Tag Archives: love

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #5

Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah

Just a quick note on soul mates…

When you get married one day, I hope that it’s to your soul mate. Sometimes soul mates are hard to recognize; it’s not all Tweety Birds, stars and soft music like in the movies, and sometimes soul mates can be a real pain in the butt, sometimes you’ll wonder how the HECK this person could be your soul mate and you’ll wonder if you made a mistake. Then that person will do something out of the blue that reminds you that, yes, indeed, they are your soul mate and for a little while all is right with the world. Then they do something else to screw it up.

I love your Dad, ok. He is, without a doubt, my soul mate. But sometimes he drives me INSANE. And I want to take my soul back from him and tell him to find a new soul mate. You guys know, don’t you… you hear us having heated conversations while smiling tightlipped at you and saying “no, we not fighting, this is how mommies and daddies talk.”  False smile. Daggers for daddy. We really are warping your idea of how big people behave, hey.

Anyway, I just want to confirm that even when we’re throwing glacial stares across the room at each other, and you see me making weird gestures towards Daddy’s turned head, I do still love him and that I’m not really going to pack my bags and leave.

Mommies and Daddies don’t always agree on everything. Mommies like to be right and know what is best for the children. Daddies don’t understand that Mommies are always right at the time, even though 9/10 times in hindsight, they will come to their senses and admit that the Mommies were right. Your father thinks I am a Miss Know-it-all, he says I don’t like to be wrong, and that I like to have the last word. I told him he is absolutely right and that is why he is my soul mate, because he knows me so well! Although you may think that people who are the same get on well because they have the same tastes, the same likes and dislikes and the same temperament, the opposite is also true. Dad and I could not be more different, we are like chalk and cheese, but somehow it works. I guess opposites do attract, hey. So a lot of our disagreements are usually because we see things so differently, but the good thing is that sometimes your Dad makes me see things that I would have totally missed on my own. He has opened my eyes to things I would never have taken an interest in on my own, and some things I quite enjoy. I can’t say I am an avid soccer fan, but I do enjoy a live match, and I do enjoy watching HIS passion for the game. A passion that he will force upon you, no doubt!

A soul mate is someone who you want to spend the rest of your life with, a person who completes and complements you… and compliments you! A soul mate will do anything and everything in their power to make you happy, and always have your best interests at heart, but it doesn’t mean that the two are always on the same page. It doesn’t mean that you won’t be at logger heads with your soul mate from time to time, and it doesn’t mean that you won’t want to strangle your soul mate when he or she makes you mad. A soul mate doesn’t like to see you upset, and will help you make things better, even if it’s just by making you a hot cup of tea. Because tea fixes everything, just trust me on this one.

I hope that one day, you two will find your soul mates, like I have. While I hope this happens far, FAR, into the future because I want to be the only person invading your soul for a long time yet, I do hope that one day you will find the perfect partner who will be the frosting to your cupcake, the light to your dark fridge in the middle of the night, the bubble to your bath, the love of your life.

It feels good to be loved, and to love, and I hope that the love your Dad and I share, will be communicated through to you, so that you feel loved too. To overflowing. Because you are.

Assuring you of my constant love and affection,



Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah #1

So I’ve decided that I need to write to you guys on certain issues so that you know where I stand and how I feel about certain things so that there aren’t any grey areas for you as you grow up. And I hope that my experience can help you. You do not have to take my advice, or follow my path, but I at least want you to learn from my experiences so that you don’t have to make the same mistakes – believe me, the person who said you need to make your own mistakes was stupid. You don’t. If you can learn from someone else’s mistake, why the heck would you want to go through that trauma too? Stupid hey? So I’m going to start a little series of letters entitled Dear Big Liam and Big Hannah and number them, and I hope that you guys will use these orders from mom  letters to empower yourselves.

