Wednesday, November 14, 2012

All I want for Christmas....

 I have a double fudge chocolate cake taste on a bread and butter budget. I love beautiful things and sometimes they are REALLY expensive. If I had an unlimited amount of money for a Christmas wish list, here are a few of the things I would wish for...
A Le Creuset casserole dish and whistling kettle. I really love their pretty colours and the fact that they are sturdy and will last for years. I wish I could have a whole rainbow of Le Creuset items in my kitchen.

Some Carol Boyes cutlery. I fell in love with her quirky style from the first time
 I saw her beautiful pewter ware and I love wishful shopping whenever I get a chance at her shop. Thanks to my Mom, I have two lovely pieces created by her and they are definitely family heirlooms.

A dress by Luna or Hiphop.I love the simple lines and the classic feel their clothes have. They are so feminine.

A ring from Jenna Clifford. They are soooo pretty and while I would probably need a bodyguard if I wore one out, I would love to own just one piece of her jewellery. This was on my wishlist for a wedding ring but on our budget that is all it will ever be.
A bath hamper from Crabtree and Evelyn, preferably their lavender or rose.

A Susan Lordi figurine ( or two..). I love them for their simplicity and the way they express such intense emotions. I have one for each of my children and I would love to collect a few more.

A Yankee candle ( Vanilla or Fresh Cut Roses).They are so pretty and smell lovely.

A dozen lavender bushes

As I said, this is my unlimited budget Christmas wish list. What would be on your list? Happy dreaming.....

Monday, November 12, 2012

A book nook to keep you dreaming

 10 Excellent Reading Nooks
 I just had to share this post from Amanda Nelson at Bookriot with you.If you are a avid (or is that rabid) book lover like I am and have a deep desire for your own book nook, then you must see these awesome  reading spaces. I particularly love these three spaces but the others are also a must see.
nook 1
I could imagine curling up here  on a cold, rainy day with a good book and a cup of coffee
nook 10
This is pure fantasy. It looks so cosy
nook 7
I think if I had a reading corner like this I would never leave.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

This and that.. and a busy book page

Hi from a very wet and cold Highveld. It has been raining on and off for days now and both little ones have summer colds. Not a very happy scenario, especially as they love being outdoors. Playing in the rain puddles at granny's house did not help either.It it the first time that our youngest child has seen hail and she was absolutely fascinated.She kept on running out and collecting hailstones to show us ( after it had stopped hailing).

We have really enjoyed the few hot days that have come our way. We went swimming, visited a play park, ate ice creams and set up a tent for the children in the back yard. 
The children spent ages playing in the tent and bringing their toys out to play " house". With a tight budget, keeping two very busy little bodies occupied has required some creative thinking. The internet is a great source of ideas and inspiration. I will be sharing ideas and links to websites as I find them, as I am sure that I am the only mom on a budget.

It has been back to work for all again and the December holidays seem very far away. We have a Christmas market coming up and I am frantically trying to complete a LARGE number of stuffed animals to sell, in between the usual chaos of our lives. This has been very challenging.

We are also facing two life changing happenings in the very near future, both of which leave me with butterflies and sleepless nights ( more on this to follow).
A busy book page in progress

I would love to share with you my completed ( yes , completed) holiday project. I found the pattern for this beautiful  busy book page at Imagine our life and am really quite proud of the final result. These pages are quite addictive, much like my crochet work. I have started on  a second page, the Castle Puppet Theater, although now that we are all back at work and the Christmas Market is looming, I think this will have to wait until December
 I will also be posting new Busy Book pages as I finish them.

I am going to start remodelling our garden, so keep watching this space as I post photo's and share the progress with you. Budget gardening is going to be challenging but fun. If you have any great idea, here would be a good place to post them.
My finished Sandcastle page
That's it for now. Have a great week.See you again in a few days time

Monday, October 8, 2012

We're all going on a (short) summer holiday...

What a busy week. My husband was away at a week long conference,so I was left with the littlies. I promptly moved in with my folks for the week ( yes I am a coward) and it was lovely.It was also our last school holiday before the December break , so I decided to make it as fun as possible for all of us.On the Saturday before my husband left, we took the children to C'est la Vie play park in Centurion. We had a lot of fun on the go-carts, scooters and play  equipment.    This was rounded off by a yummy lunch involving lots of "mato sauce" at their coffee shop , by which time both children were drooping very visibly.

