiting for for 2 months!

How was your Thursday?

Security in the home

As any mother knows, the most important aspect of parenthood is keeping your family safe. Especially in South Africa. You teach your children all of the basic tips that can keep them safe at a young age: things like never getting in a car with a stranger, never opening the door if home alone, and when it is necessary to call the police.

Beyond these basic ideas, you also keep an eye on your children at all times to make sure that they are not putting themselves in situations that could bring about danger or injury. However, one other important aspect of keeping your family safe is making sure that you have as secure a home environment as possible. These days, home security companies offer a wide range of advanced security features that can go a long way toward protecting you and your children from accidents or crimes.

Unfortunately, household accidents such as fires or dangerous gas leaks can be life threatening. This is why most home security systems offer smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, both of which are meant to alert you in plenty of time if one of these potentially disastrous accidents is occurring. Particularly in the case of gas leaks, some people do not realize until too late that they and their loved ones are in danger; with these protective devices, you should never have to worry about falling victim to a household accident.

For protection against break-ins, vandalism, and other crimes, security companies offer a wide array of different features. Of course, you can install extra locks and house alarms, which many homes have to begin with anyway. However, you may also want to add additional layers of security, such as motion detectors, laser trip wires, or even recording video equipment. All of these devices can go a long way toward preventing break-ins, and as a result can help to keep your family out of harm’s way.

Some people think that to invest in a full-fledged home security system is a bit over the top or excessive. However, those responsible for children and families understand that there is nothing more important than keeping your loved ones safe. The home is meant to be a secure, comfortable environment, and these modern, advanced security systems can go a long way toward making that ideal a reality. Do yourself and your family a favor, and at least inquire about what sort of system would be best for you.


At our previous house we had 5 gates/ doors before entering the home. At this house we have 3 but it still feels like Fort Knox.

How many gates/ doors do you have?

P.S. This post was brought to you by SecurityChoice.com

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Guest post on the Se7en blog

My friend over at Se7en (plus 1) is celebrating her blogiversary and asked me to submit a guest post.

She's "suffering for Jesus" in glorious, beautiful Cape Town *sigh*. This is a mom who knows how to live a simple life and how to get everyone to participate in chores, cooking, etc.

Se7en+1

She homeschools, has 8 kids, cooks and bakes delicious things, does crafts, etc. Where does she find the time?

She doesn't know it but she is on my "bloggers to meet" list, so watch out :)

Please go and read and leave a comment so that she knows I actually have one or two readers.

And while you're there, have a good browse around.

Do you read Se7en?

Wordless Wednesday - personalities

I love these two pics of the babies.

They PERFECTLY capture their personalities.

Kendra - serious and intense - 14 months - that dress is now hanging above her bed as "decoration" (all part of me getting my crafty side on)


and Connor - loving life - Dullstroom Dam 22 months
I swear when Connor is let loose outside, he is in HEAVEN.



How's your Wed been?

P.S. This is wordless for me :) Click pics to enlarge

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Grrrr


Number 1

Those of you who read the other blog remember me blogging about ideas for a 40th birthday present for a non-materialistic colleague. There were some great suggestions, most along the idea of an experience gift.

A lot of people mentioned a spa voucher.

Well, yesterday our PA says she's off to Woolworths to get A (the colleague) her birthday voucher. A's been on leave (clever girl) and is only back in the office today.

Sorry to say this but I flipped.

Hang on a sec, did you not ask me to blog about ideas?

Yes, but everyone said a spa voucher and we only have R500 (one-hour massage is R350).

They said an EXPERIENCE and gave examples of a spa voucher.

We can certainly NOT get A a boring Woolies voucher. She hates shopping and it's her 40th!

So I start googling, phoning, etc. This is at 3:30.

Finally I say, what about that place that did the picnic for T? T is another colleague who celebrated his 30th - what's with the milestone birthdays this year?! Incidentally T is the youngest in the team :)

It's Tres Jolie.

And finally that is what we got.

A lovely experience gift that she and her family can enjoy.

She will LOVE it - she is BIG on family.

*sigh*


Number 2

Now my fires are stoked.

Me: Where is the birthday banner Connor and Kendra "donated" to our team? Because we need to decorate A's desk.

PA: Do you really think we need it?

Me: Of course!!!! That is why it's here.

PA: Oh, okay.

Today the desk is beautifully decorated. Thankfully.


