Monday, October 31, 2011

You either have it or you don't

I'm so happy!

Our nurse here at work was happy to help me and the stitch is now out.

The best part?

I didn't feel a thing - really!

She was getting a bandage and I was, "is it already done?"

She has it.

Now that's what I was used to with previous ops.

We were just discussing in the offices how it is that some medical professionals seem to be so gentle and others are so rough.

E.g. my infertility clinic

Dr J was the best at scanning, egg retrieval and embryo transfer - and yes, I always told him so!

Dr G was the one with the best bedside manner but boy was he rough - I would go, "ow!" when he scanned, and he'd be all, "sorry, Marcia" but carry on pushing and shoving. I cringe even now thinking about it.

For those who were at the same clinic, I very rarely had Dr V but he was somewhere in between....

Although the nurse at the blood lab in the building? The best taker of blood EVER! Almost no pain.

(remember I hate needles?!)

She also has it.

I won't dwell on it but seems like both nurses who attended to me at the hospital did NOT have it - everything was so painful and didn't need to be.

I could tell you some real stories I heard at my fertility clinic - other girls who had been elsewhere and said (especially after egg retrieval), "I can't believe I didn't feel a thing. Last time............."

Do you also have a medical horror story?

PS hopefully that's the last time I put the label "surgery 6". My one friend has just had her 9th abdominal surgery (endo like me hence the laps; this time a cyst was removed)

Disclaimer - I probably also don't have it. I am so squeamish I'm sure I'd rush the procedure and mess up.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Seven on Sunday, and a little snag

1. I made chicken and cashew nuts again today. I'm refining it more and more. 1/2 onion, 400 g cubed chicken breast, 1 bottle Wellington's sweet and sour sauce (R13,99 at P&P) OR 1/2 bottle Ina Paarman's Sticky Marinade (R26,99 at P&P but I can only find it at 1 of the 3 around my home). Serve with broccoli and rice/ noodles. That's our indulgence for the week - back to totally healthy eating tomorrow :)

Have you made this recipe yet? 

2. The babies were being so fussy with food today so I got D (!) to taste it - I'd made mince with baked beans, tomato and veggie cubes which they love and told V to do two meals worth of baked potatoes.

Well, D said the potatoes were terrible and she hadn't put enough of the sauce on to smother the potatoes (like I do). I tried to rescue the meal with some milk and cheese but then they just wanted the cheese.

So tonight's supper for the babies - cheese, spinach, carrots, bread roll, banana and half a scone. At least it's varied...

3. I really, really thought I was done with this hospital nonsense BUT yesterday when I was taking pics of my wounds for you guys, I noticed they left a stitch in. See my lovely bruises, extremely dry skin (I have not moisturised for about 20 days (it is too tender to touch unnecessarily) but yes, I am using tissue oil just on the scars.


*sigh* D refuses to "try and take it out, and insists I go back. But I'm not. I'm going to text my doc and if it really must come out (it's all of 2 mm) then I'm going to first try the nurse at work, otherwise my GP.

I can't tell you how annoyed I am - I hate incompetence.

a little aside... the other day the kids said, "Mummy going to hospital?" So I assured them that I was definitely not going if I could help it. But they were adorable with their little furrowed brows :)

4. Yesterday I went to print 180-something pics - 160 from the photoshoot, my year in review pics and a few others - I like to see them all especially before deciding on which to print big. Last year I actually thought we'd put another on canvas until I saw it in print and the colours didn't move me the same as they did on screen. So we chose another.

That's my helpful tip of the day. R2,95 vs R500. And I still can't stop staring. The manager of the shop said, "what lovely pics. So different!"

Connor came with me while Kendra went grocery shopping with D. As usual he was an ANGEL. They are both amazing when they're singletons


5. I've made a Pinterest board called I made these things (I've only gone through 2 of my boards and I see I've made 5 things so far) after I read LauraC's post. While I don't agree with everything she said, I do agree that we need to take some action otherwise what's the point of wasting all that time just looking... Laura, I'm not commenting on that post because I want to link to it from my other blog and I don't want people clicking through to this one.

