Fambulous 2014!

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What an extraordinary year of family times
2014 has been!P1020946P1050306

I haven’t managed to complete the 100 target,
work has had to fit in around the happy chaos,
but that can be a task for a new year, this has been
the year of so much connectivity
in such a variety of different environments
and joy filled occasions.P1020599
A year of stories and infusions of love.
photo 2
And lots of weddings!
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It has been 365 days of where and when we will meet again.

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The year of the roller coaster,
with all our nearest and dearest along for the ride.P1050629IMG_1993IMG_2476P1060516
It has been awesome…P1020778P1060422
and it continues!P1060356

Thank you everyone,
for a year of the biggest memories
the happiest of occasions
and the best of friends and family, old and new.P1020830P1060364
Great fortune is found in loved ones.
And ducks and dogs too!

 

Creative spaces.

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P1050081Where was I?

I made a promise to myself….

It feels like yesterday that I posted my last blog
and my intention to reach 100 by the end of this year
is looking dubious to say the least.

On the flip side, It has been an explosive year
of change, travel, weddings, new wonders
and new families enriching all of our lives.P1020928
A time of teaching drawing… and learning,10577028_10152625549765429_2186437103023546215_n
10407232_10152625550235429_5105258304854668010_n10343664_10152657479645962_3384019404342406983_n
dovetailing various diverse work types
and challenging new and exciting adventures
in a very hectic medical practice,
as a general ‘pair of hands’.

Busy times both family and solo,
starting a new stock range,P1040347 P1050827
making jewellery, taking photographs,P1040586P1050866
planting miniature gardens…P1050818
doing flowers for events and blackboards for weddings.IMG_2287P1050838 IMG_2281 IMG_2351
Loads of creative energy and loads of epic family gatherings.

We welcome a wonderful new daughter/sister/friend
into our African lives full of surprises,
hopefully nothing too challenging.
Although, Sofia is brave and tenacious
but mostly very brave.P1030943

Also we have welcomed new wives, husbands and babies into extended families.P1020914

Our mother has been weaving wedlock and babies in heaven this year,
4 of her grandchildren married in 2014…
I think she just loves dancing up there!P1050329

Bonus… I can run again.
I love to run… I love the freedom of open spaces
in our beautiful city of Cape Town,
the wind in my face and the unconstrained liberty
that comes with this most freeing of pastimes.P1050537P1050562

It energises and feeds my soul.

So…
I am happy to not meet my deadline of 100,
I am delighted to welcome new members into the family,
I am beyond grateful to have found new ways
to channel my creative energy,
and pleased to have that form of energy
back in my personal stable.

But more than anything,
words sometimes do not suffice
when it comes to gratitude. P1050710

3 years ago I pushed myself to the limit
and paid the ultimate price.
Matter over mind.

I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia
and could not walk,draw, write, drive, concentrate
or use the dominant side of my body at all.
6 weeks of lying flat, 2 years of slow improvement.

Scary times indeed.
Lonely too.
Such a huge learning curve
with regard to the fragile makeup
of our mind and body relationship.

So, never mind that 100 blogs might not happen,
only joy as to what does result from a given day.P1050629

I am so grateful to have
my mobility again,
for my wonderful and supportive friends and family.
Our ever growing family… we are blessed all round.
I am so grateful to have
my creative energy restored once more.
So forget deadlines, forget 100 blogs,
I will never take anything for granted again.

This is one thing I promise.

 

Sleepless in B.A.

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IMG_1867A once in a lifetime recipe.

Amor and more.

