I am not that mom

I’m not that mom who always has tissues in her handbag for snotty noses.

I’m not that mom who reads her child a bedtime story every night.

I’m not that mom who thinks home-baked is better than shop bought when it’s time for baker day.

I’m not that mom who doesn’t bribe her kids to eat dinner.

I’m not that mom who doesn’t switch on the Disney Channel while I make dinner.

I’m not that mom who has a lot of patience when my kids eat with their mouth open.

I’m not that mom that doesn’t mind the mess of an untidy bedroom.

I’m not that mom that cooks vegetables every night.

I’m not that mom that takes her kids for their annual dentist checkup.

I’m not that mom who carts soccer boys in her SUV every afternoon.

I’m not that

But

I am that mom that will make sure you won’t go to bed with an empty stomach.  I am that mom that will work every night so you can have a good education.  I am that mom that will make sure you won’t have to go without.  I am that mom that hopes and prays that you are happy.  I am that mom that loves you like no-one else.  I’m that mom that will fight for your safety and well being.

I am that mom that hopes one day you will realize that I did my best.  And I hope it’s enough.

022

Advertisements

A mandatory rest period

I’m taking a mandatory rest break today.  My body aches, my throat is on fire and my chest is closed as tight as a treasure box.

Our kitchen counter boasts a range of Med Lemon, Disprin, ACC200, Vitamin C Immune Booster, homeopathic flu granules, Stilpayne and asthma meds.  It’s a concoction of hope.  Hope that anyone of these might just be the cure to magically feeling better.  But it’s an empty basket of hope if it’s missing one thing, rest.

Rest that eludes me.  I lie in bed and I feel guilty.  I feel guilty that Ethan is in the room next to me, just as sick, and I haven’t made him breakfast.    I feel guilty for not calling the school to setup our 10 minute Parent Teachers meeting on the 19th June.  I feel guilty for not doing my banking.  I feel guilty for not picking up a Dora package at the post office for Zoe that’s been there since the 24th May.  I feel guilty for all the unread emails in my inbox that I haven’t gotten to.  I feel guilty because my colleagues are at the office and I’m at home.  I feel guilty for failures that aren’t my own.  I feel guilty that we haven’t gone back to the SPCA to look for Vixen.  I miss her, the kids miss her.  Were we not responsible enough.  Why didn’t I get that chip put in a long time ago?  I feel guilty for the long to do list I have that I haven’t ticked off yet.

Guilt

At the end of the day the only answer to all the above is time.  There just isn’t enough time to do everything.  I don’t even have time to blog anymore.  To take photo’s.  To play.  To discover our city, and there is so much happening and it’s killing me that I don’t have time to do anything!  I want to register for this Underground Dinner.  I want to go to this Open Air Cinema in Juta Street.   I want to book a picnic Off the Beaten Track.  I want to be available. I want to be here, in the moment.  I am battling with this.

So as of right now I’m going to try take some time to rest, even if it’s for a short while.  The banking, the post office, our lost cat, work and PTA’s can wait a few more hours.

So can the guilt.

Our life in pics

May Collage

1. It was a long tedious 2 and a half hour wait just to get into soccer city to watch JB.

2. An old Beetle parked outside Ethan’s guitar lesson yesterday.

3. Long winter dresses, gum boots and pretty autumn leaves.

4. My old trusty trunk.  She is filled to the brim with crafts, old records and vintage books.

5.  Mr Teddy Bear chilling out on Ethan’s bed on a Sunday afternoon.

6. An old petrol pump we discovered at a quirky diner a few weeks ago.

7.  Ethan’s 11th birthday present.  May you have many rocking and jamming hours on her <3

8.  Soccer City through the eyes of our boy.

9.  Our kitty cat hasn’t been home for a few nights now.  There is an empty spot in my bed now and my heart.

10.  What’s on my kitchen windowsill. Words to inspire.

11.  Babytee’s was an absolute hit at the baby expo.

12.  Zoe sporting her big brothers flat cap.  So much attitude, so much love.

Come Dine with Me

Five couples from Johannesburg.  All amateur chefs, competing against each other to host a top notch dinner party for the other contestants. Each competitor then rates the host’s performance with the winner winning a R1,000 cash prize and more importantly bragging rights.  Bragging rights to the title of the ultimate dinner party host.

It sounded like a great idea whilst enjoying our High Tea at the Fire and Ice with a group of girlfriends.  So we decided to execute it then and there.   Names were drawn out of a tea cup and dates were decided.  I drew the unlucky number one and I hosted first, this week.

