Friday, April 30, 2010


MAXMOM here...

Hello there everybody!
Today I'm including an extract from my diary.
This blog will be incomplete if I don't include ALL the things that I care about...



Max is lying here next to me on the bed - snoring away. This has become a early morning ritual.  There is something so peaceful about listening to the regular pattern of his and he is ensconced in my fluffy feather duvet.  He is totally relaxed and totally content. He looks angelic and I just adore the chance to stroke his soft fur whilst I drink my tea.

Generally the 'Boss' gets up before me.  He doesn't have an option because Tammy is the first one to want to go out.  Of the four dogs accommodated in our bedroom, she is the most energetic and restless.  She saunters up really close to the Boss's bedside, right next to his face, and then flaps her ears vigorously. It's a rude awakening!

Once this canine alarm clock has been set off there is no more rest for my poor Boss, so he reluctantly gets up , puts the house alarm off and goes off to open up the door for our companions.

Tammy is the first one down the passage, chomping at the bit, whilst the Boss fumbles with the security door key.  She's keen to find out if there are Hadedah Ibises about.  Max gets up too, shakes himself off and pads quietly behind the two of them, followed by King Toffee on his hind legs.

 Aging Tommy will only get up much later when he's emerged from dreamland.

Whilst the Boss makes tea in the kitchen for the two of us, the dogs sniff around the garden.  It's dewy at the moment and they don't really like their paws wet, so they come back into he house relatively quickly.  Let me qualify this...the MALES come back! Tammy-girl has her own agenda... like watching the sun rise and ensuring a feather-free garden.  She's quite a little character!

Now Max lies next to me, fast asleep and totally contented.  He's most definitely not ready to end his fight!  He embraces the world and everything it offers - even his sleep - soaking it up a moment at a time.My angelic dog is totally at peace...alive and pain free.

It's Friday and my heart lifts. My whole family will be home for the next two days and I am happy.


Have a wonderful weekend!
With love

Thursday, April 29, 2010


MAXMOM here...
Hello there everyone!

It is a beautiful Autumn day here in
(Do you like my header?)

The sun has finally emerged after about 5 days of rain.
There is nothing like the sun to lift one's spirits!

SOCCER WORLD CUP FEVER prevails in our city!

 There is a mood of joviality in the shops and on the streets.
 Many cars (including mine) are sporting SOUTH AFRICAN flags attached to their side windows.  Our radios and TV stations are all abuzz with the latest news of the build up to the games.

There are only 42 days to go before the kick-off!!
We are more than ready to receive our guests!
These are the participating countries...

On Saturday we took a trip past the city centre of Johannesburg, only to discover that some of the buildings are decked out in large advertisements for the event...

Street sellers are armed with their wares on almost every intersection...

Even our local ice-rink is adorned with flags of welcome...
Our newspapers are also filled with Soccer World Cup stories...

Today has also seen the launch of the official Soccer World Cup 2010 theme song:
(by Shakira)

...and I am singing along...(oh well, nearly!)

There is big debate at the moment about whether our public like it or not.
I must say..the more I hear it, the more I like it!
...and tell me what you think about it.
Catchy or not?

Besides the building excitement of the anticipated event, life continues relatively normally in our own household.

For my readers who have come from Maxdog's blog, here is a picture for you...

So...are you going to get into the Soccer World cup spirit?...

Which country will you be supporting?

Have a festive day and let the spirit rise!
With love

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


Hello there to all my readers!

We all have times where our mood is sombre or introspective. I make no apologies for this although my post today is NOT meant to be invasive, nor judgemental.....

If a butterfly were to land on your shoulder, how would you react?

I have a feeling most people will simply lap up the moment for all its worth!

 I would bet that very few people would shake it off or take a swipe at it. If a butterfly landed on my own shoulder I would feel awe inspired, privileged and totally enthralled. It would most definitely be a moment to cherish!

