A blog about life - the good, the bad, the people, the books, the games, and coffee.

Sunday, 31 January 2016


Topping the list this week:

  • Keiden having a birthday. I think often we forget just how fortunate we are, and that includes birthdays
  • the right friends
  • not being afraid to ask questions
  • realising that I have the right friends
  • people who care
  • coffee
  • having social skills
  • getting time to myself - even if it is just to work in peace during the day instead of at night
  • hugs
  • being able to have a party for Keiden, even though it was small...it's still great that we were able to have a party for him
  • having the time to make the cupcakes for the party
  • getting to learn new things
  • the brief spell of cooler weather we had
  • air conditioned buildings
  • ice cold water
  • books
  • reading
  • bookbub
  • new library cards
What's topping your list this week?

Saturday, 30 January 2016

Now you are two

Dear Keiden,

Today, you are two. How did you go from the teeny, tinniest baby ever to this silly monkey who is full of nonsense and always hungry?

The year from one to two has been all kinds of astounding. You learnt how to walk, run and jump. And added lots new words, but your favourite is still "nana". My favourite is when you say love you...it's one of the best things to hear.

Food makes you so happy. You have some strong prefrences, but are still happy to try most things. You're much better at handle spicy food than mommy. Your favourites still include bananas and cheese. Sometimes you're not impressed with supper, I think it's because you'd happily eat fruit and cheese always. Whenever we're cooking you want to see what's going on. I hope it's not long till you're cooking for us.

You get so excited to see daddy when he gets home. In fact that's how you went from saying dada to daddy. When daddy got home you'd stand at the baby gate, all full of beans and shout out "Daddy!Daddy!" while holding onto the gate and almost jumping. Lately, you've taken to running around in excited circles as daddy gets home, all while shouting out in glee.

It's been really tricky for mommy this year past. Watching a big piece of my heart walking around, meeting people and doing new things has been lovely. But, at the same time every step of independence you take is a reminder that you don't fit under my heart anymore. Being a parent is all kinds of strange, yet lovely.

One of the lovely parts is how you still love books as much as I do. We're not able to walk past a book store without you wanting to go in. You know the way to the library, you love it there so much that you're quite happy to walk away to find books without me. Your love for books has you picking up some great words. Lovely is one of your favourite ways to describe something. Daddy and I don't use it often, but a book you loved has the meow say it...so you do too. One of the worst things for you is to not get a night time story. Sometimes you don't get one, because you seem to think that ears are ornaments, and not for listening.

Another lovely part is sharing music with you. You can sometimes be heard humming songs that you made up to yourself. You are very clear about when you like what you heard and want more or not. I've quickly learnt that singing a goodnight song to you is a sure way to extend the bedtime routine by anything from half an hour to an hour. You've been trying to get to my ukulele more and more. When you do get it, you sit on the couch, and "make music" and sing. You and daddy have lately been looking at covers of songs on youtube, your favourite ones either have a violin or an orchestra in it. It might be time for us to consider an instrument and music lessons for you.

This month, you started school. And despite the rocky start, I'm so pleased to see how you've settled in. That you've made a friend. That you just walk in, and don't say bye anymore :'( Daddy and I sometimes catch you practising being assertive. It's so cute, you stand there and say "No baba. This mine." We love how you're working on standing up for yourself, but that you also know how to walk away.

When we see E you show such patience. And try to distract him when he's following you around, and you don't want to play. Even though the two of you are almost the same size - he's very tall - you know that he is a baba (8 months younger) and you need to be gentle with him. It makes us so proud to see you act so carefully.

You are so caring monkey. And you show it in hugs, kisses and love. You might not understand yet, but the way you want to help with cleaning and packing away, is a really nice way of showing you care. Even though when you help things take a little longer, it's wonderful having you help hang up laundry, pack things away and clean.

Keiden, there is no one like you, and there never will be. Even though we get grumpy with each other, know that I love you always.

All my love.

Friday, 29 January 2016

Thursday, 28 January 2016

What was I thinking?

Folks, I think I dream too big.

Blimming hat, I have no idea what I was thinking...work, kid and studies? Can you tell I just got a look at the first few articles for lecture one of class one? It's 50 pages of reading, not a lot, I know it's just the slow start.


And I really, really want to do so well at this. And nail down my M idea by July. And do that in one year. And find more streams of income. And make yay you! work. And just be a better me. Gah.

I may or may not be having a massive moment of self doubt. Geez.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Monday, 25 January 2016

Policing ourselves into a corner

Cath of all the right words, wrote something which got me thinking.

Gosh, do I think that we all do this. We get so caught in bubbles of politeness, trying to not rock the boat and having people like us that we get caught in a never ending whirl of self policing. In a bid to stop doing that to myself, I'm going to officially share some thoughts I have on things, that you may or may not have picked up while reading ;)

I read romance novels. All of the different types, and I enjoy them. And I no longer care that I'm supposed to be smarter than that. Yes, it has problems, but what media that we enjoy doesn't?