It took weeks of planning and I finally settled on a Menu that I was happy with.  It looked something like this ~

Starter

Seared beef fillet with chocolate chilli and Amarula sauce

Main

Prawn & Cashew Nut Curry

Dessert

Home-made Romany Cream Ice-cream

Once the menu was out of the way, it was time to sort out all the other final details that make up the ultimate dinner party.  Two dinner tables, 10 dining room chairs, 5 metres of table cloth, old records for place mats, table decor, scoring cards, video cam and entertainment.

come dine with me 1

come dine with me 2come dine with me 3

Dinner parties don’t necessarily need to be expensive.  I believe it’s more about the experience of the night.  And what a night it was!  I had such fun with the organizing, planning, setting up, cooking, serving and entertaining but the cherry on the top, were the guests.  If you know our group of friends then the snide remarks, the constant teasing and making fun of one another, only means one thing.  It was a success!

come dine with me 4

So Good luck to the rest of you.  I’m looking forward to seeing what you’re going to put together.  I have no doubt each of you will try out-wine, out-dine and out-class me.  Until next week…

come dine with me 5

Behind the Scenes

It’s been pretty quiet on this little blog but let me tell you, behind the scenes it’s been far from quiet.  Our little family has been up to all sorts of things the last few weeks that I honestly haven’t even had time to think up a blog post, never mind write one.

Work has eaten up most of my time but if you know me well enough, you will know that I’ve never let work get in the way of living.  So even though I find myself overwhelmed every now and again with the worry of deadlines and projects, I really try to keep myself busy enough on the weekends that those thoughts don’t take over every free thought and moment.  And in those moments we’ve created memories.

One.  One magnificent afternoon spent with two amazing people at the Portuguese Festival last weekend.  Nothing beats an afternoon under the African sky eating mouthwatering food, sipping on their infamous wicked cocktail of cane, castor sugar and limes and catching up with friends.

IMG_4256

Ten.  We celebrated our 10 year Wedding Anniversary this week.  We celebrated it twofold with an al fresco picnic at the picturesque riverbank of Toadbury Hall.  Then Friday evening we dined at SA Masterchef’s restaurant Aarya and after much anticipation we sat down to watch the smash hit musical Jersey Boys, which didn’t disappoint at all.  It was a nostalgic week, and what I wouldn’t give to turn the clock back to 10 years ago?  Our wedding down on the beach with our nearest and dearest was a week I’ll never forget and one I’ll always hold very close to my heart.  Not to mention our two week honeymoon spent in the charming, quaint and strikingly beautiful Greek Islands.  I would redo it, in a heartbeat.

Five.  Five couples who have decided to host our only little SA Come Dine with Me in May.  I’ve been furiously planning a menu and trying out dishes and I’m happy to say the menu is done, the décor planned and the dessert is setting in the freezer.  I. can’t. wait.  We host this week!

Two.  We witnessed two souls become one yesterday.  I was lucky enough to be invited to Laura’s wedding and what can I say.  The bride was exquisite, the groom handsome and the venue utterly enchanting, delightful and captivating.  Photo’s are up on Jeanette’s blog already http://www.jeanetteverster.com/blog/

IMG_4323

IMG_4336

It’s been a busy two weeks and the next couple of weeks are only going to get busier, but I’m grateful.  Grateful that I have deadlines and projects to worry about, because it means I have a job.  There are so many people out there who pray for work, any work.  Grateful that I have to worry about what to cook for dinner because it means I have a family.  They are my constant.  My love.  My life.  Grateful for my sister and my friends.  They are my nicest distraction and I love them to bits.

So yes life is busy right now and it’s often a juggling act but I wouldn’t change a thing.

A new Season. A new Style.

Autumn

Here are a few reasons why I always welcome Autumn with open arms. 

The promise of cooler evenings.  I do love Summer for it’s sunny skies, however being from Joburg, let’s just say the heat can get suffocatingly hot at times.   

The array of oranges, reds, yellows and magentas.  It’s the season that boasts the most impressive colour palette. 

A gala of birthday parties.  A lot of my nearest and dearest are born in May and June which means there are weeks that are packed with parties, festivities and merriment.   

The comfort food.  Making home-made butternut soup infused with nutmeg, masala curry and sweet coconut milk. 

Autumn fashion. Wooly hats, thick tights, boots, over sized coats, colourful scarves…need I say more?

It’s cold enough to justify you staying in on a Saturday night and eating hearty stews but it’s still warm enough to picnic with friends on a Sunday afternoon. 

So in celebration of the new Season I would like to introduce Remember When’s new look.  I’m liking it a lot and just want to give my hubby Donovan a big shout out for the design.  It might have taken a few weeks and a couple of moans but I finally got it out of him.  And I love it <3

Nice things

I love all things pretty.  I particular love the items below.  I’m frantically trying to work out a way to buy them all without having to eat baked beans on toast every night.

This bag from Nonna Gift & Decor Shop in Parkhurst.  My much loved Olkapolka bag is looking a little sad and I found a little wear and tear rip in her side last week.  Bag

This beautiful Jozi Skyline Pendant that my very talented friend makes over at Whimsy & Whatnots.  So so pretty.

