Sunday, August 31, 2008

Buddy Bear fashion show

Jasmine and Juliet participated in a Buddy Bear fashion show on Saturday. The girls and boys had to compete with their Buddy Bear and dress alike. Although the girls didn't have a Buddy Bear, they participated with their Build-a-Bear. They wouldn't discriminate against the 'foreign' bears they told us. Here are some of the participants being a bit nervous and waiting to line up.

JJ and Jezz were wearing red and white and so where their bears, there were more than 30 kids walking the red carpet. It was so much fun and so cute to see!

Buddy Bear is the South African version of Build-a-Bear and the store is located in Cedar Square, here in Fourways. The mall has an open concept, so the sun was brightly shining and it became quite hot for us to sit on the side in the full sun.
Here is JJ pondering and waiting to see if she is one of the finalists, they were a bit dissapointed when they realized they weren't part of the eight finalists. To be honest I thought that at least one of them would be in the final 8, but we are thinking because the girls didn't have a Buddy Bear that that was part of the reason they didn't win....You never know, but none of the children who came with a Build-a-Bear didn't win, so you have to think. But in the end it didn't really matter, they had fun doing the show and they got a Buddy Bear shirt for their bear and a coupon for a free ice cream, on such a hot day...that is just perfect ;-)
Here JJ and Jezz are posing with their friend Heidi who also did walk the red carpet with her ballerina bear.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Uncle Arie goes Safari

Ome Arie gaat op Safarie, that is what we say in means kinda the same as the Brady bunch goes on a safari. You kinda get the picture?? (Click on the picture to see a larger image)

Well, next month the girls have a long weekend off from school so we are planning to go on a safari, to see the Big 5. We found a beautiful game reserve, only 3-4 hour drive from Johannesburg. Madikwe Game Reserve is one of the few reserves in southern Africa, which is malaria free. Located in South Africa along the Botswana border and 20 kilometres from Gaberone, the Reserve lies within a transition region between lowveld bushveld and the Kalahari thornveld. As a result the region is host to an incredible diversity of species from both ecosystems. Geographically the region has enormous volcanic intrusions known as Inselbergs, wide open plains and the riverine environment along the Marico River in the east of the reserve.

Madikwe has about 20 lodges to choose from and we are planning to go to Thakadu River Camp it is a community-based Tented Safari Camp. The tented camp, located on the banks of the Marico River, is an ecotourism partnership between North-West Parks, the Molatedi Community and the operator, The Madikwe Collection. So we are going green as well ;-)

The tents are large and spacious and are wonderfully decorated and appointed. So I am sure we don't feel like camping, but still have the adventure of it. We only have the good side of camping, not the bad uncomfortable one :-) We'll go on 2 safari's a day, one morning and one afternoon in an open Jeep. Since the tents are directly on the river where the big 5 come and drink, we can see all the animals right from our deck...isn't that cool? We're probably going to see black and white rhino, buffalo, elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah and wild dogs, and so much birds and different kind of flora and fauna. Can't wait!

"This Thakadu River Camp, where the spirit of the past whispers softly in the grass when the wind blows, and strange things can still happen on the banks of the Marico River"

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Creepy crawler in sight?

We haven't had a drop of rain since the 8 weeks that I am here, but...
It's that time of year, the gentle sounds of summer approaching, lawnmowers, crickets, birdsong, the fizz of beer cans opening, and the shrieks of suburbanites confronted by rain spiders.

"They are among the biggest non-tarantula spiders in the world," I read about the fat-bodied long-legged Sparassidae often found indoors in the last parched weeks before the summer rains come.

They can have a legspan of up to 7cm and a head to abdomen measurement of about 3cm. They also do not like being outside in the rain and are seen as a sign of approaching rainfall. And yes indeed, we had a few already in the house and it is SCARY!! Since we didn't know if they were poisonous or not, we just went for them with a broom and killed all the life out of them! I immediately googled the spider and found they are not. They can bite you but it is more like a pin prick, but thinking of that HUGE animal running up my arm...........not a nice idea.

So we already have a creepy crawler in the pool, .... a rubber one that cleans the bottom of the pool, now we have some hairy long legged 'friends' coming to visit us now and then and actually I rather wished that these friends stayed were they belong. NOT in my house! But that is part of living in South Africa I guess ;-)

Am I glad we don't have curtains yet, since they especially LOVE to hide in there!! I am just hoping that they stay away from my bed...I can handle it being on the wall, so I can see it, approach it and get rid of it.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Creating fancy bangs & buddy bear fashion show

Last night, in the dark, Jezz had a creative thought... she wanted to create some fancy bangs.
So she took a kitchen siccors and cut her front part of her hair. She said to me there was some chewing gum sticking in it...but she was already in bed..with NO chewing gum! I actually think she wanted to look like her Japanese friend in her class. But whatever the reason was... I really tried to figure it out, but if something naughty happens, Jezz kind of keeps very quite ;-)
So now it is easy to keep JJ and Jezz apart, JJ has a missing front tooth and Jezz has bangs!

