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Health, Health/Fitness, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

Let’s talk about Mental Health, Moms

March 6, 2017

Moms are superheroes, no doubt. We are the masters in homemaking, we have thriving careers and work long hours, while also making time for our families and friends. Although sadly the latter are more often neglected than not. It is true we can do just about anything we set our minds to; however, we cannot do it alone, because I have learned that it takes a village.

The most bad-ass superheroes have sidekicks and not all wear capes, just so do all moms need a strong support team of family and friends to step in when we not only need to see to our physical health but our mental health too. I always say, a fabulous mom knows when to ask for help.

Whenever our kids fall ill, who do they seek out first for comfort? MOM. When they’re feeling hurt, whose reassurance do they depend on? MOM. And when they’re uncertain, at least they can be sure of mom’s unfailing love and care for them. But how are you going to do all that when you’re battling depression or alcoholism. I believe it is in these tender moments when our kids are leaning on us for support and guidance,  that the foundation of their mentality towards the world is laid.

A healthy outlook on life starts at home and often with us. Therefore, if for none other than the well-being of our children, we need to unite in the battle against mental illness attacking our women and in so doing raise a healthier generation.

The more we speak about mental illness in our society, the more we will learn about its symptoms and treatments. Only then can we start to heal and remove its ugly stigma.

Only after my mother had a stroke while alone at home one night, tragically resulting in the loss of too much oxygen to the brain, causing severe brain damage and her ultimate passing, did I realise she’d been suffering from a mental illness for possibly my whole life. Mom was an alcoholic. 

Did you know alcoholism is a mental illness? Well, it is, and it is curable. For mom it was too late, but it doesn’t have to be too late for anyone else. Which is why this post means so much to me. Many of the most common mental illnesses are curable if treated correctly.

Gita Harie, executive director of the Durban and Coastal Mental Health Association, said: “Mental health is the nation’s wealth. We take it for granted and we forget that there is an interrelationship between our physical and mental well-being.

If you know someone with a mental illness or someone you think may possibly be suffering from a mental disorder, remember to be understanding, compassionate and supportive.

Sources: Women’s Mental Health In South Africa by Alison Moultrie research psychologist & Dr. Sharon Kleinjes Senior lecturer in the Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health at the University of Cape Town; South African Depression and Anxiety Group Sadag;  Health Systems Trust

Love,

Health, Lifestyle, News, Slider

How to best care for your Sophie the Giraffe: From its SA distributors

February 10, 2017

So I was recently contacted by Pyrelle, the sole local representative for Vulli, the manufacturer of Sophie la girafe© in Southern Africa.

This came after I voiced my concerns about the hygiene safety of the popular teether, at a baby boutique launch the other night, and the store subsequently removing the toy from its shelves.

I am not here to badmouth any product I have never had my kids use before and therefore have no personal experiences with, good or bad. I am however here to make sure moms are kept informed in order to make informed decisions when it comes to their precious little ones.

If you feel you want to get your child the beloved Sophie la Giraffe, then, by all means go for it! But, be sure to read the handling instructions carefully. Here’s why the brand’s distributor says it’s important to do so:

Based on the assessment made by the Sophie la girafe quality department, they say that “it is not possible that saliva could cause the type of mould formation shown in the pictures that went viral a few weeks ago.

Internal studies have been conducted and indicated that it is improbable that saliva can transform into mould. It seems that the inside body of the giraffe is still wet, which leads us to believe that there was presence of water inside the giraffe, which caused the mould. This situation is often seen with bath toys. We can furthermore assert that this situation occurred after the product was purchased. Therefore, it is important to be careful while cleaning the toy to ensure that no water gets inside the giraffe.”

Following the articles published in the US and the rumours that quickly spread on the internet, the BBC in the UK, some major TV and radios in the Netherlands and the US Today TV show all researched this mould issue in Sophie.

They have interviewed various specialists in their countries and physicians specialising on the immune system. Those specialists doctors explained that fungus is actually everywhere, it flies in the air. It is in everyone’s mouth and in any baby drool!

