Tag Archives: birthday

Take 2 – Surprises work better when people show up!

19 Apr

So after being left in the dark, in the stairways, behind a closed door, disappointed and forlorn, we heard footsteps from below. Recognising the mother’s footsteps, Claude quickly opened the door and we shoved ourselves into the living-room for a Take 2 -Real surprise!

Things I learned from this video:

1. The dog is very important (Just kidding. I already knew that!)

2. Man, but I have big teeth! I never took Phillip’s teasing seriously but he’s got a point!!!

3. My mother is more resistant than I thought! Fair enough, it’s not like I came back from the dead, but coming all the way from the bottom of Africa unexpectedly, I thought she would be more flabbergasted!

4. Last but not least, it was so flipping nice to surprise my mum like that!!!! I love surprises!!!!

I went to his office and all I got was this lousy picture…

8 Nov

I need to back-flash a bit here to the end of October.

Phillip’s birthday happens to be a day after Killian’s one and, just to reverse the routine, I will first post about Phillip’s birthday before devoting my attention to Killian’s. I have to confess that more often than not, my husband’s birthday gets neglected, or at least overlooked and poorly planned. I have an excuse, some kind of valid justification why it is so (The humand mind is amazing when it comes to self-justification). Yes, after planning my last kid party for the year, I have no more mental energy to think carefully about what I should do for Phillip’s. The truth also is that my introvert husband would happily choose to spend his day with me and me alone (maybe the kids, on a good day) and the real bottom of the truth is that he tends to get reflective and self-examining (yes, even more than during the year, can you imagine…) on this day – which tends to make me feel guilty, assuming that his pensive self is caused because of my lack of attention to his special day. I imagine him thinking “What have I done wrong that my wife does not love me?” It is one of my worst feeling, to think that I’ve let my husband down…

This year, as I said, has been just about the same as every other year. How can I not learn?? However, this year, just after he left for work, I frantically scratched and searched my (thin) baking cupboard and whipped, mixed and baked some muffins, told threatened the kids to write a simple but beautiful message for their one and only father, and as early as 10 o’clock, we headed to his work and surprised him there. I guess sometimes the simplest efforts are the best ones. Under his oh-my-word-I-feel-so-self-conscious skin, I know he was quite happy and touched by this. From this whole outing, I managed to get 2 very blurry pathetic pictures to illustrate that special moment. The first one is in the office with the sparkles (The rest of the people are behind me, so it looks like it’s just him in the office but don’t be fooled) and the second one is taken when he is still in the entrance of their office, feeling too awkward to go in.

That is the office. I’m sure there’s a lot of confidentiality involved here but the photo is so blurry that not even Sydney Bristow will get any secret trading code!

Stuck in the passage, awkward, self-conscious and overwhelmed 🙂

And here are the letters from the kids.

Messages from the kiddies

From Matty (dictated): Dear Papa, You are the nicest papa in the world. I love you because you always play cricket with us and you’re always nice with us. I also like it when you are torturing Mama because then we can join in. I’m a little bit upset when you need to go to work and when you have a meeting in the night because I won’t be able to see you in the night. Happy Birthday, From Matt.

From Killian: I love being with you. you our are my best papa.

From Léa: Dear Papa, Happy happy birthday! You are very special to me. I love it when you play cricket with us (although saturday wasn’t that fun). I am very sorry that we didn’t make this morning very special. I told myself last night to say happy birthday to you and then I forgot! I love spending time with you better than anything else. 38 is so old, although it is not everyday you turn that age! So I wish you a very Happy 38th birthday! Lots of love, Léa.

What I liked about these letters is that they show a small window into their heart. Killian’s heart bursts out of love for his dad. He is his hero but his message is short for his spelling is poor. I would never guess that Matty doesn’t like it when Phillip gets home late. For him, everything looks juuuust fine. As for Léa, her guilty conscience for not having done the right thing was too overwhelming for her.

Another birthday gone. Another year to plan the next one.

If I’m 6 in France, am I also 6 in SA?

22 Jul

Matty’s birthday was celebrated at my mum’s place, Fréjus, France.
I love those shots of these brief moments. Swift, stolen and special…






St James, 43 years of grace…

2 Nov

43 years of grace. Happy Birthday St James!

On Sunday, St James church celebrated 43 years of grace.

St James is the church I was converted in, the church where for the first time in my life I heard about the true Jesus, the One that loves unconditionally, the One that saves, the One that gave up His life for me, the One that brought me out of darkness into the light, the One that is working in my heart every day.

Mervyn Eloff wrote a message in the bulletin of the church about these 43 years of faithfulness and grace from the Lord reminding us of these words in Psalm 107 “Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever…”.

How true these words are and how appropriate they are as we celebrate St James’43rd birthday. God is indeed good to us and His loyal love has been shown to us day by day, month by month, in times of joy and in times of sorrow – and this despite our many weaknesses and failings. How grateful we are to God for all that He has done. How wise it is for us to “heed these things and to consider the great love of the LORD” (Psalm 107v43); how fitting for us to “give thanks to the LORD, to call on His name; to make known among the nations what He has done” (Psalm 105v1).

Mervyn goes on reminding us of how we are to respond to “this great and glorious God who has become our God in and through our Lord Jesus Christ”.

First we are to respond to God’s goodness in Praise. We praise Him always and in many ways; in songs and through our life devoted to His glory and defined by repentance, faith and obedience.

