Saturday, 31 August 2013

A restful weekend - NOT!

A restful weekend - NOT!
31 August 2013

Aaah, weekends!  Don’t you just love them?

Weekends are supposed to be an opportunity to brace yourself for the onslaught of the new week.  Filled to the brim with challenges.  A chance to recharge your battery.  To rest.  To relax.  To recuperate.  To revitalise.  To regroup.  To reenergise.  To revitalise.  To have a reprieve.  In fact, to indulge in a whole host of words all starting with “re”.

But sometimes?  Things don’t quite work out as planned.

Now I acknowledge, that for me the dice is loaded, as I have three kids.  And so I have three kids’ activities and schedules to contend with.  Still on weekends, I do like to slow down and take a break from the constant carting of kids up and down.  Especially as we live in the Strand, and simply everything, including school and extra-murals, are in Somerset West.  And this past weekend, I had really thought I was in with a good shot.  For once, none of the kids had sports matches on Saturday morning.  This in itself is a rather novel concept.  Especially in the winter months, when most Saturday mornings are spent next to a hockey field.  My two boys in particular, are hockey mad and play matches every week.  And so it is not uncommon for Grant and I to head off into different directions, to go and support our two boys, playing at different schools.

And what possibly makes this past weekend even more challenging, was the fact that I had looked forward to a quiet-ish weekend.  And exercising my right to do “re” words.  And lots of them.  Hey, even reading is a “re” word.  Imagine that!

Still my luck seriously ran out.  Cole had a birthday party on Friday afternoon between 17h30 and 19h30 in Somerset West.  He was so excited about going, as it was going to be a scientist party at a venue, that specifically caters for parties of this nature.  And so lots of experiments and mushing of things was on the cards for him.  Just a bunch of boys.  Still, I suspect Cole had been wishful that there would be a few girls.  He wore his very best outfit – a red pair of skinny jeans (you don’t understand how skinny he is already – and so his skinny jeans just serve to amplify this), a smart top, his favourite sweater and his new takkies.  And to complete his ensemble?  He liberally doused himself with some of Grant’s Dunhill Desire aftershave.  I’m sure Thomas’ mother really appreciated the effort…..  Though perhaps he has cougar ambitions and he’s really set his sights on her?

Quickly dashed home after dropping Cole off at the party, to fetch Amber and her friend Jemimah (who was spending the night).  And the reason for this rush, was that we had bought tickets to go and watch a little mini fashion show hosted by one of the Grade 6 classes, in order to raise money for charity.  Our aim was to be at school by 18h30 already, to get good seats.  A very tight schedule, especially given regular Friday traffic.  It allowed me a mere ten minutes at home.  Furthermore, we couldn’t just go straight up to school, as we had to swing past Jemimah’s house, to fetch her older sister, as she too was going to go to the fashion show.  I really don’t mind, just time was tight.  Fetched the kids, rushed up to school, quickly dropped them off and dashed down to Checkers to get a few essentials.  Urgh!  And I had already done grocery shopping in the morning, but left a few needed goodies out of my trolley, as I was rushed.  Please bear in mind that I had to have fed my family by 18h15 already in order to meet my tight schedule.  In other words, supper had to be cooked in the morning.  The fashion show was absolutely charming.  Too cute for words and provided a few lovely laughs.  By 9pm, after dropping Jemimah’s sister off at home again, we too were home.

Saturday morning was an early start with Jumping Castles.  Made a humongous pile of flap jacks for the kids to tuck in to and eventually Luke and I headed off to a hardware store at the Mall.  And the reason for our excursion?  Well, the reason is Mrs Luckhoff.  Now I’m sure Mrs Luckhoff is a lovely lady.  But on this occasion, she has complicated my life.  Why?  Well it’s simple - for Luke’s 3rd term Grade 9 Technology project, he has to build a cantilever bridge.  I.  Kid.  You.  Not.  It has to incorporate at least two pulley systems, be able to open and close successfully and carry a load of 500gr.  I don’t like Mrs Luckhoff very much.  Is that really a surprise?

We were rather fortunate though, in that Luke was at least able to team up with a friend, so that they could slog and struggle through this project together.  Term 1 was easy enough, as Luke had to simply do a written project about cantilever bridges.  Term 2 was a bit more challenging as Luke had to design a cantilever bridge.  And as we know, Term 3 now yields building a model of a cantilever bridge.  I can but only imagine that Term 4 will require a full scale effort.  Perhaps across the now-flooding Lourensriver?

