Sunday, January 30, 2011

Things I am Loving


Linking up with Paisley Jade this weekend. (she's awesome!) My list is short and sweet.....

The Long Weekend

We have a sick little boy in the house at the moment. Hot and flushed with a sore tummy and gummed up chest. I am LOVING the long weekend as we can s.l.o.w. down and curl up on the couch with him. Put the agenda aside and focus on healing and loving and nurturing.

Panda is the ever present comforter (he needs another bath!). Panda and Dida are the companions of choice- so cute!


Friday, January 28, 2011

Our Adoption Story

Linking up on Kelly's Korner "Tell us Your Adoption Story"

Adoption is always something I longed to do. I can first remember wanting to adopt when I was 18 years old and it's a dream I have carried since. It was never part of my reality though and it took 6 years of infertility for both my husband and I to be ready to consider it.

My husband took a while to want to adopt but when someone close to us asked him "what do you WANT?" as Jesus asked the blind man (Mark 10:46- 52) , the answer was clear. We wanted to be parents. It didn't matter how we became parents, we wanted to hold children in our arms.

Adoption in New Zealand is rare and precious. There are only between 16 and 25 adoptions a year in Auckland, a city of millions. We have a very high rate of abortion and a strong welfare system so adoption is seen as an absolute last resort. To adopt here, is truly miraculous.

We enrolled in the system (adoption is run by the state here and is mostly free) and were assessed. During our assessment we were approached by someone we know in church. They knew of a family where a young 14 year old girl had fallen pregnant and had decided on adoption. Were we interested? Were we interested??? YES!

It was not an easy time and it seemed like everything was coming against this adoption. The most steadfast person in the whole adoption process was Sweetpea, Rupi's birthmother. She met us and decided there and then we were the ones to parent her baby boy. And she never wavered. In spite of everything that happened God ordained this adoption and nothing could stand in His way.

We met Rupi for the first time when he was 24 hours old. He was the most beautiful baby I had ever seen and it was like a part of my heart was beating outside my body, in my arms. I loved him completely and utterly. I fell hard for this little man! It took a whole lot more adventure and God's intervention for Rupi to come home, 12 days later on the 14 November 2008.

Rupi's name means "son of vision" and "restorer". He truly is. God broke through for us with Rupi and I will never stop praising him. There is nothing I would change about Rupi's birth circumstances and he was worth the wait- every tear and every heart break.

Adoption in New Zealand is not closed. There is no option to have a closed adoption. Our adoption is very open and we see a lot of both sides of the birth families. Initially it was hard to have so much contact as I was still finding my feet as a mother. But over time it's become much easier and we have kept the adoption open as we believe it is what is best for Rupi. His identity is tied up with his biological heritage and our belief it is best for him to have open and loving relationships with the birth families.

Our prayer and our hope is that Rupi will see adoption as something that adds to his life, not takes away from it. Adoption is the most incredible blessing to us and we have been forever changed by it. Rupi's story shows God's love and mercy and we will never stop praising Him for our little boy.


A day in the life

....of Rupi. This morning he made new friends. We went to visit a friend who lives out in the wops (the sticks/ the country). Rupi was in seventh heaven.

A city-slicker girl like me could really embrace this lifestyle as long as someone got rid of the flies, looked after the animals and tended the (many ) acres of land. Too much to ask?


Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I am so not about who reads my blog, excepting all you bloggie friends who I love and cherish. I am a fan though, of so many amazing blogs and follow quite a few. I de-lurked on one of my favs and left a comment....AND SHE COMMENTED BACK ON MY LAST POST!!!

HER!!!! She's Shannon and is clever and pretty and so witty and nice and famous with about 4 zillion followers...

So please excuse me while I go and lie down and fan myself.....


Monday, January 24, 2011

Miscellany Monday

It's Monday and time for a bit of randomness once again. I don't have to think hard at all to have one or sixteen things spring to mind. Randomness rocks!

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters


Be sure, when washing exfoliating scrub off your face, to shut your eyes TIGHTLY. Scratching your eyeballs with scrub is oh so, NOT fantastic.