Number 3

Same PA (oh my word, there's a trend) moved into her new house a month ago.

She was super stressed after the move (seriously super stressed) and I suggested she go get a massage.

Oh, I'd love to but I don't have money, she says.

So I secretly behind the scenes paid for a session (half hour) with my massage therapist and told her and then sent her a mail to tell her how to sort it out.

She was SO excited but do you know she has still not gone for her massage.

The thing is the therapist is moving onto greener pastures at the end of this month and told me she can't do any refunds so all prepaid stuff must be redeemed.

Fair enough.

I keep reminding the PA and I told her K is moving on but she is just not going!

What on earth?!

I hate wasting money............

What shall I do?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Rocking the baby





I wanted to post some NICU pics too but they're on another disc somewhere....

Anyway, I'll show you some sleeping baby pics instead.

I love sleeping baby pics.

Maybe because they were so rare in the early days?

First night both babies were home (27 days old)

Connor - 21 days old - this is one of my favourite pics of him ever!

Connor - 3 months


Connor - 11 weeks

Kendra - about 12 weeks - too adorable

nearly 4 months old

4 months (he still sleeps like this)

Kendra - 4 months - technically summer but we had a freak ice-cold week in the middle of November

poor babies - after their vaccinations

(I need to post about those pillows)



And then this was them two weeks ago.


Can you believe how much they've grown?!

Do you have paper piles?

Today is Mandela Day.

From the official website, here's what it's all about:

What is Mandela Day?

Mandela Day is a call to action for individuals – for people everywhere – to take responsibility for changing the world into a better place, one small step at a time, just as Mr Mandela did for more than 67 years. Start by devoting 67 minutes to community service on Mandela Day, on July 18 each year, and then make every day your Mandela Day by doing some good for others.

So today works out well for me as I am doing a free mini-workshop called No more paper piles right here in Johannesburg.



Where
: Christian Family Church, Cnr Atlas Road and Silverwings Boulevard
(we'll meet in the food court)

Time: 7:00 - 8:30 pm sharp

What to bring: a pile of your paper (yes, really!), R20 for the notes and a friend

Will I see you there?

If you're not in Jhb or can't come tonight, you can pick up a copy of No more paper piles at a greatly discounted 67% off :)

Here's the link

I can safely say I've never ever discounted anything by this much before. (South Africans, less than R100!)

This is an audio copy of a live teleseminar I did last year PLUS the handout that goes along with the audio.

I'm only discounting it for 24 hours so if you've got some paper piles, take action or miss out.

What are you doing for Mandela Day?

Sunday, July 17, 2011

123 magic for ME

Remember this Sunday when the kids drove me crazy?

Well, I bought 123 magic and I've been ploughing through the book.

My kids aren't very naughty and are actually mostly just curious (so I discovered from the comments on this post) BUT I can't stand the business of saying the same things a million times and the time-out after time-out after time-out.

It makes me feel like I'm a screaming banshee and that all I ever say is "no".

I don't want to be a mother like that so we started implementing 123 magic.

And I must tell you that the biggest difference has not so much been the kids' behaviour, but mine.

He said something in the book (you all know I'm terrible at reviews - I hardly take notes and winter doesn't help either - once I'm in bed almost nothing will get me out), which very loosely paraphrased is:

Most parents are actually throwing a tantrum if they've totally lost control of their own emotions when they discipline.

This was me on more occasions than I'd like to admit.

And as the followers of the system will know, two things that are integral are "no talking" and "no emotion".

Difficult for an E-type who wants to jibber jabber, explain things to kids, interact, etc.

But he also refers to a scripture from the Bible that says, "do not aggravate your children, or they will become discouraged." (Col 3:21)

His stance is that the more you annoy your kids by all the constant explaining, the more you aggravate them.

I get it.

Already I get annoyed by people talking too much (I actually have a girl in the office who feels the need to explain things over and over, in slightly different language and I've said on a couple of occasions, "oh yes, you mentioned that yesterday" :)) so I can well imagine our children getting irritated too.

There's a lot less talking, explaining and raised voices around here but within days I could see the difference.

I sometimes only have to say "that's 1" and they stop.

Sometimes we go all the way (like this morning, double time-outs for FLINGING all the clothes out of their drawers ALL over their bedroom) but then there'll usually only be one incident
max per day.

But the best thing about this book is I'm calm and under control.