I equate this particular feeling to the delicate touching of my soul when a friend offers me a moment "just for me". I truly believe that the greatest gift anyone can give to another person is to simply ‘be there’ in their time of need. A bonus to this gift would be to simply sit and listen to that person’s personal and unique reality...but without judgement and with absolute unconditional acceptance!

This kind of gift is rare because as humans we are so quick to apply our own perspectives, judgements and offer opinions on the lives of others. So, I acknowledge that it would take a concerted effort for the average person to really try to give a person this kind of gift.

Some time ago, I re-adapted a scriptural passage to make it practical for me. It was my personal attempt to quantify and qualify what could be construed as
unconditional acceptance.
 To me it illustrates what I like to call
 “The butterfly touch”...
A gift of true friendship! This is how the passage goes...

“To you, my friend, I will exercise patience and kindness.
I will not be envious of your achievements nor will I boast of mine.
I will not be proud or rude.
I will look to your interests and try not to insist on my own.
I will not be easily angered.
I will not keep a record of your wrongs, but grant you forgiveness in advance.
Neither will I delight in your misfortune.
 I will encourage the good in you and will let the rest die of neglect.
I will rejoice in all truth.
I will always protect you, always trust you, always hope in you and always persevere with you. My love for you will never fail!”

The parameters of this passage are really difficult for the average human being to achieve. It requires a conscious effort to focus on these ideals.
It is something that I personally strive for...although sadly I often fail. This is precisely why I have called it..


Wishing you all a wonderful day with the hope that you might also seek to give another human being a 'butterfly touch'.

With love

Sunday, April 25, 2010


MAXMOM here...
Yes, you've got it!

What better way to cheer a frozen soul than to visit a favourite coffee shop?
The aroma of freshly ground coffee beans and the happy sound of a busy kitchen will stop anyone in their tracks!

We all have favourite coffee shops and mine is the 
(There are numerous outlets here in our buzzing city.)
( you HAVE TO read EACH WORD of this blogpost!...)

Whether I partake in  mouth-watering muffins, plush pies or simply sip on a steaming cup of coffee, the effect is the same...

Since I am currently on a weight-loss programme, my choices are severely and sadly restricted!
I find myself in a battle with withering willpower!. 

Yesterday's jovial birthday celebration, required that I devise, in haste, an ingenious plan to overcome the hurdles of temptation.

Instead of demolishing their offerings, I took to photographing their decadent display of delicious delectables!

On reflection, I realise that I have lost out on nothing!?!
(Yes, I am trying to convince myself!)

But why am I constantly recalling the images and battling with over-active salivary glands?
Oh dear! Is there no remorse in the creativity of bakers!
(They're a nasty lot!)

So in true revenge, I am embarking on an opportunity to get someone else's tastebuds flowing.
(My focus is YOU! This way, I needn't suffer alone! :)

So, dear reader, what will your order be...?

Peppermint Tart, Rich Chocolate Cake or a delicious Carrot Cake?...?

Or will it be Smooth Strawberry Cheesecake that slips down your throat?...?

What about an added muffin - poppyseed, banana, carrot, bran?
Or a scone with strawberries and silky cream?...?

A Hot Apple and Banana pie is definitely worth a try...
...with added cream..?...?

Perhaps you'd prefer the Pecan Nut Pie instead...?...?

Lemon Meringue...will tantalise those taste buds! ...?

Chocolate meringue....?...?

How am I doing?
Are you drooling yet?

Cup of coffee, anyone?
Or perhaps a fruit juice?

Or if it's breakfast time, how about this...?...

Or this?

So there you have it!
Did I succeed in transferring my craving to you?

Either way, I have declared myself
Will-power has won!
...Amidst all the festivity, I silently sipped on a fast cooling cup of Rooibos Tea..!

So what do you think?
Is the Diet done? Has the temptation won?

Did I really win the day?
Or will I dream tonight of cake?...
...light soft cake?....
...on the tip of a cake fork that never reaches my mouth?!

Oh the destructiveness of diets!!!

Friday, April 23, 2010


MAXMOM here...