Anyway, the first thing I think we need to cover is this boyfriend/girlfriend thing. Now Daddy will tell you that Granny and Pa were very strict in this regard. Daddy was not allowed to step foot up the passage in our house, unless he was going to make a wee in the toilet. He was not allowed in my room. Ever. Now while I hope that I will be less dogmatic in my approach, I want you to understand that there is no rush in doing the whole girlfriend/boyfriend thing; it is so overrated. So just as my mother told me, I want to tell you that you should have LOTS of friends… boys and girls… go out and have lots of fun, but don’t get too serious, too young. When you are young, everyone thinks getting serious is THE best thing ever. Well I am here to tell you, it isn’t and while I know you will only nod your head in agreement with me when you read this in your late twenties / early thirties, I hope that you will at least remember this when you are doodling hearts and the letters of his/her name and yours in the margin of your school books. You will have PLENTY of time to get “heavy” – and believe me, when you get heavy, there’s more complications, more sweat and tears and more strife than joy – IF you are not ready for it. So while you may feel like you are going to pass out from the physical pain of not seeing “that” girl or boy because Dad and I won’t let you go out on a Friday night, or we disconnect the wifi so you can’t sit up all night social-networking with the “love of your life,” I can assure you that you will survive and that you will thank us one day for pulling in the reigns.

Can I tell you something that may surprise you? I had one steady boyfriend all throughout high school. It wasn’t Dad by the way. Ha. I don’t live with regret AT ALL (it’s a useless emotion), but when I think of how much fun everyone else was having while I was playing house and going steady, I do think that maybe I could have left the going steady for later on. Even if you think that this is the one, in this situation I want you to use 90% of your head and 10% of your heart; give it a few years to make sure. Don’t settle kids… you are worth so much more, you deserve so much more, than settling. God has such amazing things in store for you, and I don’t want you selling yourself short because you think some blue eyed boy or girl is the one.

Guard your hearts, don’t be so bloody emotional about everything, and please do not ever tell me I don’t understand, because I do! In all things put God first, and he will direct your steps, and one day you WILL find the one , when the time is right, hopefully when you are 30 years old. I’M KIDDING OK!!! Getting serious with someone means sacrificing a lot of yourself, your ideas and your ideals for the sake of that person, it means putting the other person first and always considering someone else’s feelings above your own – AND this is not a bad thing, it’s beautiful and wonderful and fills you to overflowing BUT guys, seriously, enjoy your youth, the world is your oyster and one day when you’ve done everything YOU-YOURSELF-JUST-YOU have wanted to do, THEN you can consider getting serious because you will fully understand the implications of giving yourself to someone else and vice versa.

And yes, no boys/girls will be allowed up the passage. Bedrooms are for sleeping. Alone.

Now, I want you to read this story that I found on Lizanne’s blog, and really let it sink in ok?

