Posted in Charity, hiking, Hiking Trails, Ordinarylife, Port Elizabeth, Running, South Africa, Trail Running, Training, Training

The Rhino Run 2013

On Sunday there were various Rhino Runs held around the country and there were 2 to choose from in our area. One at Kenton-on-Sea and the other at Crossways Village near Van Standens. I did that one. It was a lot closer to town, and I love that area.

(Its an annual event – so next year why not find one in your area.

Photo by Willi Lawson
Photo by Willi Lawson

As you know, I have not been running much lately, my furthest run as been 11km so I was not really sure what distance I should enter. There was a 6km, a 12 km and a 20km. As I have the Dryland coming up in November and I really need to get some distance in I chose the 20km. Yikes!!! But it was fine. Or at least it was fun up until my Garmin said I had already done 20km then my mind said I needed to stop. Those last 1.8km were tough!!!

The view from the top
The view from the top

All in all though it was a stunning race – tough but stunning. You know you are not out for a walk in the park when at the race briefing they say “and then you run around and up the back, over the top then down the front of Lady’s Slipper Mountain to the finish”! When “hilly course” and “over the mountain” are mentioned in the same race briefing you know you are in for some fun!!!

Photo by Willi Lawson
Photo by Willi Lawson

You see the “hill” behind me…. Yip, I had just run over it! (this was also at the 20km and the legs fell off in about 5 steps from here……)  EDIT: I think this might be the first photo of me EVER where both feet are off the ground at the same time and I actually look like I am doing something resembling running!

I managed it in just under 3 hours and was extremely happy with that time (I even stopped and took a couple of photos). Even if I had been training it is pretty much what I would have expected. In fact it is a lot better than some of my runs of a similar distance. I am now very excited for the Dryland – I know I need to work on hills a bit more but my foot gave me no hassles when I was running and I am loving my new trail shoes – (Innov8)

Posted in Charity, Crafts, Family, Ordinarylife

More than I bargained on

I love paper.  It is a well-known fact and one that I have mentioned here before.  I don’t scrapbook, but do, do a whole lot of crafty stuff that involves scrapbook stuff, like paper and other bits and pieces.  Well, this past week I was given the best gift ever…. Boxes and boxes of card-making and scrapbooking stuff.

My mom started dating a family friend after his wife unfortunately passed away a couple of years ago.  This lady was into card making, and a few weeks ago he decided it was time to clear it out.  I was going to go round on my birthday to have a look, but as we know my birthday plans did not quite come to fruition.  So I went around on Thursday and OH MY WORD!!!!

After starting to go through some of the boxes I got a bit overwhelmed.  It was a very weird experience.  Obviously I was extremely grateful to be given all of this, but it was too much.  In the end we called another of the ladies friends with whom she made cards and we went through the stuff together.  That was much better but I think we both found it a bit over whelming.  I also felt bad, and kept thinking of this lady as I was going through her stuff.  A lot of it was items or cards she had already made or was in the process of making.  I felt too bad to throw anything out and then felt greedy when It seemed like we were taking everything.  I was thankfully the other lady wanted all cards that had already been worked on.  I found the whole process a lot more emotional than I thought I would.

In the end we divided the boxes and goodies into 2 piles.  We then each divided those piles into further piles.  I split mine into a pile for me, one for my nanny’s kids and one for a rehabilitation hospital that is always looking for craft stuff for its patients.

As it is I will never need to buy a piece or card or envelop ever again….

Now let’s hope that Mr OL does not read my blog… he had a bit of a fit when he saw 2 of the boxes as I was working through them.  I am not sure what he would say about the 4 more hidden under the bed and the further 12 that I have hidden in the spare bedroom cupboard…… (and yes, that is after splitting it and giving a lot away to charity)

Posted in Charity, Family, Ordinarylife

40 Random Acts – Update.

Just a quick update on my Birthday project – 40 Random Acts of Kindness.

Some of my friends decided that instead of donating time, toiletries etc they would prefer to donate money to my chosen charity. AWESOME.  So, just to let you know that we donated R 2 000 to Cuyler Homes, party of Algoa Bay Council for the Aged.  They said that their greatest need at the moment is money towards outings for the old folk, petrol or small snacks (tea) while they were out, so I requested that the money be specifically used for that.

We also donated loads of toiletries to them, with toothpaste and soap for each resident (64) as well as chocolates, sweets and things. Some of my friends also made up little packs of scented talcs and other little luxuries, including warm socks for winter.  I still also have a few more packs from my family to collect and hand over.

