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Packing and Travelling Tips

I love to explore. Always when I drive in my car and see the glimmer of the sun on an airplane in the sky, I wonder where they are headed and itch to go along! But traveling can bring its own set of frustrations! I dread having to live out of a suitcase. I hate searching for things in my handbag, while the rest of the items I’m trying to carry falls to the floor. But to give up on traveling is not an option, so I have written down the little things I do to make it more convenient and fun!
 
  1. Take a handbag which you can sling around you, so you don’t have to carry that as well. Buy strong, see-through bags to categorize your handbag. Monetary, medical, vanity 🙂
  2. You will only really need your driver’s license and your credit card. There is no need to take the rest of your cards along.
  3. Keep passports and airfare tickets separate, as you will need them often and you won’t want to dig for them in your handbag.
  4. Print a map, you will need an internet connection for electronic maps, and that might be a challenge in remote areas or when data roaming is off.
  5. Choose accommodation with Wifi, especially when traveling abroad.
  6. Never travel on unfamiliar roads in the dark…..
  7. Always try to find a local brew of beer or coffee. Or maybe a soft drink unique to your destination! I remember in Malawi we had Sobo Cherry Plum and in Germany, Johannisbeer, which is made from a Johannisbeeren berries!
  8. Stay hydrated. Small sips. Public loo’s are the enemy.
  9. Try to take travel size amounts of everything – Label them!
  10. Pack only two pairs of shoes if possible.
  11. Unpack immediately after arriving at your destination and put the bags out of sight. I HATE tripping over shoes and bags when I travel. I HATE IT!
  12. Pack random things for your toddlers to play with. Do not forget their toys there, like I tend to do! Jurgen’s Lego truck that I forgot at a guest house last year will forever haunt me.  Pack healthy snacks. When they see an M sign, they are somehow instantly hungry.
  13. Stick to their routine, it really makes them feel secure after an over-stimulating day and being in different surroundings.
  14. Tidy your house before leaving. It makes all the difference to arrive at a tidy home after a long trip. Home sweet home…
  15. Unpack immediately after arriving back home. Yes, you will probably be tired, but it will be more annoying when you want to take a shower and dry your hair, with nothing back in its place!!!
  16. I have found that if you pack everything in categories, it takes just about 5 minutes to unpack at home. I take a big plastic bag along for the dirty laundry. Then all the messiness is contained and your suitcases aren’t cluttered.
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All You Need to Know About Lash Extensions

Referred to as semi-permanent eyelash extensions, they are glued one by one to each natural lash and should stick around for the remainder of the lash’s life cycle until it falls out naturally. That is if they are maintained and taken care of.

lash extensions

Take your pick

You can choose the thickness, length, curve, and density of your lashes. Most salons will be able to offer the following options.

 

Length

Anything from 5mm to 15mm. I find 11mm to be the sweet spot, but it all depends on the shape of your face, brows, and eyes.

Density

Usually, they range from Classic 1:1 or from 2D to 6D, which refers to the volume of the lashes achieved by applying more extensions to each natural lash. Lighter lashes are then used to avoid heaviness.

Curl / Curve

 

Prepare

Arrive for your appointment without any makeup. The technician will clean your eyes, but it is good to be sure that all mascara is completely out of the way and won’t land in our eye during the procedure.

If your eyes are irritated for any reason, whether it be from crying, a cold or hay fever, rather move your booking along. If your eyes tear during the procedure, the lashes will fall off right away.

The technician will be placing a patch between your eyelids to separate the bottom and top lashes. It will touch your eyeball. Just so you know!

Some technicians use collagen patches and I can barely feel those.

 

Maintain

Avoid taking a shower with your new lashes. If you do, keep it out of the direct stream of water. When washing your eyes, be gentle! Don’t pull on your lashes or touch them too much during the day. Preferably use the lash brush which you can get from your technician.

Don’t wear mascara. The lashes will stick together and then pull out when brushing them. If they stick together they also pull on each other. Lots and lots of pain. Some say you can wear non-waterproof mascara, but this contains oil and will lift the lashes.

