Monday, 30 September 2013

Blogtember : 30 Sep 2013 - Something Treasured Through Time

So after my previous post earlier today I wasn't in the mood to post but then I thought... participating for most of the month of September - I should do myself a favour and keep to the last day! SO here it goes....
Monday, September 30: Share a photo of something old. Maybe something that has personal history for you, that was passed down to you, and that has special meaning to you. Tell us about it and why it's special.
Our first meeting
Ok maybe Uptothemoon isn't exactly old but in terms of her racing days.. they are definitely numbered. I am not someone who would be considered an animal lover. I mean I love animals but I don't usually allow them too close because I've had to say goodbye to too many of my pets that I loved. But Uptothemoon changed all that.
We bought our share of Uptothemoon three years ago, she was two years old.  We waited nine months before she ran her first race but in those initial nine months, I connected with her in one of the biggest ways. I've often tried to explain why it is I love her so much even though she is "just" a race horse but the truth is, she has the most incredible temperament. I didn't fully comprehend that until  I started visiting her more and just chatting to her. 
I don't think there are enough words to explain how much of a calmness I feel when I am around her. Even when I am feeling off, she picks up on it and she can either try to cheer me up by hugging me or chewing my hair OR she can decide to be off and pull away from me.
I knew her and I had a connection but when I moved to Cape Town and she stayed in Johannesburg, I missed her so much and when I visited her - I could feel that she missed me! But then others started noticing that she was calmed by me or excited by my presence or upset by it. I've also taught her to pose whenever the camera is around ... she even knows when we are doing self portraits  : )
Do you have anything old that you treasure? Have you ever connected to an animal?


Music Monday : Adele - I Can't Make You Me

While there are many versions of this songs, none are as touching as Adele's version.

And today, on my way home I heard it and then just found myself replaying it over and over again.

It's a depressing song for a Monday but it is a beautifully depressing song.

Turn down the lights
Turn down the bed
Turn down these voices
Inside my head
Lay down with me
Tell me no lies
Just hold me closely
Don't patronize
Don't patronize me

Cause I can't make you love me if you don't
You can't make your heart feel
Somethin' that it won’t
And here in the dark, in these final hours
I will lay down my heart
And I will feel the power but you won't
No you won't
'Cause I can't make you love me
When you don't
When you don't

I'll close my eyes
'Cause then I won't see
The love you don't feel
When you're home with me
Morning will come
And I’ll do what's right
Just give me till then
To give up this fight
And I will give up this fight

'Cause I can't make you love me if you don't
You can't make your heart feel
Somethin' that it won’t
And here in the dark, in these final hours
I will lay down my heart
I will feel the power but you won't
No you won't
'Cause I can't make you love me
When you don't
When you don't

Friday, 27 September 2013

Blogtember, 23 Sep 2013, Life Lately

Monday, September 23: A "life lately" post. What you're up to, how you're feeling, how you're doing on your goals, etc. Bonus points for great photos!

As mentioned in yesterday's post, I have been struggling to adapt to life post my Eurotrip 2013 but it is what has been happenig.. here are some picutres to explain how I have been feeling and what has been happening

This is me in Galway, Ireland

Spending time with my family

This has been my mindset
Unfortunately this is what my weekdays are like
I have been suffering with this!
The picture explains it all
 This is how I have been feeling

This is my motivation at work, I've been depending on it heavily lately

How has life been treating you recently??? 


Thursday, 26 September 2013

Blogtember, Thurs 26 Sep 2013, Post From Somewhere Different

Thursday, September 26: Go to a coffee shop. Order a favorite drink. Write about what makes you happy and what makes you sad. Or write about anything you'd like! Bonus points for including a photo from the coffee shop. (I recommend downloading Ommwriter and bringing headphones along!) *if you can't make it to a coffee shop, at least leave your usual space and write someplace new.
So this is my second Blogtember post for the day, I'm trying to catch up the posts I missed. I have never blogged as much as I have this month and it's exciting and scary and exhausting! Either way, there are a few days left and I'm excited to have completed this challenge.
TodaĆ½ I'm sort of cheating because I honestly blog EVRYWHERE from my app but today I started this post as usual but finishing it from my Blogger App.
 Ok so I'm writing from our garden.. Look how pretty the rose is.. 

