Wednesday, March 28, 2012

No trace #88

This is a bit more personal than my usual posts, but I might be of some help to others who go through this....

So yesterday I went to the gynae, one that specializes in Endometriosis, since I had severe Endometrioses most of my adult life and I wanted an educated opinion. My last action plan concerning my Endometriosis was when I lived in the States and they removed 1 ovary since it was so surrounded by it. And the doctors then advised me to take the other one out too, or actually take everything out, but I was 37 years old and not ready to go in full fletch menopause I hesitated and didn't do anything.

Till now...

The thing is being an expat you have to find every 4-5 years a new doctor, a new dentist and also a new gynae.. which is the worst! Because by the time you are comfortable with him/her you are moving again.

So for the last 3,5 years I visited once a gynae and she didn't really tickle my fancy, so after that first visit I never went back and just ordered my Bcontrol pills via email and she would sent me a prescription... never told me to come in for another check up.. that already shows you how dedicated she is to her patients. NOT!

But to say to my shame, I also never went back or did my yearly check up, bad on me!!

But now I went, to a new one and I am glad.

He checked me with scans, internal and blood tests which we get the result in a few days, and to my and HIS surprise the Endometriosis was all gone, not even scar tissue, and I had it so severe, stage 4!!

Amazing!! But wonderful!!

So there is hope for women who have Endometriosis that you can heal from it!!

How did it dissapear?? I took my Bcontrol pills continuously for the last 8 years, so I never had a period, that probably died it down and shriveled it up. But we don't know for sure... So at first I thought I needed a hysterectomy because taking Bcontrol Pills after 40 is not a great idea... but now probably I don't need one, good news!!

At least for now. We are going to see what happens the next 3 months, me off the Pill and then another scan, internal check up and see how things are developing, if the results are as good as today... I am a happy camper!!

But we have to wait and see and be patient. Although I am a bit scared of my next 3 periods, I had always very painful periods, so painful that I had to throw up and be housebound for 1-2 weeks a month! He told me the first one will be painful but then the second one should be a bit less and the 3rd even more painless...

I just hope that he is right!

I will keep you updated!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Shit New Yorkers say #87

I AM going to New York! This weekend!

and.. Ridgefield, Redding and Westport...

To see my friends... YEAH!!

But the main reason is to do my biometrics, part 2 of my trips to the USA to keep my GREEN CARD valid and updated. (I was just there last month) Because I won this priceless ticket in a lottery and I don't want to loose it. Really, I won my green card through a lottery!! Fun or what?

I have it now for 10 years and soon Dirk and the girls are getting a GREEN CARD as well, but we have to live there to activate it, but they got their numbers, which they waited for since 2005!! So the chance of moving to the USA after our stint here in South Africa is getting bigger and bigger, now the question is WHEN and WHERE??

We don't know, we will see!!

But I am side tracking a bit, to get used to the mostly rude New Yorkers.. not really MY opinion but the general public, I looked up this video; shit New Yorkers say, just to get used to it again..

So funny! So true! So over the top though...


And we will eventually buy a place in Manhattan, next time we move to the USA! And a beach house in Thailand... that's the plan! Live in both worlds for part of the year...

How do you feel about New York??
Love it or hate it??

Mireille xx

Monday, March 26, 2012

Bohemian Hippie for a day #86

Today at school the girls are dressed up as Bohemian Hippies, no normal hippies no they wanted Bohemian Hippies, more glamorous! With the wavy hair, the head band with the flower, all the jewelry, the soft make up with lip gloss, the whole shebang!

We even made a Peace sign on the tshirt, with glitter... of course!

All the kids had to dress up in the era 50s to 90s, so we browsed the internet a few days ago to see what we could come up with. Of course with excisting clothing we already had, but that is not a big problem here, since they have a 4 cabinets filled to the brim with clothing, so we came up with this....

Fun or what??

I even bought these retro ponchos a while ago, not knowing that they would be perfect for today...

With loads of bangles and glitters they are off to school like this...

I wish we had those fun activities when we were a child, I can't remember that we ever went dressed up to school!

