Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Hello 2015 I've been waiting for you!!

Well 2015 has been a bit hectic, but fun to say the least! I decided to split the post that I had been working on into 2 and not publish the negative one, but hey in life you do have ups and downs, so if you really want to delve into what happened in our lives in 2014 go to 2014 - A Backward Glance it's not a happy read, but it ends on a high note.

Me, Myself and I
I took a decision (a type of new year's resolution) that this year is going to be about me. Now this may seem self-centred, but I have put everybody before me for years and now that Tomato is well on her way to recovery, I think it's high time I focused on me and all my ailments.
I've spent a lot of time with friends (yay!) having coffee dates, picnics, lunches dinner and more dinner (yes mostly involving food!!) We've had some deep, meaningful conversations and I have met some amazing people who have imparted their wisdom to me and reignited my spark. I have sent off for a book that was out of print and didn't arrive in the mail (however I am still hopeful that it will get here) about a plan to systematically get rid of my auto-immune disease or at least get it to a point where it is controlled because right now it's all over the place. The one thing I don't like about this book is the diet involving organ meat ewwww but I'm game to try so just need to source an organic organ meat supplier and get going. I was very excited when I read that I had to consumer Sweet Breads which sounded delish [think Kitka] but then I googled it and learned that it is a term for brain, lungs and glands!! Sooooo not having eaten organ meat in my entire life, this should be a fun task *not* so wish me luck!

Bacon started Grade 1 and loves her teacher and is doing so well. She was eagerly awaiting the day when she would get her own homework, which she eventually got after the first week, but she sobbed when it was over because she wanted more!! (Long may that last!) She has started doing netball (how cute) and is always as neat as a pin. One of the many things I like about their school, is the buddy system. Basically each grade 1 gets allocated a buddy in grade 7 to help them with any problems they have. Their buddy visits them for the first couple of weeks at break to see if they are ok and know where everything is, and then they are a "big brother or big sister" to the little ones for the year. So Bacon was allocated Jasmine who is just the kindest, most loving little girl imaginable. She loves Bacon and gave her a chocolate on their first meeting, so Bacon feels like she has a friend for life. This week we went to see her swim in her very first gala called a "buddy gala." I was amazed that our little girl came third in her race! The final race was where each child got onto their buddy's back and was carried across the pool in the "buddy race"- such fun! At this stage I have to mention, why oh why are there so many parents who are keen to join in on the races?? All my tots wanted to know was why I didn't participate in the moms' race!! "Um no, sorry sweetie, I completely forgot and left my bikini at home - darn, maybe next time." (or not, whatever).

Tomato started Grade 3 and we've been to an orientation evening, a parent's evening and another 2 evening workshops, so the school is keeping us busy. She has started art club and choir which is exactly what she enjoys. Due to her new skin program she can't swim go near grass or sweat, so she is limited with sports but the results have been so phenomenal that I have no problem with it (although she does). By next swimming season I think we will be able to re-introduce swimming and playing on grass. I have become an active member of the team of parents marketing this Eczema doctor's approach and Tomato wants to fly to Cape Town to meet Dr A and say thank you. How cute is that?

Thankfully all the uniform, stationery and endless other shopping (and labelling each and every flipping item), is behind us and the girls are pretty much settled into their new grades.

Tomato was due to go to the Ophthalmologist to have her eyes re-examined and wooohoooo after 2 and a half years of patching her one eye, we can stop!!

The Ophthalmologist said due to my A-type, anal personality making sure she put that friggin horrible patch on religiously (even though we've waged war over it) Tomato has had the best result possible. [See!! Sometimes us A-types do actually come in handy!] Yes she will still have to wear glasses but we've laid the best foundation possible for the rest of her life! I told you 2015 was gonna be awesome didn't I?  Thankfully after "the incident" with her glasses in December, the medical aid paid for new frames and lenses, so I was very grateful - phew!

It is very strange not to be measuring, working out, crushing, mixing and concocting things for Tomato to take. We are down to one tablet in the morning and nothing else. Amazing that we have eventually caught up with how "normal people" live and it is blissful.

I was asked to take Tomato for a hearing test as she is battling with reading. The audiologist thought that she had a perforated eardrum as she had very little hearing in one ear. Thanks heavens we discovered after a visit to the ENT that it was just a blockage and after all the gunk was removed, she re-tested with 20/20 hearing (haha have not idea what 100% hearing is called, so let's just go with 20/20).

Little Lettuce is starting pre-school [sob] He's going to start being a little scholar and he just can't wait to go to "my little school,"
although I could wait, he can't. He has already taken to Bacon's old school bag and wheels it around behind him all the time, wanting to get in the car in the mornings and it is just heartbreaking to see him being left behind every time. I've often said that he can stay at home until he's 16 because he's growing up so fast, but judging by the destruction of our home, I think it's time he started on his own little path [sob again!]

The two pictures on the left show his artwork on my keyboard, screen, mouse and a few household items. The blue is nail polish.
Moving along to the artwork on the walls. The two photos on the right, are the centrepiece in our diningroom and lounge.

Then finally we have an entire contents of a clear nail polish emptied onto the wooden flooring in my office. He seems to be VERY creative! *sigh*

Work-wise, I was contacted unexpectedly by a different division, so I've been working for my favourite company for the past 2 months and I started lecturing again this month, so I'm being kept out of mischief.

I have been given some direction in my life and I am very excited to see how this all plays out. I think it's time to carry on with my writing, focus on the well being of our little family and help others who are struggling.

Our ship is coming in and for once we're not at the airport!!!