There are shows folks make fun of that I enjoy. And by keeping quiet about it I've been letting them rain on my enjoyment parade. 

I will no longer say I watched a lot of tv while growing up to make people feel comfortable with my accent; just because they think I can't be a South African because I don't have the typical Cape coloured accent.

Mostly, I'm over trying to make others feel comfortable at the cost of my own comfort.

Sunday, 24 January 2016


Gratitude this week for:
  • birthdays
  • birthday wishes
  • coffee
  • cake
  • friends
  • presents
  • books
  • hugs
  • fans
  • getting my student card sorted
  • sun hats
  • good bread
  • ice cold water
  • that the fires on the farms on the R44 didn't get close enough to have us leave our home
  • fire fighters
  • time to myself

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Friday, 22 January 2016

Five for Friday: Odds and Ends

Yesterday, I took my laptop to campus to register it to use the network. The guy helping folks was most surprised to see Steam starting up. His you're a gamer had a lot of shock to it. I asked, did he think women couldn't game? We chatted about games, he plays Dota only, yet somehow he's a gamer and I'm not. The silly.

Going vegetarian has been much easier than I though it would be. But then again, I have done stints of it before. I'm also incredibly fortunate to have a friend who is a third generation vegetarian, so I've been exposed to some of the most delicious dishes ever. It helps a lot knowing that the yummy enjoyment of food won't be missing.

My exercise goals aren't going that well. I haven't done much yoga, but I've been doing a lot more walking. So I figure the yoga will come.

Going back to campus and seeing all the first years, they're such babies...it's ridiculous. I'm glad not to be an older student doing an undergrad, I have no idea how I would keep my cool with the extreme levels of special snowflake syndrome.

What is the deal with special snowflake syndrome anyway? When did the world become full of people who believe that the rules don't apply to them? Has it always been like this, and I just never noticed it?

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Zombie prompt 3

What do you consider to be your biggest achievement?

This is a tough one. Biggest means I'm done achieving things...and I'm not. There's still so much to go for. My list includes, getting my degrees, maintain a great relationship with my love and the raising of a little human.

What are yours?
Prompt from her, image from her.

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Dazed and confused

Yesterday, I read a post with the subject of motherhood. The writer used a dictionary definition for motherhood. Said definition defined by relating it to a child you give birth to.

I had the most visceral reaction to it. A reaction to which I'm still feeling the echoes of now. My normal rule of thumb for things that provoke a response from me on the internet goes like this: read>take a moment>respond. Yesterday it went something like this; read> FEELINGS>FEELINGS>RESPOND>FEELINGS.

As you can guess it didn't go so well. Things were said, tears were shed and I ruined the rest of my birthday all by myself. Ad then I started to try and unpack just why I responded the way I did. I mean, I'm a mother through that definition, so why would I get so upset.

A bit later it hit me. Because if that's the way the world sees a mother, then I'm stuck with mine. There's no getting away from it at all. And I strongly reject that with all that I am. The worst of me, I got from her. But the things that I feel really make me me, I got from the other mothers in my life. My aunty Daph, is the one who supports me entirely, is the one whose caring is not driving my who the world feels you should care about your child. She is my mother in all the ways that I feel a mother should be.

Then there have been a range of women who at the time I needed the sense of mother, are the ones who gave it to me.

So I stand by my reaction, I'm just trying to explain it a bit more clearly.

Ps. Guess who's seeing her therapist tomorrow ;)

Monday, 18 January 2016


That's me. I'm a prime number, and you aren't :p [Or if you are yay for us ;)] Seriously, though...30 was interesting. But I very clearly, see why folks say your 30s are good.

Here's to hoping that 31 has more good times than bad, and all sorts of wonderful things.

I was going to write a serious introspective post, but birthdays aren't meant for that. They're meant for light and fluffy. The heavy stuff happens before or after them ;)

Sunday, 17 January 2016


Another week of all the feelings. And settling into mornings without Keiden around proper - it is amazing how much I can get done these days.

Topping the list this week:

  • having friends who care
  • friends who it's easy to care about
  • generosity
  • honesty
  • reconnecting friendships
  • real time to myself
  • Jerall
  • hugs
  • naps
  • treats that help you feel great about yourself
  • picking out a gift for someone and them loving it
  • supportive folks on twitter
  • having access to all sorts of interesting information
  • books
  • coffee
  • ice cold water
  • mini pops
  • dish washing gloves
  • music
  • gaming
  • sparkly dice that roll high
What's topping your list this week?

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Interesting links

This from Wait but Why is a long, but oh so interesting take on history.