The immune system specialists said parents should really not throw away or cut open their Sophie as it would be such a trauma for a baby to have their favourite toy taken away from them!

Dr. Ferda Arca-Sedda, PhD from University of Pierre & Marie Curie provided the following statement “Sophie la girafe is safe, it is unlikely that the mould growing inside Sophie is coming from saliva. It is known that saliva is acidic and contains several enzymes like amylase, pepsin, lipase that play a significant role in breaking down food particles. In addition, saliva contains antibacterial, antimicrobial and anti-fungal enzymes that kill bacteria, fungus or other microbes. The mould inside comes from submerging Sophie in water and not saliva.”

As you know, Sophie la girafe is composed of 100% natural rubber, so the cleaning instructions have to be carefully respected. As indicated on the packaging and in an explanatory leaflet inside the packaging, we recommend to clean the surface of Sophie la girafe with a damp cloth. It should not be immersed in water nor rinsed off, to prevent water from getting inside, as she may become damaged.

We would like to emphasise that it is important, while cleaning the product, not to get water inside the hole.

Additionally, Sophie is intended for use by only one child. We have also seen pictures of people altering the toy by cutting its legs to change the toy’s design. This a big NO!!! This is then considered damaged and unsafe. Sophie is designed especially for the safety of the child and complies with all worldwide safety standards. Sophie can’t go in the microwave to be sterilised, it is not a bath toy, harsh detergents shouldn’t be used. As usual with babies, this toy must be used only under adult supervision.

We have had many parents sharing their disappointment with us because they have been lured into cutting their Sophie open only to find no mould inside. They now have to buy a new one because their child loves Sophie. Rather frustrating! The safety of children and satisfaction of their parents is the manufacturer’s main priority. For the past 55 years, they have always strived to exceed security standards and all of our products comply with the most stringent global standards.

Pyrelle also invite you to watch and share our video to see how Sophie is made, here.

Love,

 

 

 

Entertainment, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

Fun things to do with your partner during the month of Love…and every other month for that matter

February 8, 2017

Here at Fabmom, we believe that although Valentine’s day is a cute idea thought up by ‘someone‘ to show our love for one another, we should make our love visible every day. This might sound cliche, but in the end, it’s the little things that make for the most wonderful of relationships. From sharing in your partner’s favourite things like watching a football game together or simply hanging out playing PlayStation with hubby and the kids, to getting out of your comfort zone and going skydiving.

In fact, psychologists research have shown for a long time experiences bring people more happiness than do possessions.

We live in such a beautiful City! There really is no reason for anyone not to be romantic. If you cannot think of a single romantic thing to do with your love, then you’re just lazy. There, I said it.

Now, I never get tired of a fancy dinner at a nice restaurant, but if you are, then here are a few ideas I thought you might like, to show your love and affection in a small, unique and perhaps more adventurous way:

1. Go bike riding together. On the promenade with Upcycles or around the coast with the amazing e-bikes from Venture South 
2. Plan a romantic picnic. You can either pack your own picnic basket or you can dial a picnic and choose from a selection of romantic locations around South Africa
3. Go for a long drive and watch the sunset together. Daddy’s Deals are currently offering a 2hour Harley drive around the coast for 449 only! Hurry before this amazing offer ends.
4. Watch the sunrise together. Book a hotel room for a night
5. After a nice dinner, go out dancing at one of the many lovely dance clubs around Cape Town.
6. Give each other massages with sensual oils from the beautiful and risque Bedroom adult boutique in Buitengraght
7. Take a train ride through the Winelands with the Franschhoek Wine Tram hop-on-hop-off train 
8. Have a candlelight bubble bath together with champers. Now here’s a treat we often take for granted. Especially us moms. I get that there’s hardly ever any time to run a bath for yourself, much less lie in it…with hubby. Do yourself and your relationship a favour and make some time. If you need help with creating the perfect mood, I even went and found you a lovely little guide.
9. Instead of him sending you flowers, send flowers to your man…while he’s at work. You will find the best service delivery from Bunches For Africa and Net Florist.
10. Take a cooking class with the lovely lady from The Little Pink Chef in Durbanville
11. Have a sexy photo shoot done (together!) by a professional photographer
12. Do an extreme sport together. Go abseiling down table mountain, tandem skydive 9000 feet above sea level, shark cage diving with the great whites or simply go to a theme park and go on ALL the rides together. Even the ones that scare you to death. The Italian philosopher Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli said that nothing great was ever achieved without danger. Maybe that’s true for love too!
13. Take a horse-drawn carriage ride with The Cape Town Carriage Company while sipping on bubbly with the love of your life.
14. Go Stargazing at any one of  these SA’s top spots

