Tuesday, September 30, 2008

3 months Annivesary

Can you believe it? Today We have been 3 months in Northern Ireland.

Most people immediately guess that I am from South Africa once they hear me speak. Yesterday a man treated me as English person that belonged in Northern Ireland after he heard me speak. You could almost see the relief in his face and definitely realise them in his words. We needed to protect our own. For a moment I belonged.

That is a strange feeling for me, I don't often get it.

Growing up I didn't feel like I really fitted into anything family, church, school etc. Later I found out that sister and brother were adopted by my dad - it actually made me feel more accepted - they loved me and treated normal even though they knew the truth. Now I know I fit in my family and wouldn't choose any other.

Church - I was seen as the do gooder, the person who also knew what was right and did the right thing. The guys actually said they were watching what I did to see when I would fall. I was always in trouble for some reason or another with one or few of the adults. Either because i was outspoken or liberal. It hasn't changed much - I think I more understanding and hold my tongue better.

Being Coloured - I always get strange facial expression here and in the US when I describe myself as coloured. Both my parents and grandparents are of mixed race with bloodlines from all over the place. In school I was accused of acting white because I didn't use slang and tried to pronounce my words correctly. I also did not like all the same music they like. I did not drink or smoke (for religious reasons) - I just didn't really fit it. I went to church on Saturdays, I could go on. My three closest friends accepted be fully and still do. My class mates eventually came round and tried to organise a party that I could attend.
When I dated race was not an issue for me but it became an issue sometimes. Now I am married to a white afrikaner. People talk about the children - my child would have been of mixed race no matter who I married - no issue for me.
Some of cousins were against our marriage, some people from his community opposed it.
Our core family supported us and still do.
One of the typical sayings amongst South African coloureds is: First I was excluded because I was not white enough, now I am excluded because I am not black enough.

Funny that moving Northern Ireland has not changed my status much - but what's funny is that its about whose governing the place - we are part of the UK but excluded from some of the special offers and benefits - we can't use northern Irish £ in the UK and cost of living is higher. I am technically living in Ireland but I am not a part of it. If we were a part of Ireland I would be part of the minority because I am Protestant. I might not get a job because of my religion or the fact that I am a foreigner.
People are very friendly but I don't really have any friends. Those who I would count as friends are foreigners too.

For a short moment yesterday i felt like I belonged - it made me smile. Today I am writing this and I feel sad. But I will pick myself up and create my own space where I belong and I will be happy. In area every area of my life I found there a place, a space that has my name on it. I exist for a reason, I belong.

The adventure continues.

Identity YOU

"Human beings are highly social animals, and have an innate need to communicate and interact. "

~ Alan Moore ~

Monday, September 29, 2008

Shake Aromat Shake

HEADS OR TAILS hosted by Skittle.


The first thing that popped into to my head was an advert:

"Shake Aromat shake! aro eggs, aro chips, aro mielies!"

Unfortunately I couldn't find that specific ad - it was over 23 years ago that it played on SA television.

The taste you'll fall in love with again and again. Go on! Shake our Original flavour favourite on chips, pizza, popcorn, pap, stews, just about anything, and make a meal worth talking about.

I personally do like the taste of aromat but I loved listening to the advert. I remember a perosn visiting us and he said he never met a family where we watched TV for the adverts - My sister and i made a game of it. It was basically who could guess the advert/product first and then we would sing along with it.

Here is a SA recipe - TUNA BAKE, from Proudly Indian.
An interesting blog post I found on SA adverts kick British But by Po from Spindrifting South African Seamonkey.

I thought let me get a picture. In the process I discovered that there are 32 physical shops in the UK that sell South African Products and a few more online shops that I did not realise existed.
I can proably visited this one http://www.kalaharimoon.co.uk/ in Bristol, its near my sister-in-law.

