Monday, April 26, 2010


We watched the movie Invictus this weekend. [it's a story about the rugby world cup in South Africa in 1995 and how South Africa won] The movie centres on rugby but told from the perspective of the rugby team captain and also Nelson Mandela.

Nelson Mandela is one of my all time heroes. A dream I have (which will be realised in heaven) is to meet him. He is a giant among men. A man who endured 27 years of deprivation, hardship and torture in jail, separated from his family and friends and then came out of prison preaching peace and forgiveness.

The movie was incredible. Because I lived that era. I was there. I lived through the change and the fear and propaganda.

Nelson Mandela is a man who has always been part of my life. I am a child of apartheid, growing up in the thick of the struggle for freedom. As a child the state propaganda said that he was a demon, an evil killer who would wash the country in blood. I remember an incident when I was 13 years old. I had a discussion with my friends about the worst thing that could ever happen. Yup, the release of Nelson Mandela was the worst thing we could imagine. The so called evil of the "swart gevaar" [black danger] was entrenched in our thinking.

As I grew into adolescence I began to see things for how they really were. When I was 18 years old a referendum was held to vote yes/ no for change. To move towards democracy or not. One of the defining moments of my life was walking into a school hall to cast my vote. I walked past chanting placard holders from the Conservative party, warning us against voting yes. And as I cast my vote "yes for change" I was so proud. I was part of the change, part of the start of reconciliation.

Afterwards I admit that the release of Nelson Mandela was a fearful time. None of us knew how he would react as he had been hidden from the world for so long. If he had come out of jail preaching vengeance there would have been a civil war. And some would have said rightfully so. But he didn't. He preached peace.

The movie shows the struggle for forgiveness among ordinary people. People who because of the colour of their skin had been persecuted and denied basic human rights for so long. But they overcame.

I believe that God orchestrated those defining years as South Africa was reborn. An amazing book about the hand of God in the first free and democratic elections is Michael Cassidy's book, "A witness for ever". South Africa should have had a civil war by now, if African history is anything to go by. But she hasn't. God has prevailed!

I get so angry at the negativity among the South African community here. I admit that as a family we lived without a mugging, attack or murder. We are blessed in that regard. But South Africa is to be celebrated. She has emerged from oppression into the light and God has brought her through.

This is the poem that Nelson Mandela gave Francois Pienaar in preparation for the rugby world cup. It gave him strength in prison and inspires me.

Out of the night that covers me

Black as the pit from pole to pole

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul

In the fell clutch of circumstance

I have not winced or cried aloud

Under the bludgeonings of chance

My head is bloody, but unbowed

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

Looms but the Horror of the shade

And yet the menace of the years

Finds, and shall find me, unafraid

It matters not how strait the gate

How charged with punishments the scroll

I am the master of my fate

I am the captain of my soul

William Ernest Henley

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Things I did not realise I do...

I am taken by surprise when my son mimics the (obviously odd) little things I do. I see him doing them, think "oh how cute!" and then catch myself doing them later..... and realise that he's just copying me. And he's a boy, which has made the mimicking unexpected in a strange kind of way.
Some of the odd things I do:

  1. I breathe very loudly when putting makeup on.

  2. I sigh (again loudly) when driving.

  3. I make an "aah!" sound after taking a sip of water. (How annoying that must be to other people???)

  4. I say "Mmmmm" a lot

  5. I wave my free hand in the air and walk around when on the phone.

  6. I don't point something out once, I tap it a couple of times.

These are only the things I can remember (with my switched off/ on holiday brain at the moment). He's a mini-me! And the question I ask myself is what else is he picking up on? A scary thought!!!

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A golden day

I had a wonderful day on Saturday! When a day is extraordinary I call it a "golden day" and Saturday was one and more!

It started with my baby shower. Woohoo! My last babyshower was so emotional and the birth families came and everyone was still raw so it was hard. It was such a milestone that when it was done I was shattered and just grateful it was done.

This one was very different. Super relaxed at a cute little cafe (just my style). Organised by my amazing friend M, it was everything I could have hoped for. I was surrounded by old friends, new friends and family with divine coffee and food. Just wonderful!

My wonderful friend L and I

My sister N and Amy. Love new friends!

Amazing M and Amy (once again)

My lovely family- my Mom and Penny

Simoney and her adorable little Princess

Then it was off to my friend L's combined 30th and baby shower. This girl is a gem. She's completely transparent and totally honest. What you see is what you get. I love that. Combine that quality with loyalty and kindness and I can't help loving her. She lives in London now so having her at my baby shower and being at hers was truly special.

Gorgeous L opening my presents

After that I had my gorgeous little nephews second birthday. He had a "wacky wheels" party. Super cute! Ben is adorable and very handsome, love him!

The birthday boy himself

Rupi and the hubs- note the intense concentration, driving is serious business!

A blessed day, a day out of the ordinary. I loved every moment!

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Thursday, April 15, 2010


This week's been huge so far. Met with the accountant and he worked out what my little company needs to do to buy my business partner out. All I can say is GULP!!!! But God is bigger and I trust the accountant and my husband. It's good long term for us even if it's hard right now.

I also worked a couple of days helping a friend who owns a construction company. They are super busy and I was designer/ admin girl. If you work in administration you have my greatest respect! It's hard work, no two ways about it!

But in the busyness and emotional stress I had a little gem of a revelation....