Natural History Museum

 While dad was away we visited the Natural History Museum, which was great fun, for about the first half hour. The children are still a bit small to really enjoy it but they were most impressed by the stuffed elephant and rhino and enjoyed the birds as well.

C'est la Vie play area
 We also visited a farm zoo, which was a total disaster, as the animals mobbed us for food and both children were fairly hysterical.

The kids spent hours in the blow -up pool at granny's house, racing down the driveway on their scooters and some serious bonding time with Buzz,Woody,Shrek and Barbie ( no , this is not a folk music band).  We also visited our favourite second hand book shop, Rutlands, where I came away with three of my favourite authors ( Debbie Crombie, Kathy Reichs and Sue Grafton ) and I found a very sweet book for the children called Russel the Sheep by Rob Scotton. If you have little ones, this is really a must buy. Russel cannot sleep and tries everything in his power to fall asleep. Nothing works until ( yes, you guessed it) Russel starts counting sheep. I managed to read FIVE books in my holiday, finish crocheting three birds for our Christmas market - see previous post-as well as complete my first "quiet book" page ( more on this later).

Another great entertainment for the kids was ( who knew?) a box of koki pens, some paper and a pair of scissors. This kept them busy for quite a long time, with one child drawing lovely colourful scribbles and the other reducing any piece of paper he could get hold of to confetti.We have had a very busy holiday but it helped keep our minds of the fact that my husband was away. This week it is back to work and school, with the December holidays seeming a long way away.

Have a great week

Monday, September 24, 2012

A garden picnic

For the first time it has been warm enough to have an impromptu picninc in the garden. It was a perfect Spring afternoon, with a gentle breeze, warm sunlight and the birds singing in the trees. Lovely. 

The littlies enjoying a tea of fruit, muffins, cheese and biscuits

The animals had to join us...
A lovely moonrise just as the sun was setting

Aren't these pretty. I have no idea what they are.

A pensive husband

Not sure what these flowers are but they are so pretty and give off a lovely scent.

This is Oscar and he loves it when we go outside, particularly if there is food involved.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Things I love

Hi, I have not posted for a while, as between deadlines at work, a " sick " computer and plenty of birthday celebrations I have just not had time to post. I thought I would do a quick, fun post on some of my favourite things:

Cherish - Susan Lordi

Lavender and roses. Susan Lordi figurines.Siamese cats. Golden Retrievers. Chocolate. My children..Cape Town.
 A cup of tea

Crochet. France. Reading. Silver jewellery. Mountains and sea. Purple. Music. Painting.
A date with my husband. Chocolate cake.

What are some of your favourite things? I would love to hear. Have a great weekend.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Not graceful but full of grace

My second name means graceful and as a young girl I so desperately wanted to be a ballerina or a gymnast. I used to love ( and still do )watching those girls glide and pirouette so lightly over the floor. I dreamt of appearing on stage or at competitions and being the belle of the ball. The reality is that I was built for speed and not grace. As a student at university I once had a guy tell me I could kick start a Boeing with my thighs ( the fact that I remember the comment tells you how much it hurt). That coupled with being an introvert, being clumsy ( if there is someone who is going to spill something or trip, it is usually me) and then having very bad soft tissue damage to me feet as a result of a child hood accident meant that those dreams just never came true.

As an adult I have come to realise that my Heavenly Father looks at my heart and not my body. He is molding me and making me more and more "grace-full" as I get older. I still sometimes wish I could dance or do gymnastics, be beautiful and graceful, be the princess at the ball with perfect hair and a lovely figure. But these days the hurt is fleeting at what I am not and my Father reminds me regularly that I am full of His grace and that as I draw closer to Him, I become more beautiful and grace-full on the inside. I am so grateful for the love of a Heavenly Father, who looks at this wallflower and sees a perfect rose.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Blanket, birds and a birthday party

Birdie No1

My blanket of granny squares is coming along very slowly and at this rate it might be a graduation present. It is a very soothing project that I can take up in between other things that I am doing and one that at this stage requires very little brain power, which is just as well, as I seem to be losing what little I have at the moment. 

