Friday smiles

Hooray Friday is here!  It was my first week back at work (okay first 3 days) and I’m back into the routine of things.  Wasn’t the greatest week ever but I’ve settled back in and it has been a relatively quiet week so catching up from being away went smoothly.

I love Fridays because there is an awesome link up that takes place with Lindsay Charlotte and Beth  called What’s up weekend?  Bloggers share their gratitude lists and it is a great way to start the weekend as we look back on the positives of the past week.

This week the following made me happy:

  1. A wonderful time on leave with my ❤
  2. Short work week – only 3 days 🙂
  3. Date night on Wednesday. Had a very long day – first day back in the office and going to one of our favourite restaurants was a great start to the evening.
  4. Tea. Drank gallons this week!
  5. Making birthday plans – under a month away and I’m excited 🙂
  6. Morgan Taylor nail polish. Treated myself to 2 new bottles.
  7. New Polo handbag and purse I bought a few days ago.
  8. Whatsapps from my Mom.
  9. Chilling on our bench in the garden after work last night.
  10. Frozen yoghurt

We have a quiet weekend planned and I cannot wait.  Going to have a braai tomorrow night and we need to do a grocery shop after work tonight.  Going to try get to gym after I dust my membership card off!

What your plans this weekend?



January mantras and goals

Mantra 1

Mantra 2

Both quotes tie in perfectly with my word for 2018. This year my word is release and it is something I plan to do going forward.

My goals for January are:

  • Get back into a fitness routine. Run a couple of times a week.
  • Look into gym classes to shake my routine up (once I get into one that is)
  • Plan meals for the week
  • Declutter kitchen cupboards
  • Read 2 books
  • Blog more often and schedule posts ahead of time.
  • Plan birthday – my birthday is in 4 weeks 😊

What are your goals and mantras for January? Feel free to share on Lindsay’s link up


My word for 2018

Last year I blogged about this concept.  I was inspired by Ali Edwards and you can visit her blog here if you’d like to learn more about this.

My word for 2017 was content. I feel we live in a society that urges us constantly to achieve/accumulate/spend/see and quite honestly be more. More has become the norm. From more time spent on social media to more money spent on things we don’t need, it is exhausting keeping up with the endless cycle of ‘extra’ we are supposed to be adding to each day.

I know that I could have done a better job living out my word last year. However it seemed that the moment I got the hang of it, a toxic comment from somebody really threw me. The rude insult made me re-think my word and my actions. After talking about it with my hubby, my Mom and a couple of friends I realised that the comment was fuelled by jealousy from someone who cannot stand it when I get spoilt by my husband and family.  There are people who are incapable of being happy for their family and friends and so they blurt out crap comments to make themselves feel better.

The snarky comment was not a reflection of me or how I lived out my word for the year. But I wasted a lot of time feeling upset about it. I think a lot of us over-think things and I don’t believe it is healthy.

I gave my word for 2018 a lot of thought and decided on it recently.

My word this year is RELEASE.


I plan to release:

  • Myself from unnecessary expectations and pressure.

This year I didn’t buy a personal diary for 2018 and didn’t make a looooong list of New Years resolutions.  I’m planning on being more mindful and if I can get this right then it takes care of a lot!  Each month I’ll make a list of goals I hope to achieve but those not ticked off can be crossed off or just added to next month’s list.  Less pressure is a happier me.

  • Stress.

Yip this is a big one. In a nutshell I let loads of things get to me.  I sweat the small stuff.   I adore getting the last word. I can keep a grudge like nobody’s business. These are all huge stress contributors that need to be released.

  • Negative thoughts

Super draining. I need to stop mulling over rubbish. Replaying random things over in my head and wondering if I should have done this or done that or said this or that differently. Negative thoughts are awful and it is a downward spiral. If I make a mistake I need to move on. Not come up with an A4 page list of different things I could have done.

  • Toxic people

Life is too short to spend it with people who genuinely cannot be happy for others or have to say something nasty just to feel better about themselves.  Putting others down is a pointless yet hurtful habit and yet some people make it their full-time hobby.

No thank you.

I also need to release the hold that toxic people’s throw-away comments have on me.  In time I hope to get to the point where I can instantly recognise a barbed comment for just that – an array of unnecessary words from an unhappy person with nothing better to do.