6. I'm so glad Google Reader is quiet and that I don't do Halloween so I can get my Sept photos sorted :)

Do you do Halloween? What are you doing? 

7. I'm fully indulging myself this month - have now finished 7 books. They're all Sophie Kinsella :) except for 1. Normally I try and read a non-fiction but I needed the pure escapism. My goodreads account still tells me I'm 5 behind my goal so I need to read like this for the rest of the year.

So how was your weekend? 

P.S. Right, I have a pile of filing calling my name. Okay, not exactly calling, but annoying me!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Washi tape notebooks


One of my goals for October was to make two washi tape crafts.

I did 3 - 1 was a flop (tried to washi tape an old jam jar that I use to store tea bags - it was just okay and didn't inspire me in the least.

Then I did these washi tape binder clips which turned out really cute and I'm kind of addicted now. So if you come near me with a plain black binder clip, beware. I'll be washi taping it :)

So then I wanted a 3rd craft to have 2 successes.

Yes, I'm crazy.

Over two evenings I quickly did these washi tape notebooks.

They are super easy.

  • Decide which colours of washi tape you'd like to co-ordinate and in which order. 
  • The planning part for me is the most boring but I found when I started messing up the first one that it pays to plan. Who knew it works even with crafts?! 
  • Thankfully, washi tape is so forgiving as you can pull off the same piece and re-apply it elsewhere. 
  • These were jazzed up just a little more but I don't have pics of the final versions with the punched circle tags 

I am VERY happy with how these turned out.

What do you think?

P.S don't forget to link up to the Virtual Craft Day - we only have two other contributors besides all my stuff :)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Perspective - 1st world problems and hospitals

Is it just me or do you also sometimes take a week or six to process something before you can write about it? 


Some time ago I read a post on Simple Mom that got me quite riled up. (I've looked back in my reader trying to find that post - does anyone have the link so I can link up? Otherwise has she removed it?)

I like to affectionately call it "first world problems".

Someone had written in to ask her how she felt about donating food to others that was non-organic, processed, etc.

After all, if you wouldn't give that food to your family, why give it to others?

Well, normally I don't read comments but this time I got caught up and in my (South African) view, it was just crazy thinking.

People got quite riled up - at the time of my reading it, the argument was slanted more towards only donating organic, non-processed food to food shelters and the like.

My view is this - this is a lovely intention but when you're hungry and desperate for food, the last thing you're going to be concerned about is whether something is organic. And if you can get 5 of something for the same price as 1 of something else, would you not rather have 5????

Also, I see hungry people every single day in Johannesburg and they would rather have anything to eat than go hungry. They don't have the choice to be fussy about food.

There were a few people who thought like me but I thought I'd open it up here too and hear what you all think.

Have at it!


Then yesterday, the admin system at the hospital was just as shocking the 2nd time around so it wasn't me in pain that perceived things like that. They really just are that bad.

Yes, I've filled in a survey from my medical aid (medical insurance) and said "yes, PLEASE forward my comments to the hospital - I would LOVE to have someone contact me". Interestingly, if you just looked at the survey, you'd think the hospital was fine and in the grand scheme of things, it was fine. After all, I had a successful op, didn't die and am out.

BUT... for me and I know I'm like most people, when you're in the hospital, you want care, compassion, empathy, etc. (the people stuff) and that was lacking.

The survey didn't even talk to those issues so I told them in my free-form field that they need to include questions around those areas too because Z was the only person in about 12 that I encountered that was a SHINING light in that place.

I often joke that I'm a really bad customer (but really I'm only assertive). However, when someone is fabulous, I go OUT OF MY WAY to encourage and give positive feedback.

So I did.

And a few hours later, Z sent me a text thanking me for all my wonderful comments on her work - she "truly appreciates it".

My pleasure!

Anyway... where was I?

Oh yes, yesterday.

They have this nonsensical system where to go to casualty (emergency room), you have to go to general admissions first and then back to casualty. "My hospital" (near my house) doesn't have crazy red tape for the sake of it.

I ended up sitting in a queue for 30 minutes waiting to be attended to in general admissions.