I managed to finish two crocheted birds, one for each of the children, and I think they turned out very well ( thanks Lucy at Attic 24). I have had to retie the bells on birdie number two at least 10 times as my son kept on accidentally undoing the knots as he played with the bells ( such a lovely sound).They are now both hanging  safely on the bedroom wall and I am inordinately proud of making something lovely and completely impractical for the kids.

Birdie No 2 with his bells
There are so many other projects I would love to try but time is so limited between work, running a home and looking after the children. My next project will either be a crochet bag or an owl ......or maybe a ripple blanket .. or a pair of Mary Jane slippers. I am not good with choices so maybe I should just dive in and not even try to decide where to start.

 Cake from the Pink Cake Box

I am also trying to plan my birthday party which will be in a few weeks time. I cannot decide whether we should braai ( barbecue for those of you who are not South African) or have a proper High Tea. I will keep you updated on the progress of these preparations. I am angling towards a braai but am dying to try out a lovely Topsy Turvy cake or one with plenty of flowers and stripes or maybe even a combination of the two. whatever I decide I am sure it will be great fun.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Spring is here!

I am NOT a winter person and have been waiting with bated breath for Spring to arrive.And here it is. Within a space of three weeks we went from snow to lovely sunny days with temperatures hovering at 30 degrees C. It was winter one day and then nearly summer the following ,as is usual on the Highveld, but I am not complaining. Mia was wearing a summery dress today and Noah was in shorts and a T-shirt. We went out and spent a lovely day at Montecasino Bird Park, just soaking up the beautiful weather. The kids loved running round in the sunshine.
I celebrated Spring by buying a bunch of flowers: tulips, gerbera daisies and  a sunny yellow iris. It brought a splash of colour to our lounge and cheered me up no end. I also have my first Arum Lily of the year, a great cause for celebration ,as I think I have had three flowers from this plant in 5 years!


Monday, August 20, 2012


 I saw a t-shirt recently on a Facebook page that said Introverts Unite. Individually. Mostly that is how I feel. I am an introvert by nature and not really good with spoken words, although most people wouldn't guess. I like people but for the majority of the time I really prefer my own company, sitting quietly in a corner reading or crocheting and letting the world flow gently over and around me. I sometimes feel that I am not good with written words either, especially today,as it feels as if major writers block has set in. Yet put my hands to work with something creative and they " speak " far better that I ever can. It feels as if they have a life of their own.

the start of a purple and lilac giraffe, as requested by my little girl
On the days when my words do not flow easily or swiftly and I feel linguistically clumsy and stupid and dull, I find my hands doing something creative and it brings a certain amount of healing to my insecurities. My most productive periods on a creative level seem to be when my words fail or my heart and head are so full that the only why I can express myself is through my hands. It is so soothing to pick up a crochet hook or knitting needles and some wool and make something new and uniquely me or bake a cake or sew a toy or even plant something pretty in the garden. I feel as if the words I cannot say come out in my "art", whatever form that might take. Already I feel better, having done a bit of sewing tonight. And just maybe, by tomorrow morning, my words will have returned and I will feel able to face the world again, talking and hiding my innate introversion in a world full of extroverts.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Crochet craz(y)

I have fallen in love with crocheting. I used to think it was for little old ladies. Then, after Mia was born, I wanted to get a granny square blanket for her, only they are HORRIBLY expensive if you buy one on the net and nobody I know crochets.So I decided that if I cannot buy a granny square blanket, I will learn how to make one. And so the love affair began.......... I am 22 squares into the blanket and enjoying every minute of it. I am also having great fun learning how to make flowers ( thanks Lucy, at Attic 24) and have now made a few hair clips. I have a couple of other projects in the bag ( sorry) but those will have to wait a while. Well, let me get back to my granny squares and I will keep you updated with the progress.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Snow on the Highveld

It has thankfully been a short week at work, with tomorrow and Friday being school holidays. Yesterday we had SNOW, in August, in Pretoria.This might not sound like a big deal but I have lived here for over 30 years and it has never snowed. It was lovely. All the adults rushed outside and played, taking photo's on cell phones or just holding our hands up to the sky like little kids. It snowed nearly all the way home from work and when I fetched the children, it started sowing while we were driving home. They have never seen snow and it was really magical seeing their excitement. Noah told me it was like Ice Age ( guess who is the movie addict in our house). I had forgotten how pretty it is when it snows and also how cold. It was over so quickly and by supper time it had stopped, although the cold has stayed. I love watching my children experience new things, as I get to look at them with new eyes again and be reminded that it is okay to be silly and giddy and forget about being an adult sometimes.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Farewell as a season of life