But we were not alone on our quest.  The hardware store was chock-a-block with a whole bunch of other Grade 9’s too.  Running around like headless chickens too.  In fact the kind gentleman at Builder’s Warehouse, who helped us, told me that they have been overrun with PV Grade 9’s.  Can’t imagine why?  I wonder if Mrs Luckhoff perhaps has a contact there?  A bit of an inside edge?  Luke and some of his mates teamed up quickly, to try and pool ideas, never mind resources.  At R67 a pulley, we quickly realised that we shall have to make an alternative plan.  The boys, climbed right into the off-cuts skip outside Builders, rummaging around for any odd bits and pieces they could use.  Not surprisingly this took rather long.

Went straight from Builder’s to home, to fetch Cole (had to ensure he had his hockey gear on first), give Luke the opportunity to change into his hockey gear, and fetch Amber’s friend Jemimah, so that I could finally drop her off at home.  But the boys weren’t supposed to have hockey?  Well Cole’s kind coach, invited the kids to have a bonus practice session with some of the dads on the mini-Astro at PV.  She too is a hockey player, and on Saturday afternoons, when she has a match, the kids are allowed to have a practice session, given that there are adults supervising.  Cole’s little hockey team is incredibly good.  They are a bunch of talented boys and luckily for these kids, their parents are willing to put in the extra effort.  And so a few dads volunteered to play along.  Even a practice game time is good for them, and helps to hone their skills and keep them fit.  Particularly as the school fields have been so flooded and regular practice has pretty much ground to a halt.  And Interschools against their arch rivals were looming.  I thought that I would take Luke along, as he too would benefit.  And on this occasion he could fill a mentor role of sorts for the littlies.

After their practice session, one of Cole’s friends asked him for a play date, and so Cole went home with his friend Josh.  Luke I headed off to do a quick grocery shop and then ambled home, so that Luke could wait for his friend to arrive.  Luke’s buddy would sleep over, so that they could work on their Afrikaans oral and the dreaded cantilever-bloody-bridge.

I was home for about half an hour, before Luke’s friend got dropped off and I had to get back in the car again to go and fetch Cole.  On my way home, I quickly stopped off at Flameros take-aways to get delicious spicy chips, to supplement our steak and salad supper.  Yip, the salad I hadn’t yet made.

Sunday proved to be no more restful.  Luke and his friend Keegan, discovered that they didn’t actually have all the materials that they needed.  And so instead, a plan was concocted to drop them off at Keegan’s place.  Keegan lives on a farm and has access to sheds, filled with odds and ends that the boys were sure they could use.  And so, after breakfast, and taking in a returned Jumping Castle, I hooved the boys over all the way to the very top of Sir Lowry’s to drop them off.  And headed to do grocery shopping once more. 

I was home for about an hour after that, in which I indulged in a bit of light relief…..  Writing Cole’s Afrikaans oral for him and testing Amber on her History, for the upcoming week’s test.  As well, as getting a crack on lunch.

Quickly dashed off again all the way up Sir Lowry’s to fetch Luke and take him to my friend on the other side of town.  All this in aid of the extra Afrikaans lesson, he required for his Afrikaans prescribed test the following day.

I finally got home from all of my kids carting about and shopping expeditions at 3pm on Sunday.  And I was well and truly shattered.  We still hadn’t had lunch.  And Grant was embroiled in a very exciting Grand Prix race on TV.  I don’t know how I would cope without his help…..  Oh, how dads slave away…..

The irony of course being that at 15h15, I got an sms from a dear friend, inviting Cole to a game of soccer on the beach.  The same bunch of dads were going to have some fun with the kids once more.

Now had Cole been an only child, I might have indulged.  But given the fact that I had put more mileage on my car, than during a 14 hour drive to Joburg, I graciously declined.

I couldn’t wait for the kids to go off to school on Monday.  As I was desperate for a break.  A breather.  A bit of brainless relaxing.  Indulging in deep breathing.  Some brandy.  In fact, a whole host of words all staring with “br”.

So what is the moral of the story?  Well, I should clearly do more forward planning and combine my shopping trips. 

