Saturday, 28 November 2015

Finally We Belong To Nala

No that wasn't one of my [oh so many] grammatical or brain dead not in the moment errors - we do finally belong to Nala. Nala belonged to us from the day she moved in with us. Initially, during the discussions on the day that she came to our house the first time, we were only going to look after her until we could get her to my parents at the coast, because we (I) certainly did not think she would get on with our dogs or more Miss Piggy would not get on with her and she would not get on with my cat. By the time she left to go to her home she was already part of our crazy furry family and did not even notice Garfield, who also did not even worry about her.

Nala 27 November 2015 [2 months at our house

The decision was that she would belong to us as opposed to a dog we were looking after because she needed a home - she was not going to be the unwanted stepchild. What we did not expect was that the rehoming would go as well as it did go and we certainly did not expect her to be instantly  attached to Chad and to the extent that she attached herself to him. Chad wouldn't even let me feed her biscuits the night she came to stay because he didn't want her to attach herself to me because I was the person with the treats. Obviously I did give her biscuits, but she still attached herself to Chad straight away.

Lazy Spike

All of our animals belong to someone, but we belong to all of them. Spike is Mark's dog, but if Mark isn't here then I am next in line, then Chad and then Sheila. Jingles is supposed to belong to Chad but has no time for Chad - she is extremely attached to Sheila then it is me and then maybe Mark. Miss Piggy is my dog, but she is crazy about Chad. She will only let me put her out in the mornings and when she sees me she sees biscuits. Pluto was my dog, but I would say he was equally attached to Clint - he was OK with Chad and did not like Mark at all. One day last year he went and sat on Mark's lap - it was like a miracle. After Clinty died he used to sit by Mark's feet and cry and whine as if to beg him to bring Clint home, but other than that he avoided Mark. He was very loyal to me and Clint. Garfield was Clint's cat and slept by him all the time, but she would also sleep by Mark sometimes. So although they each "belong" to one of us, they are family animals. They get sad when we all go out, but are fine when one of us are with them at home and they get so excited when each one of us come home.

Not Nala, she belonged to Chad. If Chad left she cried, when Chad came home she was so happy, she slept until Chad woke up whether it was 6 am or 11 am she did not leave the room. We battled to put her outside at night if Chad wasn't home. She refused to eat even biltong or biscuits or meat if Chad was not at home. She carried her ball in her mouth if she had to relieve herself. If Chad was sitting in the lounge and walked out she followed him - that was from day one. She would play with me every day, she would play with Mark if Chad was at home, but she never had a relationship with Mark. He always jokes and says if it wasn't for him she would still be locked in the car. Chad didn't even know there was a dog in my brother's car and I didn't want her fighting with my dogs - Mark let her out the car to play with Spike. She was out the car earlier, but our dogs were locked in the house.

I have noticed changes in her every week. She becomes more confident each week and then on the day she turned three, on the 16th of this month, she had a complete change in personality. That day it was the most noticeable. She had also been with us for 7 weeks that day. She came to us late on the Sunday, so Monday was her first full day with us

She no longer follows Chad around the house, she is happy to let him leave the room or the house. She even cuddled up to Mark that Friday night when Chad went out. She has learnt all the naughty habits from the others. Now instead of bringing the ball to us and dropping it on the floor to be thrown again, she brings it, but grips it tightly in her mouth and we have to pry it out of her mouth like we do with Spike. I am also confident enough to put my hand in her mouth and pull it out of her grip. Her and Spike pull and grab the ball in each others' mouths and play tug of war. She does the cutest thing when we are finished playing, the ball is always full of slobber and grass and sand so I wash it off under the tap by the back door. I pry it out of her mouth, rinse it and she just walks up to the tap with the running water and takes the ball gently out of my hand and goes inside with it. She also did it when Mark washed the ball last night. Even if it is not in her mouth and we end the game and I have the ball and wash it she comes from behind and takes it from me.

She has been very docile and not aggressive at all, she didn't bark at the gate when the others barked, but if she did bark it was a very deep bark that did not suit her at all. One day Phineas, who works for us, came to help Chad tow his Uno to the workshop and Chad was out in the street and she just stood next to Chad and did not bark at all. Phineas is petrified of our dogs and runs a mile when he sees Piggy - I used to take her and Pluto to work every Thursday before Sheila worked full time for us and he would not go near them. He wasn't concerned about Nala at all. Chad goes outside with her when our gardener is here and she doesn't worry about him.

Done With Playing - Now Back To Bed

On Wednesday, I heard water running and running in the kitchen and no tap was turned on, very long story short we have a burst pipe in our kitchen under the floor and the plumber who did our bathrooms came to have a look because Mark said the leak was in the bathroom. Mark just let the plumber in, because Nala is not aggressive, but she barked at the plumber. Mark said no Nala and she stepped back and left him. Our front gate also broke on Wednesday and Mark's cousin's son-in-law has a security company and he came to fix the gate. Our dogs know him and Mark thought nothing of it and left the front door open. The guy was on his haunches looking at the motor and Mark was standing next to him with the gate open and Nala charged for him growling. Mark just shouted No Nala and she stopped in her tracks. She no longer sleeps late with Chad, she gets up when she hears a lot of activity in the house, goes outside and then goes back to Chad to sleep. On Friday, she only woke up when the gardener was here and I asked Sheila if Nala goes out with the gardener and she said no, Chd said yes, but I wasn't taking a chance because he might come around the corner and she doesn't expect him and she attacks him. I closed the side gates and told him that I was letting the dogs out. The side gates are not very high at all, but they serve their purpose. Nala went around to the gate and saw the gardener and went ballistic. She would easily jump over the gate - she doesn't even need a running start, she jumps like a jack in the box on a spring. I had to run and call her in.

Locked Away - No Chances With The Workers

So we definitely belong to her now. She knows we are hers to be protected. She is probably ok when she is next to Chad when a stranger [to her] is at our house because she can see him, to protect him if need be and when he isn't right by her she has to keep any threat away before the "threat" can get to him. We no longer battle to put her outside and she will go in and outside, play with her ball by herself outside, then come inside. She still does not bark or scratch to come in if we forget her outside. She will wander off to the bedroom and just lie on her bed or come and sit in the bathroom or our bedroom when I bath and Chad is at home. She does not have to have him constantly in her sights. She is still Chad's dog without a doubt, but she is comfortable and confident enough to do her own thing with the knowledge that Chad won't leave her and it is OK to wander away from him for a bit.

