Spirited Mama

YOU have got to take in the BAD to experience the GOOD

Tag: memories (Page 1 of 6)

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52 lessons for 52 weeks: Week 16 – Take a Time Out

You deserve a TIME OUT

Whether you think you don’t, believe me you deserve a TIME OUT. No matter how small that time out is. Remember the saying “you can’t pour from an empty cup”. Well, that’s where I’m finding myself. So two weekends ago, Dude decided we need a time out. Off we went to Cape Town.

Normally, we would stay with family but this time we found a holiday apartment at the beach 🙂 This is where we found Dudie most of the time…

 

Take a TIME OUT already

With life being so busy and getting even busier at times, everyone can do with a little break. We don’t normally do holiday getaways with the masses during peak season but rather prefer an “off season” frequent break every now and then. Due to budget constraints we can’t do this as often as we would like but we manage to squeeze them in. Also, it’s tricky to coordinate schedules so many times we just wing and make prior arrangements to catch up on school/work once we get back.

We also had birthday celebrations in between. My MIL turned 70 years and I turned 35 years old the day after her birth day. Dude and Dudie made a lavish breakfast with all the bells and whistles. Even non-alcoholic champers so that Dudie could toast with us 😜 Troll used his water cup to join in on the toast.

Cut yourself some slack

You really need to cut yourself some slack. You give the best of you but do you recharge YOU? Yes, I’m talking to myself here BUT I know that most of you can relate. You give and give, and give  some more. When do you cut yourself some slack? Personally, this is extremely difficult as I feel that if I loosen the reigns things will fall apart. It’s OK to loosen the reigns a bit. My new motto; if it’s not going to harm anyone it will be OK.

As family, we needed to do “nothing”. We needed to let go of the routine and just wing it. We were busy but we needed the busyness of doing nothing. It was good for our souls.

The nothingness also became a big something as we said our final goodbyes to a family member. So in the midst of taking a time out, it was perfectly planned that we were in close proximity to be with family in a desperate time of need.

Dude has a belief that if you do something with a pure heart and good intentions, it’ll work out the way it’s suppose too.

The time out was perfectly planned. It’s rekindled my flame to Enjoy the small things. The things that often get taken for granted.

Happy Monday!

Spirited Mama

x

If you are new to my series find the previous posts below:

Week 1 – Living with intent

Week 2 – Be an example

Week 3 – Be YOU

Week 4 – Treasure people NOT possessions

Week 5 – Change is inevitable

Week 6 – Let it go

Week 7 – Love YOURSELF

Week 8 – FORGIVE

Week 9 – TRUST

Week 10 – BELIEVE in yourself

Week 11 – Find GOOD Friends

Week 12 – Enjoy the small things… F*ck balance

Week 13 – Be KIND

Week 14 – Be PATIENT

Week 15 – ARM yourself

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Bored? Teach your kids some skills with board games with #PrimaGamesFest + Win

Board games are still a part of me

Board games reminds me of so many childhood memories with my extended family. And to this day, a family gathering is NOT complete without at least one night of playing board games. We live in Gauteng and most of our family live in the Western Cape. So whenever we visit the family, you can bet on it that we will squeeze in a board game or two. In fact, it’s sort of become our tradition and Dudie, 8 years old, loves it!

I have one brother, 9 years younger than me. So growing up I felt like an only child. Don’t despair because I have loads of cousins and if you saw us together you would think that we were siblings. The endless fights BUT the closeness so surreal. Board games was also our escape from the madness of busy days and the boredom during school holidays. I don’t remember being BORED growing up!

Board games also kept us out of mischief as one time we burnt down Mamma’s beloved tree, but that is a story for another day…. I only told Mamma almost 20 years later what actually happened to her tree.

Competitive much? Try board games

Personality is linked to genetics, go google it… I’ll wait.

That being said both Dude and I are competitive by nature! And Dudie inherited THAT gene two fold. Holy moly, this child DOES NOT WANT TO LOSE! Be that as it may, we have subtle ways of reminding him that you WON’T always win in life, so you need to know how to handle that loss. Board games is one of the methods we use to get this point across.

When we play boardgames, we don’t LET him win. He has to win fair and square. We, rather I, won’t throw the game so that he can win. The lesson is sinking in and I see that he is much better at managing his competitive nature.

Parents should take advantage of board games

Growing up, the parents were always busy working so kids were left to entertain themselves. I was fortunate that Mamma was home to take care of us after school. My favourite after school activity, as you know it pours in Cape Town during Winter, was playing Rummikub with Mamma. Hours of endless fun and bonus learning!

Now being a parent myself, I see the  learning opportunity and take full advantage of games in general.

Preparing this generation for Life to come

Workplace situations – perseverance, tolerance, team work, communication, conflict  resolution, negotiation skills… Are these not SKILLS that employers are trying to hone in on?

Why are YOU not instilling these skills into the next generation? They are the FUTURE!

It need not be so complicated. It starts with baby steps, and by that I mean, start with a game. PLAY with YOUR kids. Learn from one another AND teach/build/enhance their skills whilst brushing up on YOUR OWN SKILLS. Inevitably, these skills become their coping mechanisms through life. And the BONUS is that YOU are BONDING with your family x.