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Amber and Jem all dolled up - dressed like twins.  Quite accidently, as it turned out that Jemimah packed in an identical outfit to the one Amber had planned to wear in any rate.  Gorgeous, cute little gals!

Cole and his mates having a blast on the mini-Astro at PV.  Always a highlight for the boys.

The cantilever bridge end product.  Hugely impressed if I say so myself. 

And it works!!!

My friend, Checkers and I, see far too much of each other

Friday, 30 August 2013

Our new Scottish friends

Our new Scottish friends
30 August 2013

So a while ago, Luke came home super excited and chuffed with himself.  PV was hosting a sports touring team, and players were asked to volunteer to billet a player or two.  In other words, to host one or two players.  From Scotland, no less.

Luke didn’t have to beg too much, as quite naturally we agreed, and asked to please have two boys staying with us, for the two nights that they needed accommodation for.  We felt that it would be easier for them, if there were two of them.  As they would possibly not feel so foreign, shy and alone.  A mate from home, makes most things all right.

Grant had been very hesitant at first, as our home is rather small.  Where would we fit them?  How would it work?  Men!!!  Where there’s a will, there’s a way.  Mattresses on the floor in Luke’s room, instead of en suite guest rooms, would perfectly suffice for teenage boys.  It would be more homely and welcoming even, and make them feel more like a part of our home.  Which, as it turned out, it did indeed.

Though the boys would be with us for two nights, we only had to feed them for the first night, as the second night would be spent at the principal’s home, Ledbury House.  The touring teams and host children were invited to a meal, and this also involved great excitement.  As a night out, even at the headmaster’s house, still meant a night out, mingling with fellow teens.  Go figure!

I had given the meal I should serve them, a fair bit of thought.  And decided against the traditional South African braai and boerewors option.  For one, the weather was not conducive, and secondly, I thought that roast chicken, a potato dish and huge big salad was a rather safe bet.  It turned out to be a clever decision, as the boys admitted to having had a braai for the preceding six nights, before they came to us.  Numerous helpings were had by one and all.

From the second I met them, I appreciated how very, very lucky we were.  What fabulous boys!  They were confident without being cocky.  Knowledgeable, without being know-it-all’s.  Humble, polite and kind.  They simply fit right in.  And we never had a single quiet moment.  I’m so grateful that they were talkative, as it made everyone feel more relaxed.  Awkward silences are just so awkward.  All of us were chattering non-stop.  Our meal together was a joyous one and we felt so blessed to welcome them into our home.

They are both well-travelled boys.  They hale from Aberdeen in Scotland and shared many tales about their lives back home.  They had both just returned from a cultural and music tour to Canada, and so at the young age of sixteen, they certainly seem to be seeing a fair bit of the world.  What a wonderful opportunity for them.

Before their arrival, we had been given their names and were warned about their allergies.  Most of these, were fairly easy to avoid – like shellfish.  And a nut allergy, in particular a peanut allergy, is fairly common too.  However, the one boy, had the peanut allergy rather bad, as he carried an epi-pen with him, as he can go into anaphylactic shock, if he accidently ingests any peanuts.  And so in an attempt to avoid killing one of my guests, I took particular care to de-peanut my home.  The kids often have peanut butter sarmies and raw peanuts in their school lunch boxes too.  I even went so far as to wipe out the drawer that we normally have the peanuts in.  Lest there be any peanut traces left lingering and I accidently touch something peanutie and poison one of these kids.  Would really ruin my day.  And my reputation too.

Cole in particular had been most concerned about the whole allergy thing.  In advance he asked if the boy would die if he just touched peanuts?  What if he smelled them?  Even worse – can he die, if someone just says the word, “peanut”?  Now admittedly this is taking things to a whole new level.  And I assured Cole, that the word, “peanut” was still permitted, and would not be fatal if accidently uttered.

It was lovely for all of us to learn more about a part of the world, we weren’t very knowledgeable about.  And furthermore, for them to learn more about our world.  We asked them their opinions of our beautiful and normally sunny (though not for their visit) South Africa.  And they admitted to absolutely loving it.  The people were friendly.  The food was really good.  They enjoyed the cultural exchanges.  And the girls were reportedly rather pretty too.

Luke simply beamed from ear to ear.  So delighted with his role.  In fact, he was rather talkative.  A rare-ish treat.