 

from your Valentine.

Love,

Founding Moms, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

Fabmom of the Month January 2017: How this mom landed her dream career after 40 years

January 30, 2017

Each one of us have dreams. So often we think it’s better to keep on dreaming and then maybe our dreams will come true, but I have learnt through the years that this is not the way dreams work – striving for and working towards making those dreams a reality is the only way to make it happen for you.

It took me, Wilma Schutte,  no less than 40 years to finally realise my dream. Yes, 40 years! With my unwavering faith and perseverance, there was never any doubt that I will get there some day.

However, forty years ago I wasn’t quite so sure. In fact, back then I would never have thought that I’d end up looking after the little kids of working parents. At the time we lived in Worcester, I only had my 1 month old baby and things were tough. My husband lost his job thanks to the crumbling economy and was in desperate need of another to keep food on the table and a roof over our heads. Fortunately he was lucky to find work all the way in Strand; which meant we needed to uproot and start a new life in the Cape. Things changed suddenly and fast. But little did I know this would be the beginning of big things.

With my daughter still in her pram I started going around visiting estate agents, because we desperately needed to find a place to stay. The winding road I was journeying on led me straight to Nel&Nel Properties in Strand. I managed to find us accommodation that day and was making my way out the door when suddenly life took a different course with me – the owner of the estate agency was a very old lady and I didn’t realise she was watching me from her office all the while I was chatting to her colleague. She got up from behind her desk before I made it out the door, walked right up to me, took me by the shoulder and I can still recall every word she spoke to me. She said: “Lady, I don’t know who you are or where you come from, but I was on my knees the entire night last night, praying to God for the perfect person to look after my grandchild while his mommy is at work.” Without thinking, I said yes! And so the seed was planted to one day have a playschool of my own.

Unfortunately there was no money to rent  another place and so I managed my little playschool directly from home. One child later became twenty and the numbers continued to grow bigger and bigger.

I reminded myself every day to keep on persevering and to hang in there.  

Years went by until one night I had a dream. In my dream I had died and gone to heaven. I heard God clearly speaking to me saying: “You know Wilma, you can’t be in heaven and just sit around doing nothing. Your work here is to see to all the little children.” When I woke up I knew this was not only my dream, but my calling. It’s been forty years and I am now the proud owner of my own playschool, Kids Cottage.

What motivated me and kept me inspired along the way, was knowing that if anyone else can do it, I can do it too.

So I encourage you, mom, to dream big and to hold on to that dream – it doesn’t always take 40 years. I am now finally surrounded by many little kiddies and I could not be happier or feel more fulfilled.

With that, I wish you all the most beautiful dreams.

WILMA SCHUTTE

info@kidscottage.co.za

Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

What it’s really like raising three toddlers

January 17, 2017

I hear allot of questions and debate and even fear around whether or not to go for baby #3 while the other two are still so small. As a mom of a 6 year old, a 4 year old and a 3 year old, I agree that these moms have good reason for their uncertainty and their need to be completely sure before taking the giant leap of growing the family tree. And it’s our maternal instinct to always want to reassure these moms that everything is going to be just fine, even at those times when we are not sure of this ourselves.

I therefore also hear many moms urging these parents on to have another baby.  They claim the other two kids will have another ‘friend’ to play with and, my absolute favourite, they will have more kids around to look after them when they’re old and gray.  Maybe these are somewhat true, but they are certainly not the basis on which you should make your decision.