Love you guys



Sweet sixteen had finally come! I never thought I’d make it. But I did. And it was amazing. My parents threw the birthday party of the century, and I had more people over than I could count. The whole day had been awesome. But as I watched the sun begin to set, I knew the best part was soon to come. It was late in the evening. Confetti had been swept up, helium balloons had started to sag, and gift wrapping had been folded neatly and tucked away for my mom’s later use. As I sat at my window studying the dusky sky, Dad peeked into my room with a smile. “Ready to go , Sweetie?” He asked. Was that a trick question? I wondered as I scrambled to my feet. I’d been waiting for this night for five long years, and it was finally here! I was now officially allowed to date!
The plan was for my parents and me to go to my favourite restaurant on the night of my sixteenth birthday and officiate the agreement, go over standards, and discuss rules and such. And now we were finally on the way. I sat across from my parents in a quiet corner booth. Having just placed our orders I figured it was time to get on with it. “So. I can go out with any guy I want to, right?” I squealed, hardly able to contain my excitement. Mom and Dad chuckled. Dad answered, “Well, we agreed to that, didn’t we?”
“Sweet!” I exclaimed, doing a little victory dance in my seat. My parents had held me off for years, but now that the time had come, they would let me date any guy I wanted! Of course they knew I had a good relationship with God and wasn’t too short on common sense, either.“Now wait just a second” Mom interrupted with a smile. “You have to agree to a little something yourself” I was expecting a lecture of some sort so I was already prepared. ‘”So what do I have to do now?” I asked, leaning forward on my elbows.
“Just open this,” Dad answered, producing a small white box. He gave a mysterious smile. I Hesitated a moment before removing the curly pink ribbon. I slowly opened the lid and saw a beautiful silver bracelet. But not just any bracelet. It was a charm bracelet. And they weren’t just any charms. They were gemstones, small but gorgeous. A dozen dainty charms dangled gently. “Wow.” I didn’t know what else to say. I wasn’t expecting this at all.
“Now you have to understand this isn’t just any bracelet,” Mom informed me.
“I know” I said. “It is so beautiful!” I studied it closer.
There were six small charms alternating with six tinier ones. The smaller ones were a deep blue. Sapphires, I guessed. And the other six were each different. One appeared to be just a rock, one was pink, a white one, a red one, green, and…was that a diamond!?
“This charm bracelet is symbolic” Dad explained, leaning in closer to study it with me. “It represents you and your purity. This is what will guide you through your dating relationships. Your mother and I can only tell you what’s right. We can’t make you believe it yourself. Hopefully, this will.”
I looked up solemnly. “I’m Listening.”
“This represents the first time you hold a guy’s hand”
Mom said, pointing to the gray one. “It’s just a piece of polished granite Seemingly cheap, yes, but it’s still a part of your bracelet. This is pink quartz.”
Then she gently rubbed the next one between her fingers.
“It represents your first kiss”
“This green one is an emerald,” Dad continued. “This is your first boyfriend. The pearl is the first time you say ‘I love you’ to a man other than me.”
I giggled. This was so amazing. The ruby stands for your first engagement. And the diamond represents the first time you say ‘I do’” Mom finished.
After letting it all sink in I cleared my emotion-clogged throat. “What do the six tiny sapphires stand for?” I asked.
Those are to remind you how beautiful and valuable you are to us and to God, ” Dad replied. “Now here’s the hitch in all this, the one and only rule you’ll ever have to follow when it comes to dating. ”
Only one rule. Sounded good. But little did I know…
“Whenever you give one of these actions of love – a kiss, an ‘I love you,’ a hand to hold – you also have to give the recipient the gem to match.
I must’ve misunderstood. “I have to give him the gem?”
“You have to give it to him” Mom restated.
I was silent for a while. I thought they must be joking. But they weren’t even thinking of cracking a smile. “But Daddy!” I suddenly shrieked. “These are insanely expensive! I can’t just give them away!”He gave a soft, loving chuckle. “Did you hear what you just said?”I thought about it.
“Baby, your purity, your heart, they’re far more valuable than a few little rocks. If you can’t find it in your heart to give away your little charms, I don’t think you should be giving away the things they represent.”
I could feel my insides melting, ready to gush out my tear ducts. On the one hand, it made me feel valuable and precious. But on the other, it made me furious. It made no sense. But it would.
A few weeks after that night, I was hanging out with my friends at the beach. Chad wouldn’t swim because I wouldn’t swim. I was more interested in reading than getting caked with sand, and he was more interested in sitting with me than swimming with his buddies. He was sweet. He was cute. And he tried to hold my hand.
I was thrilled for a nanosecond when a certain peice of ugly granite flashed through my mind and made me move out of his reach. I was severely annoyed – annoyed at my parents, annoyed at my bracelet-turned-handcuffs, but most of all annoyed at myself. I was letting a little rock dominate my romantic life.
I furiously glared at it during the whole embarrassing walk to the bathhouse But then God hit me upside the head with a shocking epiphany. I couldn’t give up my little chunk of granite. It was a part of my bracelet, which in a sense made it a part of me. I wouldn’t be whole without it. It wasn’t a priceless gem, yet it was still valuable. It made sense after that.
Kevin came along eventually. We had fun. We hung out a lot. I thought I might love him. I thought I might tell him so. I thought of my pearl. It turned out that I didn’t love him as much as I thought I did.
So my parents had been right. They couldn’t make me believe the things they wanted me to believe. So they let God and my bracelet do the word instead. Among the four of them I figured out how valuable I was. How valuable my purity was.
How not valuable guys were who were just wasting my time and emotions. If they weren’t in it for the whole bracelet, why should they get one part of it?
Nate. He thought my bracelet was awesome. So he never tried to hold my hand. He never tried to kiss me. But he asked me to marry him.
I never knew that so many years of torture could amount to so much happiness. I’d thought it was silly. I’d thought it was overrated. But now, I have never been more glad of anything in my life. As I gave my husband the charm bracelet in its entirety. I wondered why I had found it so hard to hang on to those little rocks when it was so amazing to give them all to the man I truly love.
But it didn’t end there, now our daughter wears it…


