Oct 7, 2012

This blog is like a diet!

Kyle, Emma, Ciaran and Caelen

This year it was my intention to stay up-to-date with my blog.........Well, you can see how that turned out!!!! Never mind, all is not lost. As with diets, we have our lapses but you pick yourself up and start over again - at least that's what I do, don't you? Seriously I have to be focussed and my mind has to be right if I am to stick to a diet and the same applies to blogging. My mindset is good for my latest (and final) diet attempt - more about that later - so why not climb back on the band wagon and start blogging again. I don't know if anyone will read this but if you do, welcome to my blog. No pretensions, just me, plain and simple.

My last post was in April after my son and his then girlfriend / now fiancee left to go back home to the UK. We had such a lovely time together and it was wonderful to see how Emma fitted right in with the rest of the family. The future brothers-in-law and father -in-law  had never met her prior to this trip. However, it was as if Emma had been with us for ever - she slotted right in - not that she actually had much choice! Such special family time - we really missed them after they left.

Chez and Emma

One thing I do not like about this global world we live in is the fact that so many families are scattered  around the globe. This is particularly true of South African families as so many young people leave the country to live overseas. Mind you, that is exactly what my own parents did all those years ago when they left Scotland with 5 young children under the age of 10 and settled in Africa of all places! I remember thinking we would be living in grass huts surrounded by jungle and wild animals and that all my friends would be black children - how wrong I was! Now it is only 1 brother and myself here and the rest back in the UK  - BUT not for long. One brother is moving to Australia and we are going to live in the UK, provided we can get DH in as he is the only one not on a British passport. That is another story which I am going to leave for another day.

What have I been doing since April? Working, working and working some more. During term time that is all I focus on because teaching demands all my time, effort and attention but I love it. I love being busy. I love trying new ideas. I am excited when I see my children make such wonderful progress. I love the challenge and the rewards. Every day is different. Being a Grade 1 teacher is demanding, exhausting, exciting but never boring! Job satisfaction guaranteed : ) 

This year we used a new approach to the way we teach reading and phonics and the results have been so exciting. It has been hard work but so worth it when we see what the children are doing this year in comparison to previous years. I am so grateful to the other Grade 1 teachers who have supported me in my drive to improve our literacy and maths skills. Thank you special ladies - you are the best! Also thanks must go to my Deputy Principal because she has backed me all the way and offered total support even though this approach goes against so much of what our parents expect - and boy, do they expect a lot!

On a not so pleasant note both of my sons were mugged in the same week. Caelen had been playing golf on a Monday afternoon when he and his friend were held up at knife point and the muggers demanded their cell phones and wallets. They wisely did not resist and were left unharmed. Ciaran and his friend were not so fortunate. They were accosted in the early hours of a Sunday morning on their way to buy burgers after a night out with friends. As they were walking to the Steers takeaway at a nearby garage, a person approached from the opposite direction. As he drew alongside he made a clicking noise with his tongue and a fellow assailant jumped out of hiding and attacked Travis with an iron bar. Ciaran put up a fight against the first attacker and the second attacker then turned on him and proceeded to attack him with the iron bar, hitting him repeatedly on the head while his friend kicked him as he lay injured on the ground. His cell phone and wallet were stolen and he was left bleeding copiously and injured after having rolled down a bank and landing up amongst some rocks. The petrol attendants at the garage laughed at them and refused to help. Travis still had his phone and managed to call his father who arrived and took the boys to hospital.
Ciaran ended up with 24 staples in the side of his head, 10 stitches on his temple and another 12 to the wound on the back of his head plus a fractured wrist.

View of the staples and behind them the wound at the back of his head which was a jagged mess before they stitched it up.

I always pray for protection over my boys when they go out and I believe God did protect them that night. It could have turned out far worse than it did considering the violence of the crime. I am happy to report that Ciaran has made a full recovery but he now has a permanent side parting!

Earlier in my post I mentioned that I had started what I intend is to be my last diet ever - a bold statement but one I want to prove to be true. Over the last few years I have steadily put on weight. I look at myself in the mirror and don't recognise the person I see there. Anyway, next year I am going to relocate to England so I decided I can't arrive there fat. One of my ex parents and her husband went on a diet and have lost so much weight so I asked her how they did it and she told me it was the Dukan Diet. I had never heard of it so I googled Dukan Diet and hey presto - there it was. I decided that was what I was going to do to lose weight. It worked for them so surely it will work for me too. Well, it has. I have lost 10.5kg in 6 weeks. I have lost weight every week even when I haven't exercised, been sick and cheated a teeny little bit!

I feel so much better. I can see the difference and so can other people. I am fitting into clothes that I haven't worn in 4 years! I still have a way to go but I am determined I am going to be at my goal weight before I go overseas. In fact, I may even reach it by the end of the year if I can keep on losing like this. I have started my walking again ( another story for another day here) and feel less tired and have more energy. My face is looking more like the old me and I feel inspired, even though it is hard going some days but I know the end results will be so worth it.

So, feeling positive I am going to be equally positive that I will post on a more regular basis. Watch this space!!! I might even be brave enough to add some photos with me in them. although I tend to be the one behind the lens.

Back to school tomorrow after a 5 day break ( Sorry, I don't call that a holiday). I know this term is going to go so quickly. So much to do...

Have a great week and I'll be back soon - anything less than 6 months is soon!