I thanked God then that 1) I had the gall bladder incident in the late afternoon and not at lunch time and 2) I had D with me to run up and down (how do they expect people in PAIN to walk up and down). I get mad even thinking about it.

I started talking to a man next to me (as I do) and turns out his wife went for a biopsy last week and got results yesterday.

Her doctor wanted to see her immediately (never good news!) and told her they have to remove her breast immediately, so the big C.

While this man was talking to me, he started crying.

I had the opportunity to encourage him a little and I told him I'd pray for his wife, which I forgot about until right this moment!!!

But it suddenly put my little gallbladder into perspective.

No, it was not nice.

I have 4 very ugly scars on my torso and a big bruise, I'm in a bit of pain again due to the stitches been tugged out with such force but I don't have the big C.

I'm so glad I sat next to that man yesterday for giving me perspective.


And then when you're tempted to moan about money and how much you don't have, go to this link and put in your income.

You'll cheer up immediately :)

I just did it again and even though I drive the oldest car in the basement at work, buy my clothes from Mr Price, never shop at Woolies, don't have an iPad/ fancy phone, etc, I am still wealthier than most of the world.

I am blessed!

So I want to hear from you - what do you think about the organic food issue? Do you consider yourself blessed? Why or why not?

PS the organic food rant is for Mandy who encouraged me to get up on my soapbox and let it all out :)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Computer crafting and our virtual craft day link-up

Oh dear, I forgot my camera cord at home so I can't post all my washi tape crafts but I do have these two computer crafts available.

So remember that Friday afternoon when I made our family rules and this virtual craft day button?

Well, I was somewhat inspired so I've been playing a little bit.

Here is a draft header for dear Julia... (I know the sizing isn't right, hence the word DRAFT :))

and here is a family rules printable I did for "my friend with the twins". I asked her what she says to the girls all the time and she sent back an email so quickly I was transported back to many, many conversations we'd had on the phone where she interrupts and keeps saying, "stop biting your sister".

I had a jpeg downloaded (I can't remember where but it was for free - just found it, I'm a googling genius) - the idea is you put this in a frame and write on the frame with an erasable marker.

I used Picasa and added this. It could have been more complicated in Picnik but looks just fine, I think.

If you want one, write out your family rules and I'll do them for the first THREE people who send their rules to me. I have no computer skills so I can't change colours or anything - font I can change :)

So there's my first link-up.

I will do the washi crafts later (or tomorrow) and I want to also show you all the other gifts I wrapped, just for some pretty things :)

Link up ANYthing you made - anything. Did you make something cute in the kitchen, on your computer, etc?

Link up.
P.S. I'm also desperate to write a "real" post :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Guess what I just got?

Yes, my disc of pics.

It was on my desk (one of my most favourite things in the world is walking to my desk and finding some happy - I literally SQUEAL!)

Can you guess which ideas for pics I pinned (without looking at my Pinterest)?

I love that Jeanette checked my Pinterest beforehand and I LOVE ALL THESE PICS, even just having a quick squiz.

 Love more...
 Connor poking Friday's eye out... and enjoying it. This is so him!
 enjoying a joke
 Mummy and Kendra (my snuggle bug)
 Love love LOVE!

What do you think?

Kind-of wordless Wednesday, at least for me

If any of you are detailed, you'll notice my label says 25 months. That's right - I'm only sorting out Aug pics now.

I love, love, LOVE babies in babygrows. Yes, even 27-month-old babies :)
I have no idea where Connor was in the earlier pics (running around the house?) but I'll take any alone time I can get with either of them.

What do your kids sleep in?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Reason number 278 I love having twins

The little one has learned how to throw a tantrum.

From her brother.

She first starts wailing like a siren. I imitated her the other day and both C and K laughed like it was the funniest thing in the world. Today she didn't find it funny at all :)

Then she starts stamping those little feet and doing these movements with her hands like she's brushing away some pesky flies. All the time crying.

And since we don't give in, she then flings herself onto the ground, face-down, and kicks her feet. This is Connor's trick.