 

It is recommended that you fill every two weeks, but I with 5D I can usually stretch it between three to four weeks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What white can do!

painting repainting

 

I was about to throw out this old frame while cleaning out our garage and then I remembered I’ve been looking for something to paint white for a while now!

I headed to the hardware store, picked up All Purpose Acrylic White paint with gloves, a mask, and a paint brush. Because this particular pot was water based, I was able to wash my brushes and bowls with water afterward, no need for turpentine.

I applied two coats and after it had dried, I gave it in at our neighborhood Glass and Framing shop, Le Nor Picture Framers. They fitted it with a mirror and fixed it with a strong back cover with horizontal and vertical hangers at a reasonable price.

Now my dining room wall is transformed by something I was about to chuck away!

 

 

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Bathroom Decor – 7 Easy ways to ENJOY your bathroom!

Bathrooms are by far my favourite rooms in any house.   At home, this is where I am revived, where I unwind and have my alone time.

This is the one room in your house, you can almost always be certain will be visited by guests!

 

 

LIGHT

Nothing can really replace natural light. Keep windows open for fresh air and natural light – all day.

Colours such as whites, creams or pastels always seem to have a calming effect and makes any space look bigger.

Darker towels tend to fade quickly and look old within a year or two.  I avoid black and navy blue.

 

 

KEEP IT CLEAN

Baking soda mixed with vinegar can do wonders to clean tiles and lift dust. Nothing freaks me out more than those brown missions that build up between bathroom tiles.

Remove labels –  Call me weird, but if there are too many products with labels I get information overload. I just want to relax and not have too much information thrown at me – ever. Removing labels will also give a classic, more expensive look and feel to your bathroom.

Chuck empties!!! Did you know that if a bottle is empty, you can actually throw it away!!! Make a point of finishing every product before opening a new one and be sure to chuck the empty bottles. Clutter is the enemy.

I made it my mission to collect a boat load of face cloths of different shades. Every month I bought about 3 or so. Then you can dry your hands once and drop it in the laundry basket. Fresh, crispy, clean face towels – every time!!! Happiness.

 

GOOD VIBES

I am no new age activist but the reality is, that energy is a, well… a reality! Fresh plants and living pot plants generate a whole lot of positive energy and oxygen. I am of the opinion that anything natural, like plants or wood absorbs negative energy – For me it takes away that wound-up feeling after a long day. There is a reason why spending time in nature fights depression.

Candles are a must. No energy connection there, I think.  I just like them. They give light and romance! 🙂 Good vibes!

 

bathroom decor

 

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Wedding Vibes

This wedding was unlike any other I have ever attended! Gabrielle, the girl my brother in law chose to make his own, is quite the go-getter! She is an ambitious career woman who strives for perfection in every area of her life and their wedding was no exception!!

From a band playing at the wedding, straight through to a pony carrying confetti, they spared no expense. This wedding was so much fun!

Okay, I’m all for true love, romance, and expensive taste, but this was shamelessly the highlight for me! Oh, and having a rock star babysitter with our panda at home!

 

 

Liezl Oelofsen, my close friend, it is clear that we have many common interests!

 

Liezl and Claire. 🙂

Liezl van Graan

She hates photo’s, but always looks the best in them!!

 

 

 

Eagles Eye Country Estate

What I loved about this wedding venue is that all of their reception halls have these big windows which could open completely. Where there were no windows, there were mirrors, creating an open spacious feel!

 

 

Liezl van Graan Those brown leather shoes!!!!!

 

 

Gerhard & Este My favourite couple! Gerhard and Este. xxx

 

table setting

photo booth
Got to love the photo booth! When our 2 yr old saw these photos he thought it was someone else and not his momma! he said “Tannie en Oom!”!! Ha!

 

Mother in lawMy beautiful mother in law.

Saving the best for last  🙂 Mr. and Mrs. Kruger!

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Mom’s Birthday Celebrations

 

Holtzhausen Women
Yes!!

These two just have the most beautiful love story.