LG - Life is gooooood!!!

Look out world, here I come..........

Rainbow over our garden

PS Thanks for reading my blog, I hit 10 000 views and didn't even realise it!!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

2014 - A Last Backward Glance

Where did 2014 go?  Never mind 2014, where did January go?

So 2014 is becoming a distant memory, for which I am quite grateful! Frankly put, last year was really rough but we soldiered through it and 2015 is looking fabulous!

2014 has been labelled as "the medical and emotional year" in my life. Fortunately I wasn't one of the patients but I spent more time visiting hospitals than I have in any other year since my dear sister crushed 2 vertabrae back in the 90's.

I'm just going to bullet point the events - just for my own records of the year and then get to the good stuff...... (there's always good stuff!)

  • My cousin passed away from a brain tumour
  • I was weaned off chemo meds by the "2nd opinion" specialist and then back on with more severe drugs and battled with the side effects
  • Casualty for Tomato after she fell off a jumping castle - fortunately nothing broken
  • My friend had an operation to remove a cyst
  • Mom went into heart and lung failure in May and spent 10 days in hospital
  • Mom was very weak and wasn't able to return home 
  • Running backwards and forwards to fetch my mom from my brother to run errands
  • Packing up my mom's home - getting rid of a lot of things that were precious to her
  • In August Mom's blood sugar was very high - admitted again for 3 days
  • Kyle passed away in his mom's arms (this will be emblazoned on my soul forever) Click here to see the blog dedicated to Kyle
  • Tomato was admitted to hospital for 4 days for a bacterial infection
  • My friend underwent radioactive therapy for 3 days in hospital to get rid of thyroid cancer cells
  • Another friend broke her ankle and was in and out of hospital
  • Another family member diagnosed with RA
  • Geyser burst
  • Lettuce ran and dived onto the driveway with Tomato's new glasses rendering them irrepairable
  • House was struck by lightning and we lost 2 small TVs and HD on hubby's pride an joy flat screen. Gate motor was zapped along with lights, some plugs, DVD player etc
  • Eczema, RA pain, dark days with no sleep.........
So that was the bad, but here's the good, better and MOST AWESOME!!


  • Tomato started Grade 2 
  • Bacon started Grade 0 and wore a uniform for the first time 
  • Lettuce was introduced to his first pizza-making experience 
  • I met many family members for the first time
  • Had a great catch up of 40 years with another cousin over coffee
  • Went on holicay to my friend's farm 
  • Had a "Frozen" party for the girls
  • Friends vistited from afar
  • Bacon got to take Honey Bear for the weekend from school and we had adventures
  • Tomato received a merit certificate 
  • Tomato received an achievement award in final assembly
  • Bacon received the highest honour at her school and a gold ribbon
  • My cousin came to visit from the UK and I met her boys
  • Dorothy and family came from Oz
  • Finding a solution for Tomato's eczema

  • Tomato and Bacon changed schools in the second term and are thriving
  • Packed up my mom's house 
  • Mom moved into a retirement village
  • Tomato's skin!

After having quite a challenging year, I was looking forward to December for it all to be over with!! But November was the turn-around. I met Sean, Shawn and Shaun in the space of a week! Thanks to my friend Chucky and things began to change.... for the better! Ok to be honest the last Shaun didn't do anything but it fitted into my story :-)

Christmastime was relaxed and fun. We had a quiet family Christmas and I actually got to talk to Dorothy from Oz for a few hours, not the usual frenetic conversations we've had in past years. We took B, L and T to the Christmas house and they loved it. I bought 10 new Christmas books and hid one of them in the house each night and we played the hot and cold game to find them. Then I would read the new book each night. The kids loved it.

To bid farewell to 2014 we thought we'd have some fun! So we asked the kids where they wanted to go and they said Spur. Hmmm not our favourite but no problem, because there was a Spur where we wanted to go, so we could do it all.

So we drove to Emperor's Palace in the late afternoon on New Year's eve and dutifully went to Spur. Then when the sun had set we hit Santa's Playground, which was a mini fun fair for the kids. They went wild!! First we went on the Ferris Wheel, then the rollercoaster train, then the kids went on the cars and motorbikes. Tomato wanted to go on the spider, which I wasn't thrilled about, but fortunately once we were strapped in, she chickened out, which meant I could get out of doing it too - yay! After that we found a loooong windy slide and the kids did that a few times and then after the kids had done the little sail boat rides,

Then little Lettuce, all of 3 years old, wanted to go on the shells! Eeek! There was a little boy who was on the shell at the time with his mom (probably 6 years old) and he was sobbing and shrieking to get off, so the girls were put off and I thought that would disuade Lettuce too, but nope, he was keen. So on he and I went. 2 days later I still have vertigo from that ride but Lettuce L-O-V-E-D it!! The first thing he said when it finished was "I wanna go again!" Thank goodness we had run out of tickets!!

We then went to see the beautiful Garden of Lights which was even better than previous years and then back to the car. On the way to the car Tomato picked up R100 worth of tickets that some unfortunate person had dropped, so back we went to Santa's Playground and they chose to do the long slide again and again and again and then we were off home. The kids were transferred to their beds from the car as it was after 10pm and they were exhausted and Hubby and I had a relaxing time celebrating the start of 2015 at home.

Perhaps to be more specific, hubby and I stayed up to make sure that 2014 left!!!

I know that 2014 was seriously bad, but I am grateful that all the bad happened in 2014 because 2015 is gonna rock even in more in comparison and it's going to remind me to be even more grateful.

Onward and upward!!

Can't wait to get my teeth into 2015