"let your boat of life be light, packed with only
what you need - a homely home and simple pleasures, someone to love and someone to love you,
enough to eat and enough to wear
and a little more than enough to drink:
for thirst is a dangerous thing"

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

how to spend R700 without really trying...

I did a small cosmetic shop at Clicks the other day (although a shop there is never small or cheap).  I needed a new foundation and basically everything on my dressing table was standing on it's head.  Over the last couple of weeks I have been hearing about this new fantastic "BB Cream" from Bobbi Brown (or Estee Lauder or Mac).  Everyone seems to be talking about them and I have had to keep quiet (not usually like me) because I did not know what a blooming "BB Cream" was (it does not stand for Bobbi Brown).  So after seeing a couple of these creams on the shelves at Clicks, noticing that they were pretty cheap, contained a SPF of 15 and working out for myself that it was basically a "tinted moisturiser", I bought myself one from Sorbet (which I did not know they sold at Clicks).  I opened the box when I got home and read the instructions.  Nowhere on the box or in the instructions did it tell me what "BB" stands for.  So I was still in the dark.

Thanks Wikipedia for this:-

BB cream stands for blemish balmblemish basebeblesh balm (apparently because of a trademark in Korea on the word "blemish"), and in Western markets,beauty balm. It is a cosmetic item sold mainly in East and Southeast Asia, although larger beauty brands are increasingly introducing BB creams to Western markets.[2]
BB cream is promoted as an all-in-one facial cosmetic product to replace serum, moisturizer, primer, foundation and sunblock.[3] It can be worn alone as a tinted moisturizer, over serum and moisturizer as a regular foundation, and under powder, depending on the desired amount of coverage.[2]
More here

I have now tried it - I must say for R99 it is a whole lot cheaper than my usual foundation and it feels nice and light on my skin.  

Next, another arb bit of shopping information and cosmetic enlightenment:-

Argan Oil 

Dalene has been speaking about this Moroccan Argan Oil which you get at the health shop and is wonderful to use under your night cream (I don't have a night cream, I use Baby Bottom Cream, remember).  On visiting Kathy's bathroom the other day I saw her shelf filled with all lovely different blue containers of "Moroccan Argan Oil".  I did not have my glasses on but, once again, I was feeling slightly left out of this "Argan Oil Conspiracy" between my sister and my best friend.  I dipped my fingers into the jar, it smelt rather nice and, as I was heading home and to bed soon, I decided to dot some under my eyes (and rub it into my hands and arms (and neck)).  Mainly because of the smell, because I am honest and the greasy look around my eyes, I confessed to Kathy and asked her where she had bought it.  "Oh" says she (with a smile on her face) "the one in the tub is the hair conditioner" and she had bought the entire range of hair products in America.

So after my little shop at Clicks (I did not see any Argan Oil there) I headed to the health shop and bought myself a sample size of this "miracle" oil for R55

I tried it last night.  To get three drops out of the bottle I had to shake it so vigorously it definitely will be toning my upper arms as well.  This morning my eyes are so sunken in my face from lack of sleep (awake from 3.30 to 5 chatting to Matthew and playing Bubble Shooter (confession and don't start - It is pointless and addictive - 120124 points my record) on my new iPhone (some stories to tell there) that I can certainly see no overnight miracle.

So, sorry for those of you that I have bored because you already know what a BB Cream is and have been using Argan Oil since it first came to SA in 2008 (why didn't you tell me?) but for the rest I hope you have found this information educational.  I still don't know whether it is a Blemish Balm or a Beauty Balm (and what is "beblesh")

I am off to shower now, to use my new Nivea "In Shower Moisturiser" and Aussie "Miracle Frizz" Shampoo and hair masque.  I can forget about my usual moisturiser while I rub in my BB Cream and I will use my new chocolate and orange flavour "Rumpy Plumpy" Lip Plumper (I kid you not).  Made by "Dirty Works" (good clean fun).

