Posted in Baby OL, Children, Crafts, Family, Ordinarylife, Sewing

No Sew Tutu – EASY!

Little OL had a princess part to attend so I decided to make her a “no-sew tutu” and bought her a little tiara crown to match.

It was really easy to make.  Measured some elastic to go around her waist,  took a safety pin and pinned the ends of the elastic together and then just tied strips of tulle over the elastic in alternating colours.  I used turquoise, purple and green.  It was so easy I got carried away and made a matching one for her teddy “Door Stop”

So where are the pictures of her looking cute and adorable in it?  There are none – my little tomboy point blank refused to put it or the tiara on.  I managed to get the teddy’s one on for all of about 3 seconds before she pulled that off. Apparently boy teddies don’t wear tutus!

HERE  is a tutorial and photo of one very similar . (using an elastic headband is pretty clever)

Above image from

Posted in Crafts, Ordinarylife

Secret Santa List

Things I love

I am participating in the Bloggers Secret Santa hosted by The  Stiletto Mum and after THIS blog post by Cat at “Juggling act of Life” I was reminded that I need to post a list of things I like.

Well, here goes.  I love:

  • Note books – any kind
  • Actually paper of any sort or variety
  • Craft supplies – pretty much also any kind.  At the moment I am into stamps.
  • Home-made stuff.
  • Recipes – especially a compilation of a person’s favourite recipes with notes about why they are your favourite – or tips on how to do them best.
  • Anything cookie related.
  • Candles
  • Picture frames

In truth I am not all that fussy and love getting gifts that are unexpected and am generally happy with whatever it is that I receive so if you “get” me to buy for then I am all for surprises so don’t feel like you need to stick to my list.

Posted in Baby OL, Books, Children, Crafts, Family, Nursery Decor, Ordinarylife

Another fun project – a bookshelf

I posted a while back (HERE) that I had bought a spice rack that I intended to use as a bookshelf.

It is finally up and being used.  I actually spray painted it a while back, but it only made it onto the wall this weekend. Here are some before and after photos.

As you can see it was in a bit of a state when I bought it.

Before – needing a bit of work.

I had been looking for one for ages after seeing something similar on Pinterest.  I eventually found this one at a charity shop.

I sanded it and spray painted it. And am very happy with the result.  It is very narrow and fits perfectly below the window in Little OL’s bedroom.  When the curtains are closed you would not even know it was there.

cleaned, sanded and spray painted


Spice rack turned bookshelf!


Little OL doing an inspection. I think it passed.
Posted in Family, Ordinarylife

Letters – Dear Pamela …

On Sunday I intended to do a bit of a mini spring clean but got a bit waylaid.  I came across old letters from my school days.  It was so odd and nice, some of the people I could not even remember meeting never mind receiving letters from.  I guess it is like now when you meet somebody, exchange numbers and get a couple of text messages and never hear from them again.

It was sweet, there were letters from my first boyfriend, even though we went to the same university and he lived only in Uitenhage. There were quite a few letters from girls I knew who lived in different parts of the country that I met up with on holiday and from people that had lived here but had moved away.  There were even letters from boys that I had met, but because they were either in boarding school or because I had really strict parents I did not get to see often.  I do remember using the “really strict parents” thing to my advantage when I did not really want to meet up.

It is sad that the “art” of letter writing is dying.  I know we “communicate” more now via email, text, skype or whatever but how many people actually keep this correspondence.  These letters didn’t say much but they gave me a glimpse into my teenage life.  It would have been fun to see what my replies to these letters were.  I can’t remember writing that many letters although I must have done as most of them start with the line of “got your letter, thanks” or something similar.

I do have the letters I wrote back to my parents – they kept those ones and gave them to me when I returned. They were fun to read but boy, did I write about rubbish. The rest was probably censored, seeing as I was writing to my parents…..

I am going to try and start letter writing again.  My sister is in Australia – I am sure that she would appreciate a hand written letter….. (or at the very least typed out and printed)

Posted in Baby OL, Children, Family, Ordinarylife, Parenting, Swimming, Women

Out the mouths of babes

For the past few Sunday’s I have been taking Little OL swimming at the gym. She took to it like… well, like a “little mini me” to water.  Have a mentioned that I LOVE swimming?

This time, instead of changing at gym, we changed beforehand, at home.  I put on my costume and then pulled on a T-shirt and shorts.  Little OL looked at me a little confused, and then asked “Mom, where your boobs gone?”

How do you explain a Wonder Bra (with extra padding) to a 2 year old???

Posted in Crafts, Family, Ordinarylife, Washi Tape

Another easy Washi craft

Here is another EASY washi craft.


3 or 4 magnetic strips  (I pulled mine from the back of old Mr Delivery menus)

Washi Tape


This is so simple.  Clean all the paper off the magnets if using old ones, then stick the washi tape on top.  I had to trim my magnets down the side a bit to get them the same width as the tape, but it cut really easily with sissors.  I then angled the ends a bit just to make it look a bit better.

Magnet strips with Washi Tape

Find your favorite photo or post card.

