28 July 2013

A time for ... springbok!

Cutting up springbok
On a rainy Saturday, 27 July 2013, Ivan and my nephew Hannes drove to a farm a few hundred kilometers away to fetch the springbok which we had ordered some months before.  They had been shot earlier that week, and then hung, ready for collection on Saturday.

My sister Celia and her son Hannes had done this the year before, and had given us a gift of some venison, which we enjoyed.  So when the time came to place an order, we decided to try it out.  It was the first time we (our family) had done anything like this, so it was all a new experience.

It was still raining steadily when they arrived at my sister's house with all 7 springbok in the van.  After weighing them all and choosing ours, Hannes then proceeded to show us how to cut it up into basic pieces.

Weighing the carcass

Sarah was quite keen to learn how to carve up the carcass, and she learnt quickly.  Celia and I had bags and labels ready for the pieces, which were heading straight for the freezer as soon as we got home.

Sarah learning to cut springbok

All together an interesting day! 

07 July 2013

A season for ... teeth!

Looks quite disgusting, doesn't it?  But I've learned a lot about the damage that amalgam (mercury + other metals) can do to us.  Every time we chew on an amalgam filling, a little of the toxic metal enters our system - it is slowly poisoning us, causing numerous symptoms. 

Another big issue is root canal - where the dentist actually removes the tooth pulp (the living, soft tissue in the middle of the tooth which contains the nerve and blood cells which feed the tooth - keeping it alive).  Then they stuff the hole with a chemical concoction and finally cap the tooth with a metal crown.  Underneath that cap, all mayhem may be breaking loose in terms of  bacterial growth and infection, but we don't know anything about it because we feel no pain (the nerve was removed and the tooth is dead!).  Research on the internet... the dangers of root canal, and be shocked out of complacency!

My research led me to find a biological dentist, who recently removed my 20+ year-old root-canal-treated tooth.  Black gunk came out from underneath the crown and it took almost a month for the area to heal, after taking various remedies and a detox.  The dentist explained that because this infection was seeping into my system for years, it could have caused cancer anywhere on the left meridian - where ironically I had to have a cyst surgically removed a few years ago!  I still have a swollen lymph gland on the left side, which I'm monitoring.

If you're interested in your health, strange as it may sound, perhaps your symptoms could be traced back to your teeth.

10 March 2013

A season of ... working full-time

I can hardly believe it's March! A quarter of 2013 has gone by since I last visited my blog.  My free time has been radically shortened, and I spend most of my days like the lady in the picture above, since I started working full-time at the beginning of this year.

Although the first few weeks were just a blur, lately I have started to question the advantages and disadvantages of working full-time. 

For us, the most obvious advantage is money, with which to make long-awaited changes at home, besides allowing a little more freedom to purchase (without having to count every cent).  We have a long list of needs, including car repairs, roof repairs, gas installation, bathroom renovation and flooring.  Then there's the even longer list of 'wants' like a new lounge suite, a deep freezer and so on.  I know you have a list too - even if it's not written down, it's in the back of your mind, constantly. 

This is what motivated us to accept the full-time employment offer.  Is this what motivates you too?

However, I have subconsciously been keeping another list in the back of my mind... This list includes all the sacrifices that had to be made along the way to our new financial 'freedom'.  And here's where the silent tears start to well up...

My family is suffering without a mom at home.  Even though we pay someone to help out once a week, our home is missing it's 'heart'.  By that I mean, you (the mother or homemaker) is not there to keep everything in order, meals start to become less planned, damage-control in the kitchen is the new 'norm', washing and shopping has to wait for weekends, husband and children have to wait till evening to speak to you, Dad has to pack his own lunch... Then there's the decluttering that never gets done, the sewing and mending that end up in the give-away bag, etc.

My pride-and-joy food garden, has almost become a waste-land, since there is no time to tend it. Vegetables that could have been harvested and preserved, end up rotting on the plants.  No time to plant seeds, no time to make preserves, no time to breathe that fresh morning air in the garden...

But worst of all, is the realisation that we're no longer PRODUCERS (making our own), but have become CONSUMERS!  That goes against everything we've stood for and worked so hard to overcome in the last few years.

Is it really worth it?  Did we anticipate that over R3000 a month would be deducted for a provident fund, or that another R2250 would pay for a compulsory medical aid?  That the paid help at home would cost us over R1000 a month?

A big eye-opener was when I marked every item on our budget that is a 'want' (iow, we could live without it if we had to) and it adding up to almost R10,000 a month!

Again I ask, is it worth it to work full-time?  I don't have a definitive answer yet, but as I consider all the above, my heart is leaning more towards home... no matter the cost.

I'd love to hear your thoughts in the 'comments' section below.

02 January 2013

A time to remember... 2012

As I sadly close my 2012 Diary for the last time, I glance at highlights/lowlights of the year gone by (summarised by key points while on holiday).  Some of them have already been mentioned on this blog, so I won't bore you, but in a nutshell...

Sarah, Jette, Andy, Jakob, Ivan and Amy in Denmark
  • trip to Denmark
  • family camp in Bainskloof
  • rock fountain sold, koi fish stolen
  • 3 deaths in extended family
  • Uncle Joe turned 90, Aunty Annie turned 105
  • last year of homeschooling
  • Ivan's birthday breakfast at Greenpoint Park
  • Sarah turned 16 and became a fruitarian, volunteered at creche, spca, health connection
  • David accepted at Oude Molen, passed Grade 8 with B
  • my unexpected job offer and subsequent permanent appointment
  • Best of all... Ruth and Matthew gave us a surprise visit on Christmas Day and spent a week with us, before heading back to Johannesburg.
Hope Christmas and New Year were spent happily with your loved ones around you too!