Don't Touch My New Toy

She is really and truly one of the dogs [and cat] now. Garfield has more of a relationship with her than she has with Miss Piggy and Jingles. She also plays with any ball she finds, before she would only play with her ball that she brought with when she moved in or the one she found in the carport on the day she first came to visit. Now she grabs a ball and plays. Chad went to buy her a new ball this morning and of course, no new ball is safe from Spike and he refuses to give it to her. It did get him off his butt for a change. He ran and ran and ran so she couldn't get the ball and growled and then licked her every time she came near him and the ball. I thought I would have a fight at my feet, because he came and lay at my feet and would only let Jingles near him and not Piggy or Nala. Yesterday Chad said Piggy and Nala had a bit of a fight. We have people digging up our kitchen and the noise and workers always stress Piggy out, Chad just shouted at them and they stopped. No bites or marks or blood and they are friends again.

But That's My New Ball

I didn't think I would ever be able to get attached to a fully grown strange dog, well I didn't think I would ever want to get a fully grown animal as a new pet, but we are all so attached to Nala and it has been so much better having a new pet without the puppy stage. As cute as what puppies are it has been so much better not going through the chewing up of everything and house training. Even though Nala is not so docile anymore, she is still so sweet. The other day one of our Clients said she would never have a Pitbull because she has grandchildren and she doesn't trust them with children, I wouldn't trust Nala with a little child either, just like I wouldn't trust Jingles; Miss Piggy or Spike with small kids. They don't know small children, but I would trust Nala and Spike with a small child long before I trust Jingles and I did not trust Pluto at all with small children - he did not like small children at all. He was fine with children from primary school going kids to older, not little ones.

We were thinking of making our trampoline hole into a big Koi Fish pond with a little stream going down into the other pond in Clint's memorial garden - it would look stunning with the garden all fixed up around it, but Spike would be devastated. Our dogs have had more fun on the trampoline than Clint and Chad ever had when they were younger. Even Rambo, who was a big lazy gentle giant, used to play on the trampoline and Spike loves the trampoline. I told Mark that we must do the pond, but dig another hole, we can't take their play area away (we can't do it until the drought is over and water restrictions have lifted anyway). We have absolutely no grass left in the back where they play, because of the very dry spell we have had. It will never grow again because it is not dead grass like Winter grass, it is dead, roots and all from no rain and the dogs running up and down. We have spent so much money on lawn at the back and it never grows, I think there were too many old trees and roots for lawn to grow and that area just has what I call veldt grass and now it is sand from the dogs running up and down - plus no rain. Green shoots started coming out when it rained about two weeks ago. Last weekend I threw fertilizer everywhere and the rain stopped. I am hoping it rains today. The temps have dropped, but so far no rain. The rain we had recently helped so much because the grass that we do have left is green now, but the dead grass is now sand.

And that's the latest on Nala and HER new friends...

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Thursday, 26 November 2015

Breaking My Fast

On Saturday morning, I went shopping to replace the sandals Miss Piggy chewed up and to buy Chad's Police Pendant for his graduation present. I never managed to find the exact same sandals, but did buy others. As a side note, although MR Price has the prettiest of sandals that are dirt cheap, I forgot why I stopped buying shoes and sandals from MR Price years ago - if the inner soles of the sandals are any colour but the natural beige, the colour of the inner soles dye your feet if a drop of water gets on them whilst you are wearing them. I couldn't find the Police Pendant at my normal stomping ground, but they had at Clearwater Shopping Centre and I absolutely abhor shopping there and have been there about three times many years ago. Chad has been going there often lately and I asked him if he didn't feel like taking me there to buy these "famous shoes Piggy chewed up". He had a burger from Burger King on Friday at Clearwater and he decided to take Mark for a sit-down as opposed to take-out lunch at Clearwater - directly translated to Mark paying for lunch :).

It worked out perfectly because I could buy his Pendant whilst they were having lunch and were under the impression that I was shoe shopping. Before we left I made myself a Green Juice so that I didn't give in and eat a Burger to "try out" Burger King Burgers and my Kenwood Smoothie machine broke and messed a whole jug of green juice everywhere. Kenwood seriously threw their name away with their smoothie machines. This is now the second one that broke and this one I haven't even had for long although I have probably used it more than the other one. Mark said I should get a NutriBullet, but they are so expensive and do they really last longer than the others. I saw in the Clicks' magazine that they sell a Kambrook one for R899.00 that received 10/10 from the three Clicks' judges that tested it. I think Kambrook may be a Clicks' product, so that could be why they gave it 10/10. I can use mine, except every now and again it loosens the blade part and all the liquid runs out and messes. On Saturday because I wasn't watching it opened completely and as I lifted the jug it came completely loose and messed everywhere and half blended green juice looks pretty gross!!!!

I was really very proud of myself because after buying the pendant I went up to Burger King and sat watching Mark and Chad eating their Burger King Burgers and Chips and did not even crave or want or have even a chip. Fortunately, I had juices in the freezer for the weekend. Fast forward on Monday night to Chad's graduation evening and although I had nothing to eat or drink at the Church Hall where they had the graduation, I did eat when we went out for dinner. I had grilled chicken stuffed with spinach and feta and ordered veggies for my side. What happens - they give me chips instead of veg. I was really good and put the chips on the side plate and they looked really good, but I was not going down that road of destruction and ate the butternut that they brought afterwards. I left the spinach because it was full of cream and all things yummy. I now have Juice for lunch, Kefir and Flaxseed for breakfast and steamed chicken with only lemon juice and no herbs and spices or salt and butternut or gem squash. Also a banana and or cashew nuts after work.  This is now my meals. BORING with a Capital B!!!

I have not had meat or coffee since the 1 November or sugar or any processed foods since then and after eating relatively healthy foods for most of the year, I should be healthy right. I did lose the plot quite often over the year, especially in September and October - I stuffed myself on cupcakes; chocolates; sweets, banana bread and even red wine. Healthy foods just don't fill a grieving hole - OK neither does stodgy unhealthy food, but it is a lot more comforting than non-stodgy food. The uncomfortable guilt adds to the sombre sad grieving mood. Chad said the other day "Gee mom,  but you HAVE lost a lot of weight - imagine if you did not go on bad food eating binges". It is true, I would have been at my pre-Clint's death weight ( which I thought was overweight then), but then again I may have stayed on a strict diet then fallen right off the wagon and put all that weight back on. Now I have hopefully learnt that I can get back on the wagon as easily as I fall off it.

On the whole, I have had far more healthy spurts than unhealthy ones this year and after my Insurance Medical I believed I was very healthy. My Cholesterol was not even mentioned and I passed my Medical with flying colours even a stress ECG. Last week on Monday I went to the doctor to have a skin tag removed. It was right where my bra goes and started as a mark for years and all of a sudden I had this ugly skin tag where the wire of my bra goes and it was gross and freaked me out so I went to get it removed. I also have a flat wart thing on my ring finger that I have had for more than 10 years and it has been burning lately so I had that burnt off. Oh, my word how painful was that and it still is. That night I hit it on the cupboard door and the skin split open next to the wart. The doc also said it might not go away by itself, I must just buy the stuff from Dischem and do it myself. Not a chance will I willingly inflict such pain on myself  - I will pay her to do it. I did not know how much I used my left hand until now and it hurts each and every time - I have even started to rethink my hand washing obsession - plus I hit it on something at least 50 times a day. The skin tag healed long ago with my bra digging into it - not this thing on my knuckle - an unhealing place to have a sore or lesion. It is minute but feels like a massive crater.

