But is it really a coincidence?

posted on: 8/8/14

Strange things have been happening around me and I am not sure if it is a coincidence or if the universe is trying to tell me something.

Coincidence # 1
 Hayli is a bit of a snob when it comes to brands that she likes and doesn't like especially when it comes to her bottles.  She turned up her little button nose at most of the bottle brands that I tried to feed her with and was finally happy when we tried the Dr Brown bottles.  I have two problems with these bottles: a) They are blue.  Why can’t they be mint green or pink or have pretty pictures on them?  b) Because it is for colic babies, it has this little thingamajig that helps with the air flow that reduces winds.  My problem with it is that it needs to be cleaned with a very tiny brush, that I keep on losing.  I lost most of them during our move and finally lost the last brush last week.  I was planning to go buy a new one this week but when I opened my boot (of my car that I didn’t have when I bought all her bottles) I found a brand new one still in its wrapper in the middle of my boot.  Tobie also doesn't know where it came from.  So my question is, is it a coincidence or is the universe trying to help me out a little bit?

Coincindence # 2
It is no secret that I am a huge fan of Flow magazine and recently saw on Instagram that they have these awesome re-stickable stickers in their current issue that I REALLY want.  My mom hardly landed in the Netherlands last week before she rushed off to go and see if she can get her hands on a copy.  Luckily she did (phew!) and she decided to send me a few photos of pretty images and sayings in the magazine seeing that I will only be reading it in December.  I received her image (left) 10 minutes after wrapping up a meeting at work where I received this beautiful journal (right) as a gift. 

I ask again if it is really a coincidence or if the universe is trying to tell me something…  Maybe I just need to do more of what makes me happy, just in case!

Hayli Baptism

posted on: 8/4/14

Time flies when you are having fun.  My mom and dad came to visit us for a few weeks and it really felt like they were here for 5 seconds.  Ok fine, maybe a bit longer, but definitely not longer than a few days.  We were so busy with Hayli's Baptism, it was my moms birthday, my sisters birthday and my nephew turned 2.

It feels like I've been planing Hayli's Baptism for so long and all of a sudden it was here and I still had so many ideas but I didn't have time to execute them.  However in the end everything looked great and I will keep my other ideas for her first birthday party. The theme of the day was bunnies!  My mom bought half of Holland's Easter stash (including the pastel coloured bunnies).

My friend, Ingrid, baked the best carrot cake I have every tasted with delicious caramel icing in between the layers and chocolate ganache on the outside! If you are in Johannesburg and you need a cake or cupcakes then you MUST let me know, I will always recommend Ingrid.

Another supplier you MUST use when planning a party and especially a wedding is Iniek.  They are based in Gauteng and the best laser cutters that I have worked with to date.  I explained to them over the phone what I need and I received a sample picture a few minutes later and it was exactly what I wanted!

Lovely Littish from Bella and Me took all the pretty pictures from me.  I can always count on her to capture the day to a T.

New Week resolutions

posted on: 7/14/14

I usually try and be a happy camper most of the time and if I'm not one then I at least try and keep it to myself and put on a brave face.  But today I'm just grumpy!  If it was up to me then I would just go home and have a tea party with Hayli and all her bears. 

But I decided that having a pity party at my desk won't make rainbows and Carebears appear to cheer me up so I need a plan.  I had a little thought and I wonder why people only have New Years resolutions.  Why don't we have a new month, new week or new day resolution?  Seeing that we are in the middle of the month a new month resolution won't work and remembering to decide on a new day resolution will be too stressful with trying to remember to feed Hayli, dress Hayli, dress myself, remember to brush my teeth, remember to remind Tobie to feed the dogs and remember to wear my glasses takes up a lot of time already.  So here are my new week resolutions - it's not super creative or inspiring but by telling all of you about it then I feel I really have to do it.
  1. Blog at least 3 times this week
  2. Try and stick to my Cape Town Marathon training plan
  3. Start my 94.7 training plan
  4. No chocolates (Except for Sunday because it is Hayli's baptism)
  5. Take out my fabric and pattern to make a floral summer dress.  
At the moment it feels like life is just going by a little bit too fast and I hate not having time for myself but I rather spend the time that I have with my family.  Hopefully the above will add a touch of structure to my week and will hopefully force me to sit and breath for a few minutes.  Lets see how it goes...

Lovely Lush

posted on: 6/6/14

Even though I work in branding and managing brands I am not a brand-barbie.  I am brand loyal to a few brands but I won't just use products because it has a brand name slapped on the front.  Especially when it comes to beauty products...

I have a very sensitive skin and find that fancy pansy products actually makes it worse or dries out my skin.  Except for Lush...  I am sure Lush is made in heaven.  There is nothing better than popping into a Lush shop with you dry cracked winter hands and see (and feel) how they transform them to baby soft hands in 5 seconds.  And it stays like that for hours and hours. 

As with most things in life there are good news and bad news.  The bad news is that everyone in Johannesburg just have to live with their dry cracked hands because there is not Lush nearby...  I am also not planning any trips to Holland or Cape Town in the near future so can't go spend my hard earned money there either. The good news (for one lucky person) is that Marie Claire is running an awesome competition to win a Father's day hamper.  Visit their twitter page for more information.  I am keeping my (dry, cracked) fingers crossed that I win,  winter only arrived this morning and my hands look 23 years older. 

