Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Sustainability

As an environmental consultant I try to practice what I preach. I re-use and recycle anything that I can, and I try to consume only what I need. I realise that one person can't make a difference, but if I can change a few people's attitudes and behaviour then that will make a difference. I know I am not perfect and I love my little luxuries...and sushi. But I try.


Now anyone who knows anything about me knows my passion for gardening. Ever since I moved out of my folks place I've been pottering in the dirt of containers and flowerbeds. Some projects have been successful, some not so much.


I like hardy unfussy plants. Plants that won't complain if I forget to water them. Plants that will thrive with minimal interference. Hence the vast majority of plants in my garden are indigenous and hardy. And they are happy. The fact that my Black-eyed Susan creeper has taken over one wall with only the help of a nylon trellis, that my Albuca are starting to flower profusely, again, are testimony.


The cats love it too. My jungle garden means there are LOTS of birds and lizards. And lizards are crunchy little buggers that are fun to catch and it's even more fun to leave a wobbly bit at the bottom of the stairs for me to step on (thanks a lot girls!).


I digress.


In these days of high consumerism, there is a growing trend towards growing one's own food. Whether it's in containers on a balcony or in the garden. Whether it's stylised, mixed in with the normal garden plants or a hodge podge jungle garden, anything goes.

So I have decided to embark on a new project. Veggie gardening. My garden in small but I have much space on my patio. I am going to attempt a vertical veggie garden. One wall is bare and sunny and the perfect place to hang up pots full of yummi nutricious goodness.

Meet the seedlings I have bought from my local garden centre. And my organic veggie gardening book Jane's Delicious Garden. It will help me get growing and I am very excited to see how it all works out.

Here is what will be planted (some I already had):



  • Edible flowers and companion plants: Pansies, Nasturtiums and Marigolds.


  • Herbs: Rosemary , Sage, Thyme (lemon and normal), Basil (sweet and red), Coriander, Parsley, Chives, Marjoram, Oregano, Vietnamese Mint, Spearmint.


  • Veggies: Cherry tomatoes, Eggplant, Spinach, Strawberries, Lettuces, rocket and welsh onions.


  • And seeds (peppers, pac choi, cucumber).

I think it will work out quite well. My family and friends will probably also get a lot of overflow (depending on how successful the project is).



Pictures to follow :-)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Musings

Discovering civilisation had a great blog post the other day. And what was said is only too true. Getting to one's goal weight is a change of attitude, of seeing things in one's life.


So here are some things I need to look at differently:



  1. Food. It's not my enemy. There are many tasty healthy options out there that I actually like. So instead of reaching for the slap of chocolate when the sweet craving hits, I should go for the strawberries, and pat myself on the back for doing the right thing, for treating my body to something nice. I recently discovered that I actually like pawpaw/papaya. I used to avoid it. Now I generally have a Tupperware of diced strawberries and papaya at work with me to snack on. And I'm loving it!


  2. Exercise. It's not my enemy. I do actually feel good and sleep really well on the days I do exercise. The fact that I was a snort-blort monster last week and on site most of this week didn't help, but I can go out and do stuff this weekend. Ha!


  3. Accept thine body shape! I am hourglass/pear shaped. Busty, narrow-waisted, hippy and (unfortunately) thunder-thighs. Damn genetics! I love the fact that I have cleavage. Weapons of Mass Distraction! The narrow waist is great (though currently too well padded), the butt is great. Bootylicious yeah! But those damn thighs....And nearly all my weight sits there. And it's the hardest part to loose weight from. But they are part of me and I need to accept that. But it's damn hard. Looking at myself in the mirror and seeing how out of proportion my body is between the bum and the knees. It feels like the thighs belong on some other body. Do you remember that game we played as kids where we folded a piece of paper in three. One person would draw the head, fold the paper, the next person would draw a torso and the third the legs and when the paper was unfolded you would get a really funny person. That's me. I want to get to the point where I only have 1-max 2 size differences between my waist and my butt. Currently my waist is a 36 and I wear a size 42 pants. Just to get the damn thighs in. I struggle to find pants. All they make are narrow legs, even the Levis Eva range don't fit. I need super wide pant legs. And of course I always end up making tons of alterations at the waist as it's always too big. But yeah. Accepting my shape is the hardest thing.

It's not going to be easy. At all. But I need to reward myself mentally for every good choice I make. Maybe I will make a chart where I award myself stars for every kg I loose / size I go down, black stars for when I seriously slip up (like eating the whole slab of chocolate). Do you, dear readers, have any ideas I could use?

