Charlie's Bird

living the dream with Charlie and Thandi and chirping all the way back to the nest.

Chronic pain

…I’ve had a headache/neckache/backache on and off for most of the last week. 2 trips to the chiro have made minimal changes; and I am really feeling atrocious. How do people with chronic pain illnesses cope, I wonder?

I also wonder how poor Dawny coped in those last few years, I know she was often sore and tired, and had very little relief with any meds – she was also so limited in what she could use. Ai… Missing you mom, wish I could curl up next to you, have you stroke me head and tell me it would all be ok…

Umzi watcha

Umzi watsha
khangela phaya
khangela phaya
umlilo, umlilo
Galelamanzi, Galelamanzi!

Jingoes, guys, this is hectic! I am stunned at what I am watching play out on the inter webs before my eyes! Those poor people! That poor town! it must feel like God has abandoned them…

(if you’ve been living under a rock and occasionally pop out to read my blog – Knysna is ablaze, Plett is not far behind and all the bits in between)

I know this is the natural cycle of events, but flip, its really really scary. I spent last night in PE at an OBGYN meeting, and there are also fires raging there, in fact one of the OBGYN’s couldn’t make the meeting, because he was trying to save his property. Last night I struggled to sleep, and I don’t know if it was because the smell of smoke in the air awoke some primordial part of my brain that identified danger. Eventually at 4:45 this morning I gave up trying to sleep and had a shower. The wind made for an extremely tough trip home – it was hectic! But I relaxed, took it easy and stayed safe…

To all of those people fighting fires, wind and high seas today – have courage, be safe.

Friends, Romans

…Comrades! Crikey, becoming a sort-of-a-runner has turned me into a freak running spectator! I spent yesterday on the couch and attached to my cell phone – I thought I might break it (the phone, not the couch) I was refreshing the app so often! And what a day it was!

3 of my little running group were there – our heroine came 9th, people, I cannot comprehend quite how fast that is! She ran that race in 7 hours! 7!!!!! Flip! Machine! Then the 2 others ran very respectable races – 1, I know is a bit disappointed that she didn’t make her goal time, but she still ran a pb; the other is smiling for a respectable run!

Then there were all the other friends – the 3 teachers from Thandi’s school; the club members; the friend’s husbands; acquaintances and casual stalkees.

And then there was Runnermom! While I didn’t see her on TV, I watched her on the app – what a machine! She has had the year from hell personally, and has run the year of her dreams! I am in awe! In the midst of all of that horrible divorce crap, she has risen above and run with excellence! Well done, you beauty, you! What an amazing example to Zoe you are!

Official pictures

…are just stunning! Thanks to MJ for these beautiful moments of a legendary party for a special 6 and ecstatic 8 year old!

 She flies! Just like Wendy did. 

 Love how our little boy cousin stands apart here. 

 Pretty Tinkerbell!   The Tinkerbell biscuits!   Sugar crystals!  I am 6!  Love this girl! 

 ‘What was the best part of your party?’ ‘Riding the crocodile!’

 My little family.

 Pixie dust.

 The cake! 

 The Magnificent Captain Hook

 Birthday girls!  Celebrating family! 

Guess what!

… I am officially a finalist in the regional BWA businesswomen’s awards, professional category! Whoohoo!

Now things get a little more hectic, radio interviews and media profiles, all good stuff, but it is going to be busy! And then I have to tackle a lost and found project – find a dress, and loose a few kgs! I am excited to see what unfolds during this process, it is exciting!

Of birthdays and weather

…so, happy birthday to me; and happy birthday party to my daughter! What a weekend it was! I was a bit of an obsessive weather watcher, and despite a very windswept beach, we found a few sheltered spots and had a great party!