In the past two weeks I have had plenty of reason to ponder on how a life is spent and what I will leave behind one day. I am a procrastinator of note when it comes to putting of doing or completing a task. I always think I will have time, next week, next year, one day in the future. Two weeks ago a family friend Lester Mills  lost his battle with cancer. As I read his obituary I was struck by the fact that while this was a man who died young, he had lived a full life and made a great impact on those around him. I have been struck by the thought that God has never promised me a long life. In fact, I have never even been promised my next breath, only that He knows the number of my days. How can I then live as if I have all the tomorrows in the world to squander. I may have another 30 or 40 years left but I may die tomorrow and then what about all those should have,could have's? Surely it is better to try all the things that I fear or that seem hard while I still have today and the ability to live a full life? This does not mean that I am going to go out tomorrow and conquer Everest but I think it will mean that I will go out tomorrow and live, with God's help, a life of integrity, doing what He puts on my path and doing it to the best of my ability and, just maybe, starting some of those things that I fear?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Holiday blog hopping

Hi there. I have been off for a while but things were a bit manic at work and then I went on holiday ( or am still on holiday). I have had a bit of time on my hands and have had a lot of fun blog hopping. I have found some blogs with gorgeous felt crafts, like this pajama case which I found at Decor e blablaba. Isn't it so pretty and girly. It comes with a tutorial ( all in Italian) and I really would like to try to make it.

Then there is the all consuming question of where to go when we have a free moment for a date or a Saturday off. I loved this idea of a leisure book from Jordan ( see right). She made a book for her husband, divided into different categories, of places to go, things to do, books,movies and plays he might like to see, amongst other things. I always seem to have great idea until the moment comes to make a date and then they fly out of my head, like clouds on a windy day. I am definitely going to try this out for our family.

 Isn't this play room lovely? If you need some inspiration for  a home makeover or just want to daydream, you really must go to Apartment Therapy. There are home tours, DIY ideas and  plenty of things to inspire you as you turn your house into a home. There are a couple of other blogs I visited  but will save those for a follow up post.

I LOVE Natalie at Busy Budgeting Mama and spend far more time on her blog than I really should. She has a lot of ideas for activities with children. Reading her blog is like sitting down with a good friend for a long chat. She also has some great links.A final blog I must mention is Michelle Ainslie's. I have been looking for inspiration and assistance in getting a dream of mine up and running and her blog is great. She has some awesome products, great interviews and links and her really helped me get a clearer picture about how to get where I want to go. Watch this space.

I hope you have enjoyed this blog hop with me. Next time I hope to share some other great blogs I discovered as well as a follow up post to The Great Cars Party.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Today's post is so different to what I had planned to write, so maybe someone needs to hear this. I discovered Laura Story's music on another blog that I follow but did not know her name or the name of the song.  Blessings by Laura Story just spoke to me so deeply, as I am coming out of what has been a very difficult time in my marriage, when I cried and prayed with seemingly no answer. Yesterday my husband and I were in a music shop and this song was playing. Isn't it awesome how God works. I happened to be in that shop just as this song was playing. It talks of how God's blessings sometimes come in the midst of our greatest trials and sorrow. It is so difficult to believe this and yet how do we grow if we are not tested and our faith is never stretched. It is so easy to believe in a great God when the bank balance is full, your marriage has a fairy tale quality, your children are healthy and happy and all is right in your world. How can your faith be tested in times of plenty? When you lose a baby to a miscarriage, when there is no food in the house and no money in the bank, when it seems as if your marriage is about to implode with no chance of restoration, when you are sick and the doctors cannot find an answer, when your beloved newborn lies in NICU, covered in tubes and fighting for life, when you only have God to turn to, THAT is when you see His blessing. I can testify to this as I have been there. He is  a great God and He is faithful and merciful.Thank you so much Laura for helping me to remember this. If you want to read more about Laura's and her music, she can be found at

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Dolls House on a budget

It is school holidays and I have two very busy little bodies to keep entertained. They have a box of dolls house furniture that they love playing with but no dolls house. We are on a very tight budget and while I would love to buy them a large dolls house with all the attachments that is just not possible at the moment. So what is a mom to do? Well, get creative! I made  a four room house out of two flat boxes, some scrap material and some string. 

