Posted in Blog posts

My Cape Town bucket list

Day 17 on the #blogbosswinterblogchallenge asked me to share my bucket list .

I settled in Cape Town just over 5 years ago and decided to make this home.

One of the first things I began to do was explore. After all my many years of living in and visiting amazing places had taught me the best way to know an area is to discover it.

And so I set off to become a tourist in my own town.

I’m still exploring …..

To date I’ve seen and experienced so much of the Cape but the list of what I still want to see and do is endless.

So where do you start ?

I found this image online from camps bay girl when I first started to look at exploring past my own suburb.

So far I’ve ticked off …

  • Table mountain
  • Lions head
  • Clifton beach
  • Chapman’s peak
  • Noordhoek beach
  • Boulders beach
  • Kirstenbisch
  • Llandudno beach
  • Bo kaap
  • V & A waterfront
  • Big wheel
  • Signal hill
  • Muizenberg beach
  • West coast park
  • Stellenbosch
  • Franschoek
  • Castle if good hope
  • Camps bay strip
  • Kloof street
  • Blouberg beach
  • Houtbay harbour and
  • World of birds

How many have you visited?

Posted in Blog posts, Family Life, Parenting

Hamish and friends on the Expresso show with Meg Faure and Lara Schoenfeld

On Thursday Hamish was invited to the Expresso studios to be part of a group of adorable toddler’s who would feature on the Morning shows segment with Meg Faure and Lara Schoenfeld from Playsense as they discussed music and toddlers and introduced their new cd Dinosaurstomp.

We woke at 5am to be at the studio for 7.30am. I’m still trying to process the 45 minute drive with a half asleep toddler in the back as he sipped on his tea and kept telling me it was dark outside.

The Expresso staff are amazing. So warm and welcoming

The toddlers arrived and Hamish was in his element, now dressed as a fireman. We have a huge box of dress up clothing at home so for him dress up always means fun.

The adorable stars were each dressed up as a variety of characters to represent the imaginative songs on the cd.

There was a fireman, dinosaur, princess, tiger and Spiderman.

So much of excitement as they waited the hour to go live. Their parents were equally as excited 😋

Thankfully we were kept in a comfortable waiting area where the kids could be as loud as they needed, have a snack breakfast and play.

Meg Faure popped by to greet the kiddies and took the time to sit on the floor with them and play the fireman song.

And then, they were called into the studio.

Hamish was immediately impressed with Thabiso Makhubela and ran up to him to give him a spontaneous hug.

This amazing man hugged straight back, put down his tablet and greeted each child at their level.

And before we had time to take it all in it was time for action as the children found their way infront of the cameras and Lara Schoenfeld led them into the fireman song.

They were just the cutest group of toddler stars.

After their singing and dancing, Hamish decided to follow Lara onto the couch and finished the segment near her.

Then it was over and time for us all to grab a few photos before heading back to the real world.

Hamish was by now catching up with the gorgeous Leigh-Anne Williams about all things fireman, as she helped him put his walkie talkie onto his fireman suit.

He had so much fun with all his new friends that he honestly didn’t want to leave the studio 😂

Thank you Expresso for such a fun, child friendly experience.

Posted in Blog posts

5 things I can’t live without

Day 14 of the #blogbosswinterblohchallenge is 5 things I can not live without

In no particular order ….

1. My family

They drive me insane. Make me grey and often leave me wondering when exactly my sanity left me but I could not live without my family.

Family is not an important thing , it is THE most important thing.

2. My phone

Yes, I’m a phone addict. I work from my phone and it has become everything from my clock and diary to a means of an income as I even write my blogs on my phone.

3. Creativity

I think the world would be a very sad place without creativity and I would be lost without the ability to express my creative self.

4. Coffee

Mom fuel, life line and the reason I can work until 3am and then function the next day.

5. Photos

Photos capture a moment and let you relive it. What would we do, how many memories would we forget without photos?

What 5 things can’t you live without?

Posted in Blog posts

Winter wardrobe tips from a non fashionista!

Day 13 of the #blogbosswinterchallenge asks me to share my Winter wardrobe tips

I’m by far the least fashion conscious person I know and hate winter with a blizzard of a passion.

So I’ll share a few tips I follow when shopping for winter ware…

  • Wear warm colours. I’m sure there’s a psychological reason but warm colours make me personally feel less cold. This season I’ve fallen in love with a sunshine mustard colour.
  • Layer everything! You can always take a layer off if you get warm.
  • Buy a few winter essentials and use accessories like scarves to dress it up.
  • Choose great boots that go with everything.
  • I normally get 4 or 5 pairs of jeans and leggings and double the amount of tops to mix and match.
  • Invest in one good jacket and jersey.
  • Don’t be hard on yourself for sleeping in socks it keeps those fashionable toes warm.
  • Beanies are not easy to wear with mom buns so you will most likely either just skip the beanie or ditch the mom-chic bun.
  • Don’t take fashion advise from me I love vintage shops and have a tendancy to think I’m a gypsy and live in 1960 when choosing my outfits. 😂

I’d love to hear and learn from your fashion tips !