The Offending Lesion

My doctor was pretty impressed with how healthy I look and how much weight I have lost. I haven't been to her for well over a year, but I don't quite think she believed that I should no longer take the Glucophage and I told her I have never taken the Cholesterol Statins and I am sure that my Cholesterol is fine because it was not an Insurance issue. She gave me a lab form to do bloods at the end of December and said I must have my Insurance Blood results sent to her. On Monday, I received a text message from her rooms to say my Doctor received my Insurance blood results and my Cholesterol is extremely raised. I was pretty floored, in fact, I was shattered. Here I was believing that I had changed to a fairly healthy lifestyle. Here I was living on green juices and choosing foods that increase my good cholesterol and lower my bad cholesterol and turns out I was wasting my time. I do eat too many cashews and although they are raw and unsalted they are full of those glorious things called calories and I would lose a lot more weight if I didn't eat them but hey they are heart healthy and so delicious and give the crunch that you don't get from salads and a green juice diet. Other than the raw cashews that I eat, most of the food I eat is boring. Here is the supper I made for Mark the night I received the news from my doctor and my food was the boring bland chicken and butternut. Chad had a baked potato instead of the capsicum with melted cheese and mince - even more yummy and I have the high cholesterol, except Mark's insurance was turned down because of his liver and mine wasn't turned down for my cholesterol, doesn't make sense, but I am not complaining.

Get Recipe Here and Excuse My Not so Pretty Plating Up

We heard that same day that another one of our Client's had a heart attack and died the other day. His wife is actually our Client and she is 45 so not sure how old he is, but he is extremely fit. He was doing some mountain bike race, he told his friend who was his team mate to stop a moment and he had a heart attack and died during the race. Fit doesn't necessarily mean heart healthy. So I gave some thought to my cholesterol levels and perhaps if I didn't change my eating habits I would have had a stroke by now, because I was feeling that ill and bloated and out of breath this time last year. I feel better now - so much better and that has to be the motivator behind my new food choices.

I have decided to go do the tests next week as opposed to the end of December and see what those results are like. I read that coffee can play havoc with Cholesterol levels and the Insurance tests were not fasting - they were random. That morning I had lots of coffee before the tests, so hopefully that messed with my Cholesterol levels. I was also eating a lot of popcorn - that was my choice of snack this year and even though it was air popped I put lots of salt on it. I crave salt, something I used to hate. It may have something to do with either my Underactive Thyroid or Nexium depleting all the magnesium in my body. I have a recipe for gluten free bread from Wheatbix, which I am going to try and make and eat it with Flora Pro-Active. I really do not want to go on statins. The one month that I took them, I felt sick all the time and my appetite spiralled out of control. I have also read more bad reports of taking statins than good.

On the Kefir making front, I have so much Kefir now that I threw some away. I forgot to increase the flaxseed to two tablespoons this week, so will probably do the detox for an extra three days. I have also decided to carry on eating Kefir after I have finished the detox. I will use it instead of Ayrshire yogurt in my smoothies - may help with the high Cholesterol. An ex-blogger who I still keep in contact with through email had a colleague who swore by drinking Kefir. When I heard that, it made me feel more sure about it being good for you as it was more real than reading about it on a random unknown web page.

And that is my unhealthy healthy lifestyle update - high cholesterol or not I feel like a different person to last year this time so it wasn't all in vain

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Tuesday, 24 November 2015

A Whole New Chapter

Last night was Chad's graduation and awards evening and tomorrow is his final exam and then he is done with Matric. OK, we have to wait for his results before we can sigh a huge sigh of relief and move forward to a new chapter. It does, however, still feel surreal that he has finished Matric and I cannot believe how quickly this day arrived. It honestly went too fast and starting Grade 8 is definitely not a distant memory, it is still fresh in our minds. The graduation was overrated and was really a waste of time except for the students that received awards. Quite a few Matrics did not even come to the Graduation. Chad didn't want to go, but I said that we should go because we never do school stuff. We were rather disgusted that the owner of the school did not even bother to come and say goodbye to the students and thank the parents for their "business" over the past five years after all it is a business - a family business and her husband makes sure that his business and finances are first and foremost. The school had snacks and refreshments, but we went out to dinner afterwards. We went to Adega and I broke my juice fast (more about that some other time) not over the top, but I still gave in because it seemed rude to sit there and not eat - that is my excuse and I am sticking to it.

It may seem as though Chad gets a lot of things and that he is spoilt. He does get nice things, more than some kids and less than others, but the way someone reacts to their gifts and how they treat their things makes someone spoilt or not spoilt. That was so apparent yesterday. Chad absolutely hates surprises and always manages to get his gifts before his birthday and Christmas. It is like he can smell his gifts. He chose his graduation present - a Police Watch and we bought it from Take A Lot. It was about R200.00 cheaper than at a jewelry store so we bought it online. The day it was delivered he was doing a late exam from 2 to 5 or so I thought. The parcel was delivered before his exam after much drama with the Fedex delivery guy as well. When I was dealing with the delivery man for my Kefir Kit, I could see in Chad's face that he thought we had bought his watch so he was kind of disappointed to see it was not the watch that was exasperating me. Whether he knew the Take a Lot package was his watch when it arrived or not, I would never know, but when I arrived home from work, I opened the package and then went to phone the time to set his watch because the time and date was all wrong (the difference between buying from a jewelry store and a general online store). As I am intently listening to the time and trying to set the watch, the kitchen interleading door opens and in walks Chad. Total surprise and shock that he is home and I try and hide the watch, but he sees it. No use putting it away, he tries it on, takes it to be made smaller the next day and wears it. Not all the time - it is only for when he dresses up - his idea.

I told him that I would also buy him a Police Pendant. He already told JD what he wanted for Christmas and she has bought it (I think) a Police ID Bracelet so I said I would buy the Pendant.  I bought the Pendant and Icon cufflinks on Saturday. I wasn't sure when I would give them to him and he had no idea about the cufflinks. I had told him that I couldn't find the pendant and I will get it for Christmas rather because he didn't want to go to his graduation anyway. Lo and behold after work I decide to wrap the present and close my door and he comes looking for me. I shouted that I was busy, he never looks for me in the afternoons, either his girlfriend is at our house or he is watching TV. He goes outside sees me with gift wrap through the window, my back was to the window, he comes in the room and end of surprise. He never saw the cufflinks at first and when he did he was so surprised and so happy because apparently he had seen them and wanted them and was wondering how he would afford them because he had spent his money on JD's Christmas present and he spent more than he was meant to. He kept saying,"mom did I show you these" "Äre you sure I didn't show you" 'Did I tell you I wanted them" He went on and on "mom you really deserve a hug for these - let me hug you" Chad doesn't like shows of affection (to his mother). He was so happy with his R329.00 cufflinks and he knows how much they cost.

