Why I blog...

I use this blog as a kind of therapy. Sometimes I'm happy and want to share it, sometimes it's just a random thought and sometimes it's to deal with things in my past. After all a burden shared is a burden halved

Wednesday, May 20, 2015



You obliterated my future.
You destroyed my perceptions of love- they were wrong.
You ruined me for any future relationships- there can be none.
You tore down my walls of self loathing and doubt.
You annihilated my insecurities.


You shattered my expectations of normal.
You entice my very being with all that you are.


Not content to simply get under my skin, you seeped into my blood stream and your essence flows through my veins.


I never came looking for you and yet you found me.
You are a part of me now and forever.


Your scent entices me and lingers when you are not there.
Your touch excites me and I feel alive.


You challenge me.
You stimulate me.
You intrigue me.
You have changed me.


I am completely and utterly enamoured by you.


Sometimes my dreams take me back to a dark world before you and I wonder if you are real but then I wake up and you are beside me and I am content.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Shedding some load....

Shedding some load...

I know that load shedding is a pain in the arse and seems to come at the most inconvenient of times but my ever optimistic brain has learned to see the bright side. (pun intended)

My husband and I are early risers which also means we are usually in bed pretty early too (yeah we are old) After dinner we chat for a little and then retire to our bedroom to watch series. Last week we had a bout of load shedding during our 'series time' as my laptop was not fully charged we decided we would sit in the lounge and chat fo half of the time and then watch one episode of our current series as my battery would probably only last that long. We started playing 'who am I' A game where one person thinks of someone and the other has to guess who it is by asking only 20 questions. While playing this game the lights came on and we realised that we had been playing for two hours.

When my step kids came to stay later on in the week, they joined in too and we played some more. Now I know a lot has been said about technology free time and that we should switch off and connect as real human beings every now and then, but how many of us actually do that. These load shedding times have forced us to do just that and instead of moaning about it, I have decided to take this opportunity to spend my time wisely. So we can't change it and we have to endure it, we may as well make it pleasant.

Today in my classroom a group of girls were playing in the kitchen corner during free play, when one of them them said; "Let's play load shedding". I watched curiously as they made a picnic on the floor with the toy food and pretended to light imaginary candles while chatting to each other.

I imagine this is what must be happening all around Cape Town during load shedding. Families are connecting, having conversations and getting to know one another. I'll light a candle to that.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Teaching and parenting.....they are the same thing but different.

Every year around this time when our academic year is drawing to a close, I stop and reflect on my students. I reflect on their year and what they have learned. I think about what they were like in January and how little they were. I compare it to what they have accomplished during the year and where they are now all the while knowing that I was instrumental in that growth. That knowledge gives me pleasure and I feel like my life has a purpose. I do get a little sad knowing that we have to say goodbye. I tend to go all introspection mode during the last few weeks of school but not today, today I started thinking about all the children I have taught since 1992! All the parents I have met and all of their quirks.

Some were fond memories, some were funny and some were sad. I thought about the ones I really really tried so hard to help (you know the difficult ones) and what a difference it made when the parents were working together with me towards a common goal. And then I thought about teaching, academics and the way we cross over sometimes into being a surrogate parent and vice versa.

Did you know that you can teach a child to read and write from a very young age but they won't be emotionally ready till much later. You see there is so much focus on academics these days (and yes I agree our educational standards are not where they should be in grade school and yes for love of god we need better literacy and numeracy stats) So for context, I am only talking about preschool here.

Parents if there is a problem with your child academically their teacher will inform you! Halfway through the first term of school, alarm bells will go off and we can usually tell if your child needs extra help. So don't worry about the academic side of things in preschool, unless the teacher says you must. Rather (and here is a great concept) how about you parent your child instead and leave the academic teaching to the teachers. I'm not saying don't be interested in your child's education. I love it when parents are involved and want to know about their child's school day. But......