And they really are a delight to live with, much more than they were a month or so ago... :)

Prov 29:17
Discipline your children; you'll be glad you did - they'll turn out delightful to live with."

Of course, I'm well aware of how these things go - the minute the kids get up tomorrow they probably won't listen to me and you'll be thinking, "waitaminute, that's the after version?!"

How's the discipline going at your place?

What do you use?

P.S. Thank you, Rebecca, for writing this post which reminded me that I have to do an update on 123 magic.

Don't you hate it when you read a blog, participate, and never know what happened? I hate it! I hate it even more when I don't remember to update. Please remind me if there are updates I've forgotten about :)

P.P.S. New post here

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Six on Saturday

  1. I wasn't going to post tonight but I've just stumbled on Gretchen Rubin's one sentence journal in the Happiness Project Toolbox and I was inspired to document anyway. Who wants to read The Happiness Project with me in August?
  2. The thank-you cards from the party are all done. Some were hand-delivered but most were posted. Only thing left on the list is to get the photos. Oh, and I want to do a little scrapbook thing, Marcia-style (super simple), with my super-fantastic binder rings.
  3. The painting of my house is done. The house looks good (it's never been painted in the 5.5 years we've been here) but I am never using people who can't communicate properly in English again. I get far too angry when there is miscommunication.
  4. I brought my work notebook home and went through the last two weeks of meeting notes making a master to-do list (since it worked so well with the personal and business stuff) and I have 25 action items. Crazy. And I have two days of training on Friday and Mondy coming up. What is up with July? I'm very tempted to take the whole month off next year.
  5. We visited friends of ours for lunch today and the kids were super-cute. Kendra takes SOOO long to warm up to people though but once she's "loose" she is so charming and delightful. Scary. The kids went to bed tonight the latest ever, at.................7:30!
  6. My nose has started running a little tonight so I'm going to take a Degoran and get to bed.

How's your weekend going?

Friday, July 15, 2011

On receiving & what I did for me this week

I am really, REALLY bad at receiving help or things from people.

Really bad.

When I'm like this, D calls me Independent Marsh.

Normally, he just calls me Marsh :)

So a couple of things happened:

I got 3 gifts from one friend all within the space of a month. Two cards and a Keep Calm brag book (I just love the keep calm thing).

I don't think she planned them (or maybe she did?) to all arrive quite so close together.

I LOVE that people think of me and think to send me nice things that they'll know I love but I started feeling bad.

And I couldn't understand why.

Why do I have issues with receiving?

It's like I want to even things out because I don't feel right about being in people's debt or some such weird thoughts...

Anyway.

I still don't know why I feel like this but God challenged me in that moment.

I love to give other people things so I need to learn to receive things gracefully too.

ooh...

When I'm in that moment I really have to challenge myself to breathe (Lynette's word for the year) and gratefully receive what the person wanted me to have.

So of course there have been a couple of things I received after this "lesson" on receiving:

  • * someone who did some work for me sent me a mail saying I didn't have to pay her and that the work was a gift to me
  • * people buying me tea at work
  • * lovely, blank cards arriving on my desk (they all know I'm a card-giving freak - LOVE it)
  • * lovely Nicole offering to go out of her way and buy me my precious binder rings (and I am having a BALL with them - I will show you soon)
  • * someone at work baking and bringing me ginger biscuits (cookies) - I LOVE ginger biscuits
  • * talented Mandy doing the giveaway for me on my blog of that gorgeous beach bag. Mandy also surprised me and told me she made me a Kindle cover - I am SUPER stoked and can't wait to get it. That did not take much work on the receiving part - I so very willingly receive it.
  • * Caren sending me all those pics which was such a labour of love - downloading, compressing, emailing. I know the schlep of sorting photos. I love and appreciate it so, so much and I gushed in an email back to her :)

I wonder if I've learnt my lesson yet? :)

Photobucket


And what did I do for me this week?

1. I turned off the computer at 10:30 on Monday and Tuesday. Huge for me.

Of course then all h*** broke loose with the website and I more than made up for that by only going to sleep at 1 both Wed and Thursday. Oy. I'm too old for this stuff.

(BTW guys, I happily paid someone to fix the website and she did what she could but then she couldn't fix the other part and that was what stressed me out. That and the fact that it's all unnecessary spending. It's not like I'm raking in the big bucks in my business. Things could be a LOT better.)