However the absolute downer to the evening was the pudding I served.  Chocolate brownies with Ice-Cream.  It would have been all okay, if I hadn’t forgotten in my eagerness to find a suitable and delectable dessert, about the peanuts.  I mean seriously!  How stupid can one person be?  Apparently lots!  Before the arrival of our guests, I showed the kids our pudding treat.  And Cole turned eyes filled with horror, up at me.  “But Mommy!!!  There’s nuts on the brownies!!!”.  I know – what can I say?  I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed.  I’m guilty of being over eager, and not very bright.  You’d think I’d have remembered.  Instead, I simply never even noticed them.

Long after the supper was finished, and the littlies went off to bed, Grant and I were sitting in the lounge, watching a wee bit of TV.  And we could still here Luke and the boys, laughing and chatting away.  I gave them some snacks and cool drink and left them to talk and bond, over a mutual interest they had found.  I think it was Call of Duty, on Luke’s PlayStation 3.

The following day promised matches against the touring team.  And we faced the driving rain, to go and support.  Sadly, we got ever so slightly whipped.  Still, it was a great match to watch.  And always encouraging for our kids to play against a worthy opponent that puts up a good challenge.

After their match, there was much showering and zhooshing for their supper at school.  As well as the hopeful wish that they would get to mingle with girls.  This I suspect from the touring boys and Luke too.

And once again, after the boys came back, there was talking and chatting late into the night.  The lot of us, even watched some hockey on TV together.  Learning more from each other all of the time.

We were all sad to see them go and feel lucky that they’ve kept in touch.  Their parents can be proud of them.  Their country too.  They were wonderful ambassadors and have truly piqued our interest in Scotland.  We find ourselves looking out for all things Scottish.  Even just looking at an atlas with the kids, our eyes all drift to Scotland now.

It was wonderful having you here, Allan and Daniel.  Wish you could’ve stayed longer.

And in the wise words of Lord Dingwall, from the movie Brave, playing tribute to the Scottish Highlands, all I can say is “Feast your eyes!”

Och, we really hope to see you wee laddies again soon.
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A very social supper

The Match!

Boys all ready to go out


Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Grow blog, grow!

Grow blog, grow!
28 August 2013

So exactly where do I go from here?

I’m super keen to grow the blog.  To take things to the next level.  To stretch myself even more.  To expand my horizons even further. 

But exactly how does one do this?  What is the right road?  And if so, will someone pretty please share the secret to success formula with me?  Or point me in the right direction at least?

I want to know what the clever tricks are.  Or aren’t there any?  Is it a lot of who you know?  And slogging away?  Hoping for that magical moment when the right person sits up and takes notice.  Besides which, is the writing even good enough to warrant a step-up from the current status quo?

Given the amount of views I’ve had in a relevantly short amount of time, there certainly seems to be an audience.  People who read daily and who follow the blog.  And the statistics show, that the numbers are escalating slowly but surely.  Pretty much month on month.  I know this to be true.  But how do I harness this? 

I would love to expand my audience.  To further my reach.  To touch more people.  To garner more blog Facebook followers.  To get more clicks, and likes.  Yes, what can I say?  I’m clearly needy.

Because I think that is surely the only way.  The more people that know about the blog, follow and enjoy it, the more the word will spread.

For me personally, it’s hard to remain objective.  And impartial.  The blog is too close to my heart.  To be unbiased and know if any of the stuff I’ve written is even vaguely good, is hard for me.  Every piece I’ve written has been fun.  And has touched a part of me.  Comes from deep within my soul.  Most of the time, the writing is like the little voice in my head.  The one that never seems to shut up!

At the very heart of it all, I still just write for the fun of it.  For the joy it gives me.  For the outlet it gives me for my creativity.  For the rush of fulfillment and delight I get when I post a new story. 

I’ve learnt so much through it all.  More about the world.  More about myself.  In fact, I think I might have a pretty good handle on exactly who Helene is.  At this very moment.  I know where she’s come from and I think I know where she’s heading.  No clear destination, except that she’s got happiness and love in her sights.  The rest is just details.

I’m especially grateful for the platform it’s given me to record so much of my life.  My observations of the world.  But most importantly of all, I’m charmed with the opportunity to record my children’s childhood.  The highs and the lows.  Those everyday run-of-the-mill days.  As I’m sure my memory of just such perfect average days, will fade in years to come.  Heck, I can hardly remember what I did last week!

