There are many good causes out there. Tonight I was fortunate enough to be part of the live recording of this track of which the proceeds will go to a worthy cause. We can all make a difference!
I could not stop thinking about Bianca Couch on the anniversary of her disappearance. I felt particularly heartsore for her mother because this is the cruellest punishment – the uncertainty must drain the hope out of her. So on this day I hoped that she’d find renewed strength and have the unwavering ability to never give up!
The twentieth of December may have passed without much ado to you and I but to a family a piece is missing and their lives remain incomplete until that piece is safely returned to where it belongs.
Wherever you are Bianca know that there are people waiting for your safe return!
I’ve been volunteering at the local food bank for just over a year now. While it started out as a way of helping people in need, I had no idea that it would change me in so many positive ways. I’ve been forced to look inside myself and to deal with many indifferences and perhaps judgements which I hadn’t realised were such a part of my make up.
I’ve worked with so many volunteers who’ve impacted my life with their positive attitudes and caring manner. As it turns out the food bank is not just about food it’s so much more. Meeting people from various walks of life with very different circumstances really does stretch you and sometimes leaves you in tears.
Today was one of those emotionally draining days where the food parcel was a very small part of our service to the community. I walked away feeling so grateful for all that I have because looking inside constantly can make you selfish. I’m so glad I signed up to help when I did. If you have an opportunity to serve in your community do it. You’ll be surprised you might just be the one being helped.
A couple of days ago my friends and I got together to celebrate our friendship with special friends who are returning to South Africa. Life has a way of getting you to believe that good things will last and I wish they would. Experience tells us that nothing lasts forever not the good or bad! I have to admit there are days I feel like life is an absolute party pooper.
So we ate, laughed and reminisced about the past but also looked to the future and where the road leads not just them but all of us. It’s hard to believe that our paths crossed just over two years ago and we gained a new family away from the comfort of home.
It will be sad when they finally step on that flight in about two weeks. It’s by no means the end of our friendship but we will miss them all terribly alas life’s many roads require us to take them.
God speed my dear friends!
South Africans are celebrating Heritage day today which is one of many public holidays. This is a day set aside to celebrate our diversity and the contribution of South Africans in building our rainbow nation. It is traditionally celebrated by citizens having a braai (barbecue) with family and friends. This is our most cherished culinary achievement. I’ve been gone so long I hope I’m not too brainwashed by the British version which consists of grilled hot dogs and burgers.
I’ve done my bit by opening a can of All Gold super fine smooth apricot jam (serious patriotism!) because there’s no chance of me having a traditional braai in this rather morbid weather anyway. So while I snack on a piece of toast I’m actually dreaming of sitting around celebrating instead of preparing to do homework.
I’m a proud South African making my way in a foreign land. It’s weird but whenever a stranger recognises my accent I feel like I’ve brought all of me on my journey. I’ve had to drop some typical South African words and phrases most notably the phrase ‘just now’ and robot (traffic light). Otherwise I’m trying to keep it real because I’ve got so much to be proud of.
Happy heritage day! Here’s to continuing our contribution to our heritage wherever you find yourself in the world. Consider yourself an ambassador I do!
These are the words of a completely paralysed gentleman following a stroke. He has made his request known by communicating via a computer controlled by his eyes. He is presently in a legal bid to demand the right to be killed. He is supported by his wife who is his carer. Along with other members of his family who all strongly feel that he should be given the choice to die.
It is such a sensitive topic and my heart goes out to this man who had an active life and is now trapped in a body that will not respond no matter how much he wills it. Death is just so permanent though and once the decision to end his life is taken there are no retakes.
The courts are adamant that to legalise this type of legislation is equal to giving murder the go ahead which will always be a crime no matter the reason. Personally I feel that the family should be giving this man all the reasons he needs to stay alive and by supporting his bid it seems they are keen to be rid of him. Just my thoughts!
Well the Olympic torch relay finally arrives in Birmingham today. No doubt people will be out in their numbers to celebrate a very special occasion. We’ll watch the procession from probably one of the best spots in the city – the rooftop of our local church.
Prior to the torch passing there’ll be a BBQ (can I just say that the world could learn a thing or two about the traditional south African braai!).
The choir will provide the entertainment while we wait for Sir Cliff Richard to make his way past our viewing point. I’m secretly hoping for a last-minute replacement by Peter André.
There’s now less than a month to go to the Olympics and Birmingham are the official host city for the Jamaican and American athletes.
Bring on the games!
Funny how our parents always warned us about choosing friends wisely particularly during adolescence. My mother always said choose friends who have a vision for their future and are not just caught up in the moment. I must admit it was a tough to imagine that anything else mattered than being popular. So some thirty years later I can see what she meant. Popularity can only get you so far but planning for your future is always going to benefit you.