Dneero conversation on US Politics

Its always amazes me how the rest of the world (well at least in SA and UK) we follow the US elections.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Week 296 of Unconcious Mutterings

Hosted by LunaNina

  1. Hearing :: Aid

  2. Aggression :: is depression turn inward

  3. Charged :: excited

  4. Traveler :: Lonely Planet

  5. Hydrate :: drink water

  6. Detox :: only drink water, is it really important?

  7. Qualify :: make the grade, meet the standard

  8. Prison :: Break

  9. Frontal :: attack

  10. Pep talk :: inspire, everyone needs one every now and again

Saturday, September 27, 2008

What coffee are You?

I generally only drink two cups a day.

I remember the first time I drank espresso - i was in Durban in a coffee shop small mall that was in the middle of the centre with my two friends Denise and Robert. I thought it was really bitter and could not see what all the fuss was about.

You Are an Espresso

At your best, you are: straight shooting, ambitious, and energetic

At your worst, you are: anxious and high strung

You drink coffee when: anytime you're not sleeping

Your caffeine addiction level: high

Friday, September 26, 2008

29 Day Giving Challenge

The breyani recipe will be coming soon. It was a bit of a disaster but husband says it was great and has few helpings from it - I accidently put too much of the curry mixture - like the double that what was required. Had to make noodles for my daughter.

I saw an interesting challenge/swap on swap-bot this morning. And its inspired by a South African woman! Read more about it here.

If you would like to join the Swap-bot challenge click on the link below. What does the challenge entail?

"Giving of any kind... taking an action... begins the process of change, and moves us to remember that we are part of a much greater universe.

Your 29 gifts can be anything... money, food, old sweaters, smiles, your time, kind words or thoughts.

The Challenge is intended to be a sacred ritual—it is your opportunity to cultivate a mindful practice of stepping outside your own story for a few seconds each day by serving others.

Don’t quit. If you have a day that you feel unmotivated to give, it’s ok. Just go for the simple give. Call a friend and give some kind words. Write someone a nice note. Or exchange smiles with a stranger. Every give doesn't need to be monumental. You might even notice that the “simple gives” feel more powerful than the grand gestures.

If you forget your give one day, be gentle with yourself. This ritual is about progress, not perfection. Sit down and quietly reflect on your day. Review the entire day mindfully and find the times you unconsciously gave so you can bring it into your consciousness.

Don’t forget that there is never a day that you don't give. There are only days that you don't acknowledge and remember you did.

Enjoy your 29 days. And remember to stay open to receiving. Giving can't happen without the receptors of our gifts. Good giving to you today.

To complete the Challenge, you will share a story about the impact it made on your life to focus on giving for 29 days. Your story can be told with written word, short film, recorded spoken word, song or visual art or whatever medium you choose.

You can also download a Giving Calendar at: http://29gifts.org/origins.html. As well as, share your calendar with your swap partner.

You will have 1 swap partner and this will be an international swap. Let's start a world-wide revolution!!!!!! "

29 Day Giving Challenge

Can you figure out my message?

Click on the image to visit the site.

Can you figure out my message?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Windy Alternative

"Wind turbines are perhaps the best known of all the renewable energy technologies in Northern Ireland. There are now in excess of 150 small-scale wind turbines installed in Northern Ireland. This growth is largely due Northern Ireland being widely recognised as having the second best wind resource in Europe; second only to Scotland. Wind energy is therefore capable of making a significant contribution to the UK’s ambitious renewable energy targets." From the article Go Green for Less read more here.

Wind speed and direction will determine the most suitable position for a wind turbine. Wind speed increases with height, so turbines will give a greater output if placed at a higher level. Turbines are best placed away from buildings and trees.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

9th Wedding Anniversary

I have had a very busy day - volunteered at the CAB , went to the library, tutored maths. Now I am planning to start cooking a dish that i have never really cooked before - it was one of the dishes served at our wedding - Chicken Breyani. Will post recipe and photos tomorrow - Fingers crossed.

Planning to do something special tomorrow. Weiers is taking the day off and its pay day!!
Maybe go to Ballydougan Pottery. It has a lovely coffee shop that I have not yet experienced.