2. However, Wed I had a massage. When I got my reminder SMS, I replied and said, "I can't WAIT. I've been counting the days since last week". That seemed to please her.

3. Yesterday I had my session with my coach who tried to tell me I should go once a month but I said no, I'm very happy weekly because it keeps me sane... and moving forward fast. She said something very nice to me - speaking to me is like free coaching for her too because I make her move on things she's been procrastinating :)

4. Tonight I made scones - from a packet, but I added my own twist by putting in some cinnamon sugar. Yip, delicious :) I've been craving for a nice scone and we've both had a tough week. My poor husband is so stressed by work he's in bed by 9:30 at night.

5. And some of you will get this but I also totally organised all the party stuff (paper plates, cups, decorations (all my birthday banners!) and other overflow crockery in my sideboard and that was also ME TIME! There's nothing like a bit of order for my sanity.

6. But the thing that made me feel so good this week is this (and please don't laugh, Jayme) -

I wrote down two long to-do lists (master lists) - personal and business - and now my mind is empty, my shoulders are relaxed and the bits of paper are all off my desk. Bliss.

Tackling them is another thing as there are 14 personal and 22 business things. Good times :)

7. Oh, and I went back to the personal trainer and worked out twice this week. Miracle in this cold!

So that's me.

What did you do for yourself this week?

P.S. I just had a little boy run from his room to come sit on my lap for a two-minute hug. When he was done, he jumped off, said, "come" and off we went to tuck him back in. How precious! I love these little moments that only he and I share.

And now I'm off to bed, only 23 minutes past my deadline.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

So... not shortlisted and other bits and bobs

This morning when I got to work (ran to a meeting, I should say, to be more accurate), I saw some filming happening and twigged that it was part 2 of the auditions.

I was just thinking, "well, they really should have said thanks but no thanks" but then I saw an email had come through very early this morning.

Hmmm.

Anyway, 15 people were shortlisted but horror of horrors, they put ALL the auditions on the intranet.

Gosh!

Fortunately I'm number 58 or something so there's lots of scrolling to do to get to mine.

Once I have a look, I may post it just for a laugh IF you promise not to link to it and mention my company (the branding is very clear) in comments, other blogs, etc.

I do like my job and want to keep it.

*************************

Speaking of which, for the 5th year in a row I've been asked to complete the best companies survey. Every year I desperately hope they won't pick me and I scream when I get the email.

Aaaarghh!

They all laughed this year when they heard the scream from my desk but really, out of 1200 people, I'm in a random sample of 350 every single year? I think not.

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I am STILL stressed about this website of mine.

My main (old) website is fixed but I bought a new, more in line with my current coaching topic, domain and this new one does one thing and one thing only - it redirects to the old website.

This new domain still shows all those hacking messages and I can't get the Google instructions to work to verify that it's mine because I have to upload a google file (done) and then click on that link to verify. Of course it brings up the warning and doesn't verify, so it's a catch 22.

I really had to exercise extreme self-control last night as I wanted to a) cry and b) click on delete website in my dashboard.

Instead I prayed and asked for peace and calm and worked on the darn thing for HOURS. Hours I intended to write blog posts and workshop material.

Oh yes, I'm having a workshop, live and in-person in Jhb. I'll tell you all when I've put together the content.

It takes me 2 hours what it will take a tech person 10 minutes to do. This is NOT my unique brilliance and I've been so frustrated.

I'm THIS close to doing the following:

a) deleting the domain
b) paying my virtual assistant to sit and manually edit the URL on 62 of my online articles to the old URL (SUCH a waste of money)
c) order new business cards - I have not one, but TWO sets printed with the new URL. Again, R1000 down the drain (and the one set is STUNNING, from moo)

My friend Nat told me last week that I shouldn't sweat the small stuff and yes, I get that it's not life and death, but it is SO frustrating my shoulders are in knots.

Remember the new URL has been "out there" for nearly a year and so I keep getting very kind people (my readers are the best though) sending me these helpful emails like, "I'm not sure if you know this but it looks like there's something wrong with your website".

I want to just scream. Or punch something.

This is not me, not professional!

I'll let you know after I speak to another two people tonight, one my coach.

*************************

Let's end off on a good note.

Here are some pics my friend, Caren, took and sent through to me. These are so special and I'm so grateful for them as I'm in just that one pic on the photographer's blog.