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Hiccup

I had a hiccup yesterday. Not one of those diaphragm ones that you can get rid of by drinking a glass of water upside down. (Yes, it DOES work! Ask me how.) But an emotional hiccup.

Yesterday was one of those gloriously beautiful late spring /early summer days. Blue skies, warm, peaceful... Just perfect. One of those days you want to spend outdoors with family, friends and a significant other. But there I was, alone, feeling rather sorry for myself. I was totally listless, moody and weepy, wishing I was with friends rather than by myself.

You may be asking “So why didn’t you get hold of family and friends?” Well, the parentals are in France for my Gran’s 90th so option (a) was not applicable. And I seriously considered phoning up friends to see if we couldn't maybe do something. But I feel guilty organising something so last minute. My friends have their own lives to live and I certainly do not expect them to go out and do stuff at a drop of a gloomy person's hat.

You’re melodramatic and silly and worry too much, and you can call us anytime!” I can hear those friends reading this post say. I know. I know. But there still is guilt. I am a giver, not a taker. Anyone who knows me well enough knows that they can come and talk to me anytime. I don't often ask for help / support fom other people. It's not the best thing in the world but I'm working on it. I know I can't only give, otherwise there will be nothing left of me to give. I need to "gift" myself more often.

I am also often ruled by the irrational side of me. I tend to keep it buried under the efficient rational me, but it does get the better of me at times. Like it did yesterday. The irrational side was saying "You're single and are unlikely to find a man who will appreciate you like you should be". The rational side "Bullshit. He'll come along one day." Irrational "yeah! When I'm 80." You get the drift.

So why was I thinking relationships when I'm happy being single? Was it seeing the ex at Billious' 30th and having that kick-in-the-gut feeling at how good he looks in a suit? Even though he behaved in a selfish and arrogant manner in the past and I bear him a grudge. Is it seeing so many of my dear friends in successful relationships? Or was it simply that it was too stunning a day to be spending alone? Probably a bit of all of the above.






I think I was just tired. It was Billious' 30th birthday bash the night before and I got to bed late and stupidly woke up early. Of course once I'm semi-awake there's no going back to sleep for me. So after lunch I put my picnick blanket under the tree, some pillows and had a light nap with the cats. I did feel a bit better after that, and so decided to spend the rest of the afternoon reading The Science of the Discworld and tanning my legs (pasty white legs not sexy).






So in the meantime I will look at this picture taken at Billious' party and reflect on the fact that I have AWESOME friends!










Starring in no particular order yours truly, Ming the Merciless, Miss Wolf, Celtic Woman and Miss ADHLAS.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Foiled

Foiled...by the dreaded head cold. 3 days of snotty grotty nose and lymph glands the size of Lesotho. So 3 days of no gym :-( But on the good side I've lost 1kg. Woohoo! Eating healthy is paying off. One gold star for me!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Chicken Soup for the Soul

We have coffee stations dotted around the office. Quite necessary in a building full of engineers. At my nearest station, the container with hot chocolate is labelled Chicken Soup.


I guess hot chocolate is chicken soup for the soul.

Monday, September 12, 2011

A Step In The Right Direction

Friday I boldly went where I have not gone in a very very very long time: The Gym!


I am finally in a frame of mind where I am feeling enthusiastic for the future and I've decided to start exercising again. I do pilates once a week, but that's for spinal rehabilitation, and I need to be physically more active.


So off I trundled to Planet Fitness. I was planning on going to Virgin Active which is literally opposite work. But when I found out the monthly fee (with discount) I almost had a heart attack. R400/month! Seriously? Apparently they give you a hot towel and there's a fruit and juice bar and all sorts of flimflammery. I don't care. I just want to exercise.


Thank goodness PF was a fraction of the price. And they had an awesome special of 4 months free Personal Trainer classes. That way I can learn lots of exercise without hurting myself. Phew!


It is my aim to go most weekdays after work to avoid the traffic. Should be feasible. Friday I walked, cycled and did that cross-trainer machine thingy. It was a great feeling!


So here's to a leaner better me!


PS: Of course it helps to stick to a healthy diet. That's the next hurdle. Fruit as snacks need to be implemented (reaches for the diced papaya and strawberries)



Saturday, September 10, 2011

Bitterness and Healing

I have been single for two months now and I'm enjoying it.

But I need to write this blog for some emotional cleansing. Maybe if I write it down I will finally be able to let go of the bitterness inside me.

In December last year I started dating H. And it was great. He's an intelligent guy, has great knowledge on numerous subjects, and, yes, he was great in bed. We only saw each other on weekends because he lives in a different city.