Sadly for some people the need to be popular and centre of attention never grows old. There is nothing worse than an adolescent attention seeking adult. You just want to shout ‘Can you grow up already!’ Of late I’ve been seeing the need to limit my interaction with these kind of individuals because no matter what you say it always ends up being about them. I refuse to be absorbed into somebody else’s little world. My life is way too busy raising my daughters to be caught up with people who have no desire to evolve.
The time has come for me to walk away from troublemakers, bullies and self seeking individuals. It seems choosing friends is a lifelong challenge. Thankfully for the most part I’ve made relatively good decisions. Friendship doesn’t have a recipe for instant success but I’m certain it shouldn’t take a lifetime to develop lasting and rewarding ones. I’m so grateful for all the amazing people in my life!
“Poverty prevails as the gravest human rights challenge in the world. Combating poverty, deprivation and exclusion is not a matter of charity, and it does not depend on how rich a country is. By tackling poverty as a matter of human rights obligation, the world will have a better chance of abolishing this scourge in our lifetime…Poverty eradication is an achievable goal” Louise Arbour
Poverty remains one of South Africa’s biggest challenges. While most human rights days celebrations seem to centre around the Sharpeville massacre. There is no doubt that what the sixty-nine fallen did was both heroic and memorable. Perhaps it is now time for the relevant authorities to focus on problems being faced by the masses which are no doubt depriving them of their basic human rights. The right to proper sanitation and safe living conditions. We can’t continue to remain focussed on the past with no thought for the present situation of far too many South Africans. The time has come and gone for delivery of far too many promises.
Viva South Africa viva…
Today I was stopped by a charity worker and while I do feel that they do some amazing work I’m not really a fan of being accosted in the street. Surely there must be a better way to create awareness about the various charities. Perhaps if each family decided on a charity to support that could take care of a bit of the financial need.
Well after the guy has stopped me and told me he won’t be a minute at which point I glance at my watch and sure as apples fall from trees he takes a good five minutes to explain what it is they do. All the time I’m smiling politely and being very agreeable needless to say I had no intention of signing up with my banking details to some stranger.
After I walked away I did feel quite bad for not just saying I wasn’t interested from the start but then again there are countless times I do and then still feel bad for not just giving up a bit of my time!
As a volunteer I know how important people’s donations are and constant reminders are essential to the work we do. I just feel that there are better ways to spread awareness. The bottom line is we can all make a difference in one way or another!
People often speak about the suffering and plight of the less fortunate. You may not have money or other resources to save the whole world. The truth is that the hungry and oppressed will always be among us. However, that does not mean we shouldn’t try to make a difference.
Take a look around your community and see where you can make a difference. Then go and make a difference!
Yet another really busy day at the central food bank. I’ve done many shifts and it always surprises me just how in need people are. I work with a fantastic team of people who I now call friends.
We have many ups and downs in a day but it all works out in the end.
At the end of the day I’m just really grateful for all my family has. I feel blessed to be able to help in this small way!
Today I spent the day at a beautiful spa. I feel so blessed to have wonderful people in my life whose company I appreciate.
My dear husband did a fantastic job looking after our daughters while I was recharging my batteries.
So thankful for the gift of friendship. Old and new friends alike!
My day started out the same old way with me in total disbelief that the morning had come after what felt like the blink of an eye. I have a very awkward relationship with my alarm clock and it seems to be getting particularly strained as the winter approaches. So after obeying its call rather promptly this morning I knew I was well on my way to beating the morning rush.
After successfully loading my precious cargo into the car and preparing for take off it just wouldn’t start. Being frustrated that early in the morning does nothing for your peace of mind. After contemplating my next move and I must admit I didn’t have too many options. One was taking the bus and of course being late for school. The other was approaching some random construction workers and asking them to check out the problem. I opted for the latter and the result was better than I had hoped for. The kind gentlemen diagnosed the problem a flat battery! They very expertly got the car started and I was on my merry way.
Today was one of those days where I really missed my dad because he would’ve been the first one I called and if he was unable to help he would’ve made sure he found somebody to help me. Living in England where it generally seems to be each man for himself I was pleased that in my time of need there were strangers willing to make a difference in this aliens life!
There is still an air of restlessness over the city. The constant sound of helicopters circling offers no sense of peace. I love living in the city but at times like these I’d much rather be in the countryside. While I haven’t had any contact with or witnessed any of the craziness personally it has had a definite effect on my livelihood! My local gym was closed and our place of worship was barricaded. After a trip to my local supermarket in my lousy attempt to stockpile (I’ve run out of juice already!) it became apparent that the trouble got closer to me than I realised.