D wanted to go and talk to her today (since it's a new thing) but I held him back and said, "no, Kendra, we can't talk to you when you're behaving badly like this. Come see me in the kitchen (!) when you're ready to talk".

Well, as D and I walked away from the scene of the crime (the sunroom), Connor bent down on his hands and knees, leaned into her face and said, "no, Kendra, no being naughty. 1, 2, 3"

I laughed and laughed.

Another reason I love having twins - the one can now discipline the other.

Sure enough, 5 minutes later, she came into the kitchen and whispered, "sorry Mummy... throwing tantrum".

And we had our hugs and kisses.

By the way, the hugs and kisses are totally for me. I'll take whatever I can get.


On the weekend I was sitting on Connor's bed and said, "give Mummy a hug".

He said, "no" and ran away. On the bright side, he knows what he wants in life, right????

This is what I tell myself along with things like, "one day that stubbornness will be great when he doesn't give up on things" (D says they get it from me!)

But when he got to the door, he suddenly turned around, ran back to me and gave me the best hug ever. How I treasure these moments.

What are some of the moments you're treasuring these days?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Our decision on pre-school

Remember all these posts on pre-school?

Well, after reading all the comments and in particular taking note of those comments that felt like they gelled with me, we've decided.

Ta da da dum....

The babies (!) will only go to pre-school when they're 3.5 (Jan 2013).

Chatting with one of my friends sealed it for me.

She said something like, "they're little for such a short time" and I thought, "exactly! What's the rush? Kids go to school for so long (12 years plus university) that I'd love them to enjoy their lives as long as they can".

Also I feel like I want to let them be as unstructured as they want for as long as possible. Now there's something you never thought you'd hear me say.

But they're little!

this one is getting verrryy naughty. oh right, you guys said I should say, "this one is displaying some verrrryy naughty behaviour" I'll tell you more tomorrow.

Now here's the weird thing - my friend's nanny then fell pregnant (we had a infertility moment talking about it was an "accident") and all her grand plans fell out the window.
See, she was also going to only send hers in Jan 2013 but now that the nanny has to go off on maternity leave in Feb, she is putting them in school next Jan instead.

I've decided that even if we have problems with Nanny V, we will rather get another nanny but I really and truly want to keep them home for another 1.5 years.

Of course I'm now the odd one out amongst all my friends so I feel all crunchy and granola. You see, in South Africa, everyone's kids are in school, usually even before they're 3. Except for the 3 people that homeschool (I'm joking, kind-of, but the % is minute).

Apparently there are one or two people who agree with me that they're still so little :)


Here's another of Sarah's posts I LOVE on having a conscious pace. I starrred it - it's that good.

Do you read her? For all of you NF's esp, you will love her posts and she won something like the best blog for deliberate mothers. HIgh praise!

So I'd especially love to hear from the mothers outside of South Africa, but everyone please chime in.

What are your views on pre-school? When should they go?

PS Speaking of fish paste the other day, I'm eating a cherry fizz pop at the moment. I think I'm addicted. Do you eat cherry fizz pops? (They're round lollipops with sherbert inside and these are a special edition pack, X% larger than they normally are - I'm lazy to go check, okay?)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Summer is here & pics of my op scars

Gosh it was hot today.

32 degrees! And it's going to be the same tomorrow and of course, I have client meetings so have to DRIVE in the heat. I think I'll focus on the fact that I enjoy meeting with my clients.

Anyway, back to today.

I start wilting at 28 degrees so imagine just how unproductive I was. Connor seems to be the same as I am except he loses some appetite too.

The two of us decided to have an afternoon nap that was about 2 hours long!

This is not a bad thing except... there are THINGS I'm meant to be doing.

MandyE and I have this thing where we mail each other what we intend to accomplish and then we check in again at the end of the period and .... I'm 40% done with what I wanted to accomplish.

On the bright side, I've "assembled" the craft kits. Oh, I make myself laugh. I literally went through some things and where I had 5 or more of anything, chose some stuff. I have tried to make the packaging a little bit pretty though. So the first couple will be jetting across the miles tomorrow as I actually have two international stamps in my wallet (yay me!).

One of those things on my to-do list was to sort my pics. And look what I found - some self-portraits of my wounds.