So the weekend went as follows

  • Friday -photoshoot for a calendar that the wild women are putting together as a fundraiser – running around in forests and bushes, diving off jettys into rivers, splashing about – crazy stuff! Then it was home to finish up party stuff – cake was almost finished that evening; biscuits were completed, and other miscellaneous party stuff. Late to bed…
  • Saturday – started with my birthday, and a panicked call from a friend’s husband, she’d fainted in the shower – so a quick dash there to get her all sorted out, then home to get ready for a long day. Thandi started at ballet rehearsals, I ran some chores, then on my way back to fetch her, I tripped on the pavement ending up with skinned and bruised knees, elbow, hands and ego! Witnessed by only an apologetic car guard, I was mortified! Anyway, pulling myself together, fetched the child, and then off to her school’s Games day – what fun and chaos, noise and laughter! And wind… I had my duty at the Stake your Claim, and we had a bumper year with great prizes and a new record with the amount we raised! Then it was home to work, work, work – more baking and the finishing touches to the party stuff. I have to say – it wasn’t much of a birthday! By the end of the evening I was sore and stiff, with all my muscles cramping after my fall!
  • After a not great night in bed, listening to the howling wind, Sunday dawned, yes windy – not ideal for a party on the beach, but anyway, there was no plan B, so we had to make plan A work. We headed off to the beach house nice and early, I stopped at the local spar to buy some bread – I wanted long slices, so as I was getting ready to put the beautiful fresh bread through the slicer the ‘wrong way’ I had the bakery lady shouting that I must stop, the security would help me, to which I replied that I wanted long slices of bread, to make ‘sushi roll sandwiches’; I reckon they are still talking about the crazy lady putting the bread the wrong way through the slicer! You get surprisingly, a lot of sarmies out! With a creamy filling – egg mayo, chicken mayo and cheese spread with ham; they rolled up well and came out beautifully! Anyway, we prepped everything, packed cars and headed to the beach, where we had to make a few executive decisions on where things had to go – we found some sheltered spots, and despite the wind, the kids had a whale of a time – no tears, no drama, delicious food, fun activities, and the best treasure hunt EVER! I had a friend there taking photos, so when I get those I will post them, here are a few I took before things got underway…

The toughest part of the weekend was quite how much I missed my mom. I shed many tears this weekend. Mom, wish you were here to see this beautiful big little girl; she’s a reminder of you every day, when I look into  her eyes and see yours. Her day was awesome – you would have loved it! See you again, second star to the right, straight on until morning!

Party prep

..ok, so things have been insane the last few days – between party prep, birthdays and the judging interview.But I am still standing!

So, the interview for the BWA awards went well, I felt good and confident going in, and coming out. I was nervous, but realised that there is nothing I  couldn’t answer. I am my own boss, I have my own passions and ethics; and I think I carried that over well. I was happy with how things went. So we will see – Monday I hear if I am indeed a finalist, then we go from there.

On the party prep side, I think I am on track…

  • fudge and smudge √ (yum – my favorite fail proof recipe – realizes that the brand of condensed milk matters – having made 2 batches, the one took way longer to cook than the other – I will have to share recipe at another time, all of a sudden I can’t remember if it’s 125gm of butter or 250gm…) 
  • coconut ice √(ooh, bad photo – super easy too – 1 can condensed milk, 340gm icing sugar – mix together; 340gm desiccated coconut, add in. It’s tough to stir! Then divide mixture in half, add colour to one, and then press them into your pan, in layers.)
  • rice crispy treats √ 
  • sugar crystals √ (The recipe for this is super simple, but don’t be scared by the amount of sugar – I start with 2 cups of water and 4 cups of sugar in a big pot, and bring to a simmer, allowing the sugar to dissolve – keep adding a cup of sugar at a rtime until it doesn’t really dissolve anymore – it usually ends up between 8 and 10 cups (!!!). Take it off the heat and allow to cool a bit. Prepare your sticks – make your skewers wet, roll in sugar and then allow to dry; then it’s the tricky part. I use my champagne flutes, pour the sugar syrup in with whatever food colouring I’ve chosen; and then it’s a matter of suspending the sticks in the syrup. I generally use a clothes peg and then adjust the height of it to accommodate the glass. You don’t want the stick to touch the sides or bottom of the glass. Then watch them grow – I grew these for about 10 days, I think, maybe longer. I do move them around every day, so they don’t get stuck to the sides – these things happen. Thandi loves watching it all too! Good science demonstrations!)
  • biscuits √(with a food colouring pen I am going to draw in a little Think, and the sprinkles are coming out of her wand – I’ll take a finished product picture.)
  • cake √
  • dresses, bunting, table runner √

Still to do

  • icing of cake
  • cupcakes and icing
  • tinkerbell onto the biscuits in food colouring
  • filling of the little jars as favours
  • and on the day – sandwiches and fruit skewers.

I have a friend helping out with lemon meringue and brownies for the adults, and my husbuddy is organising the water for everyone to drink. Phew! Now just to pray for good weather.