Local Illustrator Love

posted on: 5/28/14

I had a very fun project that kept me rather busy at work this week.  The task at hand required my to find 10 very creative local illustrators who can help us illustrate pretty merchandise for an event later this year. 

To find 10 illustrators that fits the clients requirements was a hard task.  Not because I couldn't find them but because I had so many talented people to choose from.  To make matters worse I now sit with an even bigger predicament - I want to own all of the prints that I saw! I managed to control myself and make a shortlist of 5 possible prints to live on our living room wall.  Tobie's response to all 5 of them were: "Oh, that's nice...".  Using the word nice might be the biggest understatement of the year. 

These are the 5 that I think will add the perfect touch to our home.  Hopefully I can make up my mind before my money vanishes into thin air when the debit orders kicks in...  Your opinion would be appreciated.

Brown Bear with gold eyes by Lauren Fowler

Love you all the way to the moon and back by Lauren Fowler

Whimsical Wilderness by Warwick Kay

Illustration by Jean de Wet

Hedgehog by Levitating Rabbit

Have you seen my bag?

posted on: 5/23/14

I am not a 100% sure if I am losing my mind and imagining things or if the universe has turned against me.  But if you can help me please do...

A month or three ago I fell in love with a beautiful Pip Studio To The Beach bag on their website. I immediately took a screenshot and shared it with my personal shopper in the Netherlands (I also call her mom).  I asked her to keep an eye out for the bag, otherwise I will order it online before she comes to visit in June.

You can just imagine the shock and horror when my mom told me that she can't find it anywhere AND they removed it from the website.  I was already planning my outfits around my bag and thinking of all the things I will be able to carry around in my pretty bag when we visit Mauritius in December.   For a split second I even thought it might be fashionable to carry Hayli around in it, but she might get hot and uncomfortable in there.

Tobie thinks I'm being ridiculous,  according to him I have a million and one bags and they all look the same.  But he is wrong.  I buy one or two handbags max a year, and I only buy very special bags that I will love and cherish forever.  This particular bag is begging to be loved and cherish.

If you've read my blog before you might be aware that I am the biggest Pip Studio bag fan in the whole world.  If you are aware of this fact and you might know where I can find the bag-that-vanished-into-thin-air, please send me a map, email, location pin drop or just shout loud enough for me to hear from the nearest hill or rooftop!  I will be very grateful.

Wedding treats

posted on: 5/22/14

I find that weddings are getting more creative and less traditional.  This makes my heart beat faster as I am not too fond of organza overlays but more a crafty and vintage girl. 

Last weekend we attended a wedding of good friends at Lezar Opstal just outside of Heidelberg.  It was a bit far, very cold winter weather and my shiny white car is still covered in a layer of red dust, but it was worth it.  The venue on its own is amazing without any decor.  The first course / snacks are served in a courtyard that is surrounded by horse stables.  The horses keep an eye on everyone and if they are lucky they get a carrot from the fancy dressed guests.  We were also serenaded by an amazing 2 man bad (unfortunately I didn't catch their names) who sang popular country hits.  But my two favorite parts of the wedding was the thank you gifts as well as the candy buffet. 

Thank you gift:  Each female guest received a perfect little succulent in a handmade pottery pot.  The pot had your name carved into it and also served as your name tag as it was placed at your seat.  I am not sure if it is my love for succulents or the simplicity of the gift that made me fall in love with it.  I was also lucky enough to take my sister and sister in law-to-be-one-day's (hopefully in the near future) little plants with me.  When it comes to succulents I believe in the more the merrier. 

Candy Buffet:  Candy buffets have really become a trendy thing to have at events.  At weddings they are usually the most impressive because they are not cheap to put together.  This specific candy buffet was really impressive.  Not only because it was beautiful to look at and the pretty pastel colour palette.  The reason why I loved it was the variety of treats.  Not only did they treat us with all my favorite childhood shop bought sweets but there was also a variety of traditional homemade treats. My only regret was that I didn't fill up a goodie bag with lots of treats before they all disappeared .

Congratulations Anton and Cecile!  It was a wedding to remember. 

My first mother's day

posted on: 5/12/14

Being a new mommy comes with a lot of firsts, including my first mother's day as a mommy.  Fortunately for Tobie he doesn't have to sign the Mother's Day card "with love from Toto" but he can now sign it on behalf of Hayli - even though he still added in two extremely random messages from Toto and Ruthie (I am a bit worried about him).

Being a mommy comes with a lot of sacrifices and I think a lot of our friends who are not married or parents yet might pity us for giving up so much.  But what they don't understand is that you don't just give up your so called life, but you gain so much more in return. 

I don't mind staying in every night of the week if it mean we can bath Hayli and hear her giggle when I kiss her pudgy tummy. 

I also don't mind waking up every morning at around 04:20 to give her a bottle of milk and seeing her friendly smile.  She is definitely a morning person - unlike her mother!

We don't mind eating dinner standing up because she is sitting in her pouch chatting in a language that sounds a little bit like owl sounds. 

I really don't mind missing out on social events on public holiday or weekends if we can go to her baby class or just go for a walk as a family.

I also haven't had time to even take out my sewing machine since she's been born but I would rather cheer her on during tummy time.

To tell you the truth I don't mind giving up anything and everything if little Hayli will benefit from it.  I really love being her mommy and kissing her chubby cheeks and seeing her big open mouth toothless smiles.  Hope I get to share another 60 Mother days with her - hopefully not too many more than 60 because then I will be very old.