family, motherhood, Parenting, Travel

The Kindness Of Strangers

Flying with the girls this time round was a much easier experience than it has been in the past. The first reason being their age, with the eldest being nearly 7 and the youngest being nearly 5. The other was the kindness of strangers.

Growing Up

As I have said before, I have flown many times with the girls. Most of that has been done on my own, solo parenting.

This can be a very daunting responsibility for a parent, especially if the children out number the solo parent!

This time around I can honestly say it was easier. Not perfect, but definitely easier. Here’s why: Continue reading “The Kindness Of Strangers”

Essential Personal Documentation
education, Immigration, marriage, motherhood, Our Relocation Journey, Parenting, Travel

Essential Personal Documentation

Living in South Africa, or anywhere really, having your family’s paperwork in order at all times, is essential! There are some essential personal documentation that you want to ensure are always in your possession and current!


Well, simply, you never know what you will need until you need it. You don’t want to be caught out in the situation where you need something urgently and then it takes Home Affairs MONTHS (or years) to get you the one piece of paper you require? Holidays have been ruined and cancelled, huge amounts of money have been forfeited, and family functions devastated because people book their holidays in advance without checking to make sure they have all the required paperwork. It’s not just people living in SA trying to get out, but holiday makers trying to get in as well! Continue reading “Essential Personal Documentation”

Gratitude Autumn Weather
Gratitude Series, Travel

My Saturday Gratitude Check-In: Autumn Weather

Can you believe it’s March already? I can’t. I’ve noticed a very definite change in the weather the past few weeks, but today is the most perfect early Autumn day and for that I am grateful.

If you’ve been following this series, you’ll know I missed last week. I have a good excuse. We went to the Clarens Craft Beerfest. When we left in the morning it was a little cool so I made the girls wear their jumpers. (That was a fun fight / parenting moment! NOT.) By around midday, we were boiling hot! We had arrived too late to find any shady spots so we were sitting right in the sun. I could actually feel the heat burning me through my dark jeans and I had a very shiny face! My poor husband’s bald head is peeling now. He got so burnt, eventually he went and paid R250 for a cap! It’s fair to say that we went unprepared and suffered the consequences. Fortunately I had taken sunblock for the girls so they were fine.  Continue reading “My Saturday Gratitude Check-In: Autumn Weather”

Flying With Children
Parenting, Travel

Let Me Tell You About Flying With Children!

Flying with children is not for the faint hearted, whilst I’ve never done a return flight to Cape Town, I have a few other experiences to share with you based on my many experiences of flying solo with small children!

My Experiences Of Flying With Children – you can’t make this stuff up!

The first time I flew with my eldest daughter, she was 15 months old. We were on our way to the UK from Zimbabwe with a one day stop-over in Johannesburg. I didn’t even have a stroller then as the plan was to buy one in Johannesburg en-route. My husband was also flying to the UK, but funny enough he booked himself on a completely different airline and route – no, he will never live that one down! I was scared, but excited and determined. The trip itself was fine, the only ‘bad thing’ that happened was when she slipped off her seat, fast asleep, in the middle of the night and landed on the floor – Yup! Bad mom! I felt the judgement hard, and don’t think I will ever forgive myself. Fortunately she slept through the whole thing! Continue reading “Let Me Tell You About Flying With Children!”

Road Trip Northern Cape Days 2 & 3
family, Holiday, Parenting, Travel

Road Trip: Northern Cape (Days 2 and 3)

During the week between Christmas and New Year we decided on a spur-of-the moment family road trip adventure to the Northern Cape. We had a few places on our ‘to visit’ list, but the rest was basically an adventure and exploration of the one province in South Africa that seems to pull us back, and definitely holds a special place in my family’s heart. If you want to catch up before reading on, you can check out the prep and Day 1 of our trip, or else you can just carry on from Day 2 and pop back later!

Day 2: Upington to Kathu via Van Zylsrus

Departure Time: 06.45am

Temperature: 23°C

Day 2 dawned bright and early. We packed up the car and went to have breakfast at Wimpy before heading off. After refuelling ourselves we stopped to refuel the Fortuner, and buy more ice for the cooler box! Our destination was Van Zylsrus for lunch, then on to Kathu where we would sleep the night. Continue reading “Road Trip: Northern Cape (Days 2 and 3)”

Holiday, Parenting, Travel

What's your car worth?

Friday evening we left for Jo’burg, it was raining, it was the last weekend of the month which typically means ‘pay weekend’ and the roads were crazy! A journey that normally takes us around three hours, took us almost four.

Even when finances are stretched or low, one of the things we do not compromise on is our vehicles. We always make sure that our cars are well maintained, looked after, fully insured and serviced regularly. So although the traffic and the journey on Friday night was hectic, we knew that the vehicle we were in would get us there without any hassles, and of course the girls were both safely strapped in their car seats! #carseatfullstop!