I love this little girl so much! She has the best neck for kissing. Connor has the best cheeks :)
How's your week been?

PS From the sounds of it, many of us are having really trying weeks. Even my colleague said she can't WAIT for Friday!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The good news and the very bad news

Last night Onesie Mommy and I chatted on Skype.

I loved it!

Love the idea of me sitting in my study at 8 pm at night and for her 2 pm in the middle of the day while Miss B napped.

LOVE!

She is every bit as lovely (and has a gorgeous accent to boot) as she appears on her blog.

When we finished talking "business" we got onto matters of South Africa and I happened to mention how, in the days before I was pregnant or had babies, I'd be driving down the road, hear about babies being (literally) dumped in garbage cans, and cry and cry.

For the babies and for me!

And this morning I had another episode of crying-while-driving.

You see, on the news they mentioned that a mom and 4 kids died in a tragic incident this morning, right here in Jhb.

The heater in the kids' bedroom caught alight and the room erupted in flames.

The mom rushed in to try and save them and then it's sketchy as to what happened but 5 of them died from smoke inhalation. 4 kids aged 6 months, 2, 3 and 4.

I just cried and cried, and then had to "pull myself together" as I was on my way to a meeting with new clients.

Can you picture that poor man?

I can't imagine the pain he's in.

I'm going to give my two "babies" (yes, they're still babies!) extra hugs and kisses this afternoon.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Before I delete all the party blogs from my reader

let me showcase my favourites (also, so that I can start obsessively stalking them again in May next year).

A to Zebra celebrations

Bird's Party Blog

These are the last two left in my reader - I deleted tons once I knew what I wanted.

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By the way, what's your feeling on half-birthday celebrations?

I love, love, LOVE this post by MandyE on her girls' half birthdays.

And I loved Johanna's comment so much that I announced to D that we will henceforth (!) also be celebrating half birthdays.

Because they're twins and have to share everything (especially in my house), they might as well have two birthdays :)

He thinks I'm mad.

I'm not going to go all out but I will get cake, use the happy birthday placemats (what? you don't have birthday placemats?) and put up a birthday banner.

Have I told you how much I love birthday banners/ bunting?

I put up 4 for their birthday party, and (shhhh) I had another 2 stacked away, just in case the house didn't look decorated enough :)

The main banner is still up, by the way.

I even have a banner at work so I can "decorate" the person's desk when it's their birthday.

They're so cheap (I bought mine for about R15 each at a party shop) and instantly make me (and the birthday person) feel happy.

You can download a free birthday banner here. (you're very welcome)

So what do you think about half birthdays?
Fun or overkill?


PS can you see I'm on a bit of a high? I just had a FABULOUS meeting with new clients. I LOVE working with good people.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The blogger thing and self-care

Thank you SO MUCH for all your comments on last night's post. Especially all the delurkers :)

I do realise all the logic around the whole blogging/ blogger meet-up thing.... it's just those were my feelings and they are valid.

(this is the stuff I say to friends and clients, so I'm extending the same compassion to me :))

Quite honestly, I just jumped into blogging as I do most things and yes, it is mainly an outlet for me.

And no, I don't want any social media and the whole popularity contest to take over my life. I much prefer to connect with people one on one in a meaningful way.

But... of course there is a part of me that also wants to feel included and part of things.

I'm not seeking PR/ giveaways/ etc, but I do love a good giveaway for YOU guys. It's fun to bless people and helps with my other mission of doing at least 4 unexpected random acts of kindness every month.

(of all my things on my 36 list, this has been the easiest to implement and keep up with)

And gosh, I never expected to have a proper invitation - my thing is seriously, how on earth do you know about these things? Was anyone saying spread the word, or here is a link to go read more? Etc.

So, conclusions:

  1. I do have a mainly international crowd - very true - and I love it!
  2. I don't run in the popular blogging circles - LOL - and I was absolutely reminded that blogging (and life) is about who you know :)
  3. I do think we should have a blogger meet-up in Jhb.
Can anyone suggest some good, child-friendly venues for those who want to bring their kids along?


Moving along.... (and I actually wanted to write an update on 1, 2, 3, magic..... I know you can't wait :))

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I listened to one of Jennifer Louden's audios late last week. This one was a follow-up to the Satisfaction Finder.

And I heard something quite profound.

That when you're super stressed, when everything freaks you out, and you're on edge, check your self-care!