Communicate with each other – I mean like talk to each other IN PERSON! No technology involved other than actual people talking face to face, in person. Yes, we live in a technologically driven world BUT sometimes you need to step back, switch off those devices AND just talk to the person. No text, no whatsapp, no facetime, no snapchat – Just talk like we used to in the “olden days”…

We tested some games for the #PrimaGamesFest

I consider these games, tabletop games BUT in our case, BEST played on the floor.

#PrimaGamesFest review

Rummikub

This game is FUN for adult and child alike! It’s easy to understand and once you get the hang of it, you and your kid(s) won’t want to stop. Hours of endless fun to curb some cabin fever this winter. Once you have mastered Rummikub, try Rummikub with a twist to spice things up a bit! Make sure you get a little helper to clear up AFTER you’re done playing 🙂

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Little sibling, aka Troll, clearing up after the game is done

Boomblast stix

Now this game is something you MUST try with your family and friends. It’s listed as a “teen” game BUT even my 1 year old cracks his belly laugh when we play Boomblast stix. *we don’t let Troll play with it! He is our spectator cheering us on 🙂 I’m going to do a proper video of this one soon!

King Pong

It’s all about your accuracy and speed. I’ll show you OUR version, we still need loads of practise AND then I’ll show you what it actually needs to look like 🙂

World’s smallest Doodletop

For the doodlers – You MUST try this one! I am NOT a doodler but I thoroughly enjoyed this doodletop. Probably because it requires minimal input from MY side… My Dudie thinks everyone can be an artist with a doodletop 🙂

 

 

Boardgames and games are a wonderful form of entertainment and this year, to showcase Prima Toys’ amazing products, we are very proud to be launching the first ever Games Festival. The festival highlights all our hottest game and boardgame products from the traditional ones like Rummikub and Snakes & Ladders to the brand new King Pong, Boomblast and Flipside!

The hottest #PrimaGamesFest products:

For Toddlers and Children

  • Twist & Turn
  • Disney 4 in 1 Game
  • Frozen Matching Game
  • Frozen Activity Packs
  • Lion Guard Surprise Slides
  • Lion Guard Matching Game
  • Peppa Pig Dominoes
  • Disney junior Surprise Slides
  • Minnie Play & learn educational game
  • Disney Princess Brainstorm
  • Sofia the First my nail studio
  • L.O.L. Surprise Game
  • L.O.L. Puzzle

 

For Teenagers

  • Flipside
  • Boomblast
  • Kingpong
  • Rubik’s Cube

 

Family Games

  • Wikipedia
  • 20 Questions
  • Rummikub
  • Hotel Tycoon
  • Anti-Monopoly

 

For more information go to www.primatoys.co.za or www.Facebook.com/primatoys

WIN the King Pong Game!!!

All you have to do is share this giveaway post on Facebook + tag a friend!

*Make sure that you share publicly and tag me so that I know you have entered*

And GO!!!

Spirited Mama

x

T’s & C’s

**Competition closes 31 July 2018. Winner will be announced on 3 August 2018.
Open to South African residents only.
Winner will be randomly selected. 
No correspondence will be entered into once a winner is selected.
Winner will be announced on my social media accounts and notified via email.
I reserve the right to disqualify invalid entries.
**

***Disclaimer – The games were sent to us for review but the views and opinions expressed are my own.***

 

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We EXPLORED the Prima Top Toys for 2018

Let them explore

There are 161 days before it’s Christmas!!! Generally, I try and get most of my shopping done in advance so that I avoid last minute trips to get gifts. This also saves my budget a few pennies as I can make informed decisions about the toys that I would buy the boys.

Last Thursday, I attended the much anticipated Prima Top Toys for 2018 Christmas Launch. What a treat it was or rather it was a CARNIVAL! As an adult, I do look forward to the annual Prima Top Toys launch as it is then that ALL the adults get to behave “child-like” and no one is judging you. In fact, it is expected of you to behave in a child-like manner to ensure that you enjoy the entire experience AND explore the top toys on offer.

From arrival, we, i.e. media/bloggers/vloggers/influencers/etc, were spoilt from Maverick & Jane gourmet popcorn to chilled Prosecco, playing carnival style games to win actual prizes. We knew that we were in for a real carnival.

The theme for 2018 is Let them explore. It’s about letting children enjoy and explore their world through play. It’s about giving them the opportunity to discover new things, new play patterns, new technology and more. With the array of toys that will be available in stores from now until the end of the year, children of all ages will have the opportunity and the excitement of exploring new ranges.

YESSS!!! Influencers and Bloggers, Prima Toys is taking note!

We have also seen the positive impact of influencers and bloggers in our ‘local’ market place, educating parents & children alike and in so doing changing the face of ‘traditional’ marketing for ever.

 

Here’s an overview of the Prima Top Toys for 2018

Nostalgia toys continue to make a serious comeback, together with collectibles and toys that incorporate robotics and technology. This Festive Season there is something for everyone and for all ages from toddler to tween to teenager. There is also a wide range of classic and new games that adults can enjoy.

 

Kids are becoming increasingly tech savvy and they want in on the latest toy craze around the world.