It’s been a total of 9 days that I haven’t seen my kids. All you lot who told me I’d be crying crocodile tears can sms/BBM/tweet/email me your “I told you so” gloating messages now. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve enjoyed this time with my husband, I’ve also enjoyed a most fabulous holiday in Mozambique which I will blog about soon, and I have enjoyed not having to deal with the general administration related to being a mom… the cooking and cleaning and bathing and feeding and changing clothes and diapers and linen – the break from all of THAT stuff has been amazing. But my heart is longing for hugs and kisses and … wait for it… tantrums and giggling over bodily functions. I miss the noise and the mess and the general chaos that usually reigns in our house.

Before we left for Mozambique I was fine, I guess that’s because I was speaking to them at least five times a day. Then we crossed the border and were basically shut off from the rest of civilization, which was marvelous in itself but not being able to contact the kids or hear their screaming voices down the telephone line was difficult.

Anyhoo, the point of this post is simply to declare once again my undying, total, complete, all encompassing love for Liam and Hannah. No surprises there. I’ve blogged lyrical about what awesome children I have, but just for myself, this time apart has really reminded me of how utterly amazing it is to be a mom. How no love can compare to that love that a mother or father has for a child. How I can’t compare a thing in the world, to that feeling of having a little person look at you like you’re an angel. Even when it’s bad… as with everything in life, the relationship may have its ebbs and flows, there will be times of discourse, and there may be periods of separation… it’s still so good to be loved and to love so bad – just like the song says.

A photo collage of my favourite girl, Hannah Ruth.

A daughter is a mother’s gender partner, her closest ally in the family confederacy, an extension of herself.  ~Author Unknown

When you were born, I was in a bad space. I cried a lot. I was not ready for you, or rather, I thought I was not ready for you. But from day one, you wormed yourself into my heart and every day I think to myself there’s no way I can love you anymore than I do, but as you grow I find myself wanting to squish the life out of you because you are just that adorable and lovable and squish-able and I feel like my heart will explode with this deep love I have for you.

These photos depict your journey from babyhood to toddlerhood – you grew so quickly! Some days I want to press pause and just keep you as a little girl for a while longer.  You love to explore new things, you aren’t afraid of much, even the neighbour’s big barking dog. You love getting dirty; be it sand, grass, cake or yoghurt, you love to feel it, lick it, pour it all over yourself and just for good measure, roll around in it. You are a bit of a bully-boss, especially to your big brother and your other little friends, but I love your tenacity, you know what you want, and you know how to get it.

You laugh a lot. Like way more than is healthy for a little girl, you laugh until your milk comes out your nose, usually at your brother performing antics for your pleasure. You love him. You love him so much, I think he is your favourite person in the whole world. But I’m not sure, it’s a tie between him, Zoleka and Daddy. You pull the funniest faces, you have the juicest thighs and you have this gorgeous mop of curly hair that truly has a mind of its own.

I always wanted a daughter and I am so pleased that I got you! You fill a void that I didn’t even know I had. You remind me every day that God really does have our best interests at heart and even when we don’t see His plan and purpose for our lives, He is hard at work in the background. You were my unexpected blessing and I am so glad that He chose you for me. 

