Guardians of Hope

18 July . Mandela Day. A day commemorating the lifetime of service Nelson Mandela gave to South Africa and the world. On this day, people are encouraged to donate 67 minutes of their time to help those in need. Why 67 minutes? One minute for every year of Mandela’s public service. Even the smallest gesture of kindness is a step towards a better South Africa. A South Africa that Nelson Mandela would be proud of, where his legacy can live on forever.

“We need to restore and reaffirm the dignity of the people of Africa and the developing world. We need to place the eradication of poverty at the top of world priorities. We need to know with a fresh conviction that we all share a common humanity and that our diversity in the world is the strength for our future together.”Nelson Mandela

On 18 July 2017, some of my work colleagues and I, visited Guardians of Hope Place of Safety for abandoned babies.

It was a phenomenal experience. I cried. Just soft tears rolling down my cheeks. It was so special to see my work friends with the babies, to see a softer side to them. The best part was, I got to hold a beautiful baby girl. So petite, with the cutest, craziest hair and soulful eyes. There’s nothing sweeter than holding a tiny baby close to you, the warmth is indescribable. All the small noises, the cuddles and the sweet smiles are enough to MAKE MY HEART MELT. This little miracle will have a beautiful life, all thanks to one incredible person, Elaine Brenkman.

Elaine runs Guardians of Hope. She is unbelievable! Her love and dedication is beyond amazing. It was truly inspirational meeting such an extraordinary person. She is soft, caring, kind, loving and remarkably strong. She is my inspiration. My motivation. Elaine makes the world a better place. She has adopted two boys and a girl, so we have something in common, AND we are now Facebook friends. Yay!

There are six babies at Guardians of Hope. Six beautiful babies being loved and cared for by Elaine and her dedicated staff. Guardians of Hope is not funded by government, they rely completely on private funding and donations. Elaine also encourages people to give their time, to visit the babies and give them much needed attention. Vince and I will be popping around there soon. Hoping to make a difference where we can.

Read more about Guardians of Hope here http://www.dispatchlive.co.za/news/2017/07/03/blanket-love-unwanted-babies-new-el-centre/

Read more about Elaine’s incredible story here http://www.dispatchlive.co.za/news/2017/07/21/being-the-complete-mom/

 

The best Christmas gift

December is always a crazy busy month for us and this past December we were expecting some exciting news. We had been waiting for this news since October. It was by far the hardest three months of my life, just waiting. Thank goodness for Vince, he was my rock, he kept me sane and made sure I was always ok. Best husband ever!

You see, we had finally been approved for adoption and we had been matched with the cutest baby boy.

I wanted him home asap. I felt like I was missing out, I cried a lot, like everyday. I desperately wanted to hold him and love him. Things were taking way too long. So much admin and red tape. I was convinced we would only bring him home in January. But on 21 December we got the call. We needed to fetch our little boy on the 23rd. Hooray!!! So after a long journey to Upington (10 hours there and 10 back), we finally brought our little boy home.

This is our first family photo. I know it’s blurry and we look exhausted but I absolutely love this photo. It makes my heart so happy.

I will write a more detailed post about our adoption journey. It was hard but now I get to hold my baby boy every single day.

Pinterest Favourites

Have you ever had so many ideas in your head or been so inspired that you’re about to burst? Well that’s how I’m feeling, and there’s just not enough time in the day to get everything done (especially working a desk job from 8 to 5). AND I’ve started this blog which seems to take a backseat in my life, but never fear, things can only get better :). Today I want to share some of my favourite pins from Pinterest. I love all my pins, but some are just so special.

My number one favourite pin is this one, because it reminds me that prayer is important, no matter who (or what you are). So pray everyday.       praying otter

This one reminds me to be ME and to be the best me that I can be. dr zeuss

I could picture myself and Vince sitting here on lovely summer mornings sipping our tea with our three doggies. outdoor space

I think this is such a sweet photo, such love! chihauhau

I could picture myself wearing this everyday of my life. It looks so comfy! dress

Rainy days on this couch would be so awesome. Got to get me one! media room

Need this cupboard. The extra space will change my life forever. pantry cupbaord

Don’t worry about a thing, because everything’s going to be ok. under his wings

Sharing is awesome! The web is an amazing tool and has given me so much inspiration and motivation. I have realised that I have to push my boundaries to get where I want to be and to share without holding back. To be truly ME. To believe that I am good enough and my work is beautiful.