I have had parents placing so much emphasis on rote counting up to 20 (even 100) in perfect sequence because they thought it was an important math skill. Well it's not, unless your child understands the concept of each number fully, he has just learned a nice little poem. Numbers are an abstract concept to little ones and rattling off a bunch of them in an order is not maths, it shows that your child has memory skills. But you know what its okay, you didn't know because you didn't spend 4 years studying early childhood development. So leave the academics to us and concentrate on the real lessons in life. The ones that you need to be teaching your child. 

Here they are (in case you have forgotten) Teach your child to:

Share, especially if he is an only child, he may never have had to share his toys at home so it will be very difficult for him to grasp this concept when he goes to school.

Love, not superficially but with his whole heart. You do this by loving him, unconditionally. This will also help him to love himself and build up confidence.

Responsibility, yes even a preschooler can be responsible. Give him a pet to look after, his job could be to feed it and love it. As they get older they can clean out their pet’s living space. Looking after something is a valuable gift you can give your child.

Manners, being polite and social skills. Integrating socially is such an important lesson. Learning to value people and friendships for who they are not how many toys they have. (I know some grownups who still struggle with this concept). 

Honesty and trust, never betray your child's trust. It will come back to haunt you when they are teenagers. They see you gossiping about your friends and take note. They see you telling that little white lie and take note. They see you! 

Most of all teach them to have fun...... the learning will follow naturally.

Children are always learning, everywhere they go, and they take in everything they see, hear and experience. I love how their minds are like little sponges, soaking up their surroundings. This is one of the reasons I love teaching preschoolers, their inquisitive nature and willingness to learn. I would far rather teach them than teenagers because they already know everything!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Vintage #Blogvember (late post)

Day 9 of #Blogvember: Take a photo of Vintage....

This is in our kitchen, we have not used it yet but it is an original Dover wood burning stove.

If we ever run out of electricity we can still cook or bake in this. Such a treasure to have.

I also like really pretty old tea sets which is really funny since all the pretty vintage things we have in our house comes from the kitchen. (a place I really don't like to spend a lot of time in).

This stove reminds me of an era without electricity an era of hard labour and very little luxury. I can almost imagine a woman who stayed at home to cook and clean while her husband went out to work in the coal mine. Her sole purpose in life was to bear his children, provide him with meals, a clean home and a sympathetic ear.

In almost stark contrast to the above picture, the one below reminds me of a different age. One of Marie Antoinette and opulence.

This tea cup is Royal Albert fine bone china which we found in my husband's parents house. This was part of a series of cups called Flower of the month. It has July written inside it which was his mom's birthday month.
I love the colours and the elegance of it, the fact that it is feminine, delicate and pretty.

Royal Albert fine bone china

It quietly tells me of days spent sipping tea and eating sweet cakes while sunbathing in the conservatory. Children playing on the well manicured lawn and men in top hat and tails.
Isn't it amazing how a single item, piece of music or a saying can conjure up such imagery in your mind and transport you to a different place. Long live our imaginations! Modern technology has not been able to kill it yet.

My BrightRock LoveChange competition entry

I have blogged extensively on this subject so you are forgiven for thinking you have read this before but since I didn't make it to the finals I thought I would share my entry.

Happy to be in my comfort zone I was always a little afraid of change. My adult life started when I got married at 16 and become a mom. I was happy for a while until one day I was not. I reflected upon my life and started noticing the things I overlooked. I was such an optimistic person, I kept focusing on the positive and somehow that overshadowed the negative but there comes a point in your life when you can no longer gloss over things and you realise that you have to deal with them. I became depressed and even attempted suicide. What happened to happy me? Until one day I was 37 years old and asked for a divorce.