Posted in Blog posts, Family Life

Mandela Day 2019

Today we celebrate the legacy of one of the greatest leaders of the 20th century, Nelson Mandela.

Since 2010, we’ve celebrated Nelson Mandela Day in recognition of the former South African President’s contribution to the culture of peace and freedom.

It’s an occasion for all of South Africa to join together in hope and take action to assist others in the spirit of Ubuntu.

Why 67 minutes?

Mandela Day is held annually on July 18, the day Nelson Mandela was born.

2019 marks 10 years since Mandela International Day was launched in 2009 at the 2009 UN General Assembly.

But why 67 minutes?

The 67 minutes represent one minute counted for every year that Mandela spent making South Africa a better place from 1942 to 2009. A total of 67 years.

How can you help?

Each year most non profit organisations and caring corporates collaborate to arrange an event that will allow people to donate 67 minutes of their time in the service of others.

Jenny Morris and Cape quarter

Last year, we joined Jenny Morris, celebrity chef and broadcast personality, at the Cape Quarter to cut vegetables at a soup kitchen that would become soup to feed the cold and hungry.

This year we returned, joining hundreds of caring South Africans both young and old to celebrate Mandela Day.

I was proud to take Ronan with me this year and met up with my husband and his boss.

The public are asked to donate fresh vegetables, cans of food and their time so in order to make hundreds of litres of soup.

For us, the day has a determined happiness and air of sharing. If only for 67 minutes, people remember to smile and unite for a greater purpose.

Along with a giant loaf of bread delicious muffins were baked and sold for R20. The sale of each muffin gives two people a safe warm shelter for a night.

A worthy inicitive that we look forward to assisting again next year.

Posted in Blog posts

How my blog got its name

Day 12 of the #blogbosswinterblogchallenge asks me to share how my blog got it’s name.I’m now the mom of 7 children but for many years I was the mom of 6 amazing homeschooled children.We spent our days learning through play, investigation and discovering life through a hands on technique to learning.As much as we homeschooled we also unschooled, schooled on the go and learning became our lifestyle not so much an educational choice.But I remembered my own school days… It was dull and boring. I tried to always make my lessons fun and mostly they were.As a mom of 6 small children I was also constantly entertaining. If we weren’t breaking up polystyrene to make snow in the garden, we were building mud cakes, baking, doing arts and crafts or building table forts.My children were very seldom bored, hardly fought and used their amazing imaginations and creativity for play.As an educator, volunteer, mother, friend, babysitter and that crazy aunt who you always wanted to visit ….people would always comment how much fun we had.It seemed natural when I opened my Facebook page in 2012 to have it reflect me ….So fun mamma SA was born because I was a fun mom in South Africa.When I started my blog it dawned on me that I was no longer just the fun mom of 6 amazing kids. I now had a gorgeous little baby who I had nicknamed bear to include and so this blog would mostly focus on him, as my other children were now grown.Thus the Mamma and Bear blog was started.In essence I will always be Fun Mamma SA ♥️

Posted in Blog posts

A lesson learnt – why it is ok to fail!

Day 11 of #blogbosswinterblogchallenge asks me to share a lesson I learnt.

This was difficult, in 45 years I’ve learnt many, so how do I pick just one?

Instead I decided to share something I wrote for my youngest daughter in March about why it’s ok to fail.

It’s back to school for our children today and that means back to the stress and business of their day.

So often we only think about our business, our stress during the day but I’ve seen my teen enter high school and have to adjust to totally new environments, schedules, friend dynamics and work load.

She was in a panic as her marks dropped last term and I told her I thought they would, it’s a large adjustment.

She was shocked , thinking she may be grounded for the holidays. Now, by dropped I don’t mean badly- she came 9th in her grade for maths, but by a few percent.

She obviously wasn’t grounded ( nor would I have grounded her for marks but she’s only been living back with me for a year, as she lived with her dad, so we still learning each other’s reactions again)

Out of this , the biggest lesson she learnt was that it’s ok to find situations difficult.

It’s ok for you to struggle to adjust or be stressed.

It’s not the end of the world and you do not need to always be perfect.

You see as much as I want her to succeed I also want her to learn to fail and how to get back up. I want her to learn to deal with stress but also when to ask for help. I want her to learn that pushing yourself is important but so is knowing when to relax but mostly to know that no one ever has it all figured out.

Above all I want her to know that her worth will never be judged on a set of grades or test scores but on the strength of her character and the kindness of her heart.

Posted in Blog posts

My life’s dream

I’m a gypsy and free soul and day 10 of #blogbosswinterblogchallenge asked me to share my life dream.