Everything was going hunky dory until I started feeling that he wasn't putting any effort in the relationship. He was being lazy. The fact that I was on increased dosage of anti-depressant didn't help my libido, but I was able to overcome that. Yet, things just continued spiraling downwards and I was increasingly unhappy about the lack of effort or anything that H invested in us.

Eventually, we decided to call it quits. And he said to me "I told you from the start that I just wanted a fun relationship". Uh! Say what?! That conversation never happened. We did have a talk about finances and who pays for what kind of thing.

(Please note, the guy is stingy. We had our regulars sushi night yesterday and there was no all you can eat special and he was very upset that L&G who had organised the venue had not factored that in. Lazy and stingy. And a dick.)

So nothing about what we expect from the relationship. At the start it was great fun, we had an awesome time together. ..Oh! Wait. Fun as in no-strings attached booty call fun. That's kind of fun he meant. Gee thanks for not letting me know. I feel cheap and used. And extremely bitter.

And here I thought a 38 year old guy would be serious about relationships. If he wanted booty call he should have gone for some silly 20 year old.

A later incident made me even more resentful. We play D&D together and H is the DM and there are 7 players in the group. 4 of the guys come from Centurion and 3 of us from Joburg. So it seemed fair to play at the DM's place in Centurion. Recently, one of the players had to bow out to to unforeseen family drama. So that left 6 people, 3 from Centurion, 3 from Joburg. We continued playing in Centurion.

One day, I couldn't catch a lift to the game and I sent out a friendly email asking if maybe we could play at my house this one time as I'd be really bummed to miss out on the game. The guys responded happily with didn't have an issue changing the venue this one time. All except for H. He was so vociferous in his answering email I was just knocked off my feet! And I know that the only reason he did not want to change the venue the one time was that he's to lazy to get his stuff together and go somewhere. See tat word. Lazy. Yeah. I think that had he used a more apologetic tone in his response I would have been OK with missing out on the game. So I told him that due to his unflexibility and selfishness he'd just lost himself another player.

I then sent out a mail to the other guys telling them of my decision and that I was going to miss them a lot and that I truly enjoyed playing with them. The responses I got back from the guys were so sweet, I felt validated that they at least liked me and enjoyed playing with me too.

So yes. H is a dick. A lazy fat one. And may he regret his decision forever.

Last night, H was the last to arrive at sushi and G who was sitting next to me told me to breathe out and relax because he instantly noticed how I tensed up as soon as H rocked up. G also passed on a book voucher H had given to him to give me for my birthday. And I gave it straight back to H. He looked confused and said "But it's for you." To which I relied "I don't want it" and walked out.

Sigh..Phew... I think I feel better. I'm just so puzzled as to why I'm so hurt. I obviously had deeper feelings than I thought I had, and that feeling used made it worse.

I am not someone's booty call. I am a beautiful, intelligent and educated woman and any man who does not realise and appreciate that is not worth an iota.



Friday, September 9, 2011

Babies in Leopard Print

Now, as mentioned in a previous post, I am not keen on children. I don't fawn over babies, I am not overly comfortable with them. I can do without them.


But I have a confession to make. There is one thing that is unbelievably cute and adorable related to kids: Baby clothes.


Friends of mine, B&B, are expecting twin boys. And their baby shower is on Sunday. So I went shopping for gifts. OMG! Are baby clothes cute. I could have bought the whole shop. These tiny gorgeous clothes had me oohing and aahing all over them. I guess that's the fashionista in me.


A colleague of mine is expecting a baby girl at the end of the year. I think her little girl needs leopard print pumps. It's something every woman/girl needs. Are you feeling it too?


And no, even though baby clothes are ADORABLZ, I am NOT having kids!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Daniel Craig's backside

I went to watch Cowboys and Aliens last week. It was a fun frivolous movie. Cliches galore. After all, what can one expect from a movie with that name.

But it had Daniel Craig. In chaps. And lots of shots from the back. In chaps that framed his bum. Nom! Did I mention he has a nice bum? Really nice...

So I got to perv, and get me some revenge. I went with the some good friends and my ex (H). Now you'd think it weird that I would go somewhere with him, but I've known the A&N for longer than I've known H. And I'm adult enough to be around an ex and be cordial.If I want to see A&N, I accept that H will be around. Unavoidable.

Anyway, I bought stunning killer heels, wore my lbd and looked hot! Hot! Hot! Ahhh...The look on my ex's face was priceless! Sweet sweet revenge. Bliss :-)

That's what you get when all you want is a booty call. Seeing the woman who wanted a serious relationship who is also brilliant in bed, looking amazing and virtually ignoring you. Ha!

It was so empowering and it made me feel awesome!