Sunday, September 28, 2008

Manic Monday

It's Monday already and I don't want it to be! I still want it to be weekend! Why does time fly so fast when you're having fun?

On Friday afternoon we finalised the changes we needed done on our building plans and on Saturday we went to the showroom of the people who's gonna make my dream kitchen a reality! I'm soooo excited! We're still waiting for the quote and I'm afraid it's going to be VERY expensive but I really really want that kitchen so bad! I could kick myself for not taking photos of the kitchens in their showroom so that I could show you all what it looks like! It's really something different - that's all I can tell you for now!

We had such a nice weekend with the kids. We played and relaxed and dreamed of our new home. I didn’t get a lot done creatively, but at least I finished Sharmaine's blog banner at last! I also helped her to give her blog a bit of a facelift. You have to go visit her blog. She is such a talented scrapper! This is what her new banner looks like:
If you - like most scrapbookers do - like fonts, you will appreciate this video. I think it's brilliant!

Click here to watch the video (I got the link from Jan's blog)

Now it's back to work for me! :(

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Out with the old - in with the new!

I got my new car on Thursday!

Here is my old car - an Opel Astra. I really loved this car and it was always only a pleasure to drive.

I was a just a teeny weeny bit emotional about saying goodbye to it, but the new car (Mazda 3 - 2.3) quickly cheered me up!
This car drives like a dream! I know I will have lots of fun driving around in this beauty!
I have to say that I'm so glad that this car buying thing is over now! I've had my share of test drives and comparing specs and thinking and considering and and and! I feel comfortable that I made the right choice and now I can carry on with my life ... and hopefully get some scrapping done!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Michelle Ewart

Look what I got in the post last week! A package with these pretty prints that I ordered from Michelle Ewart's Etsy Shop - MeArtDesign a while ago! Unfortunately she's busy moving house and closed down her shop temporarily.I love this girls style! Here's a better look at the ones that I bought:

Can't wait to get them all framed and hanged!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Children of Africa

Last night was Celine's school concert. The theme was "Children of Africa". The entire concert was so well thought out with just the right music, beautiful costumes and well coreagraphed (well - as well as you can expect of primary school kids at least) dance moves.

Celine is in Grade 2. She looked so sweet with her "stage make-up" and costume! And when she danced on staged I had to wipe a tear or two (ok - it was more - I cry easily!) - it was to sweet for words!

Here's a couple of pics of our own little Dancing Queen.
I stood at the back of the hall - taking pictures using my 400mm lens. Needless to say - I had to do a whole lot of Photoshop work on the stage photos to lighten them up as they came out very dark - that's why they look so blurry.


I've told you about Postcrossing in a previous post some time ago. At first I thought it was a cool idea to send and receive postcards from all over the world. Then I started looking for pretty postcards and believe it or not - I could not find a single postcard for sale in Sasolburg that actually have a picture on it! Only the plain boring old blank ones and who would want to receive that?! Eventually I found some for sale in Parys and bought a whole lot. When I had to sit down and write to the people who were nominated to me I started doubting if this was such a great idea after all. I didn't want to write just any old nonsense, so I googled each of the countries, looking for some interesting facts about their country so that I could write something about that. This was a bit time consuming but very interesting!

Ever since I registered weeks/months ago, I have sent 5 postcards and received 6 from all over the world (Finland, Malaysia, Poland, USA, Netherlands)
I guess my next round of postcard writing will go much faster :)

As if I don’t have enough to keep myself busy with!!!!!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Mamma Mia!

This movie was so great - I just had to do a blog post all about it! I wanted to see this movie ever since the first time I saw the poster. At first I didn't even know that it was THE musical with ABBA's music and all! I've always been a bit of an ABBA fan. When their music was on the hit lists I was a little girl (I was born in 1970) and my sisters used to listen to their music all the time. It brings back all kinds of great childhood memories.