Love you Hannah Pushkin Pudding Baby xxx

Legacy of Love

I have been feeling rather run down lately. The last few weeks have just been hectic on all fronts; work, home, socially – it’s been one of those months where I don’t know where the time has gone, and it feels like I haven’t spent any of that time in my bed asleep. And what with a teething baby, a “terrible-twos” toddler, my work husband (I’m a personal assistant) and my real life husband, it just seems like I am being pulled in every direction. I start tasks and never find the time to finish them, or finish them shoddily and then feel guilty. I feel bad for losing my inch-thin patience with the kids who demand my full and constant attention at all times and for my poor real life husband who has to bear the brunt of my foul moods. I sometimes feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day, or days in the week to just DO what needs to be DONE, let alone going above and beyond.

I often wonder how my mother did it, she had four children, a full time job and the home fires were always kept burning. I do recall certain times when we were particularly troublesome and she’d yell something along the lines of how sick and tired she was of us and how she wanted to run away – not verbatim, but something along those lines. But on the whole, my mother ranked #1 for being perfect in every way, and still is!

So this got me thinking about what sort of legacy I’d like to leave for my kids.. I don’t want them to remember me as the tired old hag that could barely drag herself off the couch to go and kick a ball outside. Or the kill joy who was always saying NO to everything, or the blur who was always rushing around, not a minute to smell the flowers and just enjoy each other’s company. I want to be fun-mum, my kids must WANT to spend time with me, I want them to understand that even when I discipline them, it’s coming from a place of love and concern. I want to be the type of mum with whom they can discuss anything – no holds barred. I want them to think I am cool, even when they raise questions about the human anatomy that I can’t answer without swallowing hard and choosing my answers verrrry carefully, I want them to know that nothing is off limits. But how do I go about this? I barely have time to make Two Minute Noodles, let alone be cool and suave and show them how well I can flip pancakes (which I can’t, but you know what I mean). I want to add value to the time I spend with my children. By doing seemingly inconsequential little things every day, I can enforce my “coolness” and with a one and a two year old, you don’t have to do much to be cool, believe me. And if I cultivate this sort of relationship from this early age, I won’t have to put in that much effort as they grow, because my cool factor would have established itself!

So I’m going to make more of an effort and colour in the 100th page for the 100th time that day, because Liam loves to colour and Hannah loves to eat crayons. I’m going to let them smear cake mix all over the kitchen table top and all over themselves because it’s fun to make 12 minute cupcakes in 2 hours. I’m going to let them jump on the beds  – they don’t weigh enough to break any springs anyway. I’ll let them brush my hair even though it HURTS when two pairs of little hands are stabbing at your scalp with a plastic comb. I’ll read The Silly Little Goose over and over and over again, because it makes them laugh. I’ll make sure there’s always bird seed in the house, because they love covering the lawn, and the garden toys and the veranda in bird seed so that the birdies don’t go hungry and well Hannah loves eating bird seed. I won’t rush through prayers, even though Liam prays for the whole family by name, down to Toto the dog. I will let them put loads of unnecessary groceries into the trolley and secretly dispose of them in the next aisle, even though this doubles the shopping time, because they think shopping is a treat – while I cringe at the idea of having to grocery shop with two toddlers in tow. I’ll laugh instead of shout when I find the Tupperware cupboard’s been unpacked by Hannah AGAIN, and I’ll show her how to pack it all back, instead of flinging plastic  back into place, in frustration. She’s so good at unpacking.. but packing.. not so much.

And just by changing my attitude and making these small little changes to the way we are currently doing things in my crazy time strapped household, I know my cool rating will shoot through the roof. You see, being “cool” to a kid is easy.. it’s being there mentally and emotionally and not just physically; its listening, not just hearing; its teaching by example and its using every day experiences to teach them something new and amazing – like making beautiful blowing bubbles from dish washing liquid – WOW! So I’m going to try and find little things that will make a big difference to the way I raise these babies of mine, so that my legacy will be one that they will speak of proudly, years after my bubble blowing days are over.