I had no idea that he wanted cufflinks and thought it was a bit risky buying them, but also know how he loves dressing smartly. Today he told me that he told JD what he was buying her for Christmas and I said "Chad surely she wants to be surprised" "apparently she loves surprises" he says. "Come on Chad don't spoil her surprise - didn't you enjoy your surprise just a tiny bit yesterday?" I said. "Yea it was actually nice." "So don't tell her what you are buying her".

Chad wants to sell his car and get an Audi - excuse me. I like his car it is so him and it was his birthday present, but it is too fast and it is one of the top hijacked vehicles. For those reasons, I have to agree with him and also it is seriously heavy on fuel. It costs over R900.00 a week on fuel and that is if he doesn't drive all over on the weekends. His other reasoning is because we told him that Mark's insurance would not insure the car without a tracker like he has in it, so he thought if he got a different car he wouldn't need the tracker. We have made it quite clear he has the tracker in no matter what he drives. It is for his safety not because we want to spy on him. I only check up on him if he doesn't let us know he is OK - if he checks in with us then no need to track. He doesn't speed anymore that is out of his system.

This is a conversation that we had yesterday - an actual conversation with him phoning me. I gave him my smart shopper card in the morning because you can get a discount when you use it at the jewelry store he bought his girlfriend's present from. So he phones me at work.

C "Hello mom - why does your phone sound like it is on speaker phone"
D "I don't know - it's not on speaker phone"
C "Can I give Sheila our wifi password"
D "No what do you want to do that for"
C "you know she has this new phone - a cheap smart phone"
 D "but we battle with slow connection as it is - she will use all our data"
C "uncapped mom"
D "yes but it still has a cap then gets slow"
C "well what's the point of uncapped"
D 'I don't know thats how it works - ye I suppose she can have it because then she won't run out of data for whatsapp when I try and get hold of her"
C "yes that was what I was thinking"
D "Chad why are you driving and talking on your phone" sudden realisation that it is car noises I hear
C 'Hands Free"
D "you don't have a hand's free kit"
C "ye built in with my aux cable - hey I test drove that Audi it is so cool"
D "did you - did you go on your own"
C "ja it is so cool - its got ................................"
C "OK then"
D "OK where you going now"
C "to buy condoms"
D " CHAD!!!!" all shades of red
C "hahahahahahahahahahahaha" don't know if it is just to tease me - don't really want to know either.
D "you should have taken my Clicks Club Card so I can earn points seeing that you are giving me grey hair you can give me points too"
C "hahahahahahah I will get you points and give you grey hair hahahahah .... bye"
D "bye my love - love you be safe"

Love that crazy kid with all my heart and so hard to believe he is test driving cars on his own, finished school and all grown up.

He is not going on Vac - he decided this weekend. The hotel that the other guys booked is nowhere near the beach or even the pickup points for the rage shuttle service and it would be four boys in one room with two double beds. The Rage starts before Matric exams even finish because the department of education released the exam timetable too late so two of the boys write on the day Vac starts and the mother who booked the hotel booked it from the 26th, the day before it starts until the 5th. Vac ends after the 5th plus they will be paying for two days that they won't even be there, Chad doesn't like clubbing anyway. He has been to a club once and hated it and went to a pub with a band and hated that too. His girlfriend is ecstatic that he is not going. She was encouraging him to go but told him it is because it was something he had to do and obviously she did not want to be THAT  girlfriend who is jealous and needy, but now she can be happy.

We are all happy that he is not going, but I didn't want him to feel like he is missing out because he was so looking forward to it, but that was before him and JD became so seriously in love. He keeps telling me how much they love each other and I just tell him that I am happy for him and he deserves all the love in the world...

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Sunday, 22 November 2015

Going Natural

Once upon a long time ago in March this year, when Karma hit me in the bangs and I knew that I had to find a new hairdresser because my hairdresser had one too many bad hair days - with MY hair, I eventually found a new hairdresser in August this year. I left the salon and for the first time in many years both Chad and Mark complimented my hair and both said that it looked like I had stepped out of the salon. The hairdresser is at a shopping centre I stop at almost every single day and I thought what the hell, let me just make an appointment to get my hair cut. You will be excused if you think that this post is all about me going all natural with my hair - it is not! However, going to this new hairdresser set me on this new found discovery and path in my life. Whilst we were discussing the mess my previous hairdresser made of my hair, like one side much shorter than the other and it wasn't meant to be styled like that and me agreeing that yes, hairdressers can also have a bad day at work and mess up, she did however have far too many bad days with my hair. The new hairdresser said that years ago hairdressers would round off fringes/bangs to make thin hair like mine look thicker. I thought this woman was delusional because I do NOT have thin hair. I never have had thin hair ever. I never argued the point with her and just carried on chatting whilst silently stressing about how my hair will end up if she thinks I have thin hair and I don't.

After leaving the hairdresser, I kept thinking of what she said and why she thought I had thin hair. The fact that she did not mess up my hair and that she managed to fix the mess that the other hairdresser made of my hair and I now have a fringe and not a pot effort on my head just exasperated my thoughts on her opinion of the thickness or rather thinness of my hair. My hair did feel lighter and thinner, but it usually does after being cut especially when I don't cut it for 6 months or longer as I normally do. I also started noticing that my hair falls out a lot more than it used to. It doesn't only fall out, but it breaks when I wash it. My hair has always fallen out a lot and I always said when one strand falls out three more grow - ha! I have since learned that only works with grey hair of which I have 6 strands at the moment, I started with two - now I am not touching them. When the plumber who did our bathrooms said my hair blocked Chad's shower, I said it could never have been my hair because we have never had a blocked shower before. I am now starting to rethink that idea, although I haven't blocked our shower so that reasoning hasn't been firmly confirmed or denied, but when I wash my hair my hands are full of broken strands of hair - a first. I happened across a natural beauty blog and one of the homemade products was Castor Oil and Rosewater for your hair and Lavender essential oil optional. I bought Castor Oil but I couldn't find rosewater. I did not know you bought it from the baking aisle in supermarkets and none of the Clicks stores I frequent, have Lavender Essential Oils. I also came across another site that said you can add Olive Oil to the Castor Oil, a 50/50 ratio and it will be easier to spread and you massage it into your scalp and all over your hair and leave it on for thinning and or broken hair. I used to use Coconut Oil and Olive Oil years ago in my hair, long before they both became a fashionably expensive cooking ingredient. You bought both from pharmacies and they were dirt cheap, however, I did not know about Castor Oil for your hair. Coconut Oil you can sleep with in your hair and Castor Oil just leave for an hour, then wash out and it makes your hair soft and manageable and [hopefully] stops the thinning and breaking. If you leave the Castor Oil in for too long like I did last Sunday [4 hours] there will be a slight Castor Oil smell lingering in your hair - not too unpleasant but not that pleasant either. I don't even blow dry my hair anymore, mainly because it is so hot or has been so hot and now especially because it keeps breaking and using a flat iron will just make it worse. I put Argan Oil in it and Sea Salt Spray and it air dries into curls, not frizz.