Who can resist the packaging? (Not I).

Maybe I should also test the new "Safeway Electronic Digital - Up to 150kgs Scale" at the reduced bargain price of R259.  Maybe next Monday.....

Friday, 25 October 2013

the sweetest thing

Busy times, quiet times.  I cannot believe it is Friday again.  We don't get much news from Matthew in Hong Kong - a couple of emails have been shared with the family and this one that I received on my phone today, had to be shared with you all.

Matt has been doing some relief teaching over the last two weeks.  I think it must have been his last day today and this was the card he received from his class.

Mr Matt - isn't it just too sweet?  Made my day.  Teachers must be in the profession for something.

Monday, 14 October 2013

sunday thoughts

Yesterday, a lovely and chilled Sunday at home, quite a bit of kitchen activity and, because Nic had closed his door to study and, more than likely, had earplugs in his ears, I thought it a good time to put on the radio to Golden Oldies Sunday.

I remember hating, with a passion, the music my mother played on Sundays. It gave Sunday a real Sunday feeling and Sundays never used to be my favourite day of the week.  Not sure why but everything was too quiet and the sound of my mom's Sunday request programme was enough to make the day even more morbid. Que Sera, Sera, My Way and Moonlight Serenade.

So here I was in the kitchen, repeating history and listening to songs that I don't know the titles to but know all the words.  Every week you are guaranteed to hear a certain handful of songs and Elton John singing Daniel is one of them.  As it played yesterday it brought back a flood of memories.

1974 - 15 years old.  My first disco in the Masonic Hall in Newlands, my first proper slow dance and kiss. The boy, his name was Clem (my aching nerves). He was in matric and drove a dark green mini to school. He was pretty cool. That weekend I was floating, I sung the song over and over in my head and relived the kiss.  I was in love and had a real boyfriend (one whose name was not on my pencil case) and I could not wait to get to school, tell my friends about this older boy and smile at him on Monday. 

On Sunday my best friend's older brother came around to visit. He knew everything that went on at school and told me that Clem had a very steady older girlfriend who was away and that he had kissed three other girls after I had left the disco on Friday night (at 10 o'clock).  

I retreated to my bedroom, sad and embarrassed.  What would I do when I passed him in the corridor at school?  Could I miss school on Monday? (Not much chance with my mother).  How many people saw me kissing him?  

Sunday requests playing from the kitchen added to my misery.

Yesterday listening to Elton John singing Daniel, I had to smile as the memories of that weekend flooded back.  I did not think too much about Clem, my first kiss and my broken heart.  I thought about my mother and wondered what she was thinking about when Que Sera Sera belted out from her portable radio on Sunday mornings.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

to share or not to share

I found this link on Facebook early this morning.  I have read it and re-read it. I have been sitting at my computer for ages now wondering if it is a story that I should "share". It, for some reason, does not feel like the right thing to do. Is sharing it now on my blog the right thing to do?  Better option, I think and I am doing it only because this story has made me think and has made me cry.

The body of Rosemary Theron was discovered this week.  She had been missing since March.  I don't remember reading anything in the papers or hearing anything on the radio about a mother of three from Clovelly going missing at the time.  You now know the rest of the story.  Her daughter, her then boyfriend and an accomplice have been arrested for her murder.  The papers have been full of stories this week.

The story I want to share was published by Mahala last month, before Rosemary's body was discovered. Mahala is a great publication to which Nic subscribes.  The magazine used to arrive here and I would page through it. Some great articles but also a lot of "young stuff" which goes a bit over my head.  I think it is now only available online.  

Read the article here but read the comments as well.  This is where the tragedy comes in.  

I think that the article was well written.  Christopher Clark wrote it as he would a blog post.  It was not intended to be a news article.  It was his view. The fact that Rosemary's body and murder has come to light in this last week changes the whole story.  The comments of both Richard and Gareth are heartfelt and makes you see the whole tragedy from a different angle.  Her friends are hurting.  Was Christopher out of line?  I don't think so.  