A funny take on deactivating your facebook account.

A wonderful read and thoughts on those new year, new me things.

A read that got me thinking.

This on death by Chuck Wendig.

This on Alan Rickman on playing Snape.

All the Snape scenes in chronological order.

Friday, 15 January 2016

For Mandy, on your birthday

First of all, happy birthday :) You made it, another trip around the sun :p

A little note to remind you that you are exactly just the right person for all of us who have you in our lives. You are just the right mommy for C, partner to B, daughter to your folks, sister to T, aunty to C, and friend for all of us you've picked up along the way.

I've yet to meet anyone quite like you, and that's because there's no one like you. You have an amazing ability to befriend anyone and everyone. You care with every part of you that can...and we both know that sometimes that's a hard thing to do. But you do it, and you keep on doing it. I don't think you'll ever stop doing so. Because if you ever do, I think you'll lose some of your Mandy-ness.

My friend, you are one of those shining stars, the perfect example for anyone who doubts the power of the internet (well more like twitter) to connect people, to create and keep friendships alive.

All of the love, hugs and yay yous for you.

Ps. I wanted to include a picture of us, but all that I have includes pics of our kids. Best we fix it tomorrow ;)

Thursday, 14 January 2016

On doing things that scare me

Yesterday, I got my birthday present from Jerall and Keiden early. I got my hair done. Not so scary you're thinking, but it was because I went for colour. I wanted to do something different and scary for me, so not a dark colour, something bright was needed. There have been some other things happening in my say yes year, but that's for another post.

For now, this is light and superficial...and all about my hair ;) So the hairdresser calls what I had done a balage...my sister says it's ombre. Basically, for over 3 hours I sat in a chair and had things done. First bleach was combed through the length to lighten it. Then my roots, and the rest of my hair got a dark brown on it - a few shades darker than my brown. With a bright red applied to the bleached parts.
Yes, my selfie shoots need to improve. And yes, I tied it up...it was very hot yesterday.

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Zombie prompt 2

What DIY projects are on your spring to-do list?

What is this thing called DIY? I'm one of the most onhandig people I know. I do though want to, more like need, to figure out a good solution to get last years awesome photo canvas present from my guys onto our wall. Renting has some downsides. 

Do you have any projects you want to do?

Prompt from her, image from her.

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Things I like about summer

I don't know about you, but the weather has been driving me batty. Summer is making me miserable. Sure I love the in-between seasons, autumn is amazing. But this summer is being horrid.

In a bid to not get stuck in hates-ville, I'm looking at thinks I do like about this time of the year.

  • All the fruit, summer is a wonderful season for fruit
  • Waking up with the sun
  • The feeling of sitting outside, in the shade of a tree and reading
  • Salads, warm salads are yum, but nothing satisfies as much as a salad when it's hot
  • The beach, early in the morning before all the crowds
  • Sun hats, it's a new thing I picked up
  • The relaxed feeling in the air
What do you like about summer?

Monday, 11 January 2016

I am seeking the courage I lack

Last night while putting Keiden to bed he demanded the repetition of songs. I'd gotten tired of our usual repertoire, and then I remembered The Sound of Music.

I'd gone through a few and then remembered this one,

Hope your Monday goes well, with you not only showing them, but yourself as well.

Sunday, 10 January 2016


It has been an interesting week for me, lots of ups and downs. So this week, the post is doing a great job of reminding me I have a lot to be grateful for.

This week I'm grateful for:
  • the kindness of folks, especially when I did scary for me stuff
  • honesty - I want to do some big stuff to my hair, and the hairdresser I saw about it was great in saying it wouldn't be for me. She could've taken my money and left it
  • getting to spend mornings this week with Jerall, before he goes back to work 
  • time taking it easy
  • new pancake pans
  • reading
  • learning new things
  • supportive husband, and friends
  • hugs

Saturday, 9 January 2016

Today is a take it easy day

Yesterday, there was some trouble with yay you!, and Thursday it was full on busy...so today is a take it easy do very little day. We're going to play some boardgames with friends.

In the meanwhile I leave you with a link to something lovely to read - especially relevant to this time of year change my body quests.

Please spread the word about yay you! if it's something you like. And thank you so very, very much for all the love it's already received.

Friday, 8 January 2016

Five for Friday: Keiden edition

One of his favourite things to do is knock on doors. Only Keiden says "knock, knock" while he does so. It is utterly cute.

In an attempt to avoid going to sleep on Wednesday evening he insisted that he needed to pee. While sitting on the toilet he caught sight of his reflection in the shower wall and said "Hi there baba".

He's gotten big into helping out while cleaning, long may it last. His favourite chores to help with including things laundry related, sweeping and packing away groceries - it'd be great if packing away included his toys&books, but I'll take some help over none.