I also noticed that my nails no longer grow. For about a year now, they just don't grow even when I take Vital Hair Nail and Skin Supplements, which I used to swear by. I Googled possible causes of why my nails won't grow, as we do and also if the medication I take could cause nails to stop growing. I came up with far more search results of long term use of Nexium causing hair loss than anything about nails not growing. Hair loss is not a side effect of long-term use of Nexium yet so many, especially women, were reporting loss and breaking of hair after long term use, some even as early as 6 months usage. I cannot remember how long I have been on Nexium. I know I was first put on it in 2011 and then I stopped after 6 months, it was a 6-month course. My reflux got worse so I went onto Lockit, which I stopped taking also after 6 months and the doctor put me onto Nexium again, but I can't remember if there was a break in between or how long the break was if there was one. The reflux never healed and if I stopped the Nexium I got such bad Gastritis. When I stopped smoking I suffered so badly with GERD and Gastritis, so I have been on Nexium for a long time. Most of my Google findings painted Nexium in a very bad light, but you cannot just stop Nexium, because of the sudden acid build up in your stomach when you stop. My research also happened upon something called Kefir - the new miracle cure for everything under the Sun including Gerd; Gastritis and Ulcers. A cleanse of Kefir and Flaxseed flour for three weeks will reset your body and cure every ailment possible.

I cannot credit any single site with information on and benefits of Kefir, because every site I went on has the same information down to the almost very last word, but a site I found that had the most info was this one. You cannot buy Kefir in South Africa and you have to make your own with Kefir Grains and you cannot buy Kefir Grains in a store in South Africa. In the US you can buy Kefir drinks in stores but apparently it is not as good as proper Kefir. The Google hunt began for Kefir grains in South Africa and the best place I found was Crafty Cultures in Pretoria Gauteng. You can buy a starter kit for R300.00 which I bought or the grains for R150.00 and pay R75.00 delivery. I bought Milk Kefir, you also get Water Kefir, but Milk Kefir came up in all my searches as the better one to use, although on my Juice Detox I shouldn't have had milk, but I had done two weeks of Juicing so wasn't too worried about the Milk. I thought finding Flaxseed Flour would be difficult, but our local Spar sells a whole host of healthy things these days and I just happened to come across the Flaxseed Flour one day whilst still contemplating the Kefir Cleanse.

I was very impressed with Crafty Cultures because I paid and ordered on the Wednesday and received an email that night informing me that my order was at packaging and on Thursday morning I received an email to say it was being delivered. You have to pay by bank transfer only so that was very quick. Everything fell apart with the courier company, Courier Man. It took me an hour to direct the driver from the Filling Station 3 Km's away from my house. Half an hour later he ended up at the next filling station about one kilometer up the road from the other one he was at - in the same road. Then another 30 minutes to get to my house 2 minutes away. He had the cheek to tell me to meet him at the shopping centre next door to the Filling Centre - after paying R75.00 for delivery I must leave my dinner on the stove and drive off to collect my parcel from a courier company that I paid. He eventually found it. The problem was that every time I started explaining he would say ok and put down the phone - all 20 calls barring the first were paid by me not him. That annoyed me so much I just left the Kefir in the box. When I opened the box eventually I was very disappointed.

The Kit consisted of grains, a Tea Strainer from Checkers, the label was still on it, a plastic spoon which you can grab for free at the Woolworths counters when you buy your milk, an elastic band - wow and two little pieces of cloth - ok the right cloth may have posed a problem in finding, but the rest was not worth the cost of a kit. I bought the Kit because I didn't want to hunt amongst my junk for a suitable container to culture my Kefir in, but I still had to do that. If you are looking to buy Kefir, I do recommend Craft Cultures for the grains, because their grains are good, but I wouldn't recommend buying the kit. I didn't have to hunt too far because I had a milk bottle and a suitable glass container. The Kit also came with instructions on how to start your Kefir Culture, but it didn't say how much milk to use, so I used this site. The Kefir grains came in a tiny plastic bottle with milk, I was quite disappointed and my first attempt on Friday evening that I ate on Saturday with Flaxseed flour was disgusting. I ate half and it was terrible. I kept the other half for Sunday and took about an hour to eat it.

I did not think I would manage the three week cleanse. The first week you have100mls of Kefir and a tablespoon of Flaxseed Flour every day for breakfast and the next week increase the Flaxseed Flour and have two tablespoons and the third week 150mls Kefir and 3 tablespoons of Flaxseed. You only do the cleanse once a year, but during my research I found that so many people eat Kefir every day for years. I decided one more attempt. My first attempt I did not do properly and just put a teaspoon of the grains mixed with the milk they came in into a cup of 2% Low Fat Milk into my glass jar and started the culturing process. I did not even see the Kefir grains. On Saturday, I went and bought Spring water and as usual Woolworths as always badly stocked, did not have their Farm Fresh Organic Milk that I have never bought, but always see so I bought Ayrshire Full Cream Milk. I rinsed the tiny grains in Spring Water and then in Milk and added the one teaspoon of grains that it ended up to be into one cup of milk. First you put boiling water into your glass container for three minutes to sterilise the container and ensure that there is no soap residue in the container. Pour one cup of preferably farm fresh milk or full cream milk, pour in your grains, cover with the cloth and put on a counter in a warm area 20 to 30 degrees celsius and leave to cultivate.