Problem was that I didn't know who would go with me to watch it. My kids was a big "no ways!" and Leon is not a movie fan at all. I've been thinking of asking a friend to go with me but last Friday the solution presented itself out of the blue!
Leon and I went to Pretoria to get his car fitted with some stone chip protection film stuffies. The fitment centre is located in Menlyn - just up the street from Menlyn shopping centre. I'm not a big fan of shopping malls (to say the least!) and Leon (being the macho outdoors type of guy that he is) is even worse! So here were were - in the big city - with a whole day to kill as they told us that it could take up to 8 hours to finish the job on his car!
We hit the mall at just after 8:00 am. All the shops were still closed but most of the restaurants and coffee shops were open. We had breakfast at the Mugg & Bean (yum!) and while we sat there trying to figure out what to do next, Leon suggested that we go to the movies. We had to get up at 3:30 am that morning so we both were a bit tired and he reckoned that if we go to watch a "boring love story or something" he could catch up on a little sleep. I thought it was a great idea and immediately said we must go watch Mamma Mia. We got our tickets for the 9:30 show! Definitely the earliest movie show that I have ever been to!
When Leon saw the movie posters he was "not impressed" to put it mildly. But - that suited him fine because he wanted to catch up on some lost sleep. The movie started and it grabbed me from the start! What a great intro with the girl on the boat in the moonlight on her mission to post the invites to her 3 Dads. Every now and then I looked to see if Leon was still awake and to my surprise - he was! He just couldn't stop watching this movie! He loved the music and the acting and the beautiful story line just as much as I did!
I have always been a Meryl Streep fan. Her acting is always so real! In this movie she took on the persona of her character brilliantly! Wow! What a great actress! The rest of the cast were (almost) just as good! What makes it even more special for me is that it was the actors themselves who sings the songs and even though their singing is not always that good, it is real, which counts much more in my books than perfect singing.
That island on which the movie was made (Skopelos - click on this link if you want to see beautiful photos of the gorgeous place) is sooooooo beautiful and the old buildings are so adorable! I wish I could go there one day. I just may not want to leave there - ever! It looks sooo romantic!

I wanted to dance out of the cinema and the feeling stayed with us the entire day that we had to "walk the mall"! It really helped us to get through the day. We did some shopping and got back to the car at 16:00 - tired but in good spirits!
I told Leon that I think I love him just a little bit more - just because he loved this movie with me! :)
Well done to the makers of this brilliant movie!!!

Monday, September 22, 2008

His and Hers ...

It seems like there might be a bit of a misunderstanding about the V8 (look at the comments on my previous post)

The V8 belongs to Leon! He drives it and pays for the petrol and only let me play with it every now and then. I DON'T put petrol in that animal! Can't afford to!

Here's pictures of what HIS car looks like: (only Leon's car is pure silver)
That's the reason why, even though my heart desires a big old 4 x 4, I decided to settle for a more economical car. A girl has to think about her stash money off course - nothing must come between a girl and her stash!

Since my decision is final now and I can't wait to share the news, I'll reveal the big secret!

The car that I bought is the Mazda 3 - 2.3 Individual! It looks like this (same colour and all):
On the inside it looks like this:
It drives like a dream! And it has a sunroof! I've never really cared for a sunroof but now I can't wait to get my car, open the sunroof and let my hair blow in the wind! :)

Hope they'll have it ready for my by the end of the week.

I know, I know - for a girl who don't care much for cars, I talk a lot about cars these days! This too shall pass. By next month everything will be back to normal and I will be the same old Michelle with nothing but scrapbooking on her mind! :) :) :)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

I'm back!

I'm back in one piece! :)

Feels a bit like I've spent the past few days in somebody else's skin but it's back to reality for me now. My kids are about to arrive back and I can't wait to kiss and hug them as much as they will allow me to (which is not a whole lot these days!). I've missed them soooo much! No big achievements for them in Durban but they enjoyed the trip and the experience which makes it all worth it anyway.

I still haven't received my new car. I changed my mind about which car I want - again! This time I think (and really really hope!) my decision is final. If all goes according to plan I should get my car by Friday only as they have to bring it up from the factory.

In the meantime Leon and I are enjoying his new car to pieces! It's so powerful - nothing like any car I have ever driven! I guess it's expected from a V8 - yes V8!!! - engine with a 6.0 litre engine! And 6 gears to top it!

I didn't have any time to scrap this weekend - not even a single digital lo! :(

But I'm not complaining too much. I had a great time with Leon.