Blossomy delicious-ness

I secretly love that this little petal can only be put to sleep properly by me, will often only take her bottle from me and cries (loudly, of course) if I am in the room and someone else is holding her. Rod for my back? I don't think so.

Kefir goodness

As long as you don't think about these tooooo much you are ok. They are "grains" which is a little more palatable than the mushroom-like discs (which Soulemama has). BUT. They are LOADED with goodness and are make probiotic heavenly goodness (they flavour water, you don't eat them). Gifted to us by our friend Meg, they are living in the corner of the kitchen, busily doing stuff.


Here is Rupi rocking his first ever pair of crocs. He would not take them off and looks super cute (in my humble opinion of course!)

UP... and away!

 "Up" is the most incredible movie. Rupi watches it so often and I love it. It's a really good one with healthy themes- marriage, good versus evil and friendship. Oh and some excellent humour that always makes me giggle. Rupi knows the characters by name and calls "Russell!!!" when Russel first enters the movie, like he's a long lost friend. Russsselllll!!!

That's all the random I got. For now. Be warned.


Saturday, January 22, 2011

Grateful for

Joining Maxibella loves Saturday linky. I love thankfulness and this linky is so great!

I am grateful for..... her

She rocks my world. She's my snuggle-buggle and sweet smelling luciousness. She's the one I didn't dare to dream of and now that she's here, she's everything I could have imagined and more. She is her Mama's girl and is never happier than attached to me. This makes my heart melt. She loves to fall asleep in my arms and its heaven. She has a shriek that can shatter glass and a giggle that melts my heart. She's my girl, she's Blossom ♥


Thursday, January 20, 2011


**UPDATE** I have included a list of my favourite books on South Africa/ apartheid etc below the post

{Another deep post, be warned...! This year is bringing a lot of deep thinking, must be those regular quiet times, haha!}

There are a couple of blogger friends that inspire me. I long to meet them in real life one day. Nicole is one such person. I have raved about her before and I love her dearly.

Her post on racism brought back so many memories for me. And I want to remind myself of what went before, in my childhood in South Africa. If I can remember, I won't forget what it looked like.

So bear with me, please. I think I need to reminise. And one day teach Rupi and Blossom through this blog about how searingly ugly racism is.

I grew up under the shadow of oppression. But not oppression of me, with my pale skin. The oppression of those who were the land's first people. The majority of the people. People with a mocha skin.

Although I was not oppressed and had "white rights" I was part of a second class of white people. I am English speaking and part of a culture that originates from England. English speaking people originated from Germany, Greece, Portugal (among others) and were all classed as "English speaking". Afrikaans people were the ruling class and had better access to education funding etc. Their schools and universities were world class. And somehow the English speaking community could never get it together enough to vote out the Afrikaans ruling class. The Afrikaans rulung class protected each other and their culture and so remained in power.

I first had an awareness that apartheid was wrong towards the end of Primary school. Before then, apartheid was just life. It was how things were done. I never went to school with anyone who wasn't white and never had any friends who didn't have a white skin. There was no way to come into contact with anyone who wasn't white except as part of a servant class. As I grew some people managed to bridge the gap between white and black. Mainly through the church. Actually the English speaking churches, in particular, the Anglican church. One such man was Bishop Desmond Tutu.

I remember Bishop Desmond Tutu coming to talk to our youthgroup. Although he was a bishop in the Anglican church he was seen as a rebel and anti-establishment. I am ashamed to say that much of what he said was dismissed and rejected by those in our church. I remember the adults talking about him in a derogatory way. This was my world. Closed and fearful.

Apartheid left it's mark in a horrifying way. The difference in lifestyle between black and white was appalling. White people had cars and houses and enough food and clothing. Black people did not. Education for black children was so bad that some of my generation burned their schools. Fine, said the government, you have no schools instead. So there is a whole generation of people my age who cannot read, write or add.

Government ministers and their friends took masses of land away from tribes. And in a couple of instances, relocated entire villages as they were in "the way". Relocated them to places without infrastructure, on the backs of trucks. No water, roads or food. Children died and people starved.

I could go on and on but if you would like to read about it there are so many books out there on what happened.