Top Toys for BOYS in 2018

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Ben 10

Ben 10 is still at the top of the list in terms of boy’s toys. Benjamin Tennyson moonlights as Ben 10, a superhero with special powers that he discovered from a young age when his signature Omnitrix device miraculously attached itself to his wrist. The Ben 10 range features all the alien figurines in various sizes ad movement capabilities. There are also exciting playsets including the Ben 10 Alien Creation Chamber and the Transform & Battle playset.

New to the range is Ben 10 Action Projection Omnitrix,  the Omni Launcher which includes 2 figurines, the deluxe Transforming figure and the Alien Creation Chamber.

 

Big Hero 6

The toys in this range are based on the animated superhero series of the same name. Toys in the range include Micro Chibi figures, action figures, feature figures, Armoured Up Baymax and Blast Flying Baymax.

 

Treasure X

Especially for boys who love to hunt for treasure, Treasure X is a new toy that engages the senses as children scratch, dig and unearth the lost bounty. Like any good treasure hunt, Treasure X is about more than just what you find, it’s about the fun of finding it too. Hidden somewhere inside the Treasure X brick are a collectible skeleton figure and a treasure chest which contains a gold treasure.

 

StretchMini Stretch Justice League Figures are just some of the fantastic toys available in the Stretch range.  Each toy can stretch up to 5 times its original size, it then slowly shapes back, ready to be pulled and twisted all over again. Look out for Mini Stretch X-Ray and Mini Stretch VacMan, Stretch Batman and introducing Disney Pixar Mini Stretch Mrs Incredibles.

 

Trixx

Collect the 8 cars and create your own circuit! Trixx360º is much more than a car that turns 360! Everything is usable in Trixx360! Use the packaging box to build your own circuit! Make as many combinations as you can imagine!But not only that. All the accessories of the cars are interchangeable, including the wheels and the bodies! Collect the 8 cars with their ramps and make multiple combinations!

 

Top Toys for Girls in 2018

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Shopkins

Shopkins have become a toy box staple and have crept into the heart of little girls the world over. They are cute, adorable, very colourful and collectible with price ranges that accommodate intermittent purchase and big ticket item buys kept especially for birthdays and special occasions. From the small collectible Shopkins, to the world of Shoppies and now Shoppets, the Shopkins universe features different themes for every season, sparks the imagination and provides endless hours of enjoyment.

This season sees the launch of Shopkins’ Season Nine – Wild Style, which introduces the Shoppets. They are adorable little pets for the Shoppies dolls and are larger than a Shopkin, but smaller than a Shoppie.

2018 also sees the launch of the Shopkins Small Mart Range. 

Something top secret is happening in Shopville. Shopkins Lil Secrets is another range to look out for and will be available in stores in October. Hint: they are little playsets that Shoppies can play with.

 

L.O.L. Surprise have been a phenomenon. The success of the products hinges on the fact that it’s all about unpacking the surprises inside until you have put together a complete toy. The products have won a range of international awards and continue to fascinate girls from the age of four and up.

To add more fun, sparkle and excitement to the range, a variety of new, mystery-filled L.O.L. products have been launched including L.O.L. Pets, L.O.L. Glitter, L.O.L. Confetti, L.O.L. Little Sisters, L.O.L. Surprise Game with Accessory, L.O.L. Water Game and L.O.L. Puzzles.

 

Baby Secrets

Baby Secrets is a retro toy that has made a comeback. Baby Secrets is collectibles range which features a unique element, that of discovering if the character is a boy or a girl by bathing it in water. The nappy changes colour to either blue or pink to reveal the gender.

 

Pikmi Pops and Cake Pops

Pikmi Pops and Cake Pops are just waiting to be unwrapped! Another range of collectibles that feature the surprise element, the Pikmi Pops and Cake Pops are filled with mini scented plushies and other fun goodies.

 

Baby Love

Baby Love is Prima Toys’ own baby doll range. The success of the dolls hinges on the fact that they were designed with a South African audience in mind and each doll speaks a national language. Baby Bella speaks English, Baba Tasha speaks Afrikaans and the hugely successful Baby Thando speaks English and isiZulu. Parents and little girls can look forward to a new isiXhosa speaking doll. For 2018 the range now includes a Baby Love Buggy.

 

Little Live Pets

Fans of the Little Live Pets will be pleased to know that there are new additions to the toy range. Little Live Pets Pup, Little Live Pets Dragon. There is also a Little Live Pets Bizzy Bubs.

Introducing the Lil’ Cutie Pups, the latest members of the Little Live Pets family! These little dogs are the cutest pups around. Lil’ Cutie Pups are full of life and love to show off their own personalities as they scamper about, beg and play with you!

 

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LITTLE LIVE PETS DRAGON

Hatching toys is a trend that will continue in 2018. The Little Live Pets Surprise Dragon comes in a beautiful egg and you don’t know which one is inside until it hatches. Once hatched, the Dragon can hop and flutter its wings.  The Little Live Pets Surprise Dragon can be hatched again and again.