This Sunday I have about 500mls of Kefir Milk, my grains are growing bigger all the time and it is really not bad at all. If you eat cottage cheese, you will eat Kefir with no problem - I don't eat cottage cheese at all and if you eat Greek Yoghurt, Plain Yoghurt or Ayrshire Yoghurt you will tolerate Kefir Milk. I love Plain, Greek and Ayrshire Yoghurt and quite look forward to my Kefir in the mornings. They caution you to only have 100mls and of course, I don't listen and had 200mls the other morning and had a terrible burning pain under my ribs on the right-hand side. I have had that pain often when my Gerd was really bad - I haven't had it for a long time. My healthy eating has helped a lot of my reflux problems. I don't eat Minced Meat at all because I suffer so badly with reflux, even with Mince from Woolworths. Mark does not subscribe to the notion that Woolworths sells quality food, his shop is Spar, but he can only eat Mince from Woolworths otherwise he gets bad heartburn - I get it from any Mince, some more severe than others. I did find 100mls Kefir Milk too dry with the Flaxseed Flour so have 125mls. You have to drink two to three litres of water every day when doing the cleanse - I don't but am trying.

2nd batch - but first properly made batch

It takes between 18 and 24 hours for the grains to culture into Milk Kefir. You then use the plastic strainer to separate the cultured milk from the grains. Never use metal only plastic and glass. Throw the grains back into your culture jar and add a cup of milk and start the process again. Pour the Kefir Milk into a glass jar and refrigerate until you use it.

You don't have to wash your culture jar after each batch, you just throw your grains back in and start the next batch. You wash your container every few days and eat the refrigerated milk within 7 days.

I am weaning myself off the Nexium and take one every three days just in case the sudden acid build-up becomes too hectic. Whether Kefir will help remains to be seen, if it doesn't I need to find another way to address the reflux I have. We, in fact, need acid in our stomach - it helps with the production of Biotin and Biotin is necessary for cell growth. Biotin strengthens nails and hair growth, Wikipedia has a whole bunch of information on Biotin. It all now makes sense and although my Underactive Thyroid could be a cause of hair loss as well, I tend to lean towards it being the Nexium. Hair loss is not listed as a side effect, but I have read that it was never meant to be a long-term medication for reflux, only for 6 weeks. I can't conceive of the fact that whilst I have now embarked on a journey to better health that I end up losing my hair. I could not even think that I can imagine what it is like for someone going through Chemotherapy to lose their hair, I am not going through anything has bad as that, but it is a concern. What is also a concern is that your bones and teeth also become weakened by Nexium and I have enough issues with my teeth as it is - possibly caused from Nexium too or it has exasperated the problem.

I won't lie I have felt the effects of this detox and have had all the side effects of a true detox, I haven't had that with green juicing, which I am still doing so perhaps that is why I am feeling the effects. The 100 to 125mls is more than sufficient for breakfast and it fills you up more than cereal or oatmeal. I have a green juice at 11 when I start getting hungry.

Flaxseed and Kefir Milk
It is not well documented, but it appears that you have the Kefir Milk for breakfast and then have a Mediterranean type diet for the rest of the day. A small amount of protein and lots of fruit and veg - clean eating and no processed foods or carbs.

... So yes, I am not going Au Natural with my hair I am going Au Natural with my medication in the hope that my hair will stay Au Natural...

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Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Nala Has Found Her Voice

Life is not an Instagram cropped image and my life and home definitely isn't. We always have an old towel, now used as rags lying on the kitchen floor in the hope that when the dogs drink water their dribbles [gushes of water] don't go all over the floor making foot prints and paw prints all over the house. We always have shoes lying around and cupboard doors left open; dog toys everywhere and bags and packets everywhere just waiting for Garfield to claim them for a bed. Our house is a mess, clean but an untidy mess at the best way of times and if I had to wait for that picture perfect moment to take photos I would have none. So please excuse the shoes lying around and the wide open cupboard in this photo below [and all my photos] I have cropped out as much of my morning madness as possible, but how cute do these two look - Soul Twins. This photo for me is the epitome of their relationship. If Chad is Nala's soul human then Spike is her soul twin. They stand together drinking water, they sit at the precisely same time when I say sit for biscuits, Spike will run and stand next to her when she runs to the door and one day Mark was playing with them and they both jumped into the air after the ball at the exact same time. It looked like it was choreographed and of course, I was just walking past from the front garden and never had my camera or I should say they never do something amazing like that when I am ready with my camera. Spike is definitely the yin to her yang, Miss Piggy and Pluto had that kind of relationship with Pluto, he had such a calming effect on her and Spike, I believe, makes Nala feel secure.

In this post about Nala not being perfect, I said that she never barked, that night Mark and Chad said she does bark, she has a very deep vicious bark. Her bark is deep and vicious and does not suit her demeanor and she does bark, but not to the extent of our other dogs. On Saturday when I was on my own at home, the neighbour's dogs were barking and barking, nothing unusual which is why their house was burgled with their daughter hidden under the bed and no one took note of the dogs barking non-stop - that was last year November. Nala suddenly started crying softly and it became progressively louder and then she ran to the front door and scratched and barked and she set all the others off.  I was a bit nervous opening the door to let her out. I always get scared that someone is on the property when the dogs bark like crazy in the house and I am alone and don't know why they are barking. I noticed a group of people talking to the old man from next door (Jehova Witness people). One of the dogs from the house that was robbed last year was out in the street making all the dogs bark and Nala was ready to jump through the bars of the gate to the dog. Spike was also going crazy, but she was more excited and agitated than him. I will never push her boundaries because I think she will get into a fight if she feels threatened. I kept Miss Piggy in the house so that they did not get into a frenzy at the gate and fight amongst each other like Spike used to before we had him neutered and Miss Piggy can be very bolshy. The photo below is Nala's typical way of wanting to go out when Chad wakes up and forgets to let her out and I don't know she is up and also when I forget she is outside (twice now) and she wants to come in, but obviously on the other side of the door.

On Monday, it was Nala's birthday, she turned 3 on the 16 November 2015 and today, the 18 November 2015, it is Miss Piggy's birthday and she turned 6. We are bad furkid parents because we didn't buy them a present, a giant bone or bake them a cake - seriously these dogs eat a packet of dog biscuits a day if they are the Peanut Butter flavour ones and if they are other flavours then two days and they are done. So no special treat on their birthdays, maybe I will bake them biscuits on the weekend. Miss Piggy is absolutely crazy about butternut and I am trying to perfect butternut biscuits for her.  So whilst Nala has found her voice Miss Piggy has found her inner child. On Monday, we had one hectic rainstorm and a bit of hail - not complaining we need the rain, but either Nala turning three, or another week with us or the rainstorm made her a bit crazy in that instead of her usual quiet self, she was playing in our lounge with her ball. Our cramped lounge!! Piggy joined her and kept taking her ball when Chad wasn't throwing it to Nala. Piggy would huddle under the coffee table chewing on the ball. Eventually, they settled and we became involved in TV until Chad noticed Piggy chewing up my sandal under the table. There she was chewing away quietly under the table on my new shoe. Two days before she turns six and she resorts to puppyhood. Mark and Chad both think it is not noticeable and I could still wear them, but they were really cheap so I ws not that fussed, except that they are very comfortable. I don't like flat shoes and battle to find shoes that I like that are flat, but if I wear high shoes my back really aches so I went looking for flat shoes the week before last and bought two pairs of slops (as in the rubbery ones) and two pairs of sandals from Mr Price for R179.00. OK, they are not fancy at all but R179.00 for four pairs of sandals. The pair that Piggy chewed is really comfortable. The plan was to wear high shoes and then wear the slops whilst up and down at work  like I did with my old faithful slops that finally broke the other week, but these were so comfortable, I wore them all the time - now I need to find another comfortable pair.