Throughout time human beings have been fascinated with the heavens. Astrologers, Astronomers, philosophers, poets, scientists and simple ordinary folk have studied stars, asteroids, planets, and galaxies in order to discover the essence of life.

I remember, as a small child in my father’s arms, gazing up to the millions of glittering objects in the sky and him telling me that although I was seeing them, some of them were already gone.

Having grown up on a rural farm it became habitual to stroll out into the cool evenings to watch the stars appear. I would often whisper the childish chant...

“Star light, star bright, the first star I see tonight.
I wish, I wish, I wish I might,
have the wish, I wish tonight....”

On the farm, our skies were clear and free of invasive smog so we often spotted satellites and shooting stars. I remember getting up at 3am one morning (early 1960’s) to go to the highest point in our area and watch a comet that was travelling past. We stood there for ages, clutching warm mugs of tea, with our heads pointed skywards. That comet had a tail stretching right across the sky and it made a huge impression on my young mind.
(Although I do not know its name!)

Nevertheless those special times on the farm gave me a deep appreciation for the vulnerability of my own planet.

Nowadays I live in a buzzing metropolis. It’s difficult to find opportunities to observe these heavenly spectacles. Our cities are lit up and our pollution conceals their presence. Even the fireflies have disappeared - a great sadness for me- because they too rely on their own personal illuminated navigation.

But there are still many things to marvel at. On hot summer days I am often able to observe the most incredible cloud formations. As they build up they are presented as artworks in our skies. I marvel as these angry storms grow and announce themselves with resonant thunder and widespread lightning.

 Later when the storms have dropped all their cargo, the thunder still rumbles into the night leaving me breathless and inspired. Some storms are aggressive and volatile, but many of them offer us magnificent rainbows.

Who won’t stop to marvel at the incredible colours offered by a rainbow?

(Rainbow pictures: Thanks Domonique Rogers)

In January 2007 the residents of our city were offered a unique opportunity to observe an age-old heavenly phenomena. For seven days the comet “McNought” was visible in our skies – either just before sunset or just before dawn.

For a while it was doubtful whether we’d be able to see it in our neighbourhood. I joined up with a small group of people who congregated in the car park of an elevated shopping centre nearby.  This small group met each afternoon to look for the comet. To our delight it became visible, each afternoon, just before sunset.

 How wonderful it was to find such like-minded people, in a busy city, who were marvelling at something so timeless. That heavenly spectacle seemed to bond us all by its very presence. I couldn’t help but marvel at our amazing Creator!
...and thus this poem was born:...


 We clustered together, in mission,
Searching the western skies.
Strangers connected, hopeful
To answer all the cries.

 Hype; contagious, rumour fuelled
Somewhere out there, Unseen,
A call to witness the Artist in action
And glimpse what He’s always been.

 The sky glowed red in Majestic light
As our world gave up its day.
We watched in awe, in silent space
As the Prophetic star pointed our way.

 A Trinity shape, in silver hue
It marked the sunset sky.
We watched; each other, ourselves, the heavens,
Could it be, after all, no lie?

 Plunging through the sky that night
His powerful path, maintained.
Elusive, misunderstood, beautiful Light;
A vision to be framed.

Breathless, the scene was gone,
Our minds, in Unity stained.
The story would be told for years to come-
“Your Call unanswered; then nothing gained!”

(Caryl Moll)
The appearance of Comet McNaught 15/1/2007-22/1/2007

If you really want to appreciate the majesty of our creation, you need to slow yourself down. Remove the mental clutter out of your life, just for a moment and focus on finding this wonder. The beauty of our creation is everywhere. Some of it can be seen under microscope, some of it can be seen in a telescope and some of it is right before your eyes! Just look!
Have a wonderful weekend!
With love

Thursday, April 22, 2010


MAXMOM here...

Hello there to all my readers!

Some of you might have heard this story from me before.
 If you have, please accept my apologies. 
I thought it interesting enough to repeat once more...