Every morning when he turns on any fans that weren't on overnight.

He started school this week. Monday drop off went well, the rest of the week not so much.

Thursday, 7 January 2016

yay you!

It was early December, and I had an idea. A big, scary idea. An idea driven by how few people seem to share in other happiness, how others don't know how to easily reach out and say something kind.

So here it is, my big, scary idea. It's called yay you! and it's boils down to being a cheerleader for others. A way to reach out and remind those who need it that they are awesome, they can do it. It's also a way to give someone a well done for achieving something - anything really, no matter how big or small it might seem. Because taking that moment to share in someone's joy, brings more joy to you, and puts more joy out in the world for everyone.

At the moment it's on twitter. But I have big, scary plans. Plans that'll need some help. There is so much that I want this to become, ultimately it'll become a place to reach out, share, connect and be there for someone.

For now though, I'll be focusing on spreading the word about it.

Please take a moment, take a look, follow and share all you can about this.

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Zombie prompt 1

What do you want your great-great-great-grandkids to know about you?

This is a tricky one. Well granted, most things are tricky :p I'm wondering if it would be possible for me to still be alive at this point? Would I be a Cylon? If I was a Cylon then they'd know things from personal interactions. Hmmmmm to Cylon or not to Cylon?

Anyhow, I'd want them to that I loved books, had moments of silly, and was kind. Maybe have a family recipe for something that gets passed down and loved.

What would you want them to know?

Prompt from her, image from her.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

2016 the year I say yes to what scares me

A lot of folks do a word for the year. A way to help them keep focused on what they want from the year. Me, being slightly odd, I don't do a word, I do a phrase. This year I came to: Say yes to what scares me.

The amazing Marcia, has a booklet that you can use to help you get clarity and intention for the year. Taking the time to sit through everything, and to write it down is great. I'm not sure why I haven't done it before, but it's something to use more often.

It helped me further clarify what I mean when I say that my phrase for the year is Say yes to what scares me. What this phrases means to me is that I believe I can achieve, that I am not a fraud, a fake, stupid or useless.

The only thing holding me back from what I want to achieve is me. I struggle so much with self belief and insecurity. So by committing to saying yes, I'm finding a way to fake it till I make it. If I keep on doing things that scare me because I'm afraid I'll be found out as a fake/stupid/useless then at some point it should be enough for me to stop going to a negative place.

I know, that's a lot I'm expecting from a phrase, but hey I got to aim big or go home.

Do you do a word or phrase for the year? Want to share?

Monday, 4 January 2016

Dear Keiden

Monkey, today is your first day of school.

I'm a big bundle of nerves, anxiety, guilty and worry. We've been preparing you for this as best we can, but I don't know if it's enough. Right now I'm holding onto two things. You've been there twice, and you liked your teacher when you met her. You took her hand, and showed her your tummy. Big, I like this person signs from you.

Daddy and I know you're ready for it. It'll be a place that gives you more than I can. And you'll have lots of people to play with. Something that the holidays confirmed for us.

You were the tail for your older cousins. And when we stayed over at E's house, you gave him hugs, shared with him, and you got very anxious to go help him when you heard him crying. It melted mommy's heart to see how much you care. I hope that you keep on being kind and loving.

This is a very scary thing, but I'm sure we'll all survive this. You'll be happier, and I'll be a better mommy because I'll get extra time to build up my patience for each day with you.

Love you lots and lots.

Sunday, 3 January 2016


This week top gratitude moments are:

  • being able to go buy a fan, it's something I recognise not all can do
  • easy fun moments with family
  • easy fun moments with friends
  • not having to work this week past
  • finding a non branded bag for Keiden for school
  • finding a great gift for Mandy
  • having blogs to read - a lot of people weren't posting for a bit
  • ice cream
  • shorts
  • sunblock
  • cold water
  • games
  • cheese
  • easy suppers
  • meals out
  • air conditioned buildings
  • supportive husband
  • friendly twitter folks
  • getting the right help from the right person at the right time
  • zombie prompts
  • post Christmas sales
What's topping your list this week?

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Linky dinks

This is a powerful, powerful read. Read it. Think about it. Share.

Me, elsewhere.

On books for boys and girls.

Some thing to check out from The Establishment.

Also from The Establishment, how to apologise for holiday fck ups.

More from them, how to say no to all the New Year, New You stuff.

An essay on the alone togetherness of the internet age.

Friday, 1 January 2016

tums2tots columnist

2019 Reading Challenge

2019 Reading Challenge
Cassey has read 10 books toward their goal of 100 books.

2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
Cassey has read 0 books toward their goal of 100 books.

2017 Reading Challenge

Cassey has read 1 book toward their goal of 200 books.

2016 Reading Challenge

2016 Reading Challenge
Cassey has read 9 books toward a goal of 100 books.

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