I finished Jacqui's blog banner on Tuesday before I left.
This week I will work on Sharmaine's banner. Sorry for not getting to this earlier Sharmaine! I promise - by the end of the week it will be done!

Although I really miss my creative time, I still feel content with my life at the moment. I have so many blessings that it's impossible not to! I will continue to seek God's will in my life - every single day. Here's another beautiful inspirational thought, doodled by Stephanie Ackerman.My wish for each and every reader of my blog is that you will find true happiness and contentment by actively seeking God's will for you!

Now I'm off to take a warm bubble bath and hit the sack. Tomorrow is the start of a new week and I need to recharge my batteries a little before I'll be able to face it! :)

PS: I promise to catch up on all the blog posts of my blog buddies as soon as I can! Promise! :)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I'll be away for a while

I took the rest of the week off from work. My kids are going to Durban for a National Athletics meeting (their dad's taking them). Good luck boys - hope you come back with lots of medals!

I'm going away with Leon on a couple of personal "missions" that he has to do. We're leaving for Kimberley tomorrow, then Kuruman, sleep over on a farm near Vryburg on Wednesday night, Then back home on Thursday but only to unpack and repack - off to Pretoria, sleep over at his sister on Thursday night. Business in Pretoria on Friday. Back home for the weekend. If all goes well I might just have time to scrap over the weekend.

To top it all - I'm in the middle of buying a new car! I found the right one today. It's not a Pathfinder - actually it's not a 4 x 4 at all but I've made my peace with that. It's a small little nifty car which will be perfect for what I want to use it for. I'm not revealing what it is just yet. Pop over again on the weekend - all will be revealed then! :)

Before I go I quickly want to share some arty finds (click on the image to take you to the various sites - lots of pretty pictures and inspiration there)

Cindy Thornton:

Judie Bomberger:Peter Smith:Rob Scotton - oh my greatness - this guy is talented!In the meantime - have fun - whatever you do. And remember to tell the people dear to you that you love them - all the time!


Monday, September 15, 2008


That's the one and only reason for this blog post - the first one in a week!

I feel totally overwhelmed by life at the moment! Too many things happening and so many things I want and need to do and it feels as if I don't get anything done at all - although I'm busy all the time. Anybody who knows this feeling? Between the kids and work and looking after the day to day things at our 2 houses there's just no time left to do any scrapping / gardening / decorating or even to properly organise my stuff at any of the 2 houses. It feels like we'll never get to a point were we can actually start building and renovating our Parys house either! We've changed the plans so many times now - I think we're back to were we started off (how many months ago did we start planning?)!

Amongst this "organised chaos" that is my life at the moment I know I'm busy loosing the most important thing - I'm loosing my spirituality. I'm so busy that I don't spend as much time with my Heavenly Daddy and this is making me a sad sad person! Yet - my God is still looking out for his lost little sheep! Our ever faithful God have not forgotten me - even though I make time for everything and everybody else. He still blesses me each and every day! I hardly even know where to start counting my blessings but here are a couple of things that I'm particularly grateful for at the moment:
  • Both my boys went on a school camp this weekend. They're back safe and sound with lots of new memories and stories to tell.
  • I feel so guilty for not spending more time with my mom! By the grace of God she is healthy and happy and keeping herself busy all the time. I love you mom! (mental note: I must tell her that I love her more often!)
  • I've started my weight loss journey and I've lost 5 kilos so far. This is already making me feel better about myself. I have my cravings and appetite under control - without the help of any medication. I've really prayed about this and I know that God is helping me on this journey as well.
I just have to share this doodled inspiration (created by the talented Stephanie Ackerman) with you! Seriously - if you haven't done so already - go over to her blog and check out this lady!
This made me think of James 4:8 - "Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world."

And how wonderful this same scripture is described in The Message (James 4:7-10): "So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and he'll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. Hit bottom, and cry your eyes out. The fun and games are over. Get serious, really serious. Get down on your knees before the Master; it's the only way you'll get on your feet. "

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You my dear Lord for your promise that you will never, ever forsake me! :) :) :)

Monday, September 8, 2008


What a weekend and what a day! I hardly know where to start telling you about it all!