 

Baby Born

Baby Born is a wonderful product range that has been around for 26  years. The Baby Born dolls feature lifelike functions like tearing, feeding, drinking and wetting. Numerous accessories are included with each doll ensuring that little girls can role play and take care of their doll as if it were a real baby. Accessories include plate and spoon, a potty, a dummy, a diaper and a sachet of baby doll food. Baby Born new soft body

Features of the new Baby Born rage include being soft to the touch (their bodies are soft and seamless), super movable (there is improved motion of arms and legs) and more easily crying real tears.

October will see the launch of our nationwide Baby Born campaign – in which little girls can stand a chance to win their share of R100 000 Baby Born dolls and accessories!

 

Baby Annabell

Baby Annabell® is almost like a real baby with lifelike functions and a cute expression on her face. She responds to touches, can cry real tears and loves her bottle and dummy. When she drinks her bottle or sucks her dummy, she delightfully opens and closes her eyes, while her mouth moves realistically. Patting her on the back helps her burp like a real baby. Rocking her from side to side makes her feel sleepy. When she cries, tear drops start to fall from her eyes. She yawns, closes her eyes and begins to breathe gently.

 

My Fairy Garden is an enchanting range that features fairies and unicorns and introduces children to the changing of the seasons, gardening and how plants grow. The toys are perfect for girls aged 4 years and older. Children love toys that allow them to be creative and to learn about their environment; and with My Fairy Garden playsets they have the opportunity to learn even more about nature.

 

Coming in October are the Disney Doorables! Unlock Moose Toys Latest Surprise with Glitter Eyes when Doors Open in October 2018! Through a collection of figures and connectable playsets, Disney Doorables empowers kids to become storytellers by uniting beloved Disney characters in one land – where surprise and delight await behind each door.

 

Scruff-a-luvs are adorable fur ball, rescued pets. The pets come in pink or blue and untangle in water to reveal your puppy. Find us Scruffy, Make us Fluffy! These unloved and abandoned pets are in need of your help! When buying your Scruff-a-Luv, they arrive as a sad ball of matted pink fur, but once you bathe them, dry them, brush them and love them, you will discover your puppy! Available mid September.

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SCRUFF A LUVS

Top Tech Toys in 2018

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Fingerlings continue to be at the top of the birthday wish list.

This year, the Fingerlings family has grown with the addition of Fingerlings Baby Unicorns and the Glitter Monkey. As the best-selling technology toy for 2017, the Fingerlings have become a phenomenon in the toy world and with good reason because these robotic pets are cute, adorable and very huggable.

Brightly coloured with adorable faces, these palm-sized pets curl around your finger and come to life when you play, responding to sound, motion and touch with over 40 animations. Later in the year and leading up to the festive season, more awesome and exciting Fingerlings will be added to the range.

Introducing exciting new additions to the Fingerlings family: Dino, Pando and Dragon.

 

Teksta
Incredibly lifelike, the classic robotic Teksta puppy is back with more interactive features than ever before. The puppy responds to voice, movements, lights and sounds through a built in artificial intelligence program. It communicates its emotions with barks, whines and changes in eye patterns, just like a real puppy. Teksta 360 will also react to your hand gestures to sit, stop and flip backwards. You can even train it to play and dance with its friends by downloading the app for additional bonus features.

 

Robo Chameleon                         

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Robo Chameleon

Move, Aim and Catch! A Robot Chameleon that can Shoot the tongue out and snap up the “food”!

There are 3 steps to catching Robot Chameleon:

  1. Walk your Robot Chameleon to the “food” by remote control
  2. Aim the target!
  3. Press “catch” on the remote

Robot Chameleon has a built-in extendable tongue to “catch” the “food”. It also has a LED Illuminated body, with multiple colour light changes. It also has a motorized tails and eyes that move when it walks.

 

Virtual Reality (VR) Real Feel

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VR product range

VR Real Feel is the game that makes virtual reality a reality! Experience 3D high definition graphics with your iPhone or Android smartphone using the VR Real feel headsets. Simply download the game to a smartphone, insert the phone into the headset and play. Range includes VR Fishing, VR Alien Blaster, VR Motocross and VR Racing. The headsets have a comfortable foam face, adjustable straps, and an adjustable phone cradle.

 

Show off your skills with the Laser X Two-Player Laser Tag Gaming Set.

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Laser X

With two blasters and two receiving vests, players are ready for one-on-one competitions, but can also join in on team play since the sets are all compatible with each other. Check the blast power indicator to know how many blasts you have left, so that if you’re low on blasts you can find a good hiding place.  Available September.

 

ARIA

A.R.I.A’s Adventures is an educational interactive set with 3 different games in 1 box. It includes 100 interactive flash cards, a Virtual Reality animal park and 3D colouring pages. Use your smart device or the included VR head set and allow A.R.I.A to take you on an incredible virtual journey.

 

Top Science Toys in 2018

National geographic has launched a new range of S.T.E.M. toys that stimulate the imagination and help children develop an aptitude for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. We all want to give our kids the world, and now, with National Geographic, parents can do just that. The range has fun, educational, stimulating and inspiring toys for kids.

With the National Geographic science kits, children become thoroughly absorbed in play and learning. The range includes a variety of digging kits such as the Shark Teeth Dig Kit, Dinosaur Dig Kit, Bug Dig Kit and the Gemstone Dig Kit. There is also a Volcano Science Kit and a Glow in the dark crystal it where kids can create their very own crystals. There is a new range of soft play including Dinosaur, safari and Ocean animal figures to collect, play with and display.