Below is our Song and the reason why getting some pottery is appropriate.

From Anniversary Ideas:

Traditional 9th wedding anniversary gifts are made of Pottery and Willow.

A Modern Ninth wedding anniversary symbol is made of Leather.

The Flowers associated with the 9th anniversary are Poppies.

The Gemstone list shows Lapis Lazuli and Tiger Eye associated with this Wedding Anniversary.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

How would change where you live?

I don't believe in trying to make changes before really understand the thing you want to change. I have just moved here.

There are a few physical changes I would like to make to the house I am living in and I have slowly started making them. Some will till take longer and depend on me finding work or managing our budget very carefully.

What I am doing to get to know the area I am living in?
I am volunteering at the CAB (Citizen's Advice Bureau) and taken some responsibilities in my church.

What do I expect will happen?
The culture around me will influence me and i will influence it. Along the way I will changed and the people I meet will change because of knowing me.

Monday, September 22, 2008

The last 100 days

I have joined a blogging swap on Swap-bot hosted by eveyinorbit and just so happens that hers is one of the three blogs that I will be following over the next 100 days.
There two parts to this swap.
First I have to blog for 100 days.I normaly miss one to two days week as my regular readers would have noticed, so now I am committing to posting on those days was well.
The second part is that i have to read three other blogs assigned to me randomly by Swap-bot, leave a comment at least once a week and then rate that person at then end of the 100 days.

The things we sometimes do for comments (hehehehehehe). Seriously though I like the whole idea of being focused on 100 - that number has been the theme of most of my swaps this year so I think its a very fitting way to end my year.

Over the next few days I will include the links of my partners blogs - those reading my blog and the blogs that I will be following.

eveyinorbit has two blogs:
Her website blog - the one I will be following.
Her Studio Blog

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sunday Mutterings

Pretty standard answers, I think. Wonder how others may have answer theirs.

Hosted by Luna Nina

Week 295

I say ... and you think ... ?

  1. Heist :: Robbery, The Movie or Series
  2. Hack ::computers
  3. Dane :: Great dane
  4. Stings :: bees
  5. Monkey ::Town ( a place in Somerset West, South Africa)
  6. Junkie ::drugs
  7. Pumped ::excited, motivated
  8. Brass :: steel, brave
  9. Fight! :: Club
  10. Vouch :: for, a word of recommendation

Visual Talking

Created my first sentence today with this tool, now i am trying to figure out how to retrieve it so I can out on my blog. Argh!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Prayer Tree

I made the 45 cards hanging on the tree.

Two first Days

First Day of school in Jan. 2008 - Grade 1
Helderberg Primary School, South Africa

First Day of school in Sept.2008 - P4
Edenderry Primary School, Northern Ireland

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

TV Shows

We decided that get a TV was very low down on our list of priorities. The house we are renting has a small TV/DVD combo. We discovered that BBC shows quite a bit of its shows online and they are available for about a week before they are changed. This way we are more selective of what and when we watch.
Yesterday there was nothing that was showing that was suitable for my daughter and I to watch together. Neither one of us felt like re-watching any of our DVD's. So we watch Mind Your Language on YouTube. I spent half the program trying to explain was so funny to a 7 year old and ofcourse I could not explain everything - guess we wont be watching that again. Saver to stick to reading her books.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Eggs (family tradition we have eggs every Sunday either as an omelet, scrambled or fired)
Curry (especially beans)
Ice-cream ( You scream, I scream, we all scream for Ice-cream)
Pudding (love desserts) No bake Low GI Cheese Cake
Enchilada (Simple Recipes Enchilada)

Interesting sites:
Free Printable Recipe Cards
365 Days of Pure Vegetarian
Food, In the Main