I’m working on it… 🙂

From the heart

I love Christmas. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. A time for love and a season of giving. To celebrate the begining of the Christmas season, my friends and I have a little get together to exchange gifts (secret Santa style) and embrace the warmth of our friendship. I am lucky to have such special friends and I knew a gift from the heart was in order. So I got creative and made a beautiful gift for my friend Jax. She loved it! This is how it turned out.

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I have a few more handmaid gift ideas and will give you a step by step guide on how to make a gift from the heart, so stay tuned over the next couple of weeks.

Home sweet home

I love my home. Its a fact! It might be small and need LOADS of work, but I love it. I needed something to let my home know how much we are in love with it (yes houses have feelings, and so do cars, and teddy bears). I wanted my home to know that although we do want to make changes, that it will always be my “home sweet home” forever and always.

I scrounged a piece of wood off the scrap wood pile and worked some crafty magic on that sucker. It went from zero to hero :). Here is a picture of my crafty work-of-art. So proud.

I still need to find the perfect spot for it. I had Vince hold it up in several locations around the house but I couldn’t quite decide. Eventually he got tired of holding it.

Look out for a post on my next big project. Eeeeck, I don’t know what I’ve gotten myself into…

Hellooooooooo Santa

I found this Santa Teapot at our local grocery store. Can you believe it! What a treasure! I hope to have this for many MANY years and to pass it down the family tree. And do you know what the best part is? It only cost R141.95 :). How cute does he look in my window?

Our new baby

Yip, you guessed it. Our home is plus one bundle of fur! This brings our grand total to three. Three four-legged creatures that bring so much joy to our lives. We love them to bits. My parents even refer to them as their grandchildren! So funny!

Our new little addition is called Tiny. He is so cute and fits in like he’s been living with us forever. I first saw Tiny on the SPCA facebook page, he was found at a local shopping centre and nobody ever claimed him. Some say that he was dumped there, but I find it hard to believe.  He has so much spunk and personality! Anyway, I fell in love with him and just had to have him. Vince filled in all the adoption papers and two days later, Tiny was happy in his new home. As for my other spoilt brats (Peanut and Tyson), it took them a while to get used to him, but two weeks later, I can say that we are one big happy family :).

Blooming marvelous

I hate winter! It’s cold and miserable and the days are way too short. But, there’s one good thing about winter in South Africa, the blooming of the aloes. Oh, such a beautiful site to behold. I have a garden full of these majestic plants and when they bloom, they make my heart happy. See how gorgeous they are! Like a little ray of sunshine on a gloomy day…

The aloe is a flowering succulent. There are about 500 species of aloe (can you believe it), the most common and well known of these is Aloe vera, or “true aloe”. The aloe is native to Africa, and is common in South Africa’s Cape Province, the mountains of tropical Africa, and neighboring areas such as Madagascar, the Arabian peninsula, and the islands of Africa. I only have three species of aloe in my garden and I plan to collect more, much much more. Hehe. Think I’m going to have an aloe overload! My love of aloes is a bit sentimental since they are my Dad’s favourite plant. 99.9% of my aloes were given to me by my wonderful father :), the most amazing man. Here are two photo’s of us together. One is from my wedding day and one is from my 21st birthday. Aaaah happy days.

Me thinks that these posts are getting a little bit soppy. Will update you on some home decor soon. Got a lot up this sleeve of mine.

If anyone has any tips on how I can improve on my writing, please feel free to comment. I’m a designer, not a writer, so in essence I have NO IDEA what I am doing…

Make my day

Do you need inspiration? I need it, I crave it and I seek it out, search for it, and when I’ve found something truly inspirational, I share it. Pinterest has been an amazing platform for me to find and share inspiration. Today, I shared something that touched my heart and with that I managed to touch the hearts of others. It’s wonderful to hear a friend say “Thank you for sharing this, these are words that we should all live by”. This is what I shared with my friends today.

A slimy affair

I have a new love! Two in fact… Meet Timothy and Tiny Tim…

Where those names come from, I have no idea. They just seem right. I bought these two beautiful creatures at the local craft shop. I was looking for a gift for a close friend, then I spotted these babies. I just had to have them!!! No questions asked. I didn’t even look at the price. I scooped them up, one underneath each arm, and away we went. They were plain white, so I mosaiced one and painted the other one red. Don’t they look oh-so-handsome. Tiny Tim is half the size of Timothy, hence the name Tiny Tim. Aaaaaah, they make me so happy. It’s the small things in life…

Sadly Timothy has gone to live with my good friend Helen (she’s taking good care of him) but Tiny Tim is all mine :). He sits on the windowsill in my kitchen and keeps me company. Such a good snail.