Take one feisty organised fabulous Argentinian womanP1030938

 

and one funny gentle flexible South African man IMG_1868

 

and a friendship formed in dubai IMG_1893386663_10151029066645725_702980724_22173530_577693954_n-1 add family and friends from all corners of the earth

and 10 days of festivities
in the most exciting eclectic passionate visually diverse
meat eating soccer playing location

imaginableP1040977

 

Argentina

then drop one word

wedding

 

Pow! Dubai_  2

 

I am pretty close to speechless
(clearly not quite!)IMG_2002

sleepless in B.A.
sleep was not part of the recipe

but fun times wereP1050097
with over 50 guests
from South Africa
and others from America Europe and the Middle EastP1050031IMG_1938 the party lasted for 10 days

P1050041 We mobbed the city by day

we walked
took a bus
ran
took a taxiP1040926

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and by night walked and talked
wined and dinedP1050099IMG_2085 taxied and bussed some more

stopped and stayed for hours in one place
with lots of other revellers
we got to know our wonderful new family
and their all embracing friends
and they got to understand a bit about usIMG_1993 all this and more

culminating in a wedding beyond magnificent
perfectly organised to the final detailIMG_2107
with the first dance a fusion
of tango and African gumboot dance
(thank you Johnny Clegg for ‘Impi’)IMG_2070 way beyond magnificent

a never to be forgotten eventP1050224
thank you Sofi and James
Dadour and Lili
Clari Lucas
and Edu
P1040914 P1040916
with smiles
and gentle and generous ways
and zero evidence of any stress at all
you made magic and miracles happen
in magnificent Buenos Aires.
P1050244

It’s arrived!

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P1040608I am constantly amazed
at the extraordinary ability of a tiny camera
to capture minuscule details of life around us.
Things that our eyes struggle to see are caught in a wing beat,
This is when I love technology the most.

 

But I guess we are living in a time of
nano technology, as everything around us
becomes more compact and compressed.
Except spring flowers, they are larger than ever!

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I was in my favourite garden (again…!)
And found a multitude of our indigenous fynbos (our very own floral kingdom)
bursting into new life, after a harsh Cape winter.

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See if you can spot the beetle pretending to be a stamen on a Silver tree flower.

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P1040590The insects know it is spring.

Time to say no more, just attach some of my favourite
spring bursts of energy, plants and animals in unison.
Yay to warmer weather and longer days!

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And I think to myself…

Sunday Cape.

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This is my Sunday Best revisited.
Only this time, with pictures of Jonkershoek Reserve
on a perfectly beautiful day,
walking for loved ones.

With gratitude and love for a life well lived.

P1040462A Yellowwood tree old and knotted but still with green shoots in parts.

 

P1040385The valley and well worn pathway.

 

P1040451A Sugarbush passed it’s prime but magnificent in Sunday wear.

 

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A Featherhead bush.

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(Unidentified but magical plant growing on a sheer rock face. Will get back to you on that name!)

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A Gecko, sunning itself on the rock.

 

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A Blue Sugarbush.

 

P1040486 The most regal Arum lily.

 

Why we need funny.

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Unknown He made us cry.
He made us laugh.
And he made us cry with laughter.
He was Robin Williams.
I am sad that he has gone.zzzzzzzzzz

This morning got me onto thinking about why we need funny in our lives…
Why I have a sense of huge gratitude, but see the bitter irony
of a profoundly funny person who suffers the deepest darkness of all.
Depression and sadness, humour and mirth,
“Dead Poet’s Society” and “Mrs. Doubtfire”.images
Polar opposites.

Why do we need funny?
I think it’s the extra oxygen that brings a spark of life to
every living cell in our bodies.
Hackneyed as it is, Laughter is ‘the best medicine’Robin_Williams_Wallpaper-

Even the word ‘laughter’ shimmers when I read it, it promises respite
from all that is ‘regular’ and all that is sad in this time on earth.

Thank goodness for funny,
Thank goodness for the sharp intellects but often profound depressions
that seem to go hand in glove with the people who sparkle up our lives,
make our sides ache with such over-filled lungs as to burst,
leave us crying with laughter
and then leave us.P1040326

Rest in peace Robin Williams,
I suspect St.Peter might request a ‘selfie’ with you.

Rainbows, with a lot of pink.

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Phew!
This week, my rainbow Cape Town has been in the pink.