I grew up during the 1960's on a small farm in rural South Africa. The narrow farm road leading up to our old farmhouse was littered with natural sandpits, worn down by the tyres of busy farm vehicles.

That sand was my domain and I played in it for hours, experimenting with varieties of interesting patterns and covering myself in its glorious warmth . So you can imagine when one day, to my horror, I found MY sand to be patterned with small conical depressions. My reaction was something like the story of the "Three Bears" although this time I was asking,
"Who's been playing in MY sand?!"

As a young farm child  I usually unravelled the answers to my innocent questions by simply observing the world around me.  Sooner or later they would be answered by nature's natural course. 
As the sun rose that morning so too did the ants. They emerged from underground cavities to go about their daily business and invade my sandpit. These particular ants were well known to me. They were small and brown and did not bite. I left them alone but watched what they were up to. 

As I was watching an ant fell into one of the conical holes. The ant started to struggle but these holes had obviously been carefully crafted. Soon a spray of fine granules was tossed into the air out of the tiny pit. The ant struggled in the unstable sand. I looked on as it was gradually dragged down towards a waiting set of small pinchers. Before I could blink, something had it. The pinchers had taken a firm grip of the ant and they both disappeared into the sandy grave.

I was 6 years old at the time and sat there - riveted in fascination.
This was my early introduction to the world of the ANTLION.

Over the next couple of weeks, I managed to catch some of those antlions. The trick, I eventually learned, was to use a thin piece of grass and quietly tickle the sides of their conicle depressions. It would disturb the sand and prompt the ANTLION to action. Soon it would be frantically throwing sand up from its pit. As this was happening, I would reach in and as gently as possible grab at the sand. If I was lucky, I would eventually find the little creature but I had to carefully sift the sand through my fingers.

 I then placed the tiny captive in a shoe box filled with sand and would watch, delightedly, as it dug its way underneath the soil. I spent hours catching ants and delivering them into the small death traps of the ANTLION.

My glee however didn't last long. After a few weeks the ANTLIONS and their beautifully crafted holes simply disappeared. For years I was baffled about their disappearance.  It was only much later in my life, in the age of encyclopedias, that I discovered the secret of the ANTLION...

The ANTLION, often known as the 'Doodlebug' is resident to temperate climates all around the world. They are creatures in transition since they are, in fact, the pupa of the 'lacewing' (a form of dragonfly).
During their 'ANTLION' stage, they feed primarily on ants, drawing these insects into their deathtraps and then pulling them underground to feed on their juices. These carnivores are quite beautiful with tiny furry bodies and small, neat pinchers.

Once the pupa stage is complete, a grand metamorphosis takes place as they develop into the pretty
Isn't nature amazing!

Not only do the little things in nature provide entertainment and food for thought,
but if you stop and watch, the answers are usually right before your eyes.

Have a wonderful day!
With love

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

INTRODUCING "ZAPIRO"...a South African icon.

MAXMOM here...

Hello there dear readers!
As you know, South Africans are known for their sense of humour!
I am aware that I have many readers who are not resident to my country, so
today I'd really like to introduce you to one of our well-respected local political cartoonists:

His cartoons appear in many of our newspapers and published collections are available from book stores. 
This is his cartoon for today which calls attention to the recent fiasco regarding
A range of his cartoons can be viewed online...

Do go and have a giggle!...

Monday, April 19, 2010


MAXMOM here...

Hello there to all my readers!
I truly hope that this weekend is going to be a wonderful one for you all!


Have you ever been privy to an incident that stopped you in your tracks and left you agasp?

Well I witnessed just one of those moments this weekend when, for a moment,  I was not sure if I should take the incident seriously or succumb and laugh my head off.

My husband and I had opted for some 'retail therapy' yesterday morning.
It was one of those sedate shopping expeditions where one has no agenda except to simply take some time to window shop and enjoy the company of your partner.

Well, 'the Boss' and I were about to board an escallator in a clothing store, when we noticed a neatly dressed women in front of us, in the company of two young children. She was chatting happily to them as we all took our turn at boarding the escallator to the next shopping level.

