DECEMBER BABIES AND SCHOOL

Never did I ever think that my son being born in December, on the 26th to be exact would ever be an issue but it is since he has to go to school. It is not really something that I sat and looked at before I had him or even once he was born until last year.

When we enrolled him earlier that year we initially thought he was going be in a lower grade than the one he should be in based on age because I was more than happy for him to be in class with kids closer to his age based on the months they were born. Teachers suggested we put him in with the other 5 year olds since he would be turning 5 in December. This was 2017. Now that means he was in class with kids who had already turned 5 when the year started. My husband and I agreed but were slightly skeptical because we knew our son was not ready for that class because he was still basically 4 and would be till school closed.

Fast forward to the end of term 2 he is now 4 years and 6 months and the teachers raises a few concerns about where my son is currently at in the class and where he should be. No shock to me and my husband but I wished then that I had been more vocal about him not being in that class to begin with.

Two suggestions were made, one being that he sees an occupational therapist, an idea I was not fond of because the kid is only 4 and the other suggestion was that we take him to a lower grade. We went for the second without even considering the highly recommended OT the school was referring us to.

He did far better in that lower grade which kids his real age then with kids his school age if you know what I mean. The age thing came up again when we enrolled him to a new school for 2018. He should be going Grade 0 since he turns 6 in December. When want him Grade 00 since he only just turned 5 in December and we know he is not ready for Grade 0. I’m comfortable with the choices we have made for him now at the foundation phase rather than have him experience issues in primary school in the later years once the pressure and standards increase.

Have you experienced any problems with your December baby? How have you dealt with it? Let me know in the comments.

Advertisements

Umhlanga getaway with the girls

Last week I took my first official girls trip since having kids and being with my husband. It was a really lovely trip!

Our journey began very early on Friday morning the 6th of October. I was up at 2:30am and had to drive to my cousins place in Pretoria so that we can leave super early and avoid morning traffic. We we’re on the road by 4:00am. All I needed then was coffee! We eventually stopped along the route and I got myself a Grande Cappuccino from Mugg & Bean. My fav! I was so grateful we had a decent coffee place we could stop at.

A few hours on the road, overcast weather hindering our view of the scenery and some other pitstops later we finally made to our destination. Umhlanga! I just love that place. So chilled but yet so vibey. My kind of vibe. The weather wasn’t great but it is still beautiful.

I’d been there last year December on big family trip with kids and grandparents and arriving this time around I could see that some of the developments taking place then were now complete. We checked into the the Protea Hotel by Marriott Durban Umhlanga which was just a walk away from the beach and a new mall with great restaurants there was also a lot of other restaurants just below the hotel a lot of great options.

Our first stop once we checked in was the Umhlanga Pier. The weather was gloomy and going to the beach was just not gonna work for us so we chose to have cocktails and pizza at one of the restaurants close by overlooking the ocean. We were really exhausted though from having woken up at an ungodly hour so once we were done we headed back to the hotel for a nap before we heading out for supper at Granada Square. Supper was rather disappointing I can’t even remember the name of the place.

Day two of our trip and we had very gloomy weather again. We had planned a beach day after having brunch and the weather was not playing ball. We drove to North Beach, Durban and once we got there it is was drizzling. We got our stuff out the car and found a spot on the beach but then it started to ran even harder so we decided to go to Ushaka Marine World and did a bit of window shopping and sat for coffee to warm up. Seems the locals don’t give up on their beach days because we could still see people swimming on the beach. We ended our day with dinner at Gateway and yes more drinks. Nothing wrong with a boozy trip.

Day three and the sun was out, yay! We finally had our beach day at Umhlanga Beach. We fueled up on coffee and order our breakfast as take away and set up on on the beach with food and snacks for most of the day. The water was so cold but I enjoyed it! We soaked up the sun and took some hilarious beach photos of ourselves doing the Bay Watch run and all. The weather soon turned and it was time to go back to the hotel. We grabbed a chicken bunny chow from Rocky Bunny on the way back to the hotel. It’s was spicy, really hot and very good! We spent our evening at a hotel on the Durban Beach Front for dinner and drinks.