So much happening, such busy times!
This week has been explosive with all things new and exciting.
New work, new family, which comes with a new home.
New holes in the garden, new leaves on the trees,
New Women’s day Walk,
and so the week has unfolded.P1030987

So much newness, it has been difficult to absorb it all.

We have had wild winter storms
but today we sit in glorious sunshine.
Is this a little hint of spring?
A new season, in every sense of the word.

Birthday Tea on Tuesday morning was an extraordinary event.
Driving 30 Kms from Cape Town in torrential rain,
we wound up in an industrial area surrounded by vast warehouses.
Under cover of umbrellas we dashed into one of the huge spaces,
unsure of what was in store but with every intention
of celebrating the big Birthday of an amazing woman.P1030881

‘Boeresjiek’ startled us all.
The perfect venue to party with Jacqui, the most gentle
and feminine woman I have ever met.P1030887 P1030889
The table was dressed to compliment all of those qualities.
Girltime taken to a new level!

And so it was that the week was crowded to capacity
with memorable events and moments, and life events,
Highlighter pen times, so many as to bore any readers…
I won’t do that, but I will thank the universe
for delivering spring abundance in the form of
all the pieces of the week fitting together smoothly.
Thank you for that!

The Women’s Humanity Walk was the last piece of puzzle
that needed to fit in without hiccup, and so it did.
This was the brainchild of Nancy,
the founder of Woman Zone Cape Town.P1040033 P1040085

Without doubt one of the most joyous events in a while for Cape Town,
the mother city came to that party in a way that should
make us all so proud to be a part of the beautiful complexity
and diversity that is ours to celebrate.P1040120

It was a walk to rival the best,
beginning at St. George’s Cathedral
and finishing at Artscape theatre.
The happiness was palpable. P1040070P1040113
So many women from all walks of life,
all corners of the broader Cape Town area,
all colours, religions, nationalities, young and old
they were there, walking and talking and moving as one,
escorted by Police cars and motorbikes,
marshals and onlookers.P1040092

Under perfect African skies
and wonderful just-right temperatures.
The singing and dancing on the steps of the theatre
were there to greet us as we all arrived,
with a Marimba band, compare and many more smiling
men women and children.P1040223

And oranges, for everyone to eat.P1040212

The Arch(as he is lovingly referred to) was there.
Desmond Tutu spoke with humour and humility
on this wonderful Women’s day.

He spoke about the women in his world, starting off by
explaining that he was wearing his dress for the occasion!P1040274
It fitted him just perfectly.

Thank goodness we still have leaders with energy and integrity.
And thank goodness for Women.P1040289
A belated Happy Women’s day to all.

With love.

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Today is Sunday, but it is forever Mumday.
Two years ago on this day, our Mother and Grandmother passed away.90

A strong, devoted, loving, selfless woman with the biggest twinkle
in her cornflower blue eyes.

Judy led by example and taught so much to so many people,
giving of her time, skills and love throughout her full life.P1030879

Mum was a master weaver, spinner, knitter and creator of marvels,
masterpieces in cotton, linen, wool, wood and many other tactile mediums.
A colourist and dye magician of extraordinary proportions.

Such a big life, that of mother to many,
confidant and friend, teacher, grandmother
so very many lives have been affected by her skills,
love, energy and compassion.

Mum was always humble, always generous, always self-effacing.
Always thinking of ‘other’, she never wanted to disturb.

What large shoes to fill, is it possible
to travel through this life half as graciously as she did?

I’m not sure.
But she has left a vast tapestry of life skills for certain,
and a worksheet to follow.IMG_1769

The stories of life.

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P1030839Yesterday I had the privilege of celebrating a milestone
birthday with a friend who has been a part of my life
for 30 years.
Thirty years! Wow!P1030804
It was a cold wintery morning, the rain was cascading off the mountain
but we were warm and dry and the happiness was palpable.
Brunch was served with pure love, gentle conversations
and deep respect for this wonderful woman.