As the mother and her children reached the top of the escallator ahead of us she seemed to instantly freeze.  There, a little distance in front of us all was a half-dressd mannequin, which was flaunting itself in a pair of jeans. A scarf hung around its neck and I presume the decorator's plan was to cover its two exposed breasts.  Well, the scarf had slipped aside and the woman in front of us found herself face to face with a set of dainty plastic boobs.

Without a second thought she gasped,

"Oh, my G*D!",

...and then rushed up to the mannequin, leaving her two youngsters rooted to their spot. 

I watched, with great amusement, as the women hastily and desperately tried to reallign the scarf on the mannequin so that what she deemed 'un-see-ables' would no longer be exposed.
It didn't take long before she had completed her task and straightened herself up. She primly turned around on her high heels and walked back to her startled children.

"That's better!" she uttered, clearly pleased with herself.

I was so amused by the incident that I later went back to the shop to take a photograph to share with you.

I am sure that this time there were others watching me with similar amusement.

"Strange tourist!" ..I heard them whisper,
whilst I stood there taking pictures of the half-dressed mannequin!

How do you respond to this incident?
I'd love to hear!

Have an awesome day and lotsaluv

Saturday, April 17, 2010


MAXMOM here...

I came across this scene today,
and it got me thinking...

If you are a regular reader of my blogs, you will know that I love to ponder on thoughts and ideas.
Perhaps it's my philosophical nature that prompts me to do this.

 Anyway, the image of this car and its unusual number plate got me reaching for my camera...
...and thinking...!...

I wondered...

What pompted this particular father to buy his child such a smart, cool car?
... fully stamped with a timeless reminder to his child that "Dad" had purchased it ...?....

And then I was reminded of this beautiful  poem....


Remember Me When I Am Gone Away

Remember me when I am gone away.
Gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand.
Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
You tell me of our future that you planned:
Only remember me: you understand
It will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thoughts that once I had.
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than you should remember and be sad.

Christina Rossetti

...and I asked myself...
Don't we ALL want to be rememberred?...

As parents, what extraordinary measures we are prepared to take to touch our children's hearts!

It was just a thought!

Friday, April 16, 2010



Although I am personally not a fanatical soccer/football supporter, I can't help but be pulled along with the tidal wave of excitement enveloping our country!
In a few months/weeks our nation will be hosting the

A cultural practice amongst soccer supporters in this country is to blow,
"en masse", a long, plastic horn called the ..

(Pronounced: Voo-voo-zeh-lah)

When a Soccer match is taking place, the stadium and its surroundings is abuzz with the sound of these 'musical' instruments. The best description I can give is:

 It's like a convention of all the bees on our planet...
...all buzzing at the exact same time!...

The vuvuzela was originally introduced to our nation as a toy for children to blow, but its popularity was only fully realized when it relocated into the hands of local Soccer supporters.

There are many claims to what the word really means,
but more generally it means
 "to pump up ones performance in a truly South African manner."

In my own neighbourhood, the sound of an isolated individual 'practicing' his/her Vuvuzela at 3am can be hugely irritating!
It is enough to turn a generally quiet person into a raging lunatic. 
 I will however admit that the sound itself, when combined with jubilant fans at an important event, can be very appealing to us who are hard of hearing.

Either way, the Vuvuzela is here to stay! 
It will serve to pump up people's spirits in a true South African manner!
We are already practicing....are you!?...

I believe there is a Vuvuzela Orchestra here too, where groups are gathered to play these instruments, in an orderly fashion...(huh?!)

 I also have come to understand that one can  purchase vuvuzelas which harmonise together..(mmm)?

As an experienced mother, I would highly recommend that you avoid the topic altogether with your children...

...that is..unless you are prepared to go "Sleepless in your Sanctuary"!

For a short, informatory video about the Vuvuzela take a look at

 (It is most enlightening...although produced during the 2009 Confederations Cup)

Wishing us all a quiet and peaceful weekend