And perhaps that is the greatest gift of all.  From the blog to me.  And hopefully one day to my children too.  For now, they don’t quite get the point.  Except that they know that Mommy likes doing it A LOT.  That it is her hobby and makes her happy too.  But just maybe, they’ll better appreciate the value when they’re older.  Per chance if they’re parents one day too.

So should blog success be measured by number of views?  Or number of posts?  Or followers for that matter.

Hell, no!  For all of the reasons stated above, the blog’s been fantastically successful already.  To me.

Which doesn’t mean that I still don’t value and cherish the support, encouragement, views and clicks from readers.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

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This is true

I LOVE Blogging!!!


Tuesday, 27 August 2013

The Swiss Army Knife - seriously???

The Swiss Army Knife - seriously???
27 August 2013

Right, so the Swiss Army Knife.  Does this strike anyone else as being just ever so slightly funny?  I mean seriously!  The SWISS Army Knife???  Had they said the Russian Army Knife, or the American Army Knife, or the German Army Knife it would have made more sense.  Heck, even the Rhodesian Army Knife is a more believable name, and Rhodesia technically doesn’t even exist anymore.  But the Swiss?  Having their very own Army Knife?

Because let’s face it – Switzerland is not really known for its fighting prowess.  This despite having a rather substantial military wing.  Upon leaving school, scholars (actually men between the ages of 19 and 26) are requested to serve at least 260 days in their armed forces.  And when I say request, I mean they don’t really have a choice.  However, given the fact that as a nation, Switzerland is surely trained for war, they graciously decline to indulge.  Rather, they are a nation of peace.  Of neutrality.  Don’t believe me?  Just look at their flag.

In fact, they have not been involved in any military contact, nor conflict since 1815.  And thus, the invention of the Swiss Army Knife is rather peculiar.  Especially given the fact that the Swiss Army Knife was invented and developed in 1884.  A time when Switzerland was already well known for its peaceful nature.

Though perhaps our clues to Switzerland’s true nature can be found in her famous Army Knife.  It most likely tells a story of a nation.  Through a knife you may ask?  Why just look at the various attachments that can be found.  They’ll more than likely prove my point.

I find the nail file and nail clippers particularly interesting.  This perhaps so that soldiers on the front line, can indulge in a bit of a pamper session and manicure of sorts, whilst fighting ceases over the luncheon break?  The bottle opener, can opener and corkscrew can be used in conjunction with their blade knife for their picnic feast?  Per chance a fine bottle of Merlot, accompanied by a particularly charming little smidgeon of Brie?  Or maybe Camembert instead?  The toothpick would serve to pick out those pesky olive pieces caught between the teeth.  And the tweezers could add definition to recalcitrant eyebrows.  Screwdrivers, a hex wrench and pliers, so that idle time is not wasted while waiting for the enemy to attack.  This time would be better spent doing some constructive maintenance work, with your handy tool set.  A ball point pen and a ruler, to indulge in some architectural design?  And a magnifying glass to see everything with crystal clarity and a compass to safely navigate your way around too.  A wire stripper and a saw, in case metal work is your thing.  A fish scaler in case…..

However, let’s give them their due.  They have most certainly stepped things up a notch in most recent years.  And have tried admirably to keep abreast of current trends.  Some of the latest and more upmarket models now include a 32 GB detachable flash drive, Bluetooth, a laser pointer, a MP3 player, a digital clock, an LED light, etc.

But just perhaps they’ve taken things a little bit too far?  One of their latest models, is a bladeless Swiss Army Knife.  Which sounds like a misnomer to me for sure.  I mean what is the point then?  This in order to allow you to take it onto an Airoplane with you.

But here’s the thing.  Fabulous though the Swiss Army Knife is (and I really actually think it’s a most handy and cool tool – and an awesome gift to give to someone), they’ve clearly left out some vital attachments.  They’ve missed a few critical coups.  Where’s the handy TV?  Or the really, really portable PC?  The cell phone?  The coffee machine?  The fold out blanket?  The fully stocked snack bar?

Though perhaps given enough time, these too shall follow.

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Now we're talking!!!

A detachable 32 GB flash drive - I kid you not!

Any little boy's dream Swiss Army Knife

Super impressive!