To say I carried a sense of shame over the colour of my skin would be an understatement. At times I loathed how pale I was. When I arrived in New Zealand I started to deal with my feelings as the distance gave God the chance to clear my thinking. I was not responsible but as a white person I carried part of the blame. I was too young to do anything to challenge the government, yes, but I benefited from what happened.

I asked God to forgive me and the people who carried the colour of my skin. He did and set me free from the shame I had. I still carry a hatred of oppression based on the colour of skin though. It's true that all people have oppressed, even here in the South Pacific. For example Tongans oppressed Samoans and enslaved them. The scars of that can still be seen. But white people seem to have done an awful lot of oppressing. Not so cool, people!

It's good to remember. I had a good childhood, cosy and safe. But a huge amount of people my age, did not. And I cannot forget that.


The books I have read and found really informative are:
Written during apartheid:
Cry, The Beloved Country by Alan Paton
In No Uncertain Terms by Helen Suzman

Written about/ during the first democratic elections
A Witness for ever by Michael Cassidy
From Tragedy to Triumph by Frank Retief

Written post apartheid
Die, The Beloved Country by Jim Peron
Reconciliation through Truth by Kadar Asmal
Total Onslaught by De Wet Potgieter

Written about the ANC/ Nelson Mandela:
Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela
Thabo Mbeki and the Battle for the Soul of the ANC byWilliam Mervin Gumede

Monday, January 17, 2011

Miscellany Monday

Gonna join some linky things and where better to start than one that specialises in random-ness? I excell in random!

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

1. Howler monkey
My daughter can howl like a banshee. People don't believe us and then hear it for themselves. She sounds like she is being murdered, but is really just settling down for a nap. She's doing her howler monkey impersonation right now. I am trying to eat my lunch but it's stressful and I am eating faster than I should (sigh)

{image source} Blossom DOES NOT look like this. Just so you know...

2. Aslan

I watched Voyage of the Dawn Treader and cried everytime Aslan came on the screen. I miss Jesus. Can't explain it and not going to get all theological...but some part of my heart just plain misses the physical presence of Him. I would love to curl up next to Aslan and rest my head on his side and hear His breathing....

3. Use by date

I used basil pesto I made in April 2009 on a salad yesterday. It was frozen and defrosted ok, not sure if this was a gross thing to do or not? Maybe I don't want an answer to that.

4. Hello?

At my SIL's yesterday I saw a program on the cardashion (sp?) sisters. Soooo funny! But it made me realise that I put in NO effort to keep myself maintained compared to those girls. I came home and plucked my eyebrows, shaved my legs and painted my nails. Felt mucho better.

Well, I could go one for hours but this is enough random-ness for one day...FUN!

P.S. Blossom has dropped off to sleep. The neighbours can now relax. Until the next nap.

P.P.S. Question for the Kiwi's and Aussies... This linky thing is for Monday. But our Monday is before the U.S. Monday. Sometimes by a long time! Do you wait until it's late on OUR Monday or possibly even Tuesday before posting/ linking??? Not sure what to do so posting now and linking later.....


Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Green Hornet

This weekend we went down country for our nieces fifth birthday celebration. It was fabulous and gave Rupi an opportunity to break out his Green Hornet outfit....

{For those of you from over the sea, the sun is very very (extremely) fierce in New Zealand so coverups like these are essential...}

Rupi is proving utterly fearless in the water which is wonderful and a teeny bit scary. So we are teaching him to swim pronto. So far he can jump in, put his head under while holding his breath and blow bubbles in the water. Super cute.

Blossom just took it all in her stride as her personal flotation device (a.k.a. Dida) ferried her around the pool.

Later all the little girls had a "disco" on the pool table. Rupi was not made very welcome (you know, he's a BOY!) but broke through the resistance to perform alongside the girl performers. All I can say is that I am more familiar with Katy Perry's latest album that I really wanted to be. FIREFLYYYYYYY!!!!!!

The small but mighty Green Hornet came, saw and conquered. Until next time!


Friday, January 14, 2011

Happy Anniversary!

In a far away land, 16 years ago today, on a rainy Saturday, we said "I Do, forever." We were young and so in love. We had no idea how good this thing called marriage could be. How, like a fine red wine, it would mature and deepen.