 

Nat Geo figurines

Wildlife Wow is a revolutionary NEW wildlife series! Soft and squeezable with the same level of detail as hard figures. Each figure is hand-painted with non-toxic paint. These animals come to life with a free virtual and augmented reality experience and the app’s X-ray vision lets you see the skeletal structure inside each animal. Watch videos, learn facts, and explore each animal with the educational interface.

 

Prima Top Toys Games in 2018

This year the Prima Toys’ collection of games is bigger and better. From the classics to brand new games that will have your skills tested to the limit, all in the name of fun! Our brand new games include:

Flipslide is a fast-paced electronic game that tests your speed and reflexes.

Boom Blast Stix – this game will keep everyone on the edge of their seats!

Game Box – Games Box is small enough to be taken but big enough to provide lots of fun gaming times!

Rubik’s Cube – For all Rubik’s Cube fans both veteran and amateur, the brand has created new versions of the famous cube that are more challenging, more fun and more exciting to solve. 

 

Top Toys for Toddlers in 2018

A range of new LeapFrog products are available to help your child develop a love of learning during the early childhood year.

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LeapFrog prepares your child for a lifetime of learning. The brand is the leader in innovative solutions that encourage a child’s curiosity and love of learning throughout their early developmental years. For more than 20 years, LeapFrog has helped children expand their knowledge and imagination through products that combine state-of-the-art educational expertise, innovative technology and engaging play.  LeapFrog’s learning tablets, developmental games, learn to read and write systems, interactive learning toys and more are designed to create personalized experiences that encourage, excite and build confidence in children. 

 

V Tech

VTech creates age appropriate and developmental stage-based electronic learning products for children of various ages. The products enrich children’s development and make learning fun. VTech consults a panel of experts, specialised in reading, language arts, science, math and child development, during the process of creating new products to ensure that they are beneficial to children.

Some of the new products for toddlers that parents can look forward to from VTech are:

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Little Tikes

Little Tikes is a range of toys for indoor and outdoor play that will entertain your child while helping them to develop their mind and imagination. The toys encourage discovery and learning through active, creative and social play and provide hours of fun.

The products are created for babies and toddlers, as well as older children, with a focus on interaction, movement and learning.

Below are some of the latest toys from Little Tikes:

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Mickey turns 90 years old!

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90cm Mickey Plush toy

 

 

Mickey is turning 90 on 18 November. Disney will be running a nationwide campaign to celebrate all things Mickey over the festive period and capitalising on the hype around his birthday (18 November).

Prima Toys will focus on key product categories such as: Plush toys, games, puzzles, metals and outdoor play.

Disney and dress up

Playing dress up is a fun way for kids to express themselves. The Disney rage includes costume party packs available in the following brands: Marvel Avengers, DC Heroes Boys, DC Girls and Disney Princess.

 

This season there really is something for everyone! For more information, go to www.primatoys.co.za or www.Facebook.com/primatoys and follow @PrimaToys

The toys and games are available at toy stores and retailers countrywide. 

Go on, “Let them explore”…

Spirited Mama

x

Cartoon Network Live characters

Cartoon Network Live is ALIVE!

Opening day of Cartoon Network Live

Yesterday, we attended the opening of Cartoon Network Live at the Teatro, Montecasino, Johannesburg. Man alive, am I happy that this day had finally arrived as Dudie was driving me crazy with the constant “when are we going to the show” or “Mom, come see the ad is on TV”. As a parent I take precaution in what and how much details I divulge to my 8 year old. BUT, he saw the Cartoon Network Live invite on my laptop, stupid me left it on the table and forgot that this child CAN read!

This child called me at work to ask when I’m leaving because we can’t be late for the show. Then he called again, whilst I was en route, to check how far I am from home. Alas, we made it to the show on time.

Cartoon Network Live!, features Cartoon Network’s most popular heroes from Ben 10, The Amazing World of Gumball, Adventure Time and The Powerpuff Girls, in an interactive and spectacular stage production for kids aged 5+.

We were seated and waited in anticipation! It was incredible to see all the wonderment and excitement as the Teatro was filled with gleeful children waiting to see their favourite characters LIVE on stage.

Cartoon Network Characters come ALIVE on stage

Adventure Time, Finn the dog and Jake the human - Cartoon Network characters on stage

Finn the dog and Jake the human, Cartoon Network Characters

The audience erupted as familiar Cartoon Network characters stepped out on stage. The kids were in their zone, screaming gleefully as they recognized their favourite characters. What stood out for me was the story line that these beloved characters brought to life. From inspirational songs to interacting with the audience. To instill a value that “GOOD TRIUMPHS OVER EVIL”. To be the best friend you can be and to just believe in yourself.

Kids tend to “listen” to their peers and in this instance I think they were more zoned in to the message from their beloved characters. This live production is filled with song and dance but also very important messages for our kids. We just need to listen to the message. After the show, Dudie aptly told me how this was the best show ever and that the characters have some important messages for the kids. *this is my smart egg this one 🙂 *

I prefer live productions, especially for kids. It ignites their imaginations and allows for human interaction as opposed to staring at a screen!