I think in retrospect, it's funny that I picked a picture of a rose becaus often people will say to you when you're stressed over a whole lot of things, just remember to stop... And smell the roses and this is so relevant for me because I have been SO stressed about so many things and I've been worrying about the future and if I'm being honest, I've been reflecting, scratch that, obsessing with the past and especially my recent trip.

I keep saying how much it changed me but actually adapting those changes into my life is definitely more of a challenge. 

So things which make me happy:
* my family (even they drive me somewhat insane) 
* music! I absolutely love listening to alternative folk music, traditional Irish folk music, any good love song! 
* Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres - I love watching them play and their interviews.
*blogging (reading and writing posts)
* TV - I am without a doubt a TV Addict!

Things that make me sad:
* Watching Liverpool lose
* People who are hungry
* People without ambition
* When I realize someone has underestimated me

So... Tell me, what makes you happy? Or what makes you sad? Where's your favourite place to read or write blogs?


Blogtember : Friday, 20 Sep 2013 : Comfort

Friday, September 20: React to this term: comfort.
Catching up on my Blogtember posts! Eeek... I'm a bit behind!
When I think of comfort I think of being in my room. It's always been MY space. It's the place I get to say, do and listen to whatever I want too without judgement. Well, my room and my car!!! The rules in my car are simply, you will listen to what I want to listen too.. unless I'm in a generous mood.
I know it sounds mean that I want to listen to only my music but the problem is that I like so many types of music that it's impossible to make my passengers happy all the time. My mom hates that I listen to soft rock and country but then I find her singing along :)
However, I actually think that feeling comfort comes from being comfortable with yourself. There is not much more to it then that.
That's the reason I would say, I feel so much comfort when I'm with my family. Last week, I actually tweeted about having dinner with my family and how awesome it was. It was that awesome purely because I got to be myself with them.
We all walk around with flaws but when you're with loved ones, they know them and they love you anyway!
I am not going to lie and say that I am completely comfortable with myself - but my recent trip overseas definitely helped me to come to peace with who I am and that makes me feel comfort.
I think if you are comfortable in your own skin, you can find comfort anywhere!
What does the term "comfort" make you think of?

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Travel Post : Brussels, Belgium - I (heart) the Grand Palace Market

Brussels was overwhelmingly beautiful and it was the first time I was truly alone on my trip. It was incredible and the time I spent by myself was much needed and allowed me to process the future.

I wish I could explain more about Brussels but it was more of a personal experience than I could probably ever put into words.

However, I did meet some really nice people!!!

I also found Brussels to be complex with the architecture.. some of it was so modern and some of it was so old... Also! The Cathedral was my favourite one of my trip! The pulpit was insane!

The Pulpit

The Cathdral

Tourist versions of the "Belgium Waffle" The proper Belgium waffle is actually just the waffle with icing powder over it and let me tell you it tastes DELICIOUS!

The Grand Palace Market

My Moroccan friend and I at the Mannekin Pis

Do you know the story about the Mannekin Pis? What's your favourite part about travelling?

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Blogtember : Tues, 24 Sep 2013 : Review Something

Tuesday, September 24: Review a book, place, or product.
Today's review goes to Tyler Perry's Temptations, Confessions of a Marriage Counsellor.
I hired this movie last night, yes you can still do that but I ended up falling asleep by 9pm and not watching it.
A couple of months ago when my parents and aunt watched this movie they completely raved about it and said it was "Amazing" "Life Changing" "Eye-opening".. I'm sure you can understand why it is I wanted to watch it.
Then the guy at the video shop said "Everyone who had watched the movie took something different from it". So I was clearly intrigued.
I won't go into the details of the content of the film but here's the trailer for it....
While I knew everything that was going to happen (due to my parents who told me) I was still intrigued and it was worth it. I think the movie highlights many different things including but not limited to:
* How important image is
* How important it is to pay attention to your partner
* Monogamy should not equal monotony
* If it looks like trouble, trust your instincts!
* When you love someone, you can forgive and forget but it doesn't mean you have to rewind and repeat
* When you chose to settle for something (albeit a relationship, a man, a job etc) you eventually get fed up.
Here's a song from the movie which was really interesting...
Have you watched the movie? What did you think?
As a side note, in South Africa, today is a public holiday - National Heritage Day and in light of all the events happening around the world, Africa and particularly SA, it is nice to take a time out and remember why being South African is great. I have many reasons including traveling to other countries (which I posted about here and here) and realising that South Africans are really nice and friendly and South Africa' local talent is getting more exposure (remember this post?) and mostly I love the fact that there is no "typical" South African because despite everything... we are truly a Rainbow Nation. Charlize and Nelson Mandela are great exports but I think I do my country proud too! 