The Victim Shoe

Hey I was busy chewing that shoe you took away
I absolutely love this photo of Spike, totally relaxed on all their beds after they were brought in from outside before the storm started on Monday - Sheila puts the beds outside every day when she cleans. Nala is getting more and more settled every day and there are more happy looks in her eyes than sad ones. She loves licking the other animals and has even started licking Garfield and Jingles. Garfield has only ever really had a relationship with Spike. 

And that is it from the Fearsome Five (Shame no photos of Jingles) and a massive storm just started so Nala and Jingles and Garfield all jittery and time to make dinner

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Sunday, 15 November 2015

World Remembrance Day For Road Traffic Victims 2015

Today is World Remembrance Day For Road Traffic Victims and in honour of Clinty's memory, I have acknowledged this day every year since I heard about it. I had this whole post in my head ready to type up and publish here, but I decided not to publish it as I just wasn't into putting it all out there - out of my head and into a blog post. I have done Blog posts previously which you can read over here. In saying this, I really don't need a special day to honour Clint's memory, not his death day or even his birthday, I honour and cherish his memory, every single second of every day and I am privileged to say that I am his mother and always will be. It is an honour to be his mother and I will always cherish that, however, I do acknowledge this day in honour of his memory and to highlight that "minor" traffic offences are not minor at all - they kill; they maim and destroy lives.

Clinty With His Scholar Patrol Certificate

It is a well-documented fact that mothers will smear their children full of sunblock, put safety catches on toilet seats and electrical sockets and then climb into their cars, strap their children into car seats and then speed through red traffic lights whilst updating their Whatsapp playgroup without giving a second thought to their child or another child dying as a result of their negligence. I am not saying it is only mothers who do this, road deaths don't choose between gender; wealth; age or even morals, The Arrive Alive Wall Of Remembrance is a testament to this, however, this is to what extent road safety is ignored.  It is at the bottom of the safety chain in life - putting a lock on a toilet seat takes priority over safety when driving. The Day of Remembrance is to not only honour Road Traffic Victims but to highlight the consequences of traffic offences.

Excerpt taken from the World Day Of Remembrance Website "The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims (WDR) is commemorated on the third Sunday of November each year – to remember the many millions killed and injured on the world’s roads, together with their families, friends and many others who are also affected. It is also a Day on which we thank the emergency services and reflect on the tremendous burden and cost of this daily continuing disaster to families, communities and countries, and on ways to halt it.
Road deaths and injuries are sudden, violent, traumatic events. Their impact is long-lasting, often permanent. Each year, millions of newly injured and bereaved people from every corner of the world are added to the countless millions who already suffer. The cumulative toll is truly tremendous" Read More.

This year is the 20th anniversary and the 10th anniversary that it was adopted by the UN. This year's theme is - "It is time to remember to say no to road crime".  A traffic offence is a crime no matter how "minor" you may think it is - it is a crime. An illegal U-Turn ended a beautiful boy's life - his goals and dreams. These are not statistics on The Wall Of Remembrance they are children; babies; sons; daughters; mothers; fathers - they are people. Living people until someone committed a road crime. [Arrive Alive Wall of Remembrance Is Not Part Of The World Remembrance Day Organisation].

Image Credit WDR2015

In Loving Memory Of Clinton

21.9.1989 to 16 March 2007

Clinty, I will always love; cherish and honour your memory. You will live in my heart forever - until it stops beating and beyond. Love You Always

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Saturday, 14 November 2015

Life Is Not A Text Book

In June this year when people we knew or people we knew of were dying in threes we decided to get our affairs in order because there is a lot of red tape involved when it comes to death and we didn't want Chad to have to struggle, not only financially, but with the arrangements etc if anything should happen to Mark and I, at the same time. This is life and these things happen. Anyone who believes that you just sit at home crying and waiting for people to bring you flowers and promises to be there for you any time of the day or night when someone dies of an unnatural death has no idea of the realities of dealing with death. I can't comment on death by illness as I haven't had to deal with that myself, but there is a whole lot of red tape when it comes to unnatural causes. Besides the fact that the words offered during your time of devastation and grief of being there for you are just words and no one actually lives up to those empty promises, there are realities that you have to face. There are accident reports you have to find, as in find out where the traffic official/police officer or both is stationed that was at the scene. There are mortuaries to go to; there are funeral arrangements to make, funeral homes to go to and a whole host of realities you have to face. There is no such a thing as being strong - people love saying that - it is not being strong it is a matter of having no option. It is going into autopilot and doing what you have to do.

With all these deaths, we realised that our stuff was in a mess and decided to sort it out, so Chad can find everything easily and also take out another better policy for me so Chad has no financial worries. Mark also wanted to take out another policy, he has adequate cover, but do you actually ever have enough cover. With all my ailments and medication that I am on, Thyroid; Gerd and Pre-Diabetes,  I doubted that I would get insurance, but it is not a cliche saying Mark's broker could convince an Eskimo that he needed more ice, because he would and could. At the end of June, the broker came guns blazing, redid our wills and started on the path of selling Mark even more insurance and changing my policy and months later on the 1 October 2015 my new policy came into effect. I got cover Mark didn't. His liver functions were sky high, which he blames on having Hepatits as a kid, which yes there is damage from that, as well as his earlier drinking days, but it was never high enough to be of concern to an insurance company. The fact that he drinks so much cold drink has to be a factor, but his  GP said it wasn't the reason, but I doubt the GP knows that a lot of cold drink is not the same as a lot of cold drink that Mark drinks. Almost 6 months later and he is still dealing with Insurance issues. The biggest issue is that instead of just taking out a small policy to cover Chad's car and taxes etc, yes you pay tax when you die too, which was the plan, his broker has convinced him that he should take out one big policy and cancel his others. Makes sense, because Mr Broker earns upfront commission and won't earn much on a small policy, but cancelling all the others and taking out one big one will earn him bucket loads of commission, Mark doesn't see that but then again, Mark never sees himself being conned by con artists.