Although rather settled geographically, my creative spirit often calls for adventure and new experiences.

As a young girl I remember moving a lot. As a young adult we moved around the country extensively and it wasn’t until 5 years ago that my Gypsy spirit called for roots here in Cape Town.

So, I think if you had to ask me my life dream it would be to travel.

To constantly explore the small, lesser known areas of a town or to discover a local food. To meet with every day moms whose cultures differ and see their views on parenting.

To read books next to huge open fields and explore early morning beaches.

I always dreamed of owning one of those 1970’s kombis and just driving from one town to another….

Who knows maybe one day I will.

Posted in Blog posts

3 things I would do for no pay

Day 9 of the #blogbosswinterchallenge and I’m sharing 3 things I would do for no pay .

This is an easy one for me to answer.

I spend much of my time giving back where I can as I believe we were all given talents to share, and in this world we have enough negativity, spreading a little joy is the least we can do.

The 3 things I would and often do for no pay are :-

1. Teaching / caring for children

2. Using my skill to assist non profits/ others

3. Writing

But then I thought if time, logistics and finance were not factors what 3 things would I do just to have the experience….

Here is my list

1. Work at the Two Oceans Aquarium

Last year I signed up for the volunteer program at the Two Oceans aquarium and started my volunteer course through them but unfortunately illness got the better of me and I had to leave the program.

If I thought I loved the ocean before, I wasn’t prepared for the immense interest it would hold as I learnt more.

Examining all the microscopic creatures, seeing the baby shark and holding the sea stars just reinforced my interest, passion and protection for our oceans.

In a short span of time I learnt so much. Our aquarium is more than just a home for a multitude of fish species. Their efforts in conservation, research and education run deep.

2. Do more for the homeless

We give where we can and I know that many people have conflicting ideas about helping the homeless.

In 2014 I started assisting a group called Soupa Troopers who do amazing things to feed and assist the people on the street.

The picture above is of me dishing up soup. It was such a simple gesture, just a few hours a month but I was left a new person.

In the time that I assisted my empathy grew, my tolerance expanded and I began to live with true gratitude for my own life and struggles.

3. Read more stories to children whose parents don’t have the time

This photo was taken on an organic animal farm we stayed on in Byrne, Kwa Zulu Natal. Life was quiet and simple.

I believe in the importance of reading. From well developed imaginations and creativity to learning new skills.

I’ve also always, as a book worm, read to my children and Hamish and I read several books a day.

I’ve assisted in many library hours and volunteered hours to catagorising and mending school library books.

I think the greatest thing you can do is share a love for reading so I would happily just read to children whose parents may not have the time.

What are the 3 things you would do free?

Posted in Blog posts

10 things every blogger needs

Being a blogger firstly is a lot more “work” than I once believed it was and so for me the 10 things I feel a blogger would need are based on my own experience.

1. A phone, tablet or laptop

Let’s start practically. You need something to write on.

I write exclusively to Fun Mamma SA from my smart phone, directly to the WordPress APP.

I know others, like my daughter, who prefer writing on PC only and several bloggers who write drafts on a word program before transferring them to the back end of their blog.

I think it’s a personal preference. Just like keeping a diary or journal.

2. A niche

It’s not necessary, you could just write but if you want consistent readers it helps to have an audience to talk to.

3. Social media accounts

You really need to attract readers to your blog and so the best way to do that is on your social media account.

Setting up Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest to share your blog pages and grow your audience is relatively easy.

The trick is to post consistently on these platforms.

4. Photos

I prefer to use my own photos rather than stock images and over the years have learnt the benefit of taking great photos.

I still don’t have that breathtaking Instagram feed but my photos have improved.

5. Canva

I would be lost without CANVA. It’s my go to APP to design anything!

From blog banners to Instagram story images.

Great design is just as important as attractive photos.

6. Writing skill

Basic grammar and spelling will allow you to write but to write truly great blogs you need to be able to express yourself effectively. You need to speak directly to your audience.

7. A thick skin

The blogging world can be lonely and ultra competitive. You need to realise that if you are blogging it needs to be for you first, then your readers.

There’s always a troll or a competitor.

8. A teach myself mindset

In the begining blogging may seem like just sharing thoughts but you will soon want to gain more readers and need to teach yourself to read stats, monitor posts, find the right hashtags, place tags on photos, add links, write with SEO and a hundred other skills.

All the answers can be found on a Google search but you will need a mind open to learning in order to develop your skills.

9. Coffee

So many late nights will be filled with writing, or worrying over one or other blog aspect that you will need an insane amount of coffee to stay awake. 😋

10. A notebook

Lastly a notebook… To jot down the multitude of blog post ideas that come to you at midnight, in the car, while you tying shoe laces.

If you ever have enough time to write them all ….now that is another story 😂😂

What on this list do you think I’ve missed?