All in all I think the 40 Acts was a great success (even if some if the acts were slightly delayed) and I would like to thank everyone that helped me get to the 40 items.

Some of the Acts include:

  • doubling a restaurant bill and giving the 1 half to the waitress,
  • giving car guards unexpected amounts (R20)
  • donating craft stuff to a rehabilitation hospital
  • Donating nappies to a centre that has babies of various ages
  • Donating baby clothes.
  • Donating used but good condition running shoes.
  • Giving dinner to a security guard
  • Attending a charity event where the proceeds when to Ubuntu Education Centre
  • Giving money to a street beggar (yes, I know but I could not say no)
  • Doing shopping for an elderly person
  • Taking my mom out for lunch (she does so much for me)
  • Picking up litter at a nature reserve

And many more that I can’t think of right now.  I had a couple of friends who said once they started they and their kids really got into it and it made their day fantastic. They enjoyed it so much.  I also found that instead of getting cross or worked up about something that might have annoyed me I just though “Act of Kindness” and smiled or waved them passed (if they cut me off).  It made my day a lot calmer.  I am going to try and keep the thought going.

So once again, thank you to everyone that helped and did an Act of Kindness to help me celebrate my 40th.

Posted in Charity, Family, Ordinarylife

An idea….

Ok, so I know that I “might” have said that I hate Pinterest but I take it all back, well most of it.  Every now and then I discover something that I LOVE and I have discovered what I am going to do for my next birthday.

I turn 40!  Yikes and I have been looking for ideas for parties.  I kind of decided on a cocktail party, but I have been having doubts, I was not really sure about the whole party idea. Then I saw this – I LOVE this idea. 

Random Acts of Kindness!  In my case it would be 40 Random Acts of kindness.

I love some of her ideas, but some of them would need to be adapted for SA.  We have our petrol pumped for us, we have people taking the trolleys to the cars, unpacking the bags etc.  I could do something for those people.  Also we have car guards – maybe they need a look in too.  (Hayley did a stunning post about a car guard – go read it.)

I think I should start creating a list.  She also asked all her friends to do a random act of kindness – be prepared -come April you will be getting similar request. Between my IRL friends (almost all on FB anyway) to my FB friends, blog readers and Twitter I am sure we can generate quite a few acts.

I still might have a small get together with friends and ask them that instead of a gift to bring something for a specific charity.

What do you think??  I know a few of you are also turning 40….

Posted in Baby OL, Charity, Family, Ordinarylife

Fun and games

It was our annual Christmas outing with the girls from the cottage at the EP Child and Youth Care Center that the company I work at sponsors.

We have been sponsoring it for over 3 years now and it is amazing to see how the girls have grown and become more confident.  As they get older they move to a different cottage but there are still about 8 girls that have been there since we started. 

I really enjoy spending time with them, and have taken Baby OL to visit a couple of times.  Normally she is quite shy, but this time she started laughing, “talking” to them and blowing bubbles.  Fun was had by all.

Here are a couple of photos of the day.

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Posted in Charity, Crafts, My New Business, Ordinarylife, Port Elizabeth, Sewing, Whachumacallit

Sew much to do!

So I am sewing feverishly at the moment but I don’t feel like I am getting anywhere.  I luckily got accepted to sell my Whachumacallit toys at the “Christmas in the Home” market at the end of October, but now I need stock. Who knew it would take this long to make a couple of toys.

I am getting a bit faster at it, but not nearly fast enough.  Also (and don’t get me wrong I am not complaining about this part) people keep on buying them…… J  I have  about 30 ready for the market now, but was hoping to have closer to 100.  I have nearly a month left to sew but am only averaging 1 a day at the moment.

I think what I am going to have to do is get business cards printed and have pictures of ones I have made previously around and then take orders.  I am really excited about the market.  I am curious to see how my toys will go down and if they will sell or not??? 

The Christmas in the Home Market is taking place on the 29/30 October at Moffett on Main in the underground parking lot.  Click HERE for a link to their Facebook page

Posted in Charity, Family, Food, Ocean Racing Series, Ordinarylife, Port Elizabeth, Swimming, Wetsuit

The Weekend!

I had a great weekend. 

It as fantastic to see my sister again!!!  We spent the whole day Saturday together which was great!  I then “let” her spend Saturday evening with our brother, seeing as he is off on Honeymoon tomorrow so she will not really get to see much of him.  Mr OL and I went out for dinner with friends.  They said if we did not join them we could strike them off the baby sitting list and seeing as they are the only ones on it at the moment we thought we had better go.  Of course that was not the only reason, it was great to see them and they are a really nice couple. 

