{ Review + GIVEAWAY } My 7 Day Super Juice And Soup Detox Diet With Juice Revolution – Why I Did It, My Experience and Results

Caffeine and Fairydust

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I can’t believe it, but I did it!Thanks to the amazing support from Fiona Stander, founder ofJuice Revolution, I have completed my 7 Day Super Juice And Soup Detox Diet. Fiona is a mom herself, and an all-round lovely and supportive person… there is no-one better to have on speed dial as you embark on this journey!

Why IDid It….

I tried a 5-Day Juice Detox from a different company not too long ago and even though I felt great afterwards, I was not very impressed by the results regarding my weight-loss. It was also my first ever attempt so I did not know any better to be honest. Anyway, when Fiona asked me to try out her program I decided to go for it – I had a couple of fashionindustry eventsto attend and I needed to start work in about two weeks… I wanted…

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*WIN* A #CTMomBlogMeet Goody Bag!

3 Kids, 2 Dogs, 1 Old House

Even if you missed out on our #CTMomBlogMeet you still have a chance to skip a bit of the FOMO by getting your hands on one of our exclusive goody bags.

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On Saturday morning I managed to get a group of 20 of Cape Towns loveliest bloggers together to indulge in a yummy breakfast and learn how to make their blogs a better place.  It was a really lovely morning and if you spend any time on Social Media there is a chance that you saw some of the happenings as it was happening.

If you were sitting there and wishing that you had also gotten your tickets in time, I’m here to give you one last chance to be apart of the action.

Although you may have missed out on the chance to make friends and learn something new, you now have a chance to get to know our…

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Henry’s Birth Story – My Journey of Love, Loss, & Healing

All moms who have experienced losing of a child should read this , or in fact anyone should read this and be moved that life is a gift and we should always treasure those that we love ❤

Along Came Ollie

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December 21st, 2014 started off like any other day, but ended with my happy dream of the future turning into an unthinkable nightmare; at 38.5 weeks pregnant I lost my baby boy, Henry Xavier, before he was ever even born. It’s very difficult for me to share such a deeply personal experience publicly, but I’ve decided to put my story out there, for one, because I find talking about it extremely therapuetic, and also with the hope that my journey helps others dealing with a similar loss and to know that they’re not alone.

It was a normal, busy Sunday focusing on my toddler, running errands to prep for Christmas, and trying not to think about the fact that I was HUGE and still pregnant when Oliver had been born at 37 weeks. It wasn’t until about 3pm standing on the playground watching my husband and son play that I…

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Onward We Move.

Great couple, living and trusting fearlessly!

Baby Boodle

Choosing A Surrogate.

“Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.”

**Robert Heinlein**

 

I heard it said that when you do something for somebody, like surrogacy for example or like giving a kidney to a friend or family member who is dying, that it is love that drives such an action. Only love can motivate such action. We have seen this kind of love being shown towards us in the last few weeks as we have had three amazing women offer to be our surrogate.

These three amazing ladies, whom we love dearly, have offered out of their own to be our surrogate, which is pretty incredible considering the magnitude of what it all entails. Choosing between them will be hard to do so we have decided our choice will ultimately come down to who doctors say is the best candidate…

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Miss Cass Lee Official Site

Miss Cass Lee has an official site now! (Hooray) I was quite taken back by the growth of this little informal blog, that my husband and I thought we would take it up a notch and make it more legit! So Miss Cass Lee has had a mini make over ! (Oh Yeah!)

My amazingly talented husband Rasheed (You should check out his work) has been helping me put it together ! We’ve moved everything across to the new site, and I am hoping that you will move with us. Check it out here and let me know what you think.

Miss Cass Lee

 

My Pregnancy Diary Part One

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My husband and I have never ever really been “baby people”. By that I mean, we never had those “broody moments” whenever we saw babies. In fact I think we were more freaked out by them. They always appeared to look like overgrown wriggly worms. I remember my husband would say “They look so gross when they drool, and when there’s food all over their face!”

Some times I used to question if my husband and I were robots? Don’t get me wrong I like kids (I teach kids) , they are fun, have a bit of personality and are more independent. But babies seemed a bit creepy, maybe it was because they were so small, vulnerable, and needy. Or maybe to me they resembled change. When one of my best friends fell pregnant people would ask me “So Cass are you feeling broody now that your friend is pregnant?” My response “No”. Then when my friend had her baby, I was asked again “So do you feel broody now?” My response “No, I’m good thanks!