Monday, 26 August 2013

Marriage - it's a little bit like one long sleepover

Marriage - it's a little bit like one long sleepover
26 August 2013

Marriage is a little bit like one long sleepover.  Minus the popcorn.  Minus the slouching around in PJ’s until noon.  Minus wearing silly animal shaped slippers.  Minus the pigging out on choccies and sweets and watching chick flicks all night long.  Minus the obligatory facials.  Minus the manicures.  Minus the giggling until the wee morning hours, long after light outs.  Minus the sharing of secrets.  Minus the plotting to do cool things.  Minus the huge big chin-wagging session where you share the best bits of gossip.  Minus planning what you’re going to wear for a party.  Or even just the next day.

Nah!  What was I thinking???  Marriage is nothing like a long sleepover at all.

Instead it’s trying to navigate life.  Raising kids if you’re lucky.  Worrying about them together – their education, their characters, their crowd of friends, their behaviour, their everything.  Trying to make money stretch and stretch and stretch.  Providing for your home and your family.  Making big decisions jointly.  Choosing the way you live your life.  The way you discipline your kids.  Accepting and loving each other’s birth families.  What friggin movie to watch.  Who gets to hold the TV remote.  Feeding of pets, and training them too.  Bills, and bills and bills.  Doctors and dentists visits.  Clothes shopping for the sprogs.  School projects and friends sleeping over.  What to cook for supper, and who’s buying the milk on the way home.  Remembering to buy Stay-Soft, cause you ran out again.  Birthday parties.  Filling the car up and washing it too.  Locking up at night and dropping kids off at school.  Touching base with family and favourite friends too.  Indulging in your interests if you’re very, very lucky and have the time and the dosh.  Deciding on kids’ education and subject choices and who should do what extra-mural.  Then driving them there too.  Fixing the computer and sorting out the linen cupboard.  Doing the dishes.  Opening the gate for each other at home.  Replacing that light bulb and buying a new filter for the blow-up pool.  Disciplining the kids and making them do little chores.  Putting up that picture and remembering to get an ink refill.  Responding to e-mails and attending school functions.  Supporting at sport and nursing sick kids.  Cooking everyone’s favourite dish in the world.  Mowing the lawn and fiddling with the pool pump.  Getting a new key cut for the gate and remembering to drop off hockey socks for a match.  A shared history.  A common goal.  Sharing a bathroom.  Knowing someone else’s childhood, almost as well as your own.  Similar interests.  Convergent tastes.  One vision.

Now the downside of the marriage-long-sleepover thing, is that you can’t go and whine to your mom when your “friend” is working on your nerves.  Nor can you ask your mom to phone his mom, to ask her to come and fetch her irritating child.  Because at times, there is irritation.  And annoyance.  And an unhealthy dollop of frustration too.  You how when you were little, some sleepovers just lasted that little bit too long?  And the joy was a bit gone?  The excitement no longer there.  The spark well and truly snuffed out.  And all you wished for was a bit of much needed alone time?  An opportunity to recharge your battery and want to spend time with that best friend once more?  Well, that option is no longer open to you.  So best you make it work. 

But sometimes, if you are super blessed, then there are still strong similarities between marriage and a sleepover.  You get to spend time with your best friend in the whole wide world.  Every day and every night.  Without having to get your parents’ permission first.  You get to share secrets and plot cool things to do.  You definitely indulge in some chin-wagging too.  Occasionally you can slouch around together in your PJ’s till noon.  You can pig out on choccies and sweets while watching something really cool.  Every so often, there’s even popcorn too.  And as for the giggling?  Sometimes you even still manage to get that.  Especially if it’s really late at night and the whole house is fast asleep.  When you’re lying in the dark and chatting for ages.  Still learning something new.  Something that you didn’t even know.  After twenty three and half years.  Seems impossible right?

It’s true that the manicures and facials have stopped.  But I’m cool with that.  If I really want to, I can give one to myself.  Or have a proper girlie sleepover, with my own little girl.  My mom.  Or my girlie friends.

Basically marriage is the best of both worlds.  Spending time with my favourite person rocks.  Knowing someone’s got my back, no matter what, counts for a lot.  You’ve seen each other at your best.  And your very, very worst.  But acceptance and love, brushes over it all.