The production brings together an international, award-winning creative team to ensure a quality family entertainment stage show for audiences of all ages. The show is directed by award-winning director and choreographer Bart Doerfler, known for his work on The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood, The Walt Disney Company, The Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus, Holiday On Ice and Dreamworks. Besides Bart Doerfler, the creative team consists of Stephen Emmer (Musical Director), Cynthia Nordstrom (Costume Designer), David Smeets (Lighting Designer), Michael Al-far (Video designer) and Marinus de Graaf (Set designer).

Cartoon Network Shows and Dudie’s schedule

We are fortunate to have multiple channels in our home and that everyone, EXCEPT me, can watch what they feel like. Dudie is constantly tuned in to Cartoon Network. His favourites Cartoon Network shows include the likes of Ben 10,  The Regular show (aka Mordecai & Rigby), The Amazing World of Gumball, Adventure Time AND Teen Titans!

Now before you judge how much screen time is allowed in my home, Dudie has very limited TV time during the school week but has free reign Friday – Sunday. That being said, he prefers to spend his weekends outside BUT he has an endless supply of pvr’d episodes, he does this himself, should he decide to catch up on some TV time.

About Cartoon Network EMEA

Turner’s Cartoon Network is a universally appealing boy focused, girl inclusive channel driven by its exciting slate of surprising comedy and adventure. The programming line-up explores the relatable themes of humour, friendship, imagination, action and adventure. Cartoon Network targets boys and girls aged 6-12 and aims to champion kids being themselves through its rich mix of entertaining and globally successful content.

The Powerpuff girls Cartoon Network

Cartoon Network’s -The Powerpuff girls

If you’re stuck for some school holiday fun best you make your way over to Montecasino for the Cartoon Network Live production! Your kids will thank you…

Johannesburg

3rd July 2018 – 15th July 2018

Montecasino

Ticket Price: R175 – R390 – up to 50% off all off-peak shows

Tickets are on sale now through www.bigconcerts.co.za and Computicket.

 

Spirited Mama

x

**Disclaimer: We were invited to attend the opening show but the views and opinions expressed are my own**

 

 

It’s been 1 year…

Can I just rewind for 1 year?

This photo was taken the day after Mamma passed on. Credit goes out to my Dude for capturing the grey skies, which is exactly what we felt in our hearts…an uncertainty of how to move on from here….

It’s been 1 year since I said goodbye to Mamma. I whole year without her yet it only feels like it was yesterday…the heartache is still there but it’s not as raw as it used to be. I can look at her photo without feeling an emotional storm brewing inside of me.

This morning I was extremely restless, granted we only got home at 1am from ER but that is a post for another day….I only went to bed after 2am and by then I was too exhausted to sleep. Do you also experience this? I get to a point where I’ve missed my cues to sleep.

I woke up just after 4am, and realised last year this time was my “calm” period. I felt something, it was in fact euphoria. And in that moment I realised it was in fact my last time with Mamma. On 28 August 2016 @ 04:22 (I know the exact time as I just checked my phone and used the torch app to look at Mamma) , she breathed her last breath out over my hand. It was bittersweet but I am extremely grateful and honored that I got to share her last moments with her. If you missed my list you can read it here Cancer Won…

When I got out of my bed I stepped on something. There was nothing before when I walked the same space just an hour ago. I grabbed my torch, my Troll was sleeping in his bed and I didn’t want to wake him, I found a rubber fish on the mat. That fish was on my keys. How on earth did it get there when my keys were hanging inside? I knew, Mamma was there.

Life after death

Perhaps she came to say hi/goodbye. Perhaps she just came to check in. I am not superstitious but I do believe in signs and life after death. I forgot to check a specific orchid plant that Mamma bought Dude a few years ago. Last year that orchid had the most beautiful flowers. It also lasted the longest. I have checked it last week and there were many buds already. Now we just wait for the buds to open.

Moving forward

Although, I felt emotional this morning that very emotional state has now become a happy emotional state. Remembering the fond memories I have of her, the time we spent together, even the arguments we had. We loved each other fiercely. I miss her so. She was a beautiful person, but very straight forward. If she didn’t like something she would tell you in no uncertain terms, and there’d NO sugar coating. Some may have taken offense but that is just who she was. She was a happy person, always saying if you are feeling down/sad/depressed/angry/etc just go work off that energy in the garden. Mamma passed away  on a Sunday, we came home for a quick check on things the Monday evening. Tuesday And Wednesday I was broken. I remembered her words and got my pregnant, I was pregnant with Troll at the time, self out of the house and raked up leaves…I spent the entire morning in the garden, working and crying and after that I had a renewed sense of being.

Grief

Grief is difficult but even more so when we see how our kid(s) grieve. Dudie was extremely emotional and even now still misses Mamma terribly. But we allowed  him to grieve her. We even just sat and cried with him at times. We allowed him as much time and space to deal with his emotions. It has definitely become easier to talk about her and see photos of her. For ALL of us.