 He resisted, my family resisted and so I gave in…for a little while.
I tried to make him see that we were no longer happy and have not been for some time. I listed all the things I was unhappy about our relationship. His response was “I was like that when you married me, I haven’t changed.”  That was it right there, I kept thinking, no hoping things would change, that he would change but he never did. I told him the problem was that I had changed, I grew up. I wasn’t that little 16 year old girl anymore. I was a grown woman with wants and needs that were not being fulfilled within our marriage. I saw no way out other than freedom. I began to join social networks looking for friends who will be there for me when I leave. I told myself I can be an independent woman. I lied! I was scared, where would I go? My pride would not allow me to skulk back to my mom who was violently opposed to me leaving. What about my children? How will I sustain myself? I had never been on my own, ever. How do you leave everything that you have ever known your whole adult life? I began to doubt the fact that I deserved more. The uncertainty of the future was daunting.  And then I met HIM!

The him that changed everything!!! He encouraged me to be strong, he offered me shelter with no strings attached but all the while I fell deeper and deeper in love with him. We could not deny our feelings but tried to fight it for the sake of others, knowing that neither of us was in any position to start a new relationship until our current ones were completely in our past. I held back for a while, hesitated and procrastinated. Not realising that I was putting my happiness on hold for the sake of others. Until one day with help and a nudge from new friends and circumstances I jumped, head first into a new relationship, into an unknown future, into my happiness.  I have known more joy, seen more things, been to more places in the last 5 years with my new partner than I have ever experienced in my entire adult life.  Comfort zone? What’s that? Something designed to keep you stuck in a rut forever.

Don’t be afraid of an unknown future, sometimes life can surprise you with things you didn’t even know you were capable of. Talents you never knew you had until someone cared enough to encourage you to explore new avenues. I have a new job, I met siblings I knew of but never met until my partner helped me find them. My life is completely different and I am grateful every day for making that change because without it, I would still be that sad unhappy person I came to loathe.

I am once again optimistic about my future, my life, love and everything else in between. Sure I have bad days like everyone else but they are manageable with the right person by my side.

You can view the finalists of the BrightRock LoveChange competition here: BrightRock LoveChange finalists  my husband is one of them! :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

My favourite restaurant

Day 8 #Blogvember: What is your favourite restaurant....

I initially didn't want to do this post as my blog is not for advertisement. I don't do blog giveaways and there is no advertisements on my blog. It is simply an outlet for me to share, regardless of whether anyone reads it or not. I didn't want to have this post seem like a giant advertisement for a particular establishment and so I procrastinated about it and now I am 3 days behind. So here goes...... my favourite restaurant and why.

So technically it's not really a restaurant, it's a pub. They do have a kitchen and they do serve food, so it's a pub slash restaurant and they serve awesome pizza. I love the Toad on the road because it is 2 minutes drive from home and only a 20 minute walk if for some reason I am unable to drive myself home. Their prices are reasonable, I know most of the waiters names and I love the gorgeous view of the mountain from the courtyard.

In a nutshell The Toad on the Road has become our home away from home.

Scott and I have spent many a happy night there people watching. It is our go to place when we have no plans but want to get out for a bit.

This is where we go to:

Have a few drinks
Eat a meal.
Celebrate a birthday, promotion, good day
Drown our sorrows when we have had a bad day.
Meet friends.
Have a bachelor party.
Unwind from the week/weekend.
Make bad decisions.

This is where our dignity is left some Sunday evenings and why Monday mornings hate The Toad.

The awesome downstairs bar

What I am watching right now....

Day 7 #Blogvember:

 Favourite TV series you are currently watching.....

My husband and I are not big on watching television. We have a TV but no aerial so it can't connect to any signal. It is used exclusively by his children as a monitor for watching DVDS.

Having said that, we do watch series that I download on my laptop. If we are really enjoying a series we tend to devour a whole season in the space of a few days.

We have seen most of the latest series out there but at present we are watching .....

Yes, I know we are a little late to this party, we are only on season 1 of Homeland but enjoying it so far.

Of course a blog post about a TV series would not be complete without a little mention of my favourite TV series of all time...

I just love this picture of Aaron Paul and Brian Cranston