This or That - Linking Up

So I was doing my usual reading of posts from Bloglovin and I saw Erin's (Author of Two Thirds Hazel) post about linking up on choices. Hard, hard choices!

So, in case I didn't feel like I had enough on my plate I decided I wanted to Link Up!!!

Here it goes....

Vacationing in Florida or vacationing in NYC:
I haven't been to either but who doesn't want to experience NYC!?
iPhone or Droid:
iPhone  no contest!!!! I'm completely in love with my phone
NSYNC or Backstreet Boys:
When I was younger, definitely Backstreet Boys but now.. Nsync may just take it by a hair (or JT's lack of hair!)
Being forced to delete Facebook or being forced to delete Twitter:
Tough one! I use them for different things but I think Twitter because I use FB to keep in contact with a lot of people who live far away from me.. (Sorry Twitter!)
Fireball or Miller Lite:
I have never had a fireball.... (eek! hanging my head in shame!) but if Wikipedia is to be trusted.... I would prefer a fireball
Full House or Family Matters:
This is a tough one! Full House I think although as I am typing this I am reconsidering my choice! I loved the girls in Full House...
Dumbledore or Gandalf: This isn't even a serious comparison.
Gandalf - Don't hate me!
Dying Easter eggs or Carving pumpkins:
Neither, these are more American traditions but I have dyed eggs before so I guess by default, that's my pick.
Another American choice... I enjoy movies about the NFL if that counts?!
A hangover forever or sobriety forever:
Sobriety :( Hangovers are the worst!
January or July:
January, it's my birthday month!!!!
Hannah Montana or Miley Cyrus:
Miley - even after her twerking incident!
Shark Week or Fashion Week:
I'm going to go with Fashion week but neither means much of anything to me!
Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or Saved by the Bell:
Fresh Prince! I still watch that show whenever I have the chance to, Will, Carlton and Hilary were the funniest!!!
Britney or Christina:
Crap! This is hard... I was always for Christina but in recent years Britney has grown on me more and more
Burrito or Burrito Bowl:
Reading blogs on your phone or reading blogs on your computer:
On my computer because commenting is made easier... Bloglovin' should work on it's app!!!
Angelina or Jennifer:
Team Aniston all the way baby!!!! I have now boycotted anything to do with Angelina. Hate her.
Doug Funny or The Rugrats:
An open mouth chewer or a heavy breather:
It's my first tie!!
What do you think? You agree or not? Let me know your choices...!
Oh and thanks Erin for thinking this up - it was so much fun! 

Monday, 23 September 2013

I am blessed and if you're reading this so are you!

This weekend, I got to take an impromptu trip with my parents to Durban. We drove on Saturday afternoon, arrived on Sunday, went for dinner with my family to celebrate the milestone birthdays within last week.

I decided to give into my spontaneous side, which I thought I left in Ireland (I promise I will post about it soon!) but I went with it and ended up in Durban for a good 27 hours until I would have to hop on a plane and fly back to Joburg. The weather in Durban wasn't that great (like the last time I went) but it was still fun and comforting to be with loved ones.

Dinner was really good on Sunday, in fact the only person missing was my brother who had prior arrangements with his cricket game. Maybe I should add that my dad's side of the family is but big. there were over 20 something of us there.. relaxing, eating and talking. It's amazing how you can just be with your family and find such comfort.

It's actually strange that this week I was with my dad's side of the family but last week Sunday, my mom's side of the family got together to picnic which was also sooooo much fun.

That would be Reason 1 why I am blessed.

Reason 2 : On Sunday morning, I got to have an amazing hot stone massage and it was really reasonably priced!It was my first hot stoned massage and I really enjoyed it, in fact straight after it, I went for a nap before just hanging out with my parents and then off to Sun Coast where I got to spend some quality time with Megan.

Reason 3 : When I arrived in Joburg last night, it was safe enough for me to wait for my brother to pick me up and I stood their secure in this knowledge.

While, Reason 3 seems arbitary, it is the moment I felt this post was necessary. There have been some really HORRIFIC things happening with a child hitting his teacher in Johannesburg last week, bombings in Pakistan and shootings in the Westagte Shopping Mall in Kenya.

