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Irecently started a gratitude journal, in an attempt to slow down, reconnect and create a happier life (I encourage you to give it a try). In jotting down these daily points I realised that one of the things I am most grateful for is my childhood memories. I’m so happy that my parents always made the most of family holidays and special occasions because when things are stressful now, all I need to do is think back to those days and I’m smiling again. I will never forget my dad plotting his annual Easter egg hunt in our garden, helping my mom decorate eggs and bake spicy hot cross buns,and the joy on my sister’s face as she slowly peeled away the gold foil on her chocolate bunny. Take time off to create happy memories with your little ones this Easter. Wishing you a wonderful holiday!
We follow the sound of children’s laughter to a little blue house, painted on the outside in bright yellow suns with smiling faces. We are greeted by David Jacobs, SHN Western Cape Branch Manager, who introduces us to Tamaya, crèche-owner and den mother to fifteen little boys and girls between the ages of three and five. We soon find out that what the Khaya Langa (House of the Sun) crèche lacks in
amenities, it makes up
for in love. . .
The children line up to wash their hands, before praying and digging in to the first of two SHN meals for the week. A silence descends over them as they eat, giving the grownups a chance to speak. We learn from David that SHN is serious about fostering development, as opposed to dependency, in underprivileged communities. Tamaya (and other inspiring educators like her) are encouraged to put the money they would’ve spent on food to better use. She tells us that so far, she’s been able to mend the floors, install new windows and a toilet, as well as pay the caretaker. She is proud to have eleven of her past pupils currently enrolled in Capricorn Primary School, further proof that children learn better on a full stomach. Tamaya incorporates one indigenous (non-English) language a week into the syllabus, which she says gives the children a chance to “become little storytellers” in their home languages. The SHN SA team is excited to start targeting tertiary education. As for the kids, with full stomachs and heavy eyes, naptime is the only thing on their minds. . .
At forty-three weeks, doctors advised Hlengiwe she would need to be induced. Unfortunately, she was rushed into an emergency C-section, where baby Thando-Luhle started to experience fatal distress. Through God’s Love, a beautiful baby boy was born. Today, Thando-Luhle is one-and-a-half-years old, and continues to live up to the meaning of his name: God’s love is Beautiful. A year ago, Melanie made a promise to her dying father that she would have a family. A month later, after years of struggling to fall pregnant, she found out she was expecting! Her little miracle was born on 29 December 2014, which just happens to be her late sister’s birthday. When he smiles, Melanie is reminded of both of them. After a few scares, including emergency visits to her gynaecologist, Janice was put on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy. She prayed day and night, and still remembers hearing her baby’s heartbeat for the first time. Logan was born slightly underweight, but healthy. She still remembers the first thing her gynaecologist said to her: “Some people don’t believe in miracles.” For seven years, Shoneez and her husband struggled to fall pregnant. After the Chlomid treatment she was on, as well as an ovarian cyst operation, failed to bring about results, they were just about to give up on the idea of ever having kids. But God’s timing is the best. At the age of thirty, Shoneez finally fell pregnant, and all naturally! Sherzhan was thirty-one weeks pregnant when her placenta detached from her womb. Doctors scheduled an emergency C-section, and her twins were delivered to her thirty minutes later. Both baby girls, struggling to breathe on their own, spent five weeks in NICU. Sherzhan credits God and the amazing Garden City Hospital staff with looking out for her family. The twins celebrated their first birthday in February! Mix 250ml bleach with 250ml water in a bowl before dipping the denim into the mixture. TIP: We dipped our dungaree dress in halfway. Use your discretion and dip yours up to the sleeves or just do the trim. After leaving to soak for about 15 minutes, bring it out halfway, allowing the bottom to soak slightly longer. This will make the bottom slightly lighter than the top. Leave the bottom in for another 15 minutes. When you notice a colour change, remove the dress and leave to dry. TIP: Leave to dry on a piece of plastic, or outside, where the bleach won’t drip onto a surface that could potentially damage. Once dry, give it a wash (on its own) before starting on Step 3. Grab your sewing needle and thread. Thread your cotton and tie a double knot at the other end to ensure that your first stitch is secure. Starting from one end, weave the needle in and out of both layers of fabric so that the stitches and the spaces between them are all the same size (approx. 5mm long for the firmest holding power). Continue right around, sewing only the top of the eyelet lace to the hem of the dress. When you arrive at the end, sew a triple stitch and tie a double knot in your thread to secure the stitches. Give your little one a totally unique look and something creative for your hands to do.
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