Spirited Mama

P.S. I still need to plan that Namibian boat cruise that we wanted to do together…I wish Mamma was still around as I can only imagine the excitement as we would have planned this trip…

It’s Play Day..so “Let them play”

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Let them play…Those words still hover in my mind since the #PrimaTopToys event where the top toys were revealed for the Festive Season 2017! What a fun time the adults had playing with the toys. We got to let loose our inner child without worrying about what others would think of us oohing and aahing over kids’ toys. Let’s be honest, as a parent if you are not convinced will you really buy your child a particular toy?

Prima Toys is one of Southern Africa’s leading importers and distributor of toys and games; bringing the world’s most famous toy brands and characters to children across various African countries

I remember one of my first dolls was a Prima Toys doll, a gift from my father’s friend who I think at the time worked for Prima Toys….I wish I had a picture of her.
I’m not a typical girl who played with dolls but I do remember that doll…
Being at the event evoked an emotion, at the time I couldn’t put my finger on it. Whilst playing with the toys in the goodie bag, I remembered the doll and how that doll was a Prima Toys product.

Funny how destiny or fate works…who knew that many many years later I will cross paths with Prima Toys again.

I’m definitely a boy mom and I love the toys as much as Dudie. Troll at this stage is too little to comprehend what is happening. But, he is besotted with his Teletubbie, PO. He giggles and even has a soundbyte of the actual Teletubbies music.

Dudie, obviously, raided the goodie bag I received. He loved the toys BUT that Ben10 Omnitrix was his favourite….until I showed him the hamper that I won…Gracious, that child’s eyes were ready to pop out his head. Why? Because there was a Ben10 Omnitrix Deluxe in there. He wears an Omnitrix on each arm…

And he had just seen the TV ad a few days prior to teh event and really really wanted one. Well, that was me getting the Mom of the Year award from Dudie. Granted, my status might not last long, as any parent knows you can go from hero to zero in 2 seconds flat, but I’ll revel in it for now.

The phrase, “Let them play” has constantly been on my mind. As parents, we are so busy with life/work/kids/etc/etc and sometimes we forget to stop and just be present. Similarly, we forget to just let our kids play. And to play with our kids. Dude and I have had the discussion that it seems lately we have been in “survival mode”. We have consciously made a decision to stop and have at least one “play” session per week night. Weekends are more chilled and we all get to have down time. It’s the weekdays with school/work/extra murals that consume our time.

So Thursdays are reserved for “play” in the evening. Tonight we will play 🙂

Happy Play day!

Mom’s favourite, even though I have NEVER managed to get all the colours in the right order! But I will keep trying 🙂

Spirited Mama

Disclaimer

This is not a sponsored post. Opinions and views shared my own.

10 Years ago…

10 years ago

Today, 10 years ago….we became Mr & Mrs ❤ To be joined together as one.

The one phrase that stuck in my head since 10 years ago is “They are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man put asunder” Matthew 19.6 (Dude seems confused. As if this is the first time he hears this verse…was he not at our wedding😂)

We have grown so much…it amazes me. We have so much to be grateful for and we are most definitely abundantly blessed. We even gained 2 beautiful sons in our marriage.

Here’s to the next 10 years and the next, and the next, etc

Dude is sitting next to me as I write this post this is what he just said…”Our marriage is like our tortoise…slow and steady wins the race”.

Cheers to us. To a lifetime of us. Always and forever❤

Spirited Mama

x

P.S. The resident alien arrived on 24 January 2017. So in celebrating our 10 years of marriage, we also celebrate the resident alien being 10 days old today.

 

2016 the year that has been…

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(image sourced from google)

As I picked up my proverbial pen to start blogging again, I had a renewed sense of “me”. It was my calm. It was and is my outlet. It is my CANVAS.

This year has at times been trying. It’s been rough. It’s been busy. It’s been great too.

We have lost loved ones…and in turn gained new family members too. It is also the year that we found out that the Spirited family is growing.

As we prepare to create memories of the festivities for 2016, we also prepare for the imminent arrival of a New Year. A new CANVAS. A new baby. A renewed sense of “us”. 2016 is the last year that we are a family of three. We said goodbye to a stalwart in my family “MAMMA”. We have had way too many CANCER diagnoses amongst family and friends. I have gone back to working my half day JOB and frankly I think if I didn’t may have lost my sanity…

Slowly but surely I am accepting “me” for me. I am enough for me. I can only do so much. I too am only human. I found that I have sort of strayed away from God, not intentionally, but I just don’t think I purposely made a great effort to affirm my faith. I am working on restoring my faith. I am taking stock of life and counting my blessings, as we have been abundantly blessed. We have helped some family through trying times but I also think that it’s time to cut myself some slack and let it go. God will take care of it now as I cannot make them do what they need to do.

We had some great holidays and even managed a trip to Hong Kong this year. We are super proud of Dudie for completing Grade 1 this year. For all his achievements in academia and sports – this kid really did work hard.