Put on fridge.


Washi tape magnets in action

The post card is from Russia with love from my sister-in-law.  It took over 2 months to get here but finally arrived.

I found the washi tape idea on THIS BLOG Twirling Betty

Also just a reminder that I am selling Washi Tape at R25 per roll, excluding postage.

Posted in Baby OL, Children, Ordinarylife, Parenting

Beyond me!

There comes a point when, you as parent, realise that you do not know everything that goes on in your kid’s life. They learn stuff that you know nothing about and do things either at school or even at home that you are not privy to.

I was not ready for this!  Yes, another thing I was not ready for.  I felt an actual pang in my heart as I realised that this is just the beginning.

This morning before we left home I told Little OL to go and say good bye to the nanny. She did eagerly, running back and shouting. Then she called me to come and say good bye too.  It was only then that I realised that they were actually talking Xhosa.  Oh my word – she has barely learnt to speak English, how am I ever going to keep up??

I am pretty pleased though, Xhosa is something we want her to learn and something we actively encourage whenever she gets the opportunity.  I know that she can say hello, how are you and sing happy birthday, but the good bye and see you on Monday conversation was more than I realise she knew how to say.  I am going to need extra lessons very soon.

Posted in Crafts, Ordinarylife, Washi Tape

Washi Tape – Tea light candles

Here is another REALLY easy thing to do with Washi Tape.

Required: Washi Tape, Sissors (or craft knife), Tea light candles, Pillar candle

Step 1 -( the hardest part)  Chose your washi tape

Step 2 – wrap around around the metal part of the tea light.  If wrapping around a pillar candle, make sure you put the washi tape quite low down so it does not catch alight.

Step 3 – cut.

Yip as easy as that.

Tea light Candles


Tea lights and a pillar candle

I tried wrapping washi tape around a normal pillar candle too and it looks great.  I love the idea that you can remove the tape and add different ones to match your tea light candles and table decor.

2 warnings – always put your candles on a heat resistant surface and make sure your pillar candle does not burn down to near  the washi tape.

Inspired by this post:

I am selling the tape at R25 / roll, excluding postage.

Posted in Baby OL, Family, Ordinarylife, Parenting

The “right” school

Why is schooling such a bit deal!  It is not really something I thought I would have to stress about quite so soon.  Little OL only turns 3 next year and already we are try to figure out what school to send her to!

There are quite a few good schools in Port Elizabeth – both Private and Public but the problem is getting in. I have heard this is a problem countrywide.  We need to get her into a feeder Pre-Primary to get her into the “right” school, and to do that we need to start applying now.

There is a school that we are REALLY keen on and had her on the waiting list for 2014 and figured I would stress about it later. However they have just phoned me and said they have a space for 2013 and would we like to come for an interview?  Yikes!  This is all a bit soon.

Posted in Baby OL, Books, Children, Family, Ordinarylife, Quilting, Running, Sewing, Swimming

I don’t know what to write at the moment.  I usually feel like this when there is stuff going on that I can’t or don’t want to write about.  It detracts from all the stuff I am doing that I could actually write about.

What I can say however is that Little OL and I have been having fun!  Lots of it!  When Mr OL left I decided that I would say yes to more social engagements than I normally do.  I have been feeling like a rotten friend lately and thought I had better get my butt into gear so not only have I said yes to stuff, I have actually initiated stuff too.  Very proud of myself.  Normally I only see my friend that train or race – I need to make time for the others too.

Little OL and I have been to braais, dinner, breakfast, lunch and play dates.  On Heritage day I invited a friend and her two little boys around and we lit a fire – yes, girls doing it for themselves.  I of course sent Mr OL a photo of the fire  to make him jealous just to let him know we were doing ok …

I have also been to gym a couple of times and this weekend Little OL and I went swimming.  I really want to teach her to swim so thought there was no time like the present.  At first she would not even put her toes in the water but in the end she was jumping off the side into my arms and even going under.  I battled to get her out – definitely my child. We then went home and washed my car – and both ended up soaked through.

I have also made a start to the quilt that I am going to make from Little OL’s baby clothes.  I have cut all the squares – and boy was it hard to cut the first few.  All I kept thinking was “somebody could wear these”.  It got easier after I did a few.  I could not cut them all up though and gave quite a lot to our gardener whose wife has just had a baby girl.

Baby clothes cut for quilt

I am going running tonight and my mom is watching Little OL – so that should be fun.  It is our club time trail – 5kms.  I don’t think I will do as well as I did at the last one, but it will be fun to run.

In terms of a confession – I have to say that I finished 50 Shades of Grey…  My thoughts – it’s an easy read and I can see why some people are enjoying  it.  I must say though that it is not my normal style of book, it is not written particularly well, the story is predictable and the girl is annoying.  Let’s just see if it gets any better in book 2……. J.  In the books defence I am all for anything that gets people reading!  And this book is getting people that don’t normally read that much reading.  I have spoken to friends that have not read anything in a couple of years and they have finished all three books.  So well done to the author.  She has definitely done something right!