Quick point to this because my blogging time is nearly up - I have been super stressed about my website being hacked.

I can't explain the tension I had in my back and shoulders last week.

My massage appointment is only this Wed (can't wait) and I was sooooooo tempted to be that client who insists that she move my scheduled stuff, but I couldn't fit it in anyway.

And a few other small things.

So I thought about it and yes, I haven't been getting to bed as early as I need to and my sleep is compromised.

Yes, it is normal to be stressed about a hacked website but for me, the extent of the stress was unusual.

Usually I'm not that fazed by things.

If you're freaking out about a lot of things, check in with yourself.

Are you sleeping, are you eating properly, are you exercising, are you taking time for yourself?

PS This week my rule is computer off by 10:30 latest - that is it. If you get emails after that (Julia!), tell me to get off and get to bed.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

On feeling excluded and other issues

Yesterday at the party one person said to someone else (I'm deliberately being vague because I don't want anyone to have hurt feelings but I have to write because this is my blog), "see you on Wed" and I innocently asked, "oh, what's happening on Wed?" and... there is a Jhb blogger meet-up.

I then asked about how this thing was arranged/ decided/ put together and two people were mentioned. I have met one person before very briefly at a parenting thing and don't know the other at all.

So then I again wondered aloud (clearly I don't know when to shut my big mouth) if it was a Twitter thing because I know I'm not really on Twitter (my organising blog goes to T automatically but that's it, mostly, except for spurts here and there)... and no, it's not.

How then do people find out about these things? And feel comfortable enough to go?

I had a vague feeling of itchiness (you know the feeling) but couldn't nail down my feelings til very late last night once I'd gone to bed and things were quiet.

I feel excluded.

Hear me out.

I've felt excluded from the Jhb blogging scene (actually, the South African blogging scene) for months and months and quite honestly don't know how you get to be included in these things.

Or whether I want to be included at a level that seems to be required. The Twitter level :)

I get the twitter "in thing" and on that part, I am very clear. I don't want to be glued to my phone for updates, etc. I much prefer to pick up the phone/ text someone and communicate properly.

It's not so much about this particular meet-up but about other feelings and issues that arose.

Coming back to this one for a moment, it is quite far from where I live, I generally plan my life so that I'm not too busy and in terms of my life philosophy and what I teach, I don't really want to complicate my life at the last minute.

I like to test my thought processes to see if I'm being unreasonable by saying, "what if X invited me out to coffee?" and unless it was an emergency, I probably wouldn't go to anything that very week so I feel fine about my decision.

So it's not just this thing.

I almost feel like I'm not a (semi-well read) South African blogger. I write this blog which is far less read than the organising blog (about 10 times so) but no-one knows I'm alive in Jhb and in South Africa.

Why is that?

I see people all over the place getting featured in national publications, getting things to review, getting invited to applicable PR functions and I have never had anything like this happen to me from anyone South African.

I get pitches from US and UK companies (to review products/ do giveaways) but nothing South African in the 5 years I've been blogging. Is it me or is that just weird?

I can't believe it's just the non-Twitter thing. Surely not?

And if that's the price, then I suppose I'll have to live in obscurity on the internet.

As I've been writing I realised a horrible thing - I'm a tiny bit jealous because it feels unfair.

It feels terrible to even say that but again, courage and all that jazz.

I spoke to D about all these weird feelings (for me) and he said, "why don't you just organise a blogger meet-up of your own?"

Grrr. It's not about that but the minute it warms up we will do something - promise. Maybe we need to set a date? First Sat in Sept?

There is no point to this post - let's just call it journalling. Although I would love some additional insights. But if someone tells me something obvious like of course I'm welcome to go on Wed, I will SCREAM and wake the babies, ok?

How was your Sunday?

P.S. We were out practically the whole day (arrived home at 5:30) but the babies were so good. I also taught them to say Aunty _____ and Uncle ______ (yes, a day late - that's typical me, with the good ideas too late) and our friends were suitably delighted :)

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Where do I start talking about the party?!

I feel like I haven't spoken to you for so long that I don't know where to start.

Thank you for all the sweet wishes for my babies on Thursday. And I loved reading how you didn't think I could be mushy :) I do have my moments though - ALL baby-related.