Johannesburg-Skyline1

A pink typewriter just like this that I found in a little thrift shop in Melville a few weeks ago.  It would look lovely on my old trunk and I’ve been told by the owner she is in perfect working condition.  I hope she is still there when I go back for her at the end of the month. 

pink typewriter

A big white washed vintage table that preferably seats at least 10 people for a dinner competition that I’m hosting next month.  And a bigger garden so I can fit everyone in. 

table

So many nice things to dream about, don’t you think?

Camp Outs, Canyons and Conclusions

I have come to the conclusion that I have a love hate relationship with camping.  After our last trip in December I vaguely remember promising myself that I would never to do it again, I had outgrown it! Well that’s what I thought but strangely enough I found myself packing for an impromptu camping trip to the Canyon last week and it didn’t take much convincing from anyone.  And now I find myself planning for the next camping trip because this one rocked, in more ways than one.  The Canyon was a sight for sore eyes.  Sore eyes that are normally accustomed to rows of boring office cubicles, bumper to bumper highways and the otherwise dreary concrete jungle called Joburg. 

I am embarrassed to say I hadn’t heard of Blyde River Canyon until a few days ago.  It was only when I googled that the penny dropped.  The third largest Canyon in the world could be found in our very own back garden, Mpumulanga!  And what a back garden we have.  Gods Window, Worlds End, the Three Rondavels,  the Rain Forests, Mac Mac Falls, the Canyon and so much more.  I discovered a whole new part of South Africa to love. 

blyde 2

It was a trip that might have just saved my sanity, my marriage and my general well being.  We hiked, we were stalked by scary baboons, we discovered little waterfalls nestled in great canyons, we uncovered charming little towns, we went to bed at 8 every night, it was an adventure.  It was also food for the soul. 

Blyde 19

blye 1

Camping, you’ve redeemed yourself. 

Blyde 18

A walk in the park

Life has been anything but a walk in the park lately.  It’s been a crazy mixture of work, deadlines, problems, meltdowns, system bugs, sleepless nights and did I mention stress?  I’m tired and it’s only February.  Work is getting to me and lately most Sundays are filled with dread for the week ahead.  So yesterday, instead of sitting at home we decided to take the kids to the local park.  The space was filled with playgrounds, bike trails, a lonely windmill and lots of breathing space.pic 11

And while we were there I spotted one of the cleaners.  An elderly guy in his old City of Johannesburg overall, taking photos of the bins.  I was curious.  When I asked him why, he was more than happy to tell me that it was part of his job.  He needed to prove to his Supervisor that today he emptied bins.  No photo no pay.  Good golly!  Seriously?

And what put things into perspective for me is that he did it with pride and he took dignity from each empty bin.  He was enjoying the small things in life.  He was getting it right.  He was doing what I miss.  Enjoying life and not letting silly things get to me.

Here are a few of those moments in the park.

Daddy’s girl.  She wasn’t meant to be in this shot but I love that she ran into it anyway.

pic 7

She loves to swing.  She has always loved to swing and one day when we have a big garden with a big tree, I’ll buy her a big girl swing.

pic 8

Super M’s, chubby fingers and giggles.  Can you see the little trickle of pink milk by her thumb?

pic 6

Ice cold Coca Cola’s on a hot day.pic 3

Siblings.  Always watching out for each other.  Play mates.

pic 2

Then we ended off our day at one of our favourite Greek Restaurants where we ate fried halloumi, yiro in pita and hot chips.  It was a good Sunday.

Wishes

Dreams do come true

I had been waiting in anticipation for Saturday night since we scrambled to get our Rodriguez tickets in October last year.  And I’m happy to report back that it was worth every second of the wait.  He exudes a wonderful combination of strength, humour, mystery and frailty.  At the ripe old age of 70 he still knows how to rock a pair of leather pants and he certainly brought the house down at Carnival City for the 5 000 odd fans that were lucky enough to get tickets.

Saturday was a dream come true for many South African’s.  ‘I Wonder’ and ‘Sugarman’ were iconic in the 90’s and if you searched through any average South African’s LP case you would more than likely find the Cold Fact Album alongside the Beatles, Neil Young and Simon & Garfunkel.  His anti-establishment lyrics became the soundtrack for many of us growing up in the Apartheid era and many of us believed we would never see him perform live.  Afterall not so long ago the rumours of him committing suicide after singing “Forget it” on stage, weren’t rumours.  We believed it to be the truth, well I did anyway!  So Saturday a musical hero had been resurrected for me.

Rodriguez

There were no bright lights or fancy stage setups.  Instead there was a man and his guitar in its purest form.  An old soul that captured our attention for two hours and in those two hours we were transported back in time.  I have been to many concerts over the last couple of years but this concert must rate as one of the most eagerly anticipated.  It’s only now that Rodriguez is being given a much-deserved second chance internationally that we have the pleasure of rediscovering him all over again in South Africa.

We left the Big Top with a sense of amazement and awe.  Legendary hardly begins to describe Rodriguez.Rodriguez