I am an immigrant and moved to New Zealand when I married a New Zealander. I was alone for about 7 or 8 years until my parents and youngest sister moved here. In those years I ached for my family and the separation was hard. We all knew that to be with one another we would have to do a minimum of 23 hours air time alone. We were thousands and thousands of kilometers apart.

I count the kms for work trips and so this week clicked the meter to zero and set off for my mothers house. She was going to babysit my little man for me while I worked. I looked at the odometer when I arrived at her house and tears came to my eyes.

She lives only 9.5km away from me. 9.5km. That's it. If we need one another and want to be with one another, we can get in the car and be there within 15 minutes. 15 minutes!!!! Slightly better than a good 36 hours of travel!

I am soooo grateful. God reunited all of us. Both my sisters live near me as do my parents. How wonderful is that? Instead of skyping and emailing and cramming time together when we can, we are able to be spontaneous. Get together "just because". I am so blessed!

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Monday, April 12, 2010

I heart my husband

I adore my husband. To know him is to love him. He is a people magnet and everybody loves him. Me? Not so much! I can appear aloof and a bit snobby but I am just shy. He always appears as he is- warm and friendly, like a cosy blanket.

He has been endlessly supportive through my pregnancy. Through the very hormonal, irrational and sometimes insane moments he has just loved me and waited for me to see sense. He has continually told me that I look beautiful and I have believed him never feeling fat or ugly at all.

He is an amazing Dad and Rupi also adores him. Our favourite moment of the day is when we hear his car put into the driveway. We cram ourselves into the doorway and have long 3-way hugs and kisses. Rupi is then attached to his Daddy like a limpet for the evening.

He told me this weekend that he didn't want any pictures of Baby Girl taken in hospital. He did not want Rupi to feel like Baby Girl had something he didn't. After pausing for a moment I realised why. He's grieving like I did for the experiences we did not have with Rupi. Of course we will take pictures as Baby Girl deserves to have her special moments celebrated. But I love my hubbie's sensitive heart at loving Rupi so much and getting him.

He is also my birth coach! We are doing the Bradley method (hopefully- all things going well) and he is very into it. He reads the books and we practise every night. I trust him so much and can't imagine anyone else I would rather be with.

I am so proud to be his wife and I thank God for him all the time. He's wonderful!

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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

34 weeks and 2 days

Infertility alert, a pregnancy post....(much love)

A day of randomness and busyness.

It started with my scan- all good. She is still a girl, phew! Otherwise baby would be wearing a lot of pink! And everything is where it should be. She's chubby round the tummy but her head is average size (praise Jesus!)

Rupi and I played in a park near a cafe and I learnt just how fast he can run straight into the parking lot.... without listening to my "STOP"!! I also learnt that I can waddle at very high speed to go and get him!

I went to my last work meeting (hopefully) and dropped all the accounting reports at the accountant. Hopefully the business tangles will be sorted very soon!

Then to the midwife who thinks baby girl may be around 8 lbs at birth. That good? I think so bearing in mind that Rupi was over 12 lbs... I like my midwife. She's good for me, a "go with the flow" person who is opposite to me. I need someone like that. If she was like me, it would be like a military operation and not good at all.

And lastly introducing my lovelies.... new shoes. My first in 18 months! A world record for me. Normally I wear heels. I LOVE heels and don't like flats. However a 15 kg toddler and big tummy mean heels are a bit beyond me.

So here are my new shoes! And the combined cost of these cuties was half of what I used to pay for a pair of shoes...not too shabby.

So all in all 34 weeks is not too bad. Sore (par for the course) and hormonal (again par for the course) but otherwise happy as a clam.

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Monday, April 5, 2010

An unusual Easter

Our church holds a conference every Easter called Shout. It's amazing. No other word describes it. Every year our church goes to a new level after Shout and we love being there.

Problem for us is that my hubbies family have a family reunion every Easter too. And they all travel from far and wide and spend the weekend together. He is the only saved person in his entire family- immediate and extended and his family have been wonderful at understanding our commitment to our church and the conference. Family (whanau) is BIG to them all. We have missed 7 family reunions in a row and now that Glenn (my hubbies dad) is gone, we can't get that time back...ever. Being real, my heart aches at the times we have missed with him and the family.

This Easter my hubbies cousin was having a 21st celebration as part of the reunion. This young man has worked through major intellectual hurdles and now lives independently and has built a life and social circle for himself. We are so proud of him.

So we thought long and hard and split our time. Spent Thursday and Friday at Shout and then early on Sat morning went up north to a (gorgeous, beautiful) tiny place called Whananaki North.
The look on the faces of our family as we arrived was worth the drive and missing Shout. They ALL knew we had missed the conference and chosen them instead. The birthday boy loved that we had come and my hubbie got say a few words and tell him what he meant to us. So good. So very good.


L-R: BIL & SIL, The birthday boy and my MIL and us.

And last night we put on a 40th anniversary celebration for my parents. I say "we" lightly as my sister did 95% of the preparation and work. What a lovely evening. The crowd was heavy on the South African and light on any other nationality! The food also featured South African cuisine- babotie and chicken briyani. Needless to say, I made a pig of myself!

The happy couple, my Mom and Dad


Here I have actually pushed my Dad to one side as he was cutting the cake skew (have I NO shame!?!) He is complaining about having an interior designer for a daughter.......!

My gorgeous sisters (and giant me- I am a LOT taller than they are) We normally stand together with our arms around each other and are not usually this formal (!) Hope this photo is ok, Pen and Nik?

So yes.
All in all a good Easter. An unusual Easter, but a very very good one.

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