Day 4 and it was time to head back my to husband and kids who I missed so much. We had breakfast and checked out off the hotel. We hit the road and it was raining and hailing. Same was happening in Joburg and as we arrived we are welcomed back by traffic on the N4, what a lovey welcome back. Durban had its fair share of rain and flooding just the next day which caused quite a bit of devastation. I’m just lucky to have made home safely the day before and that it didn’t happen while we were there.

Our trip was short but very much well deserved. Taking time to get away from the everyday life between home and the office is required from time to time. Fortunate are those that can do this more frequently. We are already planning our next trip which might be to Mpumalanga or the Drakensburg in the new year. I can’t wait. I’ll hopefully have a trip with my husband and kids as well before that. I just love traveling South Africa. What about you? Any places you can recommend for taking small kids? Or romantic getaways? Let me know in the comments.

How I Became An Active Mom

Have you ever just felt super uncomfortable in your body? Like you actually just don’t belong in that body and just want to crawl out of your skin. That’s how I felt when I was 71kgs heavy and was ready to embark on the journey to a new me. For years I was actually in denial about how much weight I had gained over 9 years since my first year in varsity.

I’d joined the gym after I had my first born and hardly went then I cancelled my membership. I convinced myself that actually I didn’t look that bad, I wasn’t that big. I joined the gym again in preparation for my wedding and went a few times but was not consistent with the training. I lost a bit of weight but I fell pregnant again round about the same time and had no energy for gym. But after baby number two was born I was super motivated. I just kept telling myself that if you can give birth naturally with no meds you can take on a bit of sweating in the gym. So there I was two months after giving birth more determined then ever to loose weight and get healthy.

I started going to the gym regularly while I was on maternity leave making sure I went for an hour at lease 3 times a week. Once I returned to work I continue and then changed the way I was eating. I cut out cards and ate protein and veg for most of my meals. I didn’t have a fancy diet plan I just ate what I wanted and prepared the food they way I wanted and after a while I started to notice the result and I kept at it.

I lost 10kgs in the first 6 months and I was extremely proud of myself. I went on to lose another 5 kgs in the months that followed. That 15kgs! No personal trainer, diet plan or magic pills and shakes! It’s actually possible. I have even managed to maintain that weight loss till now almost a year later.

Here are a few tips on how to get started:

  1. Be consistent – when you start getting into the routine of working out you’ll start to enjoy it and build up endurance.
  2. Make the time – Don’t make excuses for not getting your workouts done. Stop it!
  3. Fitspo “Fitness Inspiration” – I created a Pinterest board and pinned various images of gym motivation, quotes, girls with hot bodies, exercise routines and tips. I also followed a few Instagram accounts of people who were posting there weight loss journey or fitness coaches both local and abroad. I also had a health eating board on Pinterest to get ideas for meals.
  4. Take the gym classes – I cannot afford to get a personal trainer so I take a few of the class lead by an instructor at my gym. These class are great and you don’t need to feel pressured to keep up with everyone, keep to your own pace and you should get a hang of it soon.
  5. Buy new gym gear – Who doesn’t like going shopping? Like seriously, this is the best part. It doesn’t have to cost a lot spend what you are comfortable with. Having new gym gear gets me excited to take my workouts to a new level.

Don’t try and attain this level of perfection that’s just unreal. I may have lost 15kgs but my body is not perfect and I’m fine with that I’m still working on those problem areas like my belly. I’d like to have flat abs but the reality is I’ve never had flat abs and I’ve carried two babies m. I just keep working at.

I’m back to eating carbs and I’m loving life. My priority right now is to maintain the weight loss and I have managed. I’m also trying out different forms of exercise like hiking. I do this with my husband over weekends whenever we get a chance.

My last piece of advice is not to be too hard on yourself if miss a few workouts it happens to the best of us what’s important is that you don’t loose sight of your goals and why you started in the first place.