In our local mall, Cedar Square, there is a Buddy Bear shop (SA version of Build-a-Bear). So Saturday they are organizing a Buddy Bear fashion show and the girls are signed up to walk. They are very excited, the bears and the models have to kinda dress alike. Quite a challenge since the outfits for the bears don't really resemble JJ and Jezz's funky style. But we managed to find an outfit that looks a bit like the girls' outfit for Saturday.

We will have fun and that is the most important part. JJ thinks that she will win, since Jezz has st@#%d bangs. Kids can be cruel to each other ;-(

We'll keep you updated!
Ciao, Mireille

Monday, August 25, 2008

Have you stumled upon Polyvore yet?

I found this amazing website yesterday while I was browsing the web for something... That happens to me all the time, I don't find what I was looking for, but I find something else that catches my attention.
Well, is a site that allows you to mix and match images from anywhere on the web, to create outfits, interior designs, or any kind of collage. You can create outfits using real items clipped from any online store. Share your style with friends or browse thousands of looks by color, brand or item. Like these pictures below, how cute is that?!

There are Facebook, forums and other groups for Polyvore addicts, people get really into it! And there is even an official Polyvore blog run by an 18-year-old aspiring stylist living in Australia. Check it out, but beware; you might get addicted ;-)

Sunday, August 24, 2008

the little mermaid

This weekend the girls had a Bday party at the local Barnyard Theatre. Same concept as in Ridgefield. You reserve a table and buy the tickets for the show, and you bring your own food and drinks, or order it at the local restaurant.

Well, Kaitlyn a friend of JJ and Jezz turned 6 and she invited a group of her friends to see the show. It was the Little Mermaid, well known story from Christian Anderson but they added some contemporary music into it and it turned out to be really funny and great for kids and adults!

Later in the evening we were all invited to go to an Italian restaurant where they have a huge playground, so the kids can play while the adult chat, drink some vino and eat. The kids made their own pizzas in between playing and we had a wonderful night. Most of the restaurants are kid friendly, but they go beyond being kid-friendly, it is a whole different ball game here. It is not only that the meals are kid and prize friendly, they really cater to kids with games, balloons, and playgrounds. The US could learn something from the South Africans!

Besides the fun part, we also did a lot in the house. We installed a kitchen counter in Khetho's room (our live-in nanny, hung up some curtains and a bathroom mirror. When she comes home later this evening she will be thrilled to see how we enhanced her room ;-)

I stained some small furniture pieces and now my hands are so dark brown I can't get it off with soap and water or terpentine, so it has to wear off... Oh well, that is part of moving house I guess ;-(

Friday, August 22, 2008

emptying the piggy bank

The school nurse called me mid afternoon that Jasmine had a big swollen abses on her leg, it was very red and puss came out of the wound. She tought it was better that I go to a doctor for treatment. So we did, I picked up the girls..of course JJ wanted to join us as well. She likes the attention...and being picked up by your mother in the middle of the day gives you some extra attention ;-)
So off we went to the doctor. First time here in SA and I was wondering how it would go. Jezz was a bit nervous, thinking she would need a shot, so she told me the pain was miraculously gone by the time we entered the doctors office ;-) But I told her we go in anyway. and I am sure it is not a big deal, just some antibiotic cream or so. Was she releaved when the doctor told her it was a spider bite and she just has to take 5 days of penicilin after each meal...... pffew I haven't seen a happier girl in a while; no shot needed!!

The girls found this week their piggy bank while unpacking all their toys. Well, it was still full of coins and dollars.
JJ told me that we can't do anything with 'Ridgefield money' here in South Africa, so they were happy to give the pennies, dimes and dollars to me to trade it for the more valuable Rand ;-)
Then they convinced me to go with the newly gathered 'SA money' to Toys-R-Us!! With about R150 each ($20) we are going today after school to the toy store. What lucky girls that there is a Toys-R-Us here, and even closer to our home than in Ridgefield. So I am worried we will see that store quite a bit from the inside from now on...although I am not a big toy buyer (rather buy clothes ;-) but we have to buy a present for Kaitlyn, a friend of JJ and Jezz, since she has a birthday on Saturday. So we catch 2 flies in 1 swat!