Second, we are to respond to His goodness with Prayer. Our attitude should be an attitude of prayer and dependance on the Lord, a trust in Him where we turn to Him in good times and bad times.

Third, we are to respond to His goodness with Proclamation. If Jesus is at the center of our lives, we will proclaim His name without shame, we will communicate the Gospel of Christ with others. We will be committed to spread the good news of Jesus and when we will see the Gospel grow in the world, we will give the glory to God alone.

These three things, concludes Mervyn, should characterise our lives as Christians.

I am incredibly grateful that the Lord saved me into a church as committed to the Lord Jesus and as faithful to His word alone as St James has been for 43 years.

I insert a video clip that was shown to us on Sunday of the late Pastor Samuel Lockridge. Can we ever describe who our king is?


31 Oct

37 is a prime number, the fifth lucky prime, the first irregular prime, the third unique prime (Source: Wiki @ 37)

My sweet and stressed husband is 37 years old.


Tense, intense

Pain in the bum

Loyal, faithful, compassionate

Committed to the Lord

Devoted to me


Perfectionist (count that as a negative)

Determined and disagreeable (this one is just for you my Lou!)



Deep and rough

Soft and tender

Somber and sincere

Talented and unbiased

Witty (ah no, sorry, this is me!)… Funny


most importantly saved by the Lord’s grace alone, and completely and utterly surrendered to Jesus Christ.

This is my one and only ♥

My little Eeyore…

22 Jun

5 years old and all his teeth!!! …well, in french it rhymes, “5 ans et toutes mes dents!”











My little boy says that when he grows up he wants to be a teenager. He thinks his daddy’s work is to learn to make more money (partly true!) and his mummy’s work is to learn kids stuff (he means I teach them some stuff, hopefully that is also partly true). Recently I threatened to call him Eeyore because he acts like his life is gloomy. The day was not good enough. The movie was not long enough. The doughnut was not chocolaty enough and the play date was not fun enough. Eeyore.

On his up-days though, he takes intense delight at being as tall as his older brother – not quite an achievement really – and at being heavier than that same brother. The dark side of Star Wars is still dominated by Dol Phyne (Darth Vader) and the best wizard’s name is Harry Patate (seeing that it means ‘potato’ in french, it gives Potter a certain comedy style!). He has a special gift at making jokes at a time when I have no patience for it, like hiding under the bed at (past) bedtime.

I think he finds it hard to be the baby of the family, especially if your brother is Killian, 6 going on 10. I’m sure they consider arguing and fighting as a hobby. They love to irritate each other and cause the other one to be in trouble. I’m convinced it has become a competition. (Please Lou keep on praying for them to be friends!!) But deep down, I know they really need each other.

Matty is my independent son. He’s not scared of the dark and will go to the dark dark daaark bathroom all on his own, Killian and Lea in his trail taking courage as he leads the way . If you want to see a beaming smile, you can give him time on the playstation or on the ipod. He might even be able to help you out if you get stuck. He absolutely hates tomatoe soup, and potatoes in ANY form make him gag. He loves sticker books (thank you Taryn for the gift, it is permanently attached to him!), listening to stories and ME 🙂

One of my favourite moments (probably because I am very much wanting another baby… Lou??) is watching him in the shower. He still looks so little with his fat little hands rubbing the water off his face. I enjoy his long love declarations as I put him to bed, his ‘don’t ever ever ever leave me’, ‘stay with me forever’, and his ‘I wish you could sleep here with me’.

Maybe my little 5 year old boy is not so big after all.

Happy Birthday Matty Matt!!!

On the 6th of March…

18 Apr

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One of the special moments we had during my mum’s visit (which was now more than a month ago!!! Hard to believe…) was her birthday. I can’t remember when last we were all together to celebrate it. I remember a few years ago baking a cake for her birthday and sending pictures of it with the kids around.

Ah ah! But this year we were all together to celebrate her 29th birthday 😉

The obligatory gift was a handbag. We, women, always ALWAYS need a new handbag. (Kerry, are you owning a handbag by now??) But not any handbag! My friend Kirstin designs beautiful bags with her unique style and label Button Mushroom (the site hasn’t been updated for a while and her new range of bags is even better). She’s always been there for me, never failed me like a true designer friend, and always provided me with handsome-looking original and unique gifts 🙂

My mum was very chaffed with hers 🙂 Another birthday, another opportunity!

A friend of my mum and Claude had told them about a wine farm in the Cape area. It turned out to be Morganhof . So my mum decided to treat everyone and go there for lunch on that special 6th of March!

Morganhof!! What a lovely place! A (triangular!) table was awaiting us, under the trees, outside, surrounded with the most beautiful landscape. Peacoks roaming free, fishpond in a distance… Excellent food and a free bottle of wine – apologising for the wait… My mum and Claude were astonished by this gesture – so were we! If you know me, you know how much I love free stuff and although I don’t drink wine, I was almost tempted to, just to make the most of the gift 🙂

The most treasured moment was probably when my mum’s three grandchildren (that would be my children) sang happy birthday to her. And if technology works with me, what follows should be the short video clip of THE song.

Amazing how all three of their personality shines through these 23 seconds: the People-Pleaser, the Contrary-Mary and the Clown!

That was a well-celebrated birthday, à la sud-africaine…

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