So my advice would be this – choose well.  Make sure you give your heart and your life, not just to someone you love.  Or are in lust with.  But someone you genuinely like too.

In short, to your best friend.  Because only then, does marriage get to feel like one long sleepover.

Got to dash – my bestie’s waiting for me.  And we want to lie in bed and have a nice catch-up chat after a very busy day.  Feels like I haven’t seen him for ages!  Even though we woke up in the same bed this morning.  Jointly got kids ready for school.  Spoke to each other a few times during the course of the day.  And gave each other a huge big hug and a kiss after the work day.  Shared supper, brief chat about our day, kids off to bed, watched a programme on TV, etc.

Super chuffed to be having a sleepover again tonight!  And the best bit?  Tomorrow night, I get to do it all over again.  Yay me!!!

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Grantie and I

One of my fave pics

I love it!

My best friend and I
Our first official date - it also serves as proof that once upon a time, Grant did indeed have hair

Saturday, 24 August 2013

My cartoon crush

My cartoon crush
24 August 2013

I’m not proud to admit it, but I had simply the biggest crush on Tarzan.  In fact, I had it pretty bad.

Yes, yes, I know he’s merely a fictional character.  And technically speaking he’s not really, well….. real.  But he was just so darn hot in the animated Tarzan movie.  All bare chested and muscly.  In fact he’s half naked most of the time.  He has a beautiful pair of pecs on him and he could make me laugh.  Then he’s also super protective of his woman.  And let’s not forget he had really good hair.

Now, I know I’m a married woman.  And I’m not saying I would necessarily have left Grant if Tarzan had to come knocking on my door – cartoon character or not.  But I might have given it a few minutes thought.  Or maybe a few days thought – all whilst in Tarzan’s company of course.  Perhaps like a little sojourn from real life?  A jungle style vacation perhaps?

But is Tarzan my only cartoon crush?  Don’t be ridiculous!  I also had the hots for the prince dude from Tangled, Flynn Rider.  He was rather fit.  And let’s not forget how he could rock Zoolander’s Blue Steel pout.  And he had long flowing hair too.  Do I sense an emerging hair pattern?

Though to be fair, I pretty much loved that Rapunzel chic from Tangled too.  Though I possibly more fantasized about being her and meeting up with the prince dude (the one with the long flowing hair…).

Tulio (some Johnny Depp undertones) and Miguel (he’s a dead ringer for Brad Pitt) from The Road to El Dorado were rather smashing too.  And few could equal Sinbad for his bad-boy turned eventually good ways.  Combined with his smouldering looks, he pretty much had the whole package too.  The X-factor if you like.  Or should I say the C-factor (as in sea…get it?)

In fact, if you really want to make a study of it, then there are strong similarities, looks-wise, between Tulio, Sinbad and Flynn Rider too.  And I’m surmising it’s the whole olive-skinned, dark-haired, unshaven Johnny Depp angle all three of them seem to be working.  Which leads me to believe that any of the three of them, would be perfect in the animated version of Pirates of the Caribbean, as the much-beloved scoundrel, Jack Sparrow.

Oh wait!!!  Can you just imagine a movie in which all three of them “act” together?  Now that would be a visual feast.

Perhaps the reason these characters are all so appealing, is their very human qualities.  Their ability to be silly at times.  To laugh at themselves.  To turn from baddies at the start, to goodies at the end.  And let’s not forget, they all end off bagging the hot fictional cartoon character chick, before the final credits roll.  Major bonus!

Still, perhaps staying faithful to my Grantie has some real rewards too.  Unlike my cartoon crushes, he’s there for me all of the time.  Yes, yes, it can be said that he wears more clothes than Tarzan.  And has less hair than Flynn.  He’s not blonde like Miguel.  Or rocks a turban-style-bandana like Sinbad does.  Nor does he wear a goatee like Tulio.

But in my eyes, he’s the hottest of them all.  He’s real and he’s mine.

Which explains why Disney has to resort to creating fictional characters, based in part on my man.  And really, who can blame them?

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The beautiful Flynn Rider

Flynn going all Blue Steel like Zoolander

The lovely Tulio

Gotta dig the unshaven look, with the goatee, side burns and little hair lock in the front

Brad Pitt - I mean Miguel

Sexy Sinbad

Oh Tarzan!!!

Darling Sinbad

The one and only Tarzan

Brad again.....