Today was mainly a day of politicians and journalists trying to find reasons as to why this frenzy has taken place. Some of the reasons are social inequality, government cuts and lack of discipline to name but a few. I must admit that stealing and destroying people’s property and looting businesses is just plain criminality and there can be no excuse for this atrocious behaviour. Dare I say it was mainly sport, electronic and jewellery stores that were targeted by these mainly young looters. Why would people destroy their communities in this terrible manner? Probably because they don’t know the value of hard work!
It really sickens me and makes me quite sad that people would act in this barbaric way with no regard for the law. Wayward citizens are now being forced to take responsibility for this anarchy which has reigned for far too long by appearing in local courts and facing what I hope will be harsh sentences. Britain has been under siege long enough can’t wait for our streets to be totally reclaimed!
I read an article about a group of women in South Africa who are assisting single moms to get child maintenance that their children deserve from dads who insist on dodging their responsibility.
Now I’ve met many moms who’ve grown weary of fighting for maintenance for their children. While I’ve not had any experience personally in this matter. Having children I know it costs a small fortune to raise them.
Of course there are many sides to this story and it can get very complicated. I guess the goal is ultimately that we all want our children to be provided for.
Let me just say I know it’s not just moms raising children on their own but also some amazing dads. I say amazing because nurturing is mainly regarded as a moms work.
In the final analysis I guess the parties need to be fair. I know of some women who just get greedy and will not let the father of their child have a decent life with their new family.
It is quite a sad state of affairs and just blogging the subject makes me angry!
My wish is that every child would be cared for adequately and the parents get along civilly even if it’s just for the sake of their precious angels!
It’s been quite some time now since I’ve decided to have a positive attitude towards people I meet for the first time. I must admit it’s not been very easy. I really love meeting people and making friends but sometimes it seems almost impossible to get a conversation going.
There is nothing more frustrating than drawing conversation like water from a rock. At this point I usually have to admit that it’s a pointless exercise.
Of course making friends as you get older doesn’t get easier because people usually have their circle of friends. My daughters always amaze me by the ease with which they get conversations going with kids at the gym or in the park. When I ask about the other child all they know is that they’ve had fun! So maybe it’s just me who makes meeting people like a task.
So as I continue to weave my web of friendship I realise that people are individuals with their own agendas. I shall endeavour to be a good friend who does not judge people at face value!
Now we are all very guilty of this particular illness. As a nurse you were always required to know your patients names. So I’ve always been very good at remembering people’s names. Of recent times though my capacity for names has diminished.
Whether it’s at the church I attend or the local playgroup. I’ve been attending the playgroup for some time now so I just nod and smile. It’s so irritating it should be compulsory for people to wear name tags wherever they go.
The other thing that totally throws me off is the different accents. So asking the person to repeat their name fifty times, and then resorting to asking for spelling. Embarrassed you now realise their name is Katherine!
When I meet people for the first time I try to match them with someone I know quite well. Then I meet them again and can’t for the life of me remember who I’ve associated them with.
Now I’ve noticed as far as I go and people remembering my name. They opt to call me by any of my three daughters names followed by mum. Wouldn’t it just be easier to remember my name. Then again it does give them plenty of options.
Welcome to the tower of Babel!
I spent the better part of my morning thinking about friends who’ve travelled in and out my life. It’s amazing how you sometimes think that part of your life will last forever. Of course there are some of those friendships that I’ve still maintained. Those seem to evolve with you through the various phases of your life. I’m so blessed to have people in my life who I call a friend.
I hope I never grow weary of meeting people and making good friends. I’ve certainly met some very awesome people since arriving on this island!
I really enjoy going to playgroup with my daughter. The group is such an important part of integrating. I have met so many wonderful people and have made what I’d like to think will be lifelong friends. Some days I feel like I’ve been to a united nations conference. It still shocks me how diverse Britain is. There are a host of nationalities represented at the stay and play group. It makes for quite interesting conversation and I’ve learnt that smiling and nodding are just not gonna cut it.
Got to love the United Kingdom!
Today I had coffee with a young lady I met rather randomly on the no.8 bus!
Though I have to admit it’s not the first time I’ve gone off with relative strangers.
See I have had a practice run…whilst in South Africa I quite literally bumped into a stranger in a supermarket.We exchanged mobile numbers and a week later I drove to her house for tea.Needless to say my family were horrified and insisted on giving me codes for when they called after 45minutes.I didn’t see her again after that visit…strangely random!
This is something I’ve learned since moving to the uk…you just have to take chances if you want to create a social life for yourself.Of course along the way you also have to realise that there are people who are just not meant to be part of that social life!
So here’s to many more coffee dates…cheers!