WE knew we wanted to have kids of our own (Eventually). We wanted to wait until we were BOTH completely ready. Somes times a partner can be so eager to have a baby when the other partner isn’t ready and it can put pressure on them and on the relationship. And I didn’t want that for us. We live very busy lives, and we knew that we wanted to get some things done before EVER considering raising our own spawn. We wanted to be completely indulged in one another and in the things we loved for as long as we could. Because we knew that when a child comes along, things would be different. You can’t really be selfish when a kid is involved. How you plan your day, week can be tricky because you have to consider how it impacts / effects your child. You can’t just go and have “Date Night”, and leave your child at home alone, no you have to organise a baby sitter etc. It’s a juggling act.

We had a good few years of just us, hubby and I. Then something happened! We both felt in our hearts a little whisper of “Its time to plan and prepare for a baby!” ….. SORRY…WHAT? ! (And breath). We chatted about it, spoke about our concerns (could we afford it ?) our fears (are we ready to be parents?) and then we started getting excited about it (YAY,a mini us!) . We decided that we didn’t want to put pressure on ourselves with regards to the “falling pregnant” part. We wanted it to be as natural as possible, and completely in Gods timing (which is ALWAYS perfect and ALWAYS on time!) . I think because we were so relaxed about it, it happened REALLY quickly! Like as in as soon as we started! We were very blessed in that way, because for other couples it takes a bit longer.

I remember my periods were four days late, and I was feeling flu-ish (tired,REALLY tired) . I took a pregnancy test at home (without telling hubby) and it said “PREGNANT”. I went and bought another pregnancy test which confirmed “PREGNANT”. Without telling my husband (still) I went to the doctor to do a test which she then confirmed (say it with me now) PREGNANT”. I then asked the Doctor if she could do a blood test to double check (haha denial much?) . She laughed and said “Ok, we can do that, but you are definitely (one more time) PREGNANT!” . I wasn’t disappointed or anything, I think I was in shock that it happened so quickly! I thought maybe Rasheed and I would have more time to mentally prepare ourselves. I decided I would make my husband a “romantic out of this world supper”, and I would wrap the test up in cute gift wrapping. So when my husband walked through the doors he must have felt like a king (You’re welcome Hubbles!) when he saw the table all laid out all beautifully! (Go me!) 

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After we munched, I gave him his “present”, he opened it, looked at it – looked confused . I think because he wasn’t sure what he was looking at it and what the result meant. Then he clicked, and had the biggest smile, maybe a “sweaty eye” or two! We indulged in the moment, celebrated, and decided to wait a week before telling our families. Because we wanted to tell them in a  fun creative way   (which I will post about in part two) . We were excited, nervous, overwhelmed, and ready (well sort of) for this next season. This was just the beginning of the most wildest roller coaster ride of all time!

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What pregnant women don’t want to hear!

photoI was thinking the other day about this topic whilst having a chat with a friend who is pregnant about how people say the most randomest things (if not inappropriate things) to pregnant women! I can laugh at it now, but back then in my pregnant phase “those comments” would annoy me . I asked a few ladies who have been or are pregnant about “those comments”, and some of their feedback was HILARIOUS! I kept replying : “ People are crazy! How could they say something like that? Especially to a first time mom!” 

I’ve put together a list of things that they (pregnant ladies) did not like hearing! Maybe you can relate to these comments, or have a giggle or two at them. ENJOY!

Things pregnant ladies don’t want to hear :

  • You’re getting BIG! (Uh ya we kinda noticed)
  • Are you sure you want to eat that ? (oh my word NEVER ask a hungry pregnant lady that!)
  • You look like a mini whale! (Especially if your husband says that)
  • Enjoy your sleep now, WHILE it lasts! *insert evil laugh* (What sleep? Been waking up every 2/3 hours to pee at night!)
  • Your life will NEVER be the same! Basically you won’t have a life! (Sorry, I don’t want to be like you!)
  • I’ve heard of full term babies dying in the womb – especially the same month that you are carrying in! (No comment!)
  • So when are you thinking of having another one ? (I don’t know, I still have one in me?!)
  • Are you sure you’re not carrying twins ? (This one never gets old!) 
  • Are you going natural or C-section (followed by judgemental eyes after responding)
  • Are you going to breastfeed or do formula ? (Followed by confused creepy eyes after responding)
  • Ah cute, you’re waddling like a penguin! (It’s called pregnancy SWAG!)
  • You must be carrying a boy, because when you carry a girl you basically look like Shrek because the girls steal your beauty! (Sure, that makes logical sense )
  • When someone tells you ,you look like you’re about to pop and you’re only 3 months pregnant!
  • When people (strangers) start a conversation with you (lets say in Pick n Pay) about why they chose NOT to have kids! (And thats why we aren’t friends guy!)
  • Belly rubs are okay from friends and from the odd stranger but a kiss on the belly from a stranger, well thats a little creepy!
  • When you ask a pregnant lady “What are you naming your child?” please be advised as to how you respond to the name, for example it is NOT okay to respond with : ” That name reminds me of a porn stars name!” (What, who says that? LOL)
  • Please refrain from telling us all about your gory, and slightly exaggerated SCI-FI birthing stories, especially if you are man and have never given birth to a child. (Please and thank you) 