Life is not too bad for 6 year old twins adapting to a new life in a new country and on a new continent....hey as long as there is Toys-R-Us!! LOL

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thursday ~ Pub night at the club house

Every Thursday we have dinner at the clubhouse here at Fourways Gardens. This is how we met our new friends we have so far. The girls love it, there are so many children and families coming, so there is always a friend to play with. And while the adults have a sip of wine, the kids run freely around on the playground and grass fields that are ajoining the patio of the restaurant.

It is a buffet style dinner and the adults pay R40 and children under 10 pay R20. That is a little bit more than $5 for the adults and half for the children, so you almost can't cook for that yourself! A bottle of wine cost about R83, so we have an joyful evening where a few bottles of wine are flowing...mind you we are mostly with about 6-8 1 bottle of wine doesn't do it!

It is always a fun and relaxing evening. Although it is getting cooler in the evening after the sun goes down and it is still winter, everybody is sitting outside. Luckily we have those patio heaters, those big mushrooms that keeps several tables warm. So these winters here in SA are not too bad ;-)

Most of you who are reading my blog are in the Northern hemisphere and still in summer season. Did ya'll have a good summer?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Tooth fairy came by!

Yesterday JJ lost her first tooth. She was so excited, it was wiggly for a while but finally it came out! Without the much dreaded pain, it was a smooth transition ;-) Jasmine has a wiggly tooth even longer than JJ, but it doesn't want to come out yet.

We weren't sure if the tooth fairy would come in South Africa, so to JJ's surprise she found R20 under her pillow this morning! YEAH, the tooth fairy found our house and she knew exactly that JJ had hidden her first tooth under her pillow, how magical!

So now, it is easy to recognize the difference between JJ and least for a while for our new friends here and the teachers at school ;-)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

new email address

The national flower of South Africa ~ Protea ~

I like to inform all my friends and family of my new email address, since I can't send out a huge email at once for some unknown reason, so I do it via this way.

Please drop me a line, I like to hear from you again!
Love, Mireille

Monday, August 18, 2008

Unpacking & having fun at Moyo

We've been unpacking now for a whole week, and there are still boxes left everywhere! I came upon 6! hairdryers, with plugs from Holland, Thailand and the USA. So not one of them I can use here in South Africa without changing the plug or adding an adapter.... We have too much stuff and I gave already 8 fully loaded boxes to Khetho our new full-time live-in maid. She is in heaven! And me too, I want to down size and get rid of a lot of stuff, and who is more suitable than this lovely 23 year old girl from Zimbabwe who is part of our family now!

But we did more than just unpack, we had a Bday party for Donna, a new friend of us and some other friends we just met. So the 9 of us, since Donna had her sister visiting from Australia and 2 other couples we went to Moyo in Melrose Arch, Joburg to celebrate her big day. Moyo is an contemporary African restaurant with 5 floors and is an intricate fusion of African flavours, textures, sights, sounds and smells, creating the greatest feeling of all: expectation.

With a live band and lovely waitresses who face paints the female diners with these delicate African dots and flowers.
Inspired by the diversity of Africa, moyo features a range of flavours and taste sensations… from the spicy tagines of the North, to the curries of the East and seafood delights of the South incorporating fruits, spices and an array of the freshest meats, poultry and vegetables. Yummy, Yummy, was so good and so much fun to see everybody dancing to the music of Africa.
And this was only our first big weekend out...I know there is more for us to discover!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Container arrived!

YEAH!! Our container with furniture arrived. I am unpacking already the whole week, and about 300 of 500+ boxes are unpacked. The house is still not ready for guests but I am getting there. And you know what, my own computer is installed and suddenly my blogging problem is solved as well! On this computer I can add pictures again. So I will be blogging and adding pictures more and more again.
I am so happy :-)

Jasmine and Juliet went for the first time to school here in SA. And they adjusted just fine. The bus comes in the morning at 06:58 (THAT EARLY!) and brings them back at 3:50 pm. So long days, but they seem not been affected by it so far. Only on Fridays they are back at 2:15 pm. So nice long weekend ahead!

Dirk is making big changes at work, and it seems that people needing that guidance here. A lot to do here at Hilti SA, but he is up to the challenge and so far he is making progress.

We are adjusting fine to the rainbow nation and we have the impression that we will have a grand time here. So far so good! It is quite easy to make friends, since there are a lot of expats here. And so many wonderful things to do for the kids and for us. So far no complaining, although we have major issues with the house we are renting, like leakages that won't be solved because nobody figured out yet where it comes from. So maybe we just have to close one of the 5 bathrooms and turn it into another room. Because hacking open the floors and finding that leaking pipe into the concrete...I am not looking forward to that dust and rubble. So I will keep you updated what the plans are.

For now, have a great weekend. And I promise more pictures are coming!!
Love, Mireille


Related Posts with Thumbnails