I'll have to elaborate more over the coming days but a quick run-down of the babies' party.
  • It went very well but not 100% perfect. Which is good because perfect is overrated, right? :)
  • Only 2 kids didn't pitch.
  • I didn't over cater (except for the things I'd bought before, but those are all able to be used again); I think the amount of food was just right.
  • We had 4 sets of twins - so cute. My normal fertile friends were astonished and my one oldest friend (we met in the Rhodes chem lab in Feb 1992!) laughed like crazy when I said, "we're all infertile".
  • The babies were on a sugar high once everyone left and trashed my house in the time it took D to drive Nanny V to our nearest shopping centre (about 10 minutes total). Note to self - this is why they don't get sweets.
  • So, SO glad Jeanette came to take pics. I could relax knowing there were going to be pics of everything (actually, I hope so because I realised when everything was taken down I didn't take a SINGLE picture).
  • I then made up for it by taking a gazillion pics of the presents. I put each present on a wooden tray and took a couple together with the card if the people gave a card. Those cards are now all neatly together with binder rings (exactly like the Christmas cards).
  • Best decisions of the day besides getting a photographer - getting both Nanny V and Nester in and not baking a darn thing. Thank you, P&P and Woolies for the cakes :)
  • D got all soppy reading the cards! He says he loves it when people say nice things about our babies. Teehee.
  • Go see a sneak peek of our pics here and leave nice comments please :)
How has your weekend been thus far?

I'm really looking forward to lunch tomorrow - we've been invited over to friends for chicken curry. Hmm, there's a weigh-less story to tell you too...

P.S. I had 150 in my Google Reader! Now down to 112 but I'm off to bed now. I should finish 123 magic and make a good start on some chick-lit - 2 non-fiction in a row is enough for now.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Five on Friday


Some really quick updates before I jump into bed.

My hair is finally looking good after about 3 weeks. Yay! This was with the "on-standby" hairdresser as mine is on leave and... she did it better than the usual one. Could I cheat on the existing one? :)

Party planning paid off as I'm really not stressed about this. Full party planning posts to follow but for the moment, etsy rocks. Big time!

The babies had their 2-year appointment with the lovely Dr S today. All good but an in-detail post to follow.

When I unearthed all the hidden party food, I realise I have too much. Oh well, there's always our party in 3 weeks' time. Yes, that's right. I'm having another party for D and me on 30th. Fun times.

I've chosen the winner of the giveaway and it's............... RACHEL!



Rachel, please send me your mailing address so we can get your gorgeous bag to you. But... I see on Mandy's blog that she's got a flooded basement, etc, etc. so it will arrive but is slightly lower priority at the moment :)

Have you guys had a good Friday?

Gosh, I miss talking to you!

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Two miracles


I love this stage in the babies' lives.

They are SO cute and I find myself sitting and staring at them. I can't believe that they are mine.

Because they are miracles.

I know all children are miracles but when you think about how these two came from us, after a team of about 20, including God, worked HARD to get them here, that is a true miracle.

Amazing.

It honestly blows my mind.

I dreamed of having little people running around for so long and here they are.

I stare at Kendra talking sentences, sassing me (no, Mummy, no tuck - when I want to tuck her in) and saying things like "unacceptable" (shows you what I'm always saying!!!) and think, "you are a little GIRL. when did this happen?"

And Connor who never walks but always runs. Always.

I said to him the other day, "Connor, do you ever walk anywhere?" and V said, "no" :)

Yesterday I kept saying to them, "this is the last bath you're going to have as a 1-year-old" :) and on and on (I won't bore you but I was being weird according to D).

Last night we strung up the birthday banner (for the party) and put it up in the dining room and D wrapped their motorbikes (plastic ones). We also bought them a proper wooden stove.

I was just finishing up in the study (after 11 pm) when I heard a little boy running (!) from his room.

I popped my head out in a flash, more to prevent him from seeing the presents than being an on-the-ball parent, to find a little guy with Friday in the one hand (teddy bear) and a dummy in the other.

He was wide awake and just wanted some snuggles and time with me.

I popped him into my warm bed (with my electric blanket) and we had about 10 minutes of quality time and then he said, "bed" so off he went to his own bed.

Too sweet and also just what I needed - some extra hugs from him.

So today they're two.

This last year has FLOWN by. I guess that's what happens when you're running after them all the time and getting some sleep :)

PS I tried to take some pics this week of them together but they (Connor) don't want to hug or even be in the same frame. I will post the blurred pics so you can see what I'm dealing with.

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