Look away if you're squeamish!

that top one (bottom one in the pic) is getting so itchy and I'm only seeing the doc on Wed. So I've been checking it myself and I now have two normal plasters over those stitches because I couldn't leave well enough alone. Story of my life.

do you like my sheep pajama bottoms? The kids love them :)

 these pics are not very good but there's a bruise on my hand from where those incompetent nurses tried to get a needle into my vein.

this is where the actual drip went in. It is STILL very tender to the touch today, nearly two weeks later. I know I sound like a wuss but I've had good nurses (with the IVFs) and bad ones, and these ladies were all very baaaad.

Remember... my little gallstone was obstructing the duct that drains the bile from the gall bladder. So my GB was getting more and more inflamed and started poisoning my body.

Interestingly, my one colleague said she thought I'd been looking "off" but thought maybe that's just me at the end of winter (her first year with us). Hahaha.

More interestingly, I can see how I've been healing because I could see my colour in my face was getting better and not so grey. D thought I was talking nonsense but the girls at work agree that I'm looking better every day.

Do you notice things like your colour being "off"?

How was your Sunday?

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Creating and ... a challenge to 5 of you

So I'm happily putzing around in my study (thanks for the word, Heather) and I happen to glance at my computer.


Seriously, where has the time gone today?

Then again, this is what I've been up to:

1. Took Kendra shopping with me to get the last of the Santa's Shoebox items. We both had TONS of fun and I got not one but two parenting compliments from a fellow shopper and a person working there. Why? Because I was all 1, 2, 3ing in the store. I didn't even get to 2 and she was back in line. D says he would have died a silent death if he had to discipline in public. I said, "that's why you've got me, Baby. I have no shame" :)

2. While the kids napped, I had SO MUCH fun assembling the shoeboxes. My colleague gave me a fantastic idea. She said she didn't feel like wrapping a shoebox so she bought pretty boxes which are more durable and will be nice keepsakes for the girls (she chose teenage girls). So I looked through my stash of organising things and found 3 bright boxes which I've now used. I even got a chance to do some more washi tape therapy on one of them. If these two year olds are anything like my kids, they would just rip the tape off so I wasn't about to waste my time on the other boxes.

3. Connor spiked a bit of a fever this afternoon so stayed home with me while D and Kendra went grocery shopping. This boy is very sweet when he's a bit under the weather - still wants to be around me (quality time child) even if only to lie on the couch while I tidy up. We had a wonderful time eating, reading, playing on my bed, so much so that the minute I heard D come through the front door with Kendra, I fell asleep for one glorious hour.

4. We bathed (he'd fed the kids) them, put them to bed and I had a sudden burst of energy so I cooked TWO meals from my newly-revised recipes to try file. We had one for supper which is a keeper, except I used maize pasta instead of wheat pasta and it wasn't as good, but I taste the potential :)

Tomorrow I'm baking - I have apple bars (new recipe) pinned and I think I'm going to do some pumpkin muffins (old recipe) too.

5. And then I came to the study to get it tidied up but I got sidetracked googling fish paste because of a comment on my FB status. Do you eat fish paste (Peck's Anchovette)?

6. I've also made 4 washi tape notebooks (I'll share pics on Thursday 27th when we have our virtual craft day) and a 5th is calling my name. The thing with these things is once I start, I can't stop.

So I was thinking...

I'm going to challenge five of you to something.

I'm going to send you something in the mail - it will be the same stuff to everyone - and I want you to make something with the something I'll send (nice and vague!).

And then if you want, you can do the same to 5 of your readers, or back to me (make it easy!!!!)

Trust me - this will be small (I'll have to think because I want it to fit in a normal envelope so it whizzes across the kilometres quickly). It will also be EASY-PEASY :) but I just thought it will be nice to see different interpretations from all of us different people. Or maybe I'm just curious?

So MandyE, Mandy, Jess, Andrea and Shayne.... are you game?

(totally random - but if you don't want in, comment and I'll pick someone else from the comments :))

Otherwise, how was your Saturday?

Did you make something yummy to eat? Share in the comments.


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