Gerhard and Este were dating in high school and got engaged, Life and reality happened and they parted ways for a little over a decade, still remaining friends.

I remember many nights of conversation with Gerhard, were Este came up. The connection they share could not be broken by time or circumstances.

They got married last year September and are now expecting a baby boy!

The joy and contentment on these faces! I can’t wait to meet my nephew!

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The Importance of Sleep – And How to Make It Count!

WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T GET ENOUGH SLEEP?

In today’s culture, we are conditioned to pride ourselves in going to bed in the wee hours of the morning and getting up at the crack of dawn. This classifies you as a go-getter! One of those who make it count. “We’ll sleep when we’re dead.”  Well, the lack of sleep might just get you there sooner.

I’m a big advocate of the fact that God created humans just like machines. Take away one of the vitals like oil or maintenance, then the entire machine will begin to wear out and finally break down.

Sleep deprivation almost always affects mental health first; some people become moody and others are just more prone to whatever their weaknesses are. Surprisingly many health conditions such as heart problems, diabetes, weight gain and depression, can be traced back to lack of sleep.

HOW TO MAKE IT COUNT…

How Light Affects Sleep 

Exposure to bright light or daylight decreases the production of Melatonin – the sleeping hormone. This hormone is naturally higher in our bloodstreams during night time and much lower during the day.  This hormone can be taken as a supplement but be warned that it has it’s own set of side effects if not naturally produced.

Planning a Sleeping Routine 

Plan a bed time ritual to wind down. At the end of the day, we are just like our children! If we follow the same routine every evening before bed, your body will start preparing to fall asleep on a subconscious level.

Manage Your Exposure

Switch off electronics and external stressors at least 40 minutes before you plan to fall asleep. Blue light from cell phones and tablets also decreases the level of Melatonin in your body. Probably the worst thing that could happen is receiving an upsetting email from work or an exciting new project that you just can’t stop thinking about.

Bedroom Surroundings

Make your bedroom your haven. Do not use your bedroom for an office. Do not put a television set in your bedroom. This is where you rest. Your subconscious mind will immediately pick up the surroundings and start preparing your body for sleep.

Ideal Sleeping Positions 

I have learned the hard way that sleeping in the wrong position, can horribly impact both your sleep and your quality of life during the day.  When sleeping on your stomach, your head is forced to be pointed to either side of the body, you can easily strain the muscles in your neck and cause migraines during the day. They recommend rather sleeping on your side but the first prize being on your back.

What to Wear to Bed

I have read in a medical magazine at my doctor’s office that you should keep your room cool and wear light long sleeved clothes. This allows your body’s natural thermoregulation to keep your body cool. I’ve gone ahead and tested this theory and was pleasantly surprised!! I slept longer and deeper with my snuggly nighties!

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The Simplest Fried Chicken Recipe EVER!

I literally blew my own mind last night with this recipe!

I don’t know who to give the credit, the brand of wine I was drinking or the fact that my husband was out so I had the chance to cook dinner?!

After the third kind of meat I defrosted, I saw the Corn Flakes in our pantry…. And it just came to me!! “Deep fry the chicken in Corn Flakes!!!!”

So I took out the chicken fillets, defrosted them and cut them into 1.5cm slices, beat them with a hammer, dipped them into beaten eggs, then into the smashed corn flakes and voila!!!! Success!!!

Here are the golden nuggets of wisdom I learned last night :

  • Make sure not to cut the chicken too thick otherwise it won’t cook through.
  • This might not be the healthiest food for your toddler, but if he refers to it as cookies and finishes everything, then I would say it was a success!! Serve with their favorite veggies, then you will be able to live with yourself.
  • Spice it.
  • Don’t turn around for one second.
  • The bottom of a big glass works best to smash the corn flakes!

What you’ll need :

  • About 6 eggs
  • Half a pack of Kellogs Corn Flakes. Maybe a little more…
  • 6 deboned chicken fillets
  • Salt, pepper (or whichever spice you prefer)
  • A litre of cooking oil.