We started out with our marriage like a babbling brook, bubbling and exciting and over time, its become a river. Strong and deep and with hidden currents that God has built in it. We have been through amazing good times with laughter and fun. And we've had really sad times where all we could do was hold each other.

I could not imagine doing it with anyone else. Dida and I fit each other like a hand in glove. He is a provider, protector and amazing Dad. He is my best friend and I love him more than I can say.

Happy Anniversary hun!


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Bounce back

This is one of those posts that's been germinating in my head for ages. As usual inspired by my friend Tea, who always makes me think and somehow we seem to land up working through similar things at the same time.

To make any sense of this, I need to explain me. I am a perfectionist and pretty hard on myself. I am learning to embrace failure and be nice to me. It's a process! So I have high expectations of where I should be. And sometimes it takes a while for it to dawn on me that perhaps I am having unrealistic expectations of myself.

One of those times is the time I have taken to heal after getting receiving breakthrough in our struggle with infertility.

We became parents in November 2008. 2008 nearly killed us with a failed adoption & a failed IVF cycle to start the year off and then the death of Dida's Dad in June 2008. We were mentally and emotionally shattered. There was nothing left. But we still had an incredibly stressful adoption to go through that was only approved at the very last second.

When Rupi came home the overwhelming feeling I had was relief along with a deep sense of gratitude. The intensity of these emotions abated after a while and I was left with sheer emotional exhaustion. There was nothing in our emotional tanks, we were wrung dry. And its taken two years for our emotional tanks to slowly fill.

I talked to God about it as I have been disappointed in myself. I thought that once I had breakthrough I would bounce back like a rubber band. After all I had breakthrough so why would I not be back to "normal"?

God showed me how it was like we had been in surgery. We had had something that needed surgery to correct. So when Rupi came home we had emotional surgery. And like with natural surgery, we needed time to recover from it. There is a period of healing required after surgery even though surgery may have "fixed" what needed to be fixed.

{Note: This analogy does NOT imply that infertility is something that needs to be fixed or that it is some kind of disease that needs to be cut out. Infertility is not a punishment from God, it's the result of a fallen world and God uses it to bring about His purpose. The analogy is a flawed example that helped me understand what had happened a bit more.}

After receiving breakthrough after a protracted trial there seems to be a time to heal required. Even though breakthrough has arrived, a time of healing seems to follow. This was unexpected and very humbling. It didn't fit with how I thought I should be. It's been a slow time of healing, of learning to dream again and also to let go.

I have let go being disappointed with myself and accepted the time I have taken to heal. God knows anyway and He's in control. His timing is perfect and I submit to it. So anyway, I hope this encourages someone out there. I know that I am not the only person to have gone through a long hard trial and also know that I am not the only person who has high expectations of myself.

It's ok to take time, God has eternity in His hands after all.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Wild thing

Once there was a placid, round baby boy called Rupi. He was gentle in nature and very snuggley. Then he had his first birthday and became a toddler.

A Wild Thing emerged.

Rupi is full-on. He does life at 100 miles an hour. There is nothing grey about him. Life for him is black and white, wonderful or awful, cuddles or tantrums. There is no grey. He is both sensitive and incredibly boisterous. He is a mass of contradictions bundled up in one small body.

He is Rupi, hear him roar.

We are contactly assessing, re-assessing and talking about him and his behaviour. He is like a little wild bear one minute and cuddled up in your lap the next. We try and keep one step ahead of him, investigating, praying and figuring out. This works some of the time. The rest of the time we keep saying "what the heck?!"

God has had His Hand on this little boy since the moment he was conceived. He protected Rupi and shielded him until he was placed in our arms. Then we watched Rupi attach and secure and grow into himself. Then he was unleashed.

There are amazing things planned for this man-to-be. Rupi's story will draw many to Him. And we think that to live such a big life he will need to be strong. And fiery. And full-on. Very full-on.

So here we are, doing life with a Wild Thing. It's crazy and appears chaotic from the outside. But from the inside there's a little boy with an adoring sister and parents. Who are cheering him on and can't wait to see what God will do in him and through him.

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