I guess the beginning is always a good place to start.

The weekend was so much fun! We relaxed and chatted and ate and relaxed some more - and all of that surrounded by all the beauty that Mother Nature has to offer - right in the middle of the bushveld! The kids had a ball - swimming for the first time this summer. When the water in the swimming pool got too cold - they jumped into the jacuzzi! We really didn't want to leave on Sunday afternoon - only one thing made it worth our while to come back. Here's just a couple of the hundreds of photos I took.

Leon bought a new car last week - a Chevrolet Lumina - and we had to pick it up in Pretoria this morning. Although he's a little under the weather at the moment, Leon was as excited a boy about a brand new (and rather expensive!) toy! The kids didn't go to school and we took the day off from work today cause we all just had to go along to fetch our new car! Needless to say - I had to drive home from Pretoria to Sasolburg all by myself in my car cause they all wanted to get into the new car with Leon!

I have to admit that I am totally exhausted as I sit here typing this! All the excitement of the day really got to me and I can't wait to "hit the sack". I'm sure this insomniac is going to sleep like a baby tonight! :)

But before I sign off I want to say thank you to my Father in Heaven for blessing me with a life filled with blessings from all directions! Leon, my kids, my health, my home, and all the other little and not so little blessings! Thank you so much dear Lord! :)

Friday, September 5, 2008

Casual Day :o)

Today is Casual Day in South Africa. For all my non-SA blog readers, Casual Day is a {FUN}draising project benefiting persons with disabilities. Each year we call upon everybody to dress differently on the first Friday of September and to wear the Casual Day sticker to show their support for disabled people.

This year the theme is “Wake up for people with disabilities”The idea is that you have to wear your PJ’s to work. I have a bunch of fun girls in my office and we all decided to go big with this one – jeans with PJ tops, slippers, lots of pony tails with ribbons (my scrapbooking ribbons of course!) in our hair, false eye lashes, freckles and BIG earrings.

This is what I looked like this morning when I took the kids to school

The kids had to wear “funny hats” to school. Marco decided to stitch flowers and buttons to his hat (clearly a scrapbookers son). He even tried to stitch it himself but in the end mommy had to finish the job.

Michael (being a fishing fanatic) decided to hang all kinds of fishing thingys from his hat with fishing line. Here’s a closer look at my hair do.
And here are all the girls in my office, all dolled up for the occasion! I have to say that I can get used to wearing slippers to work every day – they’re soooo comfy!

We're going away for the weekend!

We're off to spend the weekend with the kids as well as Leon's sister and her family at Modimo-Omfile - a game farm in the North West province of South Africa. I can't wait to just relax and spend time with my loved ones and off course - take loads of photos!

Hope you all have a lovely, peaceful weekend filled with at least one pleasant surprise! ;o)


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Drumroll ...

.... and the winners are .... Sharmaine and Jacqui!! I've done the whole names in a hat thing and took pictures and all but for some reason my computer does not recognise my camera today???!!! So - unfortunately I can't show you the proof but I promise you that the process was fair. :)

It will be an honour for me to design new blog banners for you girls - in fact I can't wait to start!

And the other's who also wanted new banners - don't fear - I have a feeling this RAK might not be the last one! As and when my time allows it - I will do more!


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Blogging Friends Forever Award!!!

Yay! I've been blessed with yet another blog award! This time it was passed on to me by my new blogging friend - the very talented scrapper - Caro! Thanks so much Caro - I really appreciate the sentiment of "Blogging Friends Forever!"The Rules of this award are as follows:
1. I must pass the award on to five people.
2. Four must be dedicated followers of your blog.
3. One has to be someone new or recently new to your blog and live in another part of the world.
4. you must link back to whoever gave you the award.

As I've only been blogging for 2 and a half months now I can't really claim any "dedicated followers" of my blog so I'll have to just pass it on to girls that I regard as blogging friends - and they are:

Kim Watson
Annette West
Brenda O'Reily
Sam Ellis

And then "
someone new or recently new to your blog and live in another part of the world" - this one goes to eilandkind - an Afrikaans speaking expat South Africa who now lives on the Virgin Islands - what an idylic life - you have to check out her site - even if you can't understand a word - just look at the pretty pictures! :)

My mojo is MIA!