  • Clutter

A fresh and uncluttered space immediately feels fresh and calming.

  • The need for perfection

Life is real and the best moments are when you just sit back, relax and enjoy it. Not everything needs to be Pinterest and Instagram worthy to be fun and memorable.

For the record I’m not on Pinterest or Instagram but I see a lot of ‘it has to be perfect’ moments displayed on FB and all I can wonder is how many pics had to be snapped before the ‘perfect’ one was posted.  By then the magical moment is lost.

  • Rigid routines

Obviously we all have work routines and deadlines but I’m talking after hours. A spontaneous date night after a long day at the office is awesome.   Sometimes housework can wait 😊   I prefer not to live my after-office hours to a timetable.

  • Social Media and having to be online constantly

I’m over FB. Twitter is still fun at times but I plan on focusing more on my blog than scrolling through a timeline this year.  The other day I realised I haven’t posted on FB (other than posting blog links to the fabulous blog group  and seeing what other bloggers are up to) since November last year.  I haven’t missed it at all.

  • The past

Nobody has one that is perfect but I’m not going to let a stressful yesterday ruin a potentially great today.  Letting go is sometimes a gift we give ourselves.

  • Things that don’t make me happy.

From a friendship that has run its course to attending things I feel obliged to go to but don’t enjoy. I’m not going to force fun just to keep other people happy. If it doesn’t bring me joy, it is coming off my to-do list.  Also I’m going to be upfront about it – my time is as important as others and I’m saving it for those I genuinely love and care about.

Do you have a word for 2018?


December recap!

Firstly Happy New Year everyone!  Hope that 2018 is an amazing year for us all filled with good health and happiness.

Secondly I haven’t blogged for weeks and am seriously behind.  Hoping to catch up today (my last day of leave).  I hope that everyone had a fantastic festive season and made loads of happy memories.

I thought I’d do a December recap – I always love reading fellow blogger’s weekend recaps so this is a monthly version.  December was a really hectic month and just before I went on leave my Mom landed up in hospital.  It was a very scary and stressful time for us all and since my parents are over 2 hours away the distance was really felt.  My Mom had a blockage in her kidney – she’d had back pain and had gone to see the Dr – and was then rushed to a hospital where they did lots of tests.  She had to stay overnight and was on pain meds and then a cytoscopy was booked for that afternoon.

Well the good news was that no cancer and no stones were found.  My Mom’s right kidney wasn’t releasing urine quickly enough which caused the pain and bleeding.  The medical term is Pelvic Uretic Junction Stenosis.  She was able to leave the hospital that afternoon.  She has had to drink smaller amounts of liquid at at time and has assured me she is feeling better.

The weekend before her health scare we visited my parents and sister in Montagu and we had a wonderful time.  My parents showed us around and gave us a tour and we visited restaurants and had a great catch up over good food.  Our anniversary is in December so my parents insisted on booking us a night at a lovely guesthouse walking distance from their apartment.

I took some pics of the weekend.


The beautiful bedroom and bathroom of the cottage we stayed in.


The patio was so spacious with stunning views.



Hubby relaxing outside 🙂


We had lunch at a restaurant called Die Kloof Padstal.




After a leisurely lunch my Dad drove us around giving us a personal tour of their new home.  My parents moved recently and I’ve never been to Montagu before.  Then we went back to my parents apartment which has the loveliest of views and chilled out before supper.  My parents and sister had put all the Christmas decorations up and I felt rather festive!  I’m so happy for my parents – my Dad retired the December before last and I can see they are enjoying this time in their lives.  Montagu is a beautiful place.

We had an amazing nights sleep and then we went to Die Boord / The Orchard for breakfast.


Hubby and my family ❤


The time just flew by far too quickly 😦  Before we knew it, it was time to pack up and go home.

We went on leave a few days later and celebrated our 11 year anniversary and Christmas in Hermanus.  We had a wonderful time – visited the Danger Point lighthouse.


We spent our days going for drives (De Kelders was stunning), hiking up Fernkloof Nature Reserve, leisurely breakfasts at nearby restaurants, walking around Hermanus and having cheese and wine before delicious braais.  It was just what we needed.