Sunday I went to the beach and watched the Ocean Racing Series.  It was funny not to be taking part, but I am chicken of swimming in the sea without my wetsuit. When I got down there I really wished I had entered. The sea was beautiful and not cold at all.  I would have managed just fine.  My sister enjoyed it and it was a just a little reminder of what she is missing living in London…. 

On the way home I got caught up in a whole group of motor bikes….  Luckily they were going the opposite direction so I just pulled over and watched.  It was the Toy Run, where the bikers collect toys and then give them to needy children.  I am not sure how many bikes there were but there were a lot!!!  I am not usually a fan of motorbikes but it was amazing to watch and hear.  Click HERE for photos’ of the Cape Town one.   And HERE for photos of the PE one.

After that I went to the Walmer Park Summer Food Festival – Yum!!!  It was pretty good. But then it involved food so…… Of course it was good.

Then of course it was “THE WEDDING”  I can’t believe my little (all 6foot3 of him) got married.  He and his friends scrubbed up pretty good. Who knew that those boys could look that smart.  His wife looked STUNNING but then I expected no different she really is beautiful.  The wedding was fantastic, very simple décor, white roses for flower, all very tasteful.  I will post photo’s as soon as I have had them developed (or stolen some from somebody else).  Yes, I said developed – I took them on my film camera (so retro I know) but I enjoy using it and sometimes think the photo’s come out better.  But then I do have a really crap digital camera. 

Well I guess that is all from me for now – except to say that I am going to head straight to bed when I get home.  Mr OL is very good about sharing although this time I wish he had been a bit more selfish – he seems t have given me his cold!!!

Posted in Charity, Ordinarylife, Port Elizabeth, Work

Rock Pools and Penguins

We started with a talk at the SAMREC Centre to learn about about penguins and see a few that have been rescued and then headed down to the beach and rock pools. 

The day ended with games on the beach.  Luckily the weather held for most of it, but turned a bit chilly and windy towards the end.

Here are some photos  – none of me as I was the one holding the camera.

At the SAMREC Centre learning about penguins


Some of the rescue Penguins and Volunteers
Sea Urchins.
Sea Urchins
Cape Recife Lighthouse
Cape Recife Nature Reserve
Posted in Charity, Ordinarylife

Life’s a beach!!

I am off to the beach this afternoon – what a fantastic way to spend a Tuesday afternoon and considering it is “work” even better.

We are taking the kids from the children’s home for an outing to the rock pools.  It should be fun.  Well, sort of fun.  There is an organization called Jonginenge that teaches them about the rock pools and marine life so hopefully they enjoy it.  I am not sure how many of us from the office will actually be in the water with them. 

Here is my dilemma – 6 month pregnant tummy in a costume on the beach, looking very white surrounded by work colleagues that refuse to get in a costume at the best of times.  I might be the only adult that actually gets involved….. 

But then – it’s the BEACH!!!  And I love the beach!  Ok, I hate sand but I love the ocean and swimming and stuff!  So I might just say – stuff it and push the kids out the way and jump in the sea first!  Hmmm, maybe not jump, maybe more like a rather ungraceful entrance.  I did bring my goggles and flippers just incase… 

I will let you know tomorrow.

Posted in Charity, Ordinarylife, Recyling

All coming together.

I am scared!  Nervous! And VERY EXCITED!!!! 

I came up with an idea which I made reference to here…. 

I started investigating the possibilities and things have kind of gotten out of hand – in a good way.  In a very good way! 

At the moment it kind of feels like a steam train that I have no control over  Usually when I say I am going to start a project I get all excited about it. Start investigating the possibilities and then loose focus or passion or both and it just kind of fizzles out.  This time I am just getting more and more excited about it, and it the people I am asking for support are giving it to me and more.  

What I want to do is not unique, in fact there are two other companies/projects making the same product in South Africa alone.  However I believe there is enough space (market) for all of us.  And if I can do this to benefit others (as well as myself) then so much the better.  I want to take a waster material, recycle it and sew it into different items.  Well, I won’t be sewing it. That is the part that I want to outsource to community skills development centres or similar places.  One of the other places making these products is a church in Johannesburg, the other is a full on business.  I want to combine the two? 

And here in lies the problem.  I thought getting the materials would be the problem. Turns out it is not too bad.  As it is “junk” companies are more than willing to give it to me. The problem is finding centres that are able to sew the products.  All the sewing centres that I have heard off have closed down and the ones that are still open are unable to sew the materials I want to use as they don’t have industrial sewing machines.  This is obviously a problem I am going to have to figure out.  I had better figure it out soon as it looks like I might have my first order… Yikes!