It’s also coming to the end of the year, which for us means re-evaluating our finances, and it’s coming up time for car-insurance renewals and life insurance policy renewals etc. I know a lot of people think insurance is a luxury, but for us it’s really important.

The car I drive is around 4 & 1/2 years old, and has done a higher than average mileage. It was my husband’s car that he used for work until he got his new one about six months ago. As well as being his work car, it’s also the family vehicle that we use when we go on our road trips all round South Africa, and it’s even been to Zimbabwe and back about 6 or 7 times. We love it! It’s the perfect car for our lifestyle! Even with all that wear and tear, it is still in excellent condition because we take such good care of it: regular dealership servicing, new tyres when needed, etc.

When I was asked to review a website where you can sell your car or find out the value of it, I was interested to find out what the car would be worth when you compare it to the insured replacement value that we pay a premium for!

So I went onto the website . The process was so quick and easy. All I had to do was enter the year, make, model, transmission type, engine capacity and number of kilometers my car has done. (Yes, I do know all that, even though I’m a woman!) I was impressed that it even flagged to me that the mileage is higher than average, because I know that it is. Their estimated value immediately came up on the screen, and an email arrived in my mailbox instantly.

They give you two prices based on estimate prior to vehicle inspection. The first is a cash offer, and the second is the offer if you agree to advertise it on their website for 48 hours. There is quite a substantial difference between the two prices.

I was a bit upset to realise that it’s value was far lower than I thought it would be, but I’m guessing this is more for quick sales, and it’s clearly an estimate based on the details I’d provided and is a pre-inspection value. The next step in the process would be to book a free inspection, and they offer a number of inspection centres where you can choose to take your car.

As I am doing a review, I wanted to compare the process with one of their competitors. I went on to another site and filled in the details (far more details were required). Instead of giving me an estimated value for my car it asked me to put in an amount that I thought my car was worth, so I did even though I’m a bit confused by this. On clicking ‘next’ it then sent me to the next page where I was hoping to see an estimated value there and then but instead it just told me that they will be in touch via email. At the time of posting this, I have received a text message with a reference number on it, but no email yet.

Whilst I realise that the two companies have different ways of operating, I think that in this day and age, people expect an answer almost instantly, even if it’s just an estimate initially. If I did want to sell my car, or if you want to sell your car, you want to know its value there and then so that you can work with your budget towards your next vehicle.

Would I recommend CarZar for a quote if you were looking to sell your car? Yes.

Would I still shop around to get the best price? Yes.

Am I selling my car? No way! I love my car (it’s a 2013 Toyota Fortuner by the way). It’s worth far more to us as it is, than what the selling price I was quoted is.

Am I calling my insurance company to review the amount they claim my car is worth!? Hell yes!


Blogging, family, marriage, motherhood, Parenting, Travel

Making Moves – The Reality

Our moving date is getting closer and things are starting to get real, and really hard. For those of you who are new to my blog, or who don’t follow me regularly (Shame on you! lol), we are relocating soon from the Free State, to East London in the Eastern Cape.

My husband started his new job two months ago, but the reality is that there has been a lot of back and forth, and more time at home than away which has been great for all of us. However, real life is now setting in and he is now gone more than he is home. It’s hard for all of us, and here’s why.  Continue reading “Making Moves – The Reality”

Blogging, family, Holiday, motherhood, Parenting, Travel

My Instaweek Round-up – July Wk 4

This past week was spent in East London doing all the things you do when moving to a new city. We had what felt like a billion house viewings, visits to potential schools, and a few hours of down-time at the beach. It was an exhausting week and to say that I am exhausted today is an understatement.

The girls and I travelled back home from East London yesterday. We were up at 05.00 and flew from East London Airport to Johannesburg, then had to collect our luggage and check back in with a different airport to fly to Bloemfontein. That flight was delayed by over an hour as the original plane was not available so they had to split the passengers into two groups on smaller planes. We were obviously put on the smaller plane taking not more than 30 passengers – I felt sick (thanks SAA – no comment!). Then on landing at Bloem airport we had to then drive two hours to get home. It should have been one and a half, but I took a wrong turn so had a quick tour of Bloem before finding my way out. I got home around 16.00. Basically it was 11 hours of travelling solo with the girls – and we’re still in the same country! Continue reading “My Instaweek Round-up – July Wk 4”

My 3 Strike Superstition
Blogging, family, marriage, motherhood, Parenting, Stay-at-home-mom, Travel

My 'Three Strike" Superstition 

Superstition. Signs. Warning. God. The Universe. A mother’s intuition.

Whatever you want to call it or whoever you want to credit it with, I have a ‘3 Strikes & Stop’ rule that I listen to.

What do I mean you ask? Continue reading “My 'Three Strike" Superstition “