So, here are my ten proven facts of what life is really like with three little ones.

1. You know the phrase that goes something like this: ‘you gotta have hair on your teeth’? Well, with three toddlers this is definitely a requirement. You’ll want to murder them all.the.time! But you don’t, because even though they terrorise the living hell out of you (and each other!), they are the most precious beings to you and you would literally walk over molten lava for them.

2. Everything is a competition. Everything. Which is not a bad thing at all, however it does tend to push you to the edge when the one wants to sing louder than the other, or swim faster, have the last goodnight kiss, when all three compete to sit next to mom, hold mom’s hand in the mall or be the same movie character. Not to mention they all have their own taste in movies, which mean three movies all at once unless your negotiating skills are on point. Which it unfortunately as to be most times. It really is THAT crazy and the only thing keeping you sane is to remind yourself of your unconditional love for them ruckers. #woosah

3. Speaking of keeping sane. You HAVE to make time for just you and hubby at least once a month. This is non-negotiable. If grandma will allow you once a week or you can find a babysitter twice a month then all the better. Raising three toddlers is HARD work and like sponges, they suck every bit of energy from you. All three require individual, undivided attention all day, every day. You may think I’m exaggerating right now, but I’m only giving you the cold hard facts. What keeps me from completely losing my mind is a sunset walk on the beach after work, a Baxter theater show and the occasional Tuesday date night at HQ.

4. Then just when you think your life is about to become a whole lot more peaceful with the firstborn finally outgrowing the tantrums or terrible two’s, the other one starts the exact same sequence, followed by the next. I’m afraid, honey, it doesn’t get easier, you just become better at controlling the situation, your kids and yourself. Which is what makes us moms so fabulous.

5. Going on holiday is not so easy anymore. In my vain attempts to book family holidays, I noticed most places offer free flights and accommodation for two kids under 12. With three kids I still have to pay full price for the third child. Not exactly the end of the world, this only means our plans might be slightly delayed and we’ll have to save up a little longer.

6. School fees and study policies are always quadrupled. So when deciding on baby number 3, think of your career goals and which schools you would like your kids to attend. They may seem like minor details but has the potential to cause serious implications on not only your pocket but also your relationship with your spouse.

7. Everything comes in threes. Clothes, toys, life stages, I love yous – you name it. And bath-time takes forever!

8. Oh, and you’ll sadly have to say goodbye to your beloved 2 door sports car or the 5-seater family sedan for that matter. With you, hubby and three kids, all still in their baby seats, I recommend you find yourself a more reliable 7-seater fast! Although your family of 5 may still easily fit into the 5-seater, it, unfortunately, does not allow any other family members or friends to join in on the ride. Which we discovered is a big problem for us. So 7-seater it is. They are however costly, in value and petrol, so be sure to do your research carefully before deciding on baby number 3.

9. Three is such an uneven number. The buy-one-get-one-free concept means little to nothing to you when you have three little ones. On New year we bought tickets on daddy’s deals for bugs play park  – 2 tickets, including all kiddies rides, for the price of one ticket. Great deal, except we then ended up with one extra ticket we could not use. This is just one example of many, but you get my point. I’m almost tempted to say that having 4 kids instead of 3 may make more sense.

10. You have more kids than hands. Any mom would agree that having just one child is already physically and emotionally demanding. Having three, even more so. Sure your kids have each other to occupy. Until one pisses off the other and then it’s right back to mom and dad to clean up the mess.

I’m sorry I didn’t sugercoat more, but this is reality. MY reality right now. These facts are not meant to scare you, but to prepare you. It’s tough and it’s messy, but at the same time it’s also beautiful to see them grow up together, protective of one another, an unbelievable friendship and an unbreakable bond. Honestly, I wouldn’t change a thing if I could. The truth is you are never going to be ready. You simply have to ask yourself if you are ready to become a stronger version of you, a wiser one, a more tolerant one, grow a bigger heart.

Love,