 I need to mention that the furniture is a little bit bigger than that of a Polly Pocket and the size of the boxes I used are about about 30 by 50 centimetres squared.You will need to use boxes large enough to fit the furniture of the dolls you are using. Also, if you are making a house for Barbie, the walls will have to be much higher than I have made for my house.

I took two large, flat boxes we had lying around. You could make as many rooms as you like of different sizes but these two boxes were more than big enough for our needs.You can also use normal boxes and cut the walls  to the required size. Cut the box about 5cm from the bottom of the box and tape the flaps shut. Lie the boxes next to each other and then make holes along the inner two sides which are touching, lining up the holes so that they match.String some  ties through the holes or if you do not have any, just use some string and tie the boxes together.

Next choose some fabric to line the bottom of the boxes. I used two different colours in each box ( a very pink pink as chosen by my daughter and two different blues chosen by my son) to make four separate rooms. Cut the material to size and then glue it to the bottom of the box.This is as far a we have gone but you can let your imagination run wild and cut doors and windows into the side of the boxes, cut out pictures from magazines to glue to the "walls" as art work, even make curtains for the windows by cutting out squares of material and gluing them over the window openings.

Finally get down on the floor and play.This is the best part of making a dolls house and a great excuse to play with dolls ( particularly if your next birthday is the big 40).

Have fun and post some photo's to let me see how it turns out

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Hot fudge pudding cake

My husband and I spent a wonderful afternoon at Rutlands. If you have not visited them, love books and reading and live in or near Pretoria, you have to make a visit. We bought a number of books, including a set of four Pillsbury cookbooks, mostly with chocolate as the main ingredient and looking as if they have never been opened. I could not resist. I decided to try one of the recipes for lunch today and it was a resounding success, so I decided that the recipe was too good to keep to myself. Try and let me know how it turns out.

Hot fudge pudding cake
1 and1/4 cup cake flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
2 tbs margarine or butter,melted
1 tsp vanilla essence

1 cup sugar
2 tbs unsweetened cocoa
pinch of salt
1 and 1/3 cup of boiling water

Cream, ice cream or custard to serve

  • Heat oven to 190C
  • In a bowl combine the flour,3/4 cup of sugar, cocoa, baking powder and salt
  • Combine milk , melted margarine and vanilla essence and add it to the flour mixture.
  • Mix well.The mixture will look like cookie dough.
  • Spread it in a small ovenproof dish and pat down with your hands
 for the sauce
  • in a seperate bowl mix together  sugar, cocoa and salt.
  • Sprinkle evenly over the dough mixture in the baking dish
  • Then pour over the boiling water
Bake for 35 to 45 minutes at 190C or until the center is firm and springy to the touch

Serve with custard, whipped cream or ice cream.

Be warned, this is a very decadent pudding

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Toothless or Lightning Mcqueen

Big brother turns four this month and after long debates as to whether he wants  Cars or  Dragons as a theme, mom made an executive decision and decided on cars ( mainly because I had no idea how I was going to make a pitch black dragon cake and have it looking anything but downright scary). After scouring the net endlessly, I have finally found instructions for a Lightning McQueen cake that looks doable as well  a couple of fun ideas for food and decoration ( go to Disney Family website). Now all I have to do is find the energy to put the plans into action. The birthday boy has been promised a jumping castle and very kindly informed his grandparents that they were also allowed to jump on the castle ( photo's to follow!!). Before the party takes place I have three days of holiday too look forward to, just me and my wonderful spouse. I am counting the days, particularly with the knowledge that there will be no little voices waking me at before sunrise or a very sweet  voice shouting in my ear "Mommy wake up. I got a hairstyle".

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day

Happy Fathers Day to all you special dads. I particularly want to say thanks to my wonderful husband and my own dad for all they do for our families.