So cheers to 2016 – the year that has been. You are etched in my soul. Looking forward to 2017! To less worrying and more time for making and creating memories…

Spirited Mama

This Christmas…

 

It’s starting to look like Christmas

It’s starting to look alot like CHRISTMAS in the Spirited Household. Albeit, we were 12 days late with putting up our tree…I am just happy that it is finally up. We are counting down the days to Christmas, only 11 more sleeps…For the past 7 years we have been home for Christmas. It all started when Dudie was baptised on Christmas Eve during the midnight mass, 24 December 2009. Granted he was too young to remember any of it but from that Christmas eve we have been attending midnight mass every year since. It is our very own tradition. And this year will be no different. Every alternate year we have family with us and this year was supposed to be “the family” Christmas.

This Christmas

Well, things changed during 2016 and even though we will share Christmas with two family members, it just won’t be the same because Mamma won’t be at our table… Mamma loved McDonalds and upon returning home from midnight mass Dude always used to buy McDonalds meals for everyone. We would open our gifts and eat McDonalds until 2am sometimes 3am. Even Dudie would be wide awake by the time we get home from mass.

We were toying with the idea of just dining out this year BUT for us Christmas is about the joy, the laughter, the togethernesss, all of us cramming into our little kitchen to cook amazing dishes to be served on Christmas day. We will spend ALL day cooking on the 24th of December, only to take an afternoon siesta so that we can be fresh and bright eyed for midnight mass. We generally only wake when the sun is high up in the sky and the room gets too hot to sleep in. We always skip out on breakfast as we just had McDonalds at 2am. Normally, we are ready to eat our festive feast by lunch time, which could range anywhere from 12pm onwards. Even our dogs sleep late on Christmas morning.

This Christmas will be different. But this Christmas we will remember the good times and encourage new traditions and memories and remember those whom once shared that table with us.

What are your Christmas traditions?

Spirited Mama

x

Memories

 

Memories need to be savoured

Some days I find myself sitting quietly and reflecting and savouring my happy childhood memories. It wasn’t all moonshine and roses but I chose to remember the good old days…

I remember that fresh baked bread smell and warm biscuits smell coming from Mamma’s kitchen. Stealing half the cookie dough that was left to “rest” when Mamma wasn’t looking.

Some of my best memories were created during school holidays when we went to visit Ma, Mamma’s mom, on the farm in the Cederberg. There is nothing quite like running out in the wild, diving into God made rock pools and picking your fruit straight from the tree and collecting your veg from the garden. There is also that other side, the one that freaks me out a little, about having to slaughter your own meat. I never ate freshly slaughtered meat. Just couldn’t stomach that meat. Don’t get me started on seeing a headless chicken running around the tree – it’s great fun at the time but then they expect you to eat it. No can do.  Up until today I still don’t like freshly slaughtered meat, fresh milk and fresh eggs – it is just too rich. Nothing quite like picking those cherries from the tree – I love cherries – and I used to eat it to my heart’s content. These days they just don’t taste the same…Picking Almonds from the tree. My pockets were always filled with cherries and almonds and you would generally find me sitting on a big rock watching the pigs paly in the mud. We used to love feeding the lambs and billy goats their milk bottles.

Reflecting on the memories

I remember Ma making me rooibos tea, not a teabag from the shop. This was pure rooibos from the tea field complete in her home made little bag and all. And of course those “harde koekies” she used to bake. It wasn’t ginger but I’m also not entirely sure what they were.  I distinctly remember her last batch she made for me, she was in her 80’s and it was just before I moved to Gauteng. She came to visit Mamma and as we stood in the kitchen waiting for her to unpack her basket she said to me “ooh jchent “meaning kind or child” maak tog vir jou moer koffie want daai koekies is so hard en moet gedoop word. And believe me it was moer hard. I ate them with the same conviction as what I always ate those cookies. I didn’t want her to be disappointed…but fuck knows why that batch was SO hard.

Ma also had a puffadder, yes a real live snake, living in the big tree in front of the house. like right by the gate -you need to pass the tree to get to the front door. She called him Oupa. He used to slither on the stoep to wherever he went during the day and come back at night. And this was whilst Ma and the dog would sit on the stoep. They never bothered each other. They had a mutual living arrangement. I shat myself thinking we used to sleep on that stoep, in summer under the beautiful starry skies. Where was Oupa all that time… Probably sleeping on the bed next to us…

Creating new memories

After I moved to Gauteng I used to have weekly Sunday afternoon calls with Ma. I just wanted to check in on her so to say as she lived by herself. I could hear the excitement in her voice every single time as this was as important for her as it was for me. She always said that I must come visit her cos she will NEVER get into an airplane. And she never did. If there was a storm MA would end our conversation so quickly because we cannot possibly use the phone during a storm. She would close all the mirrors and the tv with a blanket because of the lightning. Before they got “Telkom lines” they had an operator system. How each resident knew whose call it was, was beyond me but apparently everyone had a different ring tone/number of rings. But let me tell you those old people were naughty – they used to listen in on each other’s conversations all the time. Sometimes we had a few calls during the week too.

Ma passed away in 2010, just before her 94th birthday. Someday we will take him back to the Cedarberg again, as he was only 5 months old when we went to the funeral. I miss those good old days. I miss her cookies and I miss her rooibos tea. I miss her cuckoo clock – this thing was the most fascinating clock ever. I even miss those rogue geese and ram that used to chase us ALL the time.

I miss Ma.

Spirited Mama

 

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