Mommy Needs A Time-Out

I have been planning a little getaway with the girls and it is coming up in October and I am super excited. I can’t tell you how much I need to relax and unwind far away from the kids and the husband! Yes, I want to leave the kids and the hubby at home and I’m not phased by this. Mommy needs a 3 night time-out away from the household.

I’ll be traveling to Umhlanga in Kwazulu Natal with two of my cousins and a friend and we are staying for 3 nights. We would leave Johannesburg early in the morning and are traveling by road. I love a good road trip.

I look forward to being on the beach in a really nice swimsuit, something sexy since I’ve last 15kgs over the past year. Can I call myself a yummy mummy? I certainly think so. I have not decided if I want to bikini or one piece since my mom-tum just won’t let me be great but hey I’m still working on it.

Most of the planning is done and accommodation is booked. All that’s left to do is the shopping and packing then off we go. So, what’s the plan for the kids and their dad? I actually don’t know. Fortunately the nanny will be around so dad won’t be too stressed “babysitting” for the entire weekend by himself. I had to rolled my eyes as I typed that out. I say “babysitting” because that’s what he thinks it means to be left alone with the kids, I mean you’re just being a dad, chill out.

It will be my first vacation away from the family. My last vacation in December 2016 was a big family trip. My parents, my kids my twin sister and her three kids, my younger sister and my husband were all there and it was great. Five kids between the ages of 18months and 6 years old at the time all together was chaotic. Feeding them, bathing them, getting them dressed and getting them into the car was a mission to be handled with so much precision that you would forget that we were actually on holiday.

Anyway, I thinks it’s a good idea to get time away as a mom sometimes to rejuvenate and reflect. I have not done a full trip away but my time away from home is normally spent at the gym a few times a week. I often sleep in on a weekend just to have some alone time once dad has left the room. Other times when I’m alone are in the car after doing the school run with my son and my on trip back home from the office. Not so luxurious but a lot of thinking can be done on that 45 minute drive in Joburg peak traffic.

I work a full time job and it is very exhausting. I’m already feeling the fatigue towards year end that makes my mind and body very sluggish and going on this trip before the big December break will help refresh and restore the mind and body for the remaining months of 2017. I know there a a lot of working moms like myself and even full time moms who just need a little break and it’s okay! Don’t put off having time for yourself and the things you want to do as that will only leave you feeling worse than you may already be feeling in the long run. Just do you for a little bit.

Career Anxiety

Here’s the thing, you cannot plan your life and have it turn out exactly how you had dreamt about it and that can be rather disappointing. My life today is not how I had imagined it almost 10years ago when I was completing high school.

I don’t have the house and car I’d imagined and certainly not the job I dreamt I would have by now. I’m still hustling having bought a small place earlier this year and a car I at least like to drive that is in my price range.

In my six year working life I would like to believe I’ve done well and excelled having started as an intern and now managing a small team of four, I think I’m doing ok at this life thing. It may not be the dream job but it’s a start. However six years on I’m finding myself questioning a lot about whether or not this is really what I want to do. Am I in the right industry? How will I continue to grow as a young black female in this very white and very male environment? How will I continue to make myself valuable? These are just some of the questions I ask.

I’m constantly thinking about what my next big achievement in my career is going to be and trying to plan for this and I have to be honest I don’t know how I’m going to move on from where I am and it’s actually scary. Career anxiety! Is there even such a thing? I guess so.

I have a degree and would like to further my studies and pursue a post-grad education but studying in South Africa is rather expensive and it is an expense I simply cannot afford to take on at the moment. I try and focus on ideas that will propel me in establishing my own business however the idea of starting a business without funding is intimidating. I read a lot about how other woman manage and start there own businesses and find inspiration in learning about there success stories. A lot of your women are doing very amazing things in this country and there is no shortage of inspiration.

I guess it’s really about patience while seeking out all those things and simply watching how the story develops at whatever pace without feeling that there is a rush to be at a certain position at a particular time. It’s a long journey ahead. One just needs to keep at it, work hard and flourish.