 Here is a list of some of the wonderful things I can say than you for to my husband:
  • Tea in bed every morning ( I am spoilt , I know)
  • Holding my hand through a 27 hour labour ( not fun and I really do not think I could have done that)
  • Staying calm and taking care of me when my waters broke at 32 weeks and we were an hour away from the hospital.
  • Washing dishes (which I hate)
  • Going out searching for pineapple in the middle of winter because I HAD to have some pineapple NOW during my second pregnancy
  • Endless readings of "The cat in the Hat" and other favourite stories, to the point where Daddy can quote entire sections from the book
  • Staying at home with sick children when I cannot.
  • Supporting and encouraging me as a mom
  • Valiant efforts at doing a ponytail every morning ( what a special dad)
  • Singing silly nonsense songs because the children love them
  • Train rides, visits to the zoo, taking us to granny and grandpa, long walks together.
  • Letting us have a dog when you are not a dog person
  • Letting us watch endless reruns of How to train your dragon,Cars, Barney ( a particular favourite), Mary Poppins and a long list of other DVDs.
  • Making yummy pancakes on Saturday nights.
  • Taking care of our family 
If you want to read the job description for dads, go to Stray Thoughts. Barbarah has given a long list of things that men let them self in for when they take on the role of dad .

Saturday, June 16, 2012

My awesome premmie

We received Noah's first school report on Friday and my heart broke.Every mom wants her child to be top of the class with masses of friends. Or do we? Noah' s report was not very encouraging. His marks were mostly 1's (still exploring the skill) and I cried myself to sleep last night wondering if we have failed him in some manner. This morning brought a new perspective. Noah is a happy, healthy little boy. He is an introvert like his mom, which goes a long way in explaining why he has no special friend at school yet ( he has only been there six weeks). He has reached all his milestones, taking his time but getting there in the end. His conception and birth are both miracles and my baby boy is a fighter, surviving his first few precarious days with a battle. He is funny,curious, fiercely protective of his sister and generally just a normal little boy. He loves reading and music, plays endlessly with is cars and will seldom say no a game of "golf" ( read anything involving a ball ) with his granny or granpa.Maybe his pencil grip and some of his other skills are not quite what they should be but I know my boy will be okay in the long run and I just need to trust him that he will get there is his own time and in his own inimitable way.

Striped engiraffes

I have recently discovered a great website, Lion Brand Yarns, where there are dozens of free, easy patterns to knit and crochet. I am getting a bit bored crocheting granny sqaures, so I thought I would try my hand at knitting Noah a giraffe. He is a bit obessed with "engiraffes" ( his words) and so I decided to knit him a lovely stripey giraffe. His is done in blue and yellow. It is nearly done and so cute.I discovered this link on Busy Budgeting Mama. You really must go and read her blog. The website is really pretty and  Natalie, the author, has some really great ideas for arts, crafts and recipes. My next project is the felt food on her website. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A new season

I started a new job today and the children started a new school. It was with a great deal of trepidation that we left the house this morning, with my son insisting that he wanted to " stay with Daddy". Once at the school, he said goodbye very cheerfully and my daughter barely had time to get the waterworks going before she was distracted by new toys and new faces. Then it was my turn. A new job always involves new people, which for an introvert, even a seasoned one like myself, is still a VERY scary prospect. I need not have worried as I was warmly welcomed and made to feel at home immediately. It is also a familiar environment, as I am now working as a school social worker at a school for the Deaf, which is where I had a number of cases as a new social worker when I first started practising.Watch this space for further developments....