Due to my many ailments I had to have many medical tests. Before they even took blood tests I had to have a full medical and because my GP doesn't do stress ECG's I had to go to another doctor and MR Broker who loves money arranged that I go to a Medical Centre and I refused. I will not go to any Medical Centre where I may come in contact with the murdering bitch who killed my child. I need to have control over the doctors I get to see and she may be a locum or employed by one of these train station type facilities. There were many emails and phone calls going back and forth, because going forward was in Chad's best interest and Chad is my reason for 90% of my life and reasoning, but dealing with Insurance Companies was making the end goal, Chad's well-being, very difficult. We got to a stage of a nurse coming out to ask questions and take bloods and I had to answer the same questions over and over and when the nurse arrived in all her arrogance I was ready to throw her and her suitcase out the window. When I did the forms with MR Broker, I said I had been on anti-depressants a year after Clint died, which was 7 years ago and question question question... I stopped them within about 6 months when my psychologist agreed with me that taking a pill will not bring my child back, all the pills in the world won't bring my child back and will not take away the pain. I did not have depression, I was and still am grieving. Lo and behold the nurse comes and asks the same questions and more. Her one question was when did my symptoms stop. I had to restrain myself from punching her in the face and told her she obviously has not gone through the death of a child and told her to go and tell her Company that I refuse to answer another question and tell them life is not a textbook. She was a seemingly intelligent women, English was her home language, she obviously did her training and schooling in the "good old days" a term I use loosely, yet her simple mind could not think out the box. I also said to her that you don't wake up one day and say "Oh Wow I Am Over My Son's Death".

When she left I did not expect to get Insurance, but MR Broker's office had already arranged with a Physician that I had been to previously to do the Full Medical. A really lovely man that helped me to restore a tiny bit of faith in the medical field which helped with all the Medical Marvel Moments I have had since Clint died and now that I have given up smoking. Turns out that I am super healthy, I have stopped taking the Glucophage, my stress ECG was better than very good and I am most definitely not an Insurance Risk. It took weeks and weeks to get there and even if my Insurance got turned down, I still managed to get a free medical out of them with a good physician. If all doctors were on the same level of professionalism and knowledge and empathy and compassion and of course, dedication as Dr Promnitz then life would be so different for us. He also told me that the term pre-diabetic is used far too loosely and I was probably Glucose Intolerant and obviously at the time I did need the Glucophage, but changing my eating habits have done more good than the medication. He told me after checking that I was never given a machine to check my sugar levels daily ( that would mean I am diabetic) that I should stop the glucophage for a month then check my blood sugar levels and if they are normal then I really don't need Glucophage anymore. My levels were excellent.

I did not mention on the Insurance form that I was treated for depression years ago because it was longer than the 5 year period on the form, but also in hindsight, I now know that I was not depressed. Doctors are too quick to think that a little pill is the answer to everything in life, without doing tests first. I now know that I had without a doubt iron deficiency anaemia, which have the same symptoms as depression, but no tests were done or questions asked about my then current health issues. Why, because iron deficiency anaemia doesn't put money into the bank account of medical institutions. I more than likely also had hypothyroidism then too, because you don't wake up one morning with an underactive thyroid and go to the doctor get diagnosed and treated for it. It is one of those medical conditions that take years and years to diagnose. Hypothyroidism have the same or similar symptoms as depression. My cholesterol was not even mentioned after the insurance blood tests were done and I have had high cholesterol since (that I am aware of) the insurance policy I took out about 13 years ago. Last year or the year before, my doctor said my Cholesterol was dangerously high and put me on medication, which I took for one month only and couldn't handle the side effects and stopped them, now it did not even come up as Insurance alarm bells. My physician said that my thyroid would have caused the high cholesterol as well.

I have to say that just by cutting out gluten and sugar for most of this year and doing juice detoxes throughout the year my health has improved in leaps and bounds. This time last year, I was so overweight and "ünwell". I felt ill all the time, I could not breathe, I just felt terrible. I remember waking up one morning and feeling so bloated I decided to try and do a 7 day juice detox and I managed, but barely and also I ate stir fry veg at night, but I struggled and I almost passed out at the shops, it was also very hot, but I felt faint all the time and now I do them with ease. I am currently on day 13 of a Green Juice detox, except that I ate butternut and also orange and fennel salad for dinner on Wednesday night (day 10) and Thursday night butternut and beetroot salad (homemade not bottled) and a shot glass full of raw cashew nuts on Thursday and Friday night and the rest green juices - no food at all. I haven't had coffee for 13 days and only drink water (not enough) Green Tea and Hot Lemon Water when I wake up. Oh I forgot some days I have a banana after work, because I feel I need the potassium from them.

I have managed to lose all my weight that I put on when I stopped smoking without really depriving myself, but I haven't managed to lose the weight from filling a hole after Clinty died. Now my weight fluctuates up and down by 5kg's and then I know I have to detox. I don't even have to weigh myself, as soon as I have too much gluten, my body screams and shouts at me to stop. I get puffy and bloated and I get out of breath easily and then it is time to detox. Thinking about it is tough, but once I get started I don't get hungry. I don't juice as such, whereby the juice is sucked out of the fruit, I still have the fibre, because I use my smoothie machine to make the juice, but I still don't get hungry. I sleep better, have more energy and feel so much better and I don't get hungry. I get hungry when it is time for a juice, I have four a day and then I am full and have no cravings for coffee, sugar, meat or anything and I cook for Mark and Chad every night.

Mark bought Grapefruit the other day, which he thought were oranges and I was upstairs at work and heard him saying that they were the most disgusting oranges he has ever tasted, they are sour. Then I said are you sure they are not grapefruit, he replied it says grapefruit on the label!!! I don't think Mark has ever seen or tasted Grapefruit, but instead of throwing them away I have had Grapefruit; Fennel; Apple and Lemon juices for breakfast every morning - Yuck right??? Not really it is definitely an aquired taste and I discovered by pure accident that freezing it straight after juicing and eating/drinking it frozen is actually refreshing and yummy. Now I am working on getting off the Nexium - another stupid Insurance question - when did you last have heartburn?? Um just wait whilst I have a look in my Diary that I DO NOT KEEP TO RECORD MY HEARTBURN EPISODES!!! I take the dam medicine and suffer from the side effects so that guess what - I don't get heartburn and acid reflux all the time!!!

So yes, life is not a textbook, how many super fit healthy people have unbeknown to them, cancer lurking in their bodies, just waiting for the day that it can rear it's ugly head, which could be a day after their insurance kicked in. What about road deaths, Clint's death is ultimate proof that life is not a textbook and does not go according to the plan of life. About a month ago another Client of ours was driving home from work late at night, he has probably never been to a doctor in his adult life, has no ailments and ends up dead as a result of the carnage on our roads, leaving behind a wife and two small girls. What I am saying is, yes Insurance Companies must do checks otherwise they would go bankrupt, but seriously, take your blinkers off, climb out the box, close your textbooks and face life realistically and pose your questions accordingly.

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