Who are we to judge and who gives us the right to?  But we do.  We read the newspaper article and in our heads we immediately form our own opinion of mother with three children from different fathers who dresses like a hippy and works as a clown.  We are only unknown, inquisitive voyeurs looking in from the outside.  

There is another story here.  There are so many stories.

I feel so sad.

RIP Rosemary - I was guilty of making up my own story, I know nothing. Your death has taught me something today

Thursday, 3 October 2013

i only had two glasses of wine (and other stories)

The Telegraph in the UK published an article this week about the larger portions that white wine drinkers poured themselves.  Read here.  All quite technical about the colour of the glass and the wine, the width of the glass and the contrast in colour between the wine and glass.

Nothing new for me there.  Nothing I never already knew and reading it is not going to change anything either.  However, I was wondering why this new Helderzicht Chenin is going down so well.  It is almost the colour of water, it looks really good in a large wine glass and sometimes I only need two glasses to almost polish off a bottle!

"When pouring white wine into a clear glass they were found to pour nine per cent more than when pouring red, which had a greater colour contrast to the glass.  They also poured around 12% more wine into a wide glass than a standard one."

"One person's two is totally different than another person's two. Participants in the study were asked to pour the same amount at each setting, but they just couldn't tell the difference."

This is the most brilliant graduation speech which has gone viral.  It is worth watching when you have 11 minutes to spare.

To tie everything together, I remembered this song of his (I think I may have used it before (sorry)).  Lovely words, not quite Christmas but makes drinking white wine in the sun and getting the family together for Christmas sound oh so wonderful and who really cares about the portions poured or the size of the glass?

I really like Christmas
It's sentimental, I know, but I just really like it
I am hardly religious
I'd rather break bread with Dawkins than Desmond Tutu, to be honest

And yes, I have all of the usual objections
To consumerism, the commercialisation of an ancient religion
To the westernisation of a dead Palestinian
Press-ganged into selling Playstations and beer
But I still really like it

I'm looking forward to Christmas
Though I'm not expecting a visit from Jesus

I'll be seeing my dad
My brother and sisters, my gran and my mum
They'll be drinking white wine in the sun
I'll be seeing my dad
My brother and sisters, my gran and my mum
They'll be drinking white wine in the sun

I don't go in for ancient wisdom
I don't believe just 'cos ideas are tenacious it means they're worthy
I get freaked out by churches
Some of the hymns that they sing have nice chords but the lyrics are dodgy

And yes I have all of the usual objections
To the mis-education of children who, in tax-exempt institutions, 
Are taught to externalise blame
And to feel ashamed and to judge things as plain right and wrong
But I quite like the songs

I'm not expecting big presents
The old combination of socks, jocks and chocolate's is just fine by me

Cos I'll be seeing my dad
My brother and sisters, my gran and my mum
They'll be drinking white wine in the sun
I'll be seeing my dad
My brother and sisters, my gran and my mum
They'll be drinking white wine in the sun

And you, my baby girl
My jetlagged infant daughter
You'll be handed round the room
Like a puppy at a primary school
And you won't understand
But you will learn someday 
That wherever you are and whatever you face
These are the people who'll make you feel safe in this world
My sweet blue-eyed girl

And if my baby girl
When you're twenty-one or thirty-one
And Christmas comes around
And you find yourself nine thousand miles from home
You'll know what ever comes

Your brothers and sisters and me and your Mum
Will be waiting for you in the sun
Whenever you come
Your brothers and sisters, your aunts and your uncles
Your grandparents, cousins and me and your mum
We'll be waiting for you in the sun
Drinking white wine in the sun
Darling, when Christmas comes
We'll be waiting for you in the sun
Drinking white wine in the sun
Waiting for you in the sun
Waiting for you... 

I really like Christmas
It's sentimental, I know...