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Remembering Hannah Rose

Easter weekend is always a time of mixed blessing for me. Remembering Christ's death and celebrating His resurrection is always a time of great rejoicing for me. I love knowing that I serve a risen Saviour, that He died for me and is waiting to welcome me home one day. I used to enjoy the Easter weekend much more than Christmas as a child and young adult.  However, for the past 6 years it has also been a time of great sadness, as I remember the loss of our first baby, Hannah Rose.  It is six years to the day today that I had the miscarriage. I saw that minuscule little dot on the ultrasound and heard her heartbeat for the first time at 6 weeks and by the following week I had lost her in a rush of blood and pain. I thought at the time that I would never recover from the loss, as it felt as if an integral, vital part of me had been ripped away. As the years have past, while this sense of loss has never disappeared completely, I am no longer reminded of it daily and it does not fill my every waking moment and stop my breath with pain. It still comes to me, as grief will do, but mostly when I least expect it. A beautiful poem, a friends baby shower, Christmas time because it would have been her birthday. At these times I shed a tear if needed or wonder with longing what she might have been like had she lived.  However, my grief is tempered with the knowledge that she is safe in my Father's arms, that she has great-grandparents, a great aunt and a grandpa to welcome her into Heaven with loving arms and that while this loss was so devastating at the time, it is not an eternal separation and that I will see her again someday. Remembering Hannah Rose this Easter weekend has not come with the sense of shattering loss as it has in years past. It is rather with thankfulness that I hold my two younger children close and give thanks for God's blessing and faithfulness in the years that have past and know that while at the time my grief was so overwhelming it has been used to mold me into the woman I am today and also been used to bring a measure of comfort to others. Sleep well , baby Hannah. Mommy loves you.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Our household has grown with the addition of two goldfish. My son's first comment when he saw them was WOW! That comment made me stop and think really hard about the last time I saw something as simple and beautiful as a fish and said wow. As a child and even a young adult so many things brought tears to my eyes and made me stop in wonder at their beauty. I remember standing in the Drakensberg mountains with tears streaming down my face and goosebumps on my arms as two friends gave an impromptu open air concert. This past weekend my daughter and I spent ages watching a tiny little chameleon climbing up into a tree. She was speechless and fascinated and so was I. When did life become so hectic and complicated that I stopped being awed and amazed by the beauty of Gods creation, be it by the thunder and lightning of a Highveld storm or by the intricacy of a dragonfly wing? In this modern age of Ipads, Ipods,Wii's and Mnet, I need to remind myself to stop in wonder and connect with that which my Creator has given me to enjoy each day.

Monday, March 26, 2012


I am busy reading So long Insecurity by Beth Moore and something she said really hit home. I have felt that the past few years have been a long series of calamities and that I am just keeping my head above water. You name it,we've been there as a family. Beth Moore talks about people who are insecure experiencing dramatic change as a loss or instability. Well here I am , front and centre. Insecurity  could be my middle name. This is what struck me. God uses change to change us into what He wants us to be. I cannot grow if I am stuck in one place. I do not like change. In my mind change equals loss. But isn't that what growth is. The loss of something in order to make way for something better. Should I not trust God with that loss so that He can complete the work He started in me? If I cannot trust God to move me where I need to be,who can I trust ?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Of maps and misty eyes

Today was a full day, the kind of day that other working moms would understand. Late for school (again), late for work(again), deadlines to complete as I try to finish up before leaving at the end of the month for a new job. No telephone lines  at work for the ninth day running, so I cannot call clients or make court dates.  A midday hail storm just as I am about to leave to fetch the children, so I have to wait until it is over in case the car stalls in the rain, as it did in last weeks rainstorm. Then two bright little faces rushing to hug mommy as I pick them up from school. We then go to granny and grandpa, where Noah fights with me for 15 minutes about getting him a map, which I  promised him so that he could see where all the family live. Noah is a bit OC, so this is a theme for the rest of the afternoon. A good run on the lawn and a cuddle from the grandparents, then it's back home for supper and a quick wash before bedtime. Did I mention that the wash was with a facecloth and a jug of water, as I am too tired to do the whole bath routine tonight. Andrew rushes in, then out as he is going back to work. Mia ends the day with a backward fall off the bed. Finally it is bed time. I can catch my breath and wonder why I am doing this. Then I see two tired little bodies fast asleep in bed and remember the years of tears that I cried before they were born, thinking I would never have the privilege of being a mother. And I realise that full days like these are what make up the fabric of a life.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Friday the 13th

You just know that your day is not going to go well when it starts with a panicked little voice saying " Mommy, Mia has blood all over her face". Leaping out of bed, I went to see what Mia had done. What a sight! She was covered in blood from forehead to chin and her bedding did not look much better. Fortunately it was a nose bleed that was easily cleaned up but the day did not improve. Clients whose stories break my heart did not improve my day. Wildly out of sink thyroid hormones just added to the mess and by five o'clock I was snivelling into my tea, with a very worried son watching me but too afraid to come closer. There are some days when you just KNOW you should have stayed in bed. Fortunately these days pass and I know that one day when my children are all grown I will wish for days like this again , when busy little bodies wake me up and fill my heart with both joy and heartache.