The weather was amazing every day and just added to the relaxed holiday feel.

I packed in Christmas decorations to decorate our table for Christmas lunch 🙂  Hubby made a delicious gammon which was out of this world.  We repeated the tradition on New Years Eve at home.  Minus Rudolph the reindeer!


And now we are in the second day of 2018 and tomorrow is back to work.  This is the first year I haven’t bought a diary and made a list of new years resolutions.  I’ll make a few goals for each month but my biggest one is just to be happy and mindful.  To live in the present more and worry about the past and future less.  If I can get that right I’ll be thrilled!


Weekly gratitude list

Another busy week!  Another 7 days gone by and copious amounts of tea downed!

This time of year is always so busy and I try very hard to take a step back at times and soak up the festivity and not the stress!  Sometimes easier said than done but I’m working on it.

I love Fridays because there is an awesome link up that takes place with Lindsay Charlotte and Beth  called What’s up weekend?  Bloggers share their gratitude lists and it is a great way to start the weekend as we look back on the positives of the past week.

My list this week:

  1. Good news regarding my Mother-in-law. Dr is happy with how the op went and she isn’t having to have chemo.  We are so relieved and grateful!
  2. Getting a last minute hairdressing appointment over the weekend.
  3. New Christmas CD’s.
  4. Hubby and I did some gardening on Sunday – a good workout and back garden is looking tidier!
  5. Monday was a super long day and we decided on a spontaneous date night! Went to the movies to see “Bad Mom’s Christmas” and then to Cattle Baron for dinner.
  6. Pizza.  I had it twice this week 😉
  7. Awesome workout on Wednesday after work
  8. Fun department lunch on Thursday.
  9. Slightly cooler weather after the super hot days last week.
  10. My Garmin watch – loving it soooooooo much 🙂

What is on your gratitude list today?









Tis the season… enjoy yourself!

I’m now feeling more festive by the day.

Decorations are up and last night I ate mince pies off a Christmas themed plate.  I felt a definite sense of smugness at this.

I’ve put a Christmas CD in the car.

A few more gifts to buy (and wrap).

And I go on leave in a weeks time (cannot wait!!) 🙂

I love this time of year and yet I know it can be super busy for so many of us.  All the running around trying to tick things off an endless to-do list.

Monday was a seriously busy day and I knew that after work we should go to gym.  Then do grocery shopping.  And have something healthy for dinner.

When the work day got to the end I decided to shake things up!  As I climbed into the car I told hubby that gym can wait.  He happily agreed 🙂  We decided on a spontaneous date night and it was fabulous.

We went to the movies and watched “Bad Moms Christmas”.  It was really funny – days later I’m still chuckling at random parts of the movie 🙂  The cast is brilliant and I found the Mom’s Mothers hilarious!  Cheryl Hines is sooooooo funny!

Then we had dinner at one of our favourite restaurants.  Chatting away over delicious food I felt relaxed and it just added to my festive feeling.  It was a perfect date night with my ❤

This time of year is often so busy and I’m determined not to get sucked into a whirlwind of stress.  I just want to enjoy this special season and fit lots of laughter and relaxation into the next few weeks.

How do you relax during the holiday season?


Happy Friday

I’ve relied on a great deal of tea to get through this week!  It has been a mad rush from last Friday already and I feel in desperate need of this weekend.  My MIL is out of hospital – her op went well but she gave us a scare on Saturday and Sunday.  We are just relieved she is out and can now heal at home.  Work has been very busy and I started early last Friday morning so hubby and I could have the 2nd visiting hour for that day.  I had a deadline which I managed to tick off my list and then rushed out so I could be in time for a 3:00pm visit.  We cancelled a braai with friends over the weekend and were constantly on alert each time our phones rang as FIL kept us updated in between visits to the hospital.

It was a stressful time and this week just felt like a juggling act of note.  Needless to say, I’m tired and so glad Friday has arrived.

Each Friday Lindsay Charlotte and Beth  host a link up called What’s up weekend?  Bloggers take stock of what made them happy during the week and it is a wonderful way to start the weekend as we share our gratitude lists.

So here is mine.