Monday, September 15, 2008

Considering a career change

I always knew that I would change career paths and do several jobs before I die.
Jobs I have done include: factory worker, laboratory assistant, Au Pair, secretary, Administrative assistant, education officer, receptionist.
My Career has been as a Teacher - here I have taught several subjects and held a management position.
In my minds eye I have seen myself as an author, a trainer (in a broad sense)and/or running my own educational business (either a pre-school or tutoring centre).
Now I am at the point in my life where I need to choose one of those paths.
I might need to pick a job to fund either studying further or to raise some capital.
I am at the point of exploration.
This weekend the guest speaker at the Women's Retreat I attended made sparked off what I had been feeling inside myself but not yet fully contemplated or verbalised.
She is a Life-Coach.
I have loved being a teacher but I have also had a feeling that it was time to take a break or teach in a different environment. Part of the reason for moving to Northern Ireland was to give that opportunity.
The two goals on plate is to Start prepare/train for different career and to lose weight.
This weekend I put a timeline on the second goal.
Current weight 108.2kg - goal 65kg - timeline 1kg per week, 11 months in total.
I started today by ensuring I made wise eating choices and exercising.
I have also starting investigating the career options, I have ordered Martha Beck's
book Steering by starlight ( Step-by-step Guide to Fulfilling Your True Potential: How to Fulfil Your Destiny, No Matter What).

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Mutterings from the Retreat


I decided to just quickly check my e-mail only to discover that it is blocked! So I paid 1 euro and I need to use the time.

Week 294
5 hours, 25 minutes ago

I say ... and you think ... ?

Cut the crap :: you are full of nonsense
Scent :: smell, beautiful, dangerous
Vanishing :: Act
Wetness :: Ireland
Cheap :: Not worth it
Badges ::we wear different ones every day
Puppy :: cute, playful
Problem solver :: Me - I wish that was true all the time.
Gambling :: not something that I do
Sophia :: Lourence

Friday, September 12, 2008

Women's Retreat

I can't remember that I have ever on one before. I remember mom going on them. In fact I remember one she went on a Singles one (included seminars for divorcees)and on the Saturday we went up and joined them for a day. I sat in one of the seminars with my mom. I found it very emotional.

Well I am going to Dublin for the second time this year for the Retreat probably not see much of the city again but hopefully make some friends.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Week 293 Mutterings

Hosted by Luna Nina

I say ... and you think ... ?

House :: sit, need to buy one.
Think :: Hat, Tank
Clot :: Blood, stroke
Believe me :: in other words you can't
Fumigation :: smoke, liturgation
Bore :: boring, hole
Luck :: Irish, Lucky packet
Patient :: Egnlish patient (movie),
Tremors :: earth quake
Pickles :: Don't get your knickers in a pickle, easter food dish -

Thursday, September 04, 2008

2-Ply: A South African in Northern Ireland

Toilet paper in a public toilet in Derrygonnelly, County Fermanagh. Sunday, 31 August 2008.


A South African in Northern Ireland

Why the Title?

The irony will probably only be clear to South Africans: Northern Ireland had just experienced its wettest August day on record and I was on the road. I had been stuck in queues (in South Africa we call them traffic jams) for four hours and desperately needed a toilet.

Toilets are hard to find in Northern Ireland if you don't know where to look. A stop at a filling station proved fruitless and now I was sitting on a flooded highway near Lisburn and getting rather desperate.

There were some road works on the side of the road. And a portaloo was put out for the workers. In desperation I stopped there. I was a bit worried because I did not have any toilet paper in the car. But I did not need to be. I found a clean chemical toilet with three roles of 2-Ply toilet paper!

When I finished, three cars had stopped behind me and a queue of a different kind was beginning to form. I was greatly relieved and thought that this would be a great metaphor to use while explore the different layers that make up my Northern Irish experience.

written by my husband Pastor Weiers Coetser
His old blod was Gomoto Diaries

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

List three things from any category

3 Things I would like to learn:


(I am saving up for a new camera and reading books I took out from the Library)


(This goal is still up in the air and I need to work out a plan and set some goals)

To apply healthy lifestyle principle
(working on this - lost 5 pounds in six weeks so far read all about in my 4 Day Win Blog)

Favourite Musicals:
Fiddler on the Roof
My Fair Lady

Current Hobbies: