Category Archives: #justsaying

My opinions, thoughts and musings.

100 Happy Thoughts – The First 20

Hazel from My Nutty Dubai did a really great post a few months ago on how she brought a focus on things that bring her happiness into her life. You can read about it here. I thought this was such a great idea for me to do that I started compiling it on that day – Sunday, August 6, 2017.

It has been a year of challenges and learnings and I also needed to focus on the things that brought me happiness each day.

Because this is a humongous read, I’m splitting it into 5 separate posts, each with 20 entries.

So here are my first 20 of 100 happy thoughts 🙂

Day 1 (6 August 2017) – Coming across Hazel’s 100 Happy Thoughts page and starting this post.

Day 2 – I finished my input on the HR syndicate group assignment, now I can focus on my individual assignment. Both are for the same day (16 August).

Day 3 – Watching Downton Abbey with Che – we managed 3 episodes.

Day 4 (9 August 2017) – Women’s Day in South Africa, hence a public holiday. I read read read.

Day 5 – I can smell spring in the air, it was warm and the wind was not cold.

Day 6  – My favourite lunch of sushi and cappuccino. 

Day 7 – Food shopping with Che, I love our routine – first lunch, then the food market, followed by a cappuccino at our favourite coffee shop 🙂

Day 8 – Reading reading reading. I haven’t read much that isn’t related to my Social Entrepreneurship Programme. I sat in the sun reading for the better part of the day, and it was bliss. I almost finished the book but left some for enjoyment during the next week.

Day 9 – Had my Action Learning Project feedback session. Even though I am behind on this project I learned a lot from the feedback.

Day 10 – I had the honour of coaching 3 wonderful speakers for the Agile Africa conference.

Day 11 – Day of speaker coaching – amazing talks and I’m looking forward to seeing them deliver them next week. Also saw a friend I hadn’t seen in a few years.

Day 12 – Returned home after being away for 2 days training. It was great to come back to the love and warmth of home.

Day 13 – I finished my assignment. Now I can enjoy the weekend and get back to things like blogging.

Day 14 – Vegging out in the sun. Che and I also went to the food lovers market and bought yummy ingredients for yummy dishes.

Day 15 – Agile Africa speakers dinner. Wonderful to meet old friends and make new ones.

Day 16 – Day 1 of Agile Africa – I MC’d the main ballroom and got to hear some great talks by new up and coming speakers.

Day 17 – Day 2 of Agile Africa where a new friend and I are concocting an exciting new project. We’re going to connect again in 2 weeks time. Watch this space!

Day 18 – I am home again, sleeping in my own bed, and got to have the first real cup of coffee since Sunday, bliss!

Day 19 – I had my hair done.

Day 20 – Friday it’s Fri-daay! Downton Abbey in the evening.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this first instalment of 100 happy thoughts. Come back tomorrow for the second one.


Donating School Uniforms

When I was a child my family and I relocated to different places. It was never more than 50 kilometres from the previous place, except for when we relocated from Mozambique to South Africa.

So when we relocated, it sometimes meant going to a new school. This caused nervous jitters because of having to get to know the teachers, make new friends and get used to new rules.

It also meant that my parents had to buy new school uniforms for us kids, always an expensive task. Which is why I loved reading the story of the grade 12 learners at the Eersterivier Secondary School in Cape Town who left their school uniforms in plastic bags on their desks, for future learners who don’t have any.

When I was still in school, at the graduation from primary to high school the tradition was to get our uniforms signed by all our teachers and classmates, a memento of the years spent together. The same thing happened when graduating from high school. I still have my high school uniform, with all the signatures and well wishes. I haven’t looked at it since they were signed.

So instead of getting the uniform all scribbled on, it’s much better to donate it to learners whose parents can’t afford a new one.

What do you think?


That’s Value Right There

Patina, thin layers brought on by time.

Yesterday Che and I were talking about restoring old things of value. Restorations are something Che loves doing. The love that he puts into bringing life back into an old and misused item is something that is beautiful about him. He recently restored an old oil welder. It was cracked and rusted. After a few months of tlc, it now looks very different. It’s usable now. That led us to talk about restorations and I asked about the cost/benefit ratio of restoring something. Of course, my frame is different to that of a restorer. There are some things that it is necessary to restore to look brand spanking new. And there are other items that need to be restored just enough to still retain the patina of age. That is what gives them value.

I came across this quote by John Yemma editor of the Christian Science Monitor, in his “open source” column for November 22, 2009, “On Thanksgiving: the memorial that time forgot” that beautifully describes this:

“Monuments are anchors in time. Epochs pass, weather erodes, people lose interest. This cannot be helped. But patina itself is worth appreciating. Patina is the value that age puts on an object.”

The same applies to other items such as cars, Fender amps and old oil welders. The patina is what gives items character helping them to retain their value.

The same thing can apply to people too. As one gain in years, people are imbued with a patina of wisdom, the passing of time creating layers of experience, layer upon layer upon layer upon layer.

Generally, in Western cultures, people who have these wonderful rich patinas are put away from mainstream society depriving the youth of learning from their wisdom. Many elderly people lose their purpose in life when removed from the family system, from their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. A life without purpose is no life at all and often, at that stage of life, the only purpose an elderly person has is to be with their family.

I love the story of the students who live rent-free in an old age  home in the Netherlands in return for spending 30 hours with the residents, giving them computer lessons and cooking for them, helping to combat “the social isolation and loneliness in older men and women which increases mortality” – imagine the wisdom that they can tap into. This story was written in 2015 and I hope that it’s still ongoing.

John Yemma goes on to say,

(Patina) “It’s what makes an antique antique. It is experience, maturity, the soft sheen of time. Patina wasn’t present at the spanking-new creation. It comes from a life lived.”

How amazing is that, how incredible that as we become better versions of ourselves each and every day, we acquire the patina of a life well lived. That’s value right there.



Share Your World – November 27, 2017

Or December 3rd, 2017 🙂 – tomorrow Cee will publish a new one. Anyhooo, here goes…for this week.

Would you prefer a reading nook or an art, craft, photography studio?

A reading nook without a doubt! Like this one.

Click on image to go to source.

Or this one.

Click on image to go to source.


Tell how you are feeling today in the form of a weather report. (For example, partly cloudy, sunny with a chance for showers, etc.)

Partly cloudy with the sun peeking through.

If you could witness or physically attend any event past, present or future, what would it be?

Nelson Mandela’s first public speech on 11 February 1990, after his release. My friends T & B were there and described the electric energy in the audience. It was not the same watching on TV.

What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week?  

After a year of learnings and deep personal shifts this year, I was glad to be writing my final social entrepreneurship programme exam yesterday. It consumed more energy and time than I expected when I started in January, and at the same time, I feel the pull of this new world I stepped in to. Courage is my word for the immediate future.

Click on image to go to source

I wish you a courageous week ahead!



As I prepare to write my final exam tomorrow I have reached the point of enoughness for this year. Courage is a word that often left my lips, to clients, friends, family, and to myself. I know that it hasn’t only been me. Many things have happened in the world, things that many thought impossible to ever have happened. Some were positive, others negative.

Today is the 1st of December. As the year winds down, I reflect on what courage has been for me this year.

I’m looking forward to a December of reading books, spending time with family and enjoying the hot sun on my skin.