Does your school now or then do those fun things??

Have a good day,

Sunday, March 25, 2012

For Sale... my old house #85

The current owner of my precious house in Ridgefield sents me a message that she is selling the house again. Moving back to California.

And I must say.. I feel a bit sad.

This house is so great, the location is perfect, right on the lake with beautiful surroundings, garden, nature, just a super house!!

So if you are in the Ridgefield area living and you want to move to a great house, watch the MLS listings!!

Soon it will be on the market!! Here is already a link from

We had a grand time there!!

Maybe I should buy it back??

Hmm.. just a thought...

Have a good day,

Saturday, March 24, 2012

This is sick! #84

Woman marries restaurant chef to become the biggest woman in the world!! Trippin 750 Pound Woman Trying To Be World's Fattest!

I am trying to loose weight (which by the way I am succeeding and already lost 10lbs) while this woman is trying to GAIN a 100lbs a YEAR!!

How sick is that!!

And by the way, she says she is healthy on this video, how can that be??

This couple is out of control, soon to be married, well I hope there next goal is NOT to have children, because this is BAD example for their offsprings!!

It should be forbidden!!

How do you feel about this??

OUTRAGEOUS!! or can everybody do with their own body what they want to do??

Remember when we first started to forbid smoking in public and everybody was against it, and it was up to you if you wanted to smoke. But now everybody is fine with that regulation?? Because they had proven that second hand smoke is bad for you.

Well, in my opinion and it will come down to that in a few years, because the health insurance is sky rocketing and if you treat your body in public so bad, one day it will come to that that we can't eat in public anymore when you are overweight because it is hurting our health insurance premium. So it is bad for everybody..

Watch my words... one day it will come to that!!

How do you feel about this?? Do you think it will come that far??
Share your thoughts with me!

Mireille xx

Friday, March 23, 2012

Master Chef South Africa #83

Do you watch cooking shows??

I do!

Lot's of them!!

And one of my favorites are the Master Chef series, we had now Master Chef Australia, so far it was the BEST, Master Chef USA, but now we have Master Chef South Africa!!

And I love that show!! So fun to see how the local people from Joburg, Capetown and Durban compete with a mix of dishes from their own backgrounds and classics from all over the world. Always an inspiration for me to try new combos as well!

Since South Africa has such a rainbow of different nationalities living here, the food reflects that and that is exciting!

I would have loved to compete in this show, but you have to be 3 months away from home to tape the show... that is a bit too much for me at this time right now... so now I just watch and enjoy the other contestants.

I am starting to see my favorites forming already...

Which one is your favorite cooking show??
Mireille xx

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Somebody that I used to know... #82

Have you ever thought of the fact that you would spent so much time with a person in your life...

and suddenly, he/she is not your friend anymore.

He/she is somebody that you used to know.

Isn't that weird??

At first you hang out all the time, you really know everything from that person and then it is over..

Not even because you had a fight or something, it is just over..

Now he/she is just somebody that you used to know.

This song is about that, and I am totally head over heels in love with this song, it is so beautiful.

Listen to it... and tell me what you think, good or bad??

Gotye - Somebody That I Used To Know (feat. Kimbra) - official video

PS: I like the guy better when he is painted... don't care much about seeing his naked body...

And this video is I guess what started it all, the song above is more beautiful I find, but this video is so cool with all the people working on that one guitar!

"Somebody That I Used To Know"

Now and then I think of when we were together
Like when you said you felt so happy you could die
Told myself that you were right for me
But felt so lonely in your company
But that was love and it's an ache I still remember

You can get addicted to a certain kind of sadness
Like resignation to the end, always the end
So when we found that we could not make sense
Well you said that we would still be friends
But I'll admit that I was glad that it was over

But you didn't have to cut me off
Make it like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don't even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough
No you didn't have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don't need that though
Now you're just somebody that I used to know

Now you're just somebody that I used to know
Now you're just somebody that I used to know

Now and then I think of all the times you screwed me over
But had me believing it was always something that I'd done
But I don't wanna live that way
Reading into every word you say
You said that you could let it go
And I wouldn't catch you hung up on somebody that you used to know

But you didn't have to cut me off
Make it like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don't even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough
And you didn't have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don't need that though
Now you're just somebody that I used to know

(I used to know)
(Now you're just somebody that I used to know)

(I used to know)
(That I used to know)
(I used to know)

Do you have somebody in your life that you used to know??
Would you love to rekindle or re-connect, see if he/she is on FB and find them, and just tell her/him that it is because of this song, or that I told you so!!

Good Luck and keep me updated :-)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Bday prep #81

Next month the girls celebrate their 10th Bday... and we still didn't know any theme or what they wanted to do. But yesterday after a brainstorming session with the girls we do now!

Since we only have 1 Bday to celebrate and both Jasmine and Juliet can invite their whole class, or just the girls from the whole grade that is what we do usually. We have a huge crowd to please!

Last year we had a huge and very WILD party. See here if you can't remember, it was an Xtreme Disco Foam Party! and wild it was because a) there were boys involved and b) everybody jumped into the pool with clothes on, so water dripping in my house after they got cold and a huge mess and piles of clothing everywhere!

So this year, again they want to invite boys and girls, it makes it a bit harder to please both genders, but after some brainstorming Jasmine and me kind of came up with this idea: a PUNK, ROCK & GOTH PARTY!

And this image will be part of the invitation, which I am creating now... We have to give enough time to all the children to get their outfits in order, so I want to send them out asap.

Everybody has to come dressed up either as Punk, Rock or Goth, and we are working on the details for the party now... so 1 month to prepare, book the DJ, hire some lights and other details we are planning to make this party ROCKING!!

Jasmine and Juliet are already thinking of the clothing, hair and make-up.... the rest I have to do, well even the clothing, hair and make-up I have to do.... Oh well, with twins it is at least only 1 time a year that I have a party to plan... and if you know me by now, I LOVE to do that!!

More on this to follow.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Last of the house #80

I am so so behind blogging, because I had either NO Internet connection or VERY SLOW, so uploading pictures was hell! Decided not even to try it anymore... the disadvantage of living in Africa :-(

But I am back and trying to get back into blogging mode this week... I have to do 2 posts a day.

I had one more post left of the pictures of the house, here it comes. I am still working on some areas in my house, and probably they will never finish... you know how that goes. After a while you get comfortable with a bit of mess, I can handle ONE room with mess, and that is my study, huge mess, so NO picture of that. All the stuff I have no closet space for but it is hard for me to throw out (which I should do, because when it is sitting in a box not being used, I can easily throw it out, or give to Khetho for her to sell, so she makes some extra money, but I can't seem to get myself doing it...)

Our TV room, behind the kitchen, we are not much here except to watch TV. And one treat for the girls... when Dirk is not home we eat in front of the TV on this little table, the girls love it, since normally we eat outside on the terrace or at the kitchen table, NEVER in front of the TV.

If you would come to visit us, you would sleep in this room. This is our guest bedroom, with its own bathroom and in a really nice position of the house. On the other end of where we sleep, nice and quite and it has a view on a little private walled in garden. Hard to photograph but trust me this is a nice room!

Since the girls still wanted to share one bedroom, we had one bedroom left over and we made it into a play room, with the girls own TV. The girls are lucky each room has their own bathroom, and this one has a bath and the other a shower, so they can choose :-) Extra mattresses, since the girls have sleep-overs almost every weekend!

First we put 2 single beds into their room, but they ended up sleeping in one each night, so we took the bed from the guest bedroom and put that in their room. Now the girls are happy, still cozy together! I wonder how long that will last. Maybe when we move again in a year or 2 the girls are ready for more privacy...

Master Bedroom, love that we are on the back side of the house, it is so nice and quite and our room opens up to the garden. All rooms almost do, since the house is build in a U shape and the garden and patio/terrace is in the middle. The design of the house is real nice!

Each bedroom has their own bathroom, which is such a luxury when you come from Holland like we do. I mean I have it now most of my adult life, but when I grew up in the Netherlands we had 1 toilet and 1 bathroom for the whole family. I can't even imagine going back to that, but at that time we didn't miss anything... Now we have a shower & bath, so nice!

So now you have pretty much seen the whole house, except a few bathrooms and the study, since it is so hard to photograph these smaller spaces and the study is way too messy :-) Not fun to see a picture of that.

Hope you liked my tour of the Casa!
Ciao, Mireille xx

Monday, March 19, 2012

More of the house... #79

So yesterday you saw the living room, from here you walk one way and you end up in the dining room. It's on the other side of the fire place.

While you are sitting at the dining room table you look straight onto this little space we have outside through glass doors, a little stone garden. It's really a cute view. At night the tree lights up, so it gives a nice cozy feeling :-)

And then from the dining room you walk into the kitchen... the heart of the house! This is where we spend a lot of times and this is the kitchen where I give my cooking lessons. A great space for that! It's roomy enough to seat 9 people.

From the kitchen you walk onto the covered terrace or lapa as they call it here, it is huge. So we have enough space for a breakfast/dining table, 2 cozy chairs to watch over when the kids are in the pool, or just to read a book and a cozy couch for when we are with more people to hang out with.

This set I used to have indoors in my bar area with white cushion covers, but since we don't have a separate space for a bar anymore, which Dirk really misses, we moved this set outdoors and I covered it with red fabric. It looks totally different now.

And while the kids are in the pool, Dirk and me are sitting in our red adirondack chairs sipping a vino and enjoying the view!

Not bad huh?
The rest comes tomorrow...

Mireille xx

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Our house in Dainfern #78

I will show you each day a few rooms, since I haven't taken pictures of each room yet. So yesterday you saw the street, today you will see some of the inside.

Our house reflects all of the countries we have lived in, we have items from Africa, Asia, America and Europe all over the place, so it is a nice mix of eclectic and modern.

The house from the front, it has a 3 door garage, 4 bed/4 bath, TV room, Dining room, Living room and a study where I sit most of the day behind my computer. This room is too messy to take a picture. I don't like mess, so I always collect everything I don't know where to put in 1 room, so I have only 1 room cluttered, the rest is neat and organised.

You enter the hallway through the front door, then a few steps up and you are immediately in the living room. Everything is open.

Immediately from the hall you take a few steps up and you are in the living room. It has doors to the terrace here on the right.

It also has a fireplace that opens up on 2 sides, the other side is the dining room.

I just bought a new carpet, it has small squares of cow hide, I love the colors and pattern. It gives the room a total different feel than the old carpet I had there before. More modern feel to it. Which I like.

OK, this was it for now. Next blog post some of the rest of the house...
Do you like it so far?? Or not your taste??

Ciao, Mireille xx

Saturday, March 17, 2012

The neighborhood #77

I haven't been blogging for a few days so I have to catch up on back blogs...

So I will do a set on my house and the neighborhood, first you will see the outside and then I move indoors. I know many of you want to see how my 'new' house looks :-)

I live in a cul-de-sac and my house is on the left, with the heart on the front door, the white one. Very quite little street, which I like!

Behind our house we have a little park, where people can walk their dog, so no neighbors in the back, which is great you have the feeling that your own garden is much bigger. The bright white fence on the left is our house.

When you walk out of the cul-de-sac you will see this street. Left on the corner is my neighbor's house.

This is the same view but then from the other end, where the little park is, and now my neighbor's house is on the right and the first street on the right is where I live. Not many cars you will see, since only the people who live here or come to visit you are driving here. It is no main street, so that is very quite and relaxed!

97% From the expats I know whose kids go to the American International School live in a secured estate. That means there is a gate/wall around the estate and you have to have either a code or little card to swipe to come in, otherwise they won't let you in. The school busses come to pick up our children up from door to door. The estate we live in is called Dainfern and is the biggest estate with 1800 houses around Joburg. It's a golf estate, so in between the houses you will find an 18 hole golf course with club house, tennis courts, soccer field, play areas and little parks to walk your dog.

Once inside the kids can go and play anywhere, because it is safe! That is important living in one of the most dangerous cities in the world, although we don't feel the danger so much... it is because we live in a secured estate.

But outside many things happen to people you don't want to happen. Living in a dangerous country is always a big step to make as an expat, why would you go there, if your children and yourself could be in danger?? But the thing is because it is dangerous the areas where the wealthier people live are secure, because they make sure it is secure otherwise how could a country survive? So wherever we go there is security, in the malls, around the restaurants, the schools are hard to get in without a sticker on your car that you belong. Security checks are everywhere, so once you go through that security you feel safe!

We hear things that happen to our maids or gardeners, since they don't live in such secured places and yes family members are getting robbed, raped, killed sometimes even just for a cell phone or even less. Although they live fairly closeby in an informal settlement called Diepsloot with corrugated metal shacks without running water and electricity just 5k's down the road it seems it is a world apart. We only go to those areas with escort or combined in cars. Some of us do volenteer work in those areas, and you only go there during the day and never at night! That is where most of our maids and gardeners live.

The 2 opposite worlds almost next to each other is hard to get used to. I wonder a lot of times how they must feel to come and work every day in such opulent neighborhood to go back home to almost nothing, that's how so much crime happens here!

But coming back to my neighborhood in Dainfern, it is safe and fun to live here. There are many many kids from JJ and Jezz's school who live at walking distance. So the kids can play and visit friends without me going to drop them off for a play date, which makes life a lot easier!

Enjoy your day!
Mireille xx

Friday, March 16, 2012

Google... the new daddy? #76

Why does your skin get itchy? How fast does an airplane fly? How do the sun and moon interact? Why does it hurt when you hold your finger in a flame? Why does the neighbor smell so bad? Why are boys so stupid? How do fish have sex?

Do you remember that as a kid you would ask your parents a million questions?

I did and my parents didn't always know the answer.. so they bought me this kids encyclopedia. Every question I had would from then on answered with; look it up in your encyclopedia!

These days kids and also MY kids don't come to us with these questions anymore...

And you know why??


Google is the new daddy! Parents are number 2 when it comes for questions and then the teacher or peers, but kids these days find that Google is the most thrustworthy and the FASTEST!

So if we are lucky, Google will come up with a section: Birds & Bees.. wouldn't that be great?? Although I am not so sure about that?? What if they Google the wrong word?? Or mabye there should be a Birds & Bees page on Google for every age, so it progresses....

Are your kids still coming with questions?? Or is Google the new daddy in your house too??


Think about how the world has changed for us.. even only when you think back to our own childhood, which wasn't THAT long ago?? Was it??

It seems like a century ago! When you compare the technology... scary how fast things go!

We better enjoy our days.

Have a great day,
Mireille xx

Thursday, March 15, 2012

East meets West #75

Dirk is going on a business trip in May and I am joining him... without the girls!

Can you guess which city we are going??

I am excited!!

Just have to arrange a sleep over address for Jasmine and Juliet...

This will be such a foodie trip!!

Can't wait!
Have you been here, and some good tips for me??

Mireille xx

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Moonbasket #74

A while back I bought these lovely crochet votives, and I just put them on my table, they look just great! So when I took the label of the votives and wondered if the company made more of these great items... so I started my research. And lo and behold it is a South African company that gives back to the comunity... even BETTER!!

Then I saw that they have these cute cute lamp shades, aren't these just adorable?? Now I have to figure out where they sell these in Joburg, because the company is based in Capetown.

Moonbasket is a project that was started by Cape Town designer and artist Dani Le Roy. It aims to both support a community-based project and create beautiful items for living spaces.

Le Roy and crochet maniac Laura Summs have created the beginnings of a range of lampshades and other home accessories. Using natural strings and braids, the dynamic team's most beautiful item created thus far must surely be the spiral-stitched ball lampshade.

Using cotton string and jute twine to emphasise the sculptural quality of the stitchwork, the next exciting leap for the team will be into colour. Crochet is one of the few crafts that cannot be replicated by machine. The unique quality of each handmade item produced becomes the most essential part of its luxury.

All components of Moonbasket suspension lighting are fabricated in Cape Town. Craftswomen hand-knit the crocheted patterns that dress the wire frames in Khayelitsha, one of the most troubled townships in the city. All of the women have an existing skill set, inherited from relatives or teachers, which the Moonbasket project helps both broaden and refine.

LOVE this!!
What do you think?

Mireille xx

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Palace of the Lost City #73

Even on holidays we wake up early, so now it was not an exception... 6am we were awake. Luckily for us the breakfast was open from 7am till 11am, so we could go early and immediately after we went to the Valley of the Waves.

A shuttle bus runs every 15 minutes from each hotel (there are 4) to the waterpark.

The garden of the hotel had some funny looking trees, so we had to pose next to them...

This was the hotel garden with a pool, so if you didn't want to go to the waterpark, each hotel had also their own pool, which we mostly went to at the end of the day, when we were tired of the waves....

At 9am the Valley of the Waves opens and we were there just a few minutes after... so as you can see not many people yet, and we had the choice of the best location to sit and relax for the day.

The only slide the girls didn't go on, was this one. It goes straight down!! SCARY!! Maybe next time... Dirk and me didn't dare either :-)

Beautiful blue skies we had, and really hot weather!

Still not that many people while JJ and Jezz are hitting the first waves...

But then an hour later and it is packed with people! Some running for their lives.. LOL

A waterfall at the entrance of the waterpark.

And a whole row of elephants and a cave with a huge lion on top. All part of the theme of the lost city.

At night we went for dinner at the Palace of the Lost City, one of the other hotels here on the grounds... and definitely the most beautiful one!!

Wow, impressive, and the girls and me decided that NEXT time we will stay here!! It was magnificent and the pictures don't do justice to the hotel. It was so ornate and fabled to be the royal residence of an ancient king. The hotel is a fantasy world conjured out of African myth. And is adorned with exquisite mosaics, frescoes, hand-painted ceilings and exquisite furniture. Which we couldn't let by and we had to sit in some of these baroque chairs with real zebra hide, it was fun to feel like a queen for moment, although JJ was so sunburned that the only thing she wanted was to go home, as quick as possible... poor thing!

She doesn't look too happy here...

This is the dining room, it looked impressive and real beautiful but the food I found a bit old fashioned and nothing really special.. a bit of a disappointment. We were the first guests, although the girls were wearing flip flops and they normally don't allow that, but because there was nobody there, they thought better one table than nothing... Later 3 other tables were occupied, not much and lucrative for such expensive hotel!

But we like it anyway... it was fun to dream of our next stay there! Prices run from $600 in low season to $1,200,- to $1,500,- in high season per room per night.

A fun long weekend! And the girls still have the whole week off from school, but they are actually happy to stay the rest of the week home. They are such a homebodies... it's actually a new trend due to the crisis everywhere... a staycation, have you heard of that already?? So the girls are right on track with trends... as usual :-)
Mireille xx

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Valley of the Waves #72

Spending a few days at the Valley of the Waves at Sun City is like being in heaven for the girls!

Being in the water, catching those huge artificial waves, going down the slides called Black Mambo and Viper is fun, fun, fun!

So there is this huge swimming pool which looks like a beach and they create these artificial golf waves, every few minutes this huge wave comes up and the whole pool/beach gets flooded and the waves end up like in a normal beach. But you have to be aware that it is not sand but just a cement floor that is painted from white to darker blue to create the sea effect.

Fun, but you have to be careful to not scrape your bud when the waves take you all the way to the end....

The girls were good in catching the waves, they would go to the spot at the highest level of the waves, where the water is still deep, so they wouldn't be swept away so far by the waves to come to the undeep area. So much fun and anticipation waiting for the waves each time....

A bit anxious waiting for the waves...

How far is it??

We survived!! Each time I had to run to the shore to protect my camera... :-)

Another one is coming!

Whoa... how fun!!

And this went on all day... the first day they stayed at this level, the next day they went into the BIG waves and went all down, but daddy had to go with them first.

More tomorrow!
Mireille xx


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