There is so much of pain currently in the world and I don't even know if you read the news but these events have been so intense it's been in my face and it's frightening and overwhelmingly sad! All I keep thinking is I am so blessed that despite all the chaos going around I am warm, safe and alive.

And if you are in a position to read this, you are blessed too! Embrace it!!!

Have a great week!


Friday, 20 September 2013

Travel Post : Spending the Day in Strausbourg, France

When I was in Europe a few weeks ago ( I cannot believe how long it's been already) while I was with my friends Julia and Oliver, they decided they were going to take me to France for a day trip! How freaking awesome is that... we could just take a day trip to get there!

I was so excited that I got to take a drive into another country and the country just happens to be a country with so much history.

I was super super super excited when I saw this road sign:

 You know you would have been excited!! Paris was only 5 hours away!
It was so beautiful to be there but I will say compared to the other places I was visiting in Germany, Strausbourg was very touristy.
When we arrived we saw the Cathedral but decided to go eat first and we ended up at this restaurant - and it was not good. Well from the four meals we ordered, only Oliver was happy but I'm not sure if it was because the food was that good or because he was that hungry!
Afterwards we walked around and went into the Cathedral - it was incredible! I can't explain what it was like walking around there.. but as much as I liked the inside, I am absolutely in love with the details of the exterior of the Catherdral!
Here are some pics from when we walked around the town... all I can say is *prettiness* everywhere!

I hadn't even heard Strausbourg before this trip and now I am so grateful for the experience.
Have you heard about it? Have you been? Better question.... would you go after this post?
Have a great weekend everyone! I will still do my Blogtember post later today!

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Blogtember: Thurs, 19 Sep 2013, A little story telling....

Thursday, September 19: Creative writing day: write a (very short) fictional story that starts with this sentence: "To say I was dreading the dinner party would be the understatement of the century."

The story does not necessarily need to have a conclusion - you can leave your readers wishing for more!
To say I was dreading the dinner party would be the understatement of the century. HE was going to be there - with HER. How could Janie invite me to this shindig knowing that he was going to be there. Ok, I'll admit it would be a challenge to avoid inviting both of us after all she's my best friend and he's Steven's brother.
What was I thinking when I said yes to a date with my best friend's boyfriend's brother?! Obviously things were doomed to go badly. Then again they weren't always bad between us. In fact, things were great.
The problems started and ended with his highschool girlfriend showing up, beautiful, brunette and a seven year old. I did not need my maths major to work out that at 25 that seven years ago he was the high school child who made a child. 
It was challenging to watch him react to that news... I could see he was beyond excited to have someone whom he "made" and I could see that she wanted a family for the three of them. He was so thrilled at the prospect of being a father he didn't question her much as to why she had kept their daughter away for the last seven years. 
His reaction was one of the many reasons I fell in love with him. Why I still loved him. Then why did I end things? Because I'm an emotional mess. I want him to be happy and his child to be happy. After all, we may have never been able to have children together...
I look great, in a new nude bodycon dress. He always said he loved to see me in nude!
Why did I pull up behind, I suppose some instincts never leave you, I'll always want to be close to him. Oh No! He's in the car, I thought he was just parked here. When he first saw me, it felt like MerDer in  Season 1 snd 2 - we shared our look.
As he approached the car, I was ready to ask where Ann was, he blurted out "She's not mine! Ann lied, Brooke isn't mine... please say you want to get back together! Now we can have children together and be a family just like we planned".
There is so much going on in my head but should I tell him the truth... we may never have children together, I may never have children which biologically mine... but I missed him too much and he already lost one child this week - should he lose the hope of anymore?

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

947 Joburg Day 2013

I have wanted to attend a Highveld Joburg day for the last 10+ years but every year for whatever reason I have always missed it.

Well not this year! After arriving back from my Euro Trip my mother told me she hadn't bought the tickets and to say I was upset would be putting it mildly... However, being the awesome mom that she is.. she pulled a few strings and asked a few favours and off I went to Joburg Day.


Joburg day, for those who aren't sure what I'm referring to, it's a day which one of the main radio stations in Johannesburg host a music festival with only local artists.

The music festival left me buzzing and feeling extremely proudly South African! Here are the Acts which performed.

The crowd was incredible, we stood for over 11 hours... The organisers handed out water which resulted in a water fight which we definitely needed at 30 something degree weather!

We missed the first Act which was Connell Cruise but while walking in he was performing this song:

While there were many great acts my favourites were:




Have you been to Joburg Day? Or what Music festivals have you attended?