Look at this pretty digi layout that my friend Bee made of her little Emma using my Pretty In Pink set!
I suppose it's time for me to do something digi again - something like a freebie maybe?! I just don't get time to design anymore - and when I do have a little bit of time I'm too tired! I will try my best to get something done this week.

If anybody sees my mojo wondering around aimlessly - please send it back to me! I desperately need it back!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Needs and wants

This past weekend was filled with ups and downs for me - emotionally speaking that is.

I'm considering buying a new car. I'm not really "into" the car thing and usually it's rather low on my priority list. BUT my car is getting old and I needed to start looking out for a new / newer one. The only cars that I really like are 4x4 SUV's. Needless to say, they are all expensive and heavy on fuel so I never really considered actually buying one. So, on Saturday, Leon and I started our hunt for a new car for me. We specifically looked at the smaller SUV's but couldn't find something I really liked.

Then, as I was there wondering about all the cars in this rather up-market second hand car dealer, I saw it! The car of my dreams! I never really cared much either way for Nissan and would somebody have told me that I would fall head over heels in love with a Nissan I would have laughed. But - there I was - heart racing, eyes gaping and mouth drooling over this beautiful, beautiful car. It was a Nissan Pathfinder (don't you think it's a great name for a car!)
I can honestly say that I have NEVER in my life felt anything like this over a car! I loved every bit of detail on the car and could already imagine myself driving it. It had an automatic transmission and I've never really like that either, but for some bizarre reason it didn't bother me in the slightest on this car - I even said I think it "suits" this car! Then I took it for a test drive! It felt like heaven! Everything was just so smooth and perfect!

Leon also liked the car and were pointing out all the features. We also discussed the irritating but I suppose important" matter of FUEL CONSUMPTION. He mentioned that it was a rather thirsty vehicle but the entire time I tried to convince myself that "it couldn't be THAT bad!" I loved this car and wanted it with all my heart - and I didn't want to listen to that little voice in my head trying to tell me that it didn't make sense.

Leon is an excellent negotiator and I asked him to handle the negotiation for me. He told the salesman that we are seriously interested in the car but that we will contact him on Monday to confirm if we'll take it or not. When we left I was still a bundle of excitement but with almost every minute that passed reason started returning to my over-emotional self and I started realising that it would probably be the most foolish thing I have ever done if I buy that car. With the fuel price at a record high and interest rates sky high as well as the fact that I have to travel more and longer distances - it just didn't make any sense at all! My heart still tried to argue for a while but I had to accept all the arguments against it. (We confirmed that this was unfortunately one of the vehicles with the highest fuel consumption on the market.)

And so my day ended on a bit of a disappointing note. I promised myself that I will never again allow myself to get emotionally involved with a car. Can you imagine that! Me - little old Michelle who's only interested in pretty scrapbooking stuff and never really cared for more earthly possessions than a safe and comfortable home!. I then started - like I usually do when I'm down in the dumps - to count my blessings. I still have a reliable car that's not so "thirsty". I love my car and I really enjoy driving it. I can still get a couple more miles out of my car and in the meantime I can still afford to buy little luxuries for myself, my home and my kids - which would not have been the case if I bought my Pathfinder.

I guess one have to always distinguish between wants and needs - take care of your needs first, then if there is something left over - spoil yourself a little bit and be satisfied to do without the rest.

However - nobody ever said a girl can't dream - right?! ;o)

New banner and RAK

It's official - today is the first day of Spring!! Some might think "not a perfect Spring day" if you look at the weather today but I know that Spring is here to stay so I don't mind the wind and cold for just a couple of days longer.

To celebrate Spring, I designed a brand new banner for my blog. I want to share my exitement about Spring and decided to give away a RAK. I will design a custom blog banner for 2 people. If you would like a customised banner - leave a "footprint" on this post. On Wednesday 3/9, if there are more than 2 footprints, I will put the names in a hat and pick 2. I will then contact these 2 people to get their preferences and will do my best to design a special blog banner accordingly.