Nan and I have painted together for years, laughed and cried together
and been witness to the roller coaster ride which is invariably
part of our life’s journey.
She has other disciplines alongside her creativity,
she is a doctor, teacher and spiritual councillor.
Also a loving mother to 3 adult children.
She is an extraordinary woman.

But then there are so many extraordinary women
and daily I am discovering that if we take the time to listen,
stories of monumental proportions start to shine out
through the gaps in women’s armoury.wz_invite_women13july

Stories…
Something we women generally do well.
Listening is often more difficult, but this has become the essence
of the 13 Women Series, an exciting initiative
launched at the start of this year by newly founded
Woman Zone http://womanzonect.com
a Cape Town based NPO, brainchild of yet another remarkable woman.
A woman of intelligence, integrity
and so much empathy… making a difference to so many lives
by bringing this dream to reality.

 

P1030611
Once a month, on the last Saturday of the month,
one Capetonian woman is given a forum within her community
under the Woman Zone banner,
to tell the story of her journey in life. Being a woman in Cape Town.

 

 

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This is followed by rich conversations and much needed tea.
I cry every time.
Emotional me!P1030650

Yesterday sadly I missed that story.
I was brunching and listening elsewhere to another woman.
Nan spoke from her heart, told her tale
with strength, honesty and deep emotion.
Once again it was inspiring to hear how women soldier on,
often in such difficult circumstances.
It doesn’t matter which side of Table Mountain
the sharing is happening, it is happening!
The importance is in the concrete support,
the strength similar to flying buttresses,
that connectedness brings to all our fragile lives.
And so we laugh again, released by the story sharing,
aware of the importance of the telling,
the good and the not so good.
The laughing and the crying.

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On Woman’s Day, 9 August, there is a Woman’s Humanity Walk in Cape Town,
once again under the Woman Zone banner,
where more stories of life will emerge and women will come together,
this time to walk and talk, maybe laugh, maybe cry but talk for sure!
Will you join in, as a woman of Cape Town?

Crying and laughing, the circle of life’s journey.
It’s what we women do well.

Sunday best.

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As a child growing up, ‘Sunday Best’ usually referred
to our church clothes, all the smartest favourites
that came out of the cupboard with anticipation and glee.
I loved the dresses and frills, they made my heart sing, even
louder than my church voice.

These days, Sunday best has modified, now it is my running apparel
that I pull on in the dark, before bouncing out of the house
with just as much glee as that little girl did,
clad in all her frilly dresses, best shoes and high hopes.

Sunday runs are special for a few reasons, the company is always wonderful,
conversations stimulating, generally lighthearted, and invariably with those
who have shared more than just running tales, these are rich friendships.
These are people I love, a lot. IMG_6524

We run all over the peninsular, watch the sunrise in Seapoint,
the waves pound in Muizenberg and the clouds swirl and twist
around the mountain that acts as my anchor and compass,
Table mountain.
From Constantia greenbelt to Newlands forest, all our runs are extraordinary, memorable and addictive, who wouldn’t want to start the week this way?IMG_6371

So today, as we rubbed the sleep dust from our eyes
and bravely launched into the early morning rain showers,
we made our way around the most uncommon of commons,
an area steeped in heritage and history, wild flowers and wildlife,
Stone pines and grasses.P1030733
Known fondly as ‘The Common’ to those fortunate enough to live within it’s reaches,
it is today dotted with vast puddles, little clusters of early blooms
and not too many early adventurers.P1030751

As we traveled through Mowbray, Observatory
and then back to Rondebosch Common, our finery started to come off
and was tied around our waists, the rain had stopped and we were warming up.

 

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On this quiet Sunday morning in a ‘church’ of a different kind,
I said a little gratitude prayer,
for the rich beauty all around us, the legs to run and eyes to see,
the company which as ever was inspiring,
and for the mother city and her extraordinary inhabitants,
her ever changing mountain,
and her ability to never looks the same twice
but always to startle us with her Sunday Best.

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