  • MIL getting stronger every day.  So relieved her op went well and despite having a scare over the weekend she is recovering well so far.
  • New Garmin watch which hubby bought me for our anniversary.  Yes it is weeks away but I couldn’t wait.
  • Ran my first 5k at the gym
  • Clean home
  • New Christmas tree which is up and decorated.


  • My new Christmas decoration – loving Rudolph 😊


  • Feeling festive.



  • Finished another book. 1 more until I’ve read 40 this year!
  • It is Friday and long last.
  • A relaxing weekend to look forward to.

What are you grateful for today?


Footloose and festive

When I was younger my Mom would bring the tree and decorations out on the 1st December every year.

To me, this time of year was always magical.  I remember an occasion when I was  in primary school and couldn’t understand why we had to wait for December to decorate the tree.  My Mother had to explain (for quite some time) that putting the tree up mid year was not going to happen.

And now as an adult I find that putting up the tree is (oh I shudder to say it out loud for fear of judgement) but….well more of an effort.  There I said wrote it.  For just a moment I considered giving in to being less festive than usual this year.  The past few weeks have been extremely stressful with my Mother-in-law’s illness and nobody would judge us for not hauling out the tree and putting lots of shiny things onto it, would they?

But the feeling passed and the other day we took the tree out.

Then I realised we had lost the feet to said tree.  Was that a sign?  But no, we bought a new tree (and I will make a point of looking after the feet).

I bought tinsel.  Because ours was looking a little threadbare and sad.

And a reindeer.  Because I thought he was adorable.

And I found the Christmas side plates and mugs from last year.

And we put the tree up last night, decorated it and my festive feeling returned.  I don’t think it was ever really lost but it might have gone walkabout (along with our old tree’s feet).

I’m just glad that it came back.  Because sometimes I remember the 8 year old me sulking when I couldn’t have a Christmas tree up in the middle of the year.  The sheer injustice of feeling festive and not being able to decorate something with tinsel.

And it reminds me how special this time of year is.


December mantras and goals

How is that we are in December?  The time for putting up the Christmas tree, feeling festive and bringing out the Boney M CD’s has arrived.

My mantras for December are:

Quote 1

So often it is easy to complain rather than focusing on the good.  This month I want to be mindful and not let simple pleasures go unnoticed.

Quote 2

I hope Beth doesn’t mind me using one of her November Mantras which I saw last month.  I love this message so much.

November goals recap:

Continue healthy suppers – Yay!  Cutting down on red meat was easier than I thought

Go to gym more often 

Read 3 books so I can reach my goal of 40 books by the end of the year 

Practice patience. Learn to let things go. – An ongoing goal but I feel I am getting there 🙂

Spend more time offline

Take time to appreciate the simple things in life  – Realised I’m doing this when the other evening after a long day I sat outside in our garden and the first thing I noticed was the beautiful Hydrangea flowers. 

Goals for December:

Challenge myself with running.  Ran my first 5k the other day on the treadmill and it felt great!

Continue to be mindful.

Practice patience.  Learn to let things go.


Hermanus mini-break


I mentioned in the gratitude list before last that Mark had planned a surprise for me that weekend.

We have a favourite hotel in Hermanus called Misty Waves and I had been hinting to hubby that I’d like to visit again soon.  We often go there for birthdays and last Christmas we spent 5 stunning days there relaxing and soaking up the sun.

So Saturday dawned and bright and early we made our way to Hermanus.  Hubby then told me he’d booked us a night in the penthouse and I was over the moon!

We had breakfast at The Bistro and then walked around before having a couple drinks at Tapas.

When it was time to check in we made our way to the hotel.


This was the view from our balcony.  The weather was beautiful 🙂



The bedroom and bathroom was so spacious and luxurious.  I felt instantly relaxed when we arrived!


We were treated to a wine of our choice which was such a thoughtful touch.

We enjoyed it along with some cheese and biscuits on our balcony while we soaked up the view.

Misty Waves has a cinema and the rugby was showing that evening so Mark booked us a spot.  What an exciting match it was!

The next morning we enjoyed a delicious breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant.

We took some fun pics around the pool.

It was another beautifully sunny day and we took another walk around before making our way home.

I love surprises like this and need to plan one for Mark now 🙂