I remember a mom (no names) would repeadtly remind me EVERY time (without fail) she saw me “ Your life will never be the same again! Enjoy the peace and quiet now!!!!”. One day, I had just about enough of her remarks and I replied “ You know what, I am actually quite excited to meet my son! I know it will be tough but I think children are a big blessing!” . I think she realized that because being a mom for her was still such a shock to the system she was feeding her “views and attitudes” onto me. She immediately said “You’re right, they are a big blessing, I love my son!” and that was the end of that!

I know some parents mean well by letting us know that “its challenging” being a mom (because it is). But they (the first time pregnant moms) want to be reminded and encouraged that although it is tough at times – it’s thee most amazing , and rewarding experience! I think other moms (seasoned moms) forget that first time moms are already nervous of whats to come ! Therefore no one needs to reassure them of their worst fears. They want to know that you have their backs, that whatever they decide to do in that time leading up to birth that you will be cheering them on! Believe me they know that it will be challenging, and that it will be a major life style change but let them walk into this new chapter with a sense of excitement and expectation knowing that this new season will have its challenges but it will also have the BIGGEST BLESSINGS !

Basically friends, maybe think twice before you speak to pregnant women! And pregnant friends learn to sift through some of “those comments” and shrug them off, better yet have a giggle compliments of them!

Thank you to the following ladies for contributing their funny or not so funny moments with us : Candice Mc’Carthy,Karen Visser, Amanda Goncalves, Ingrid Alexander, Leanne Koopman, Aimee Kruger, Mia Leao, Roxy Evans and Amy Wyness! 

 

 

 

My Colic Story

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I have always wanted to do a little post about my experience with Colic, purely to help other new moms out there who are going through it with their little ones. The purpose of this post isn’t to scare anyone, or put anyone off from having or ever wanting babies. The aim of it, is to encourage other moms who are going through something similar.

Lets get into it shall we?

Colic : is defined as episodes of crying for more than three hours a day for more than three days a week for three weeks in an otherwise healthy child between the ages of two weeks and four months. This could be due to an immature digestive system, or being overly stimulated , to a combination of the two.

Uh, But God!?

I never truly understood “Colic” until Malakai had it.  When I fell pregnant I said to God : “Okay , God if I do this pregnancy thing please can I not have morning sickness (and I didn’t) and oh ya about Colic can I please be excused from that too? (uh how about no) . Don’t you just love how we make these deals with God sometimes? (haha). I never entertained the thought of Colic because I thought I was excused from it.

Roller coaster of chaos begins

I had heard from other moms whose babies were born a week or two before Malakai saying “enjoy the first two weeks – all they want to do is eat,sleep,poop then repeat – its pure bliss”.  Nope, NEVER experienced that at all! He screamed from the moment he was born! He cried non stop, and it looked as though he was in serious pain!  No matter what we tried (from medicine, to burping,to changing,rocking) nothing seemed to help! A crying baby can leave a first time mom feeling so helpless! We took Malakai to his Paediatrician , and he also confirmed that Malakai had Colic by assessing his symptoms (he had a bloated tummy, would arch his back, had clenched fists etc) It devastated me when the doctor confirmed that it was Colic, I think because I was still hoping that it wasn’t !

We eventually took Malakai to see a Chiropractor who specializes with Colic babies and he noticed that Malakai had spinal tension from being squished up in my belly. The Chiro massaged the tension out, also dangled him by his feet (upside down) to help straighten and lengthen his spine and he also showed us some expert baby burping and massaging techniques to help alleviate the Colic symptoms. It helped a little,but he would cry EVERY night for 6 hours from (wait for it) 12 am until 5:30 -6:am (yip, lucky us!). All he wanted was to be held and rocked. Rasheed and I took turns (tag teaming) sleeping on the couch.

The Famous “Mom Guilt”

There were moments during these screaming sessions that I would feel angry , then I would feel guilty for feeling angry (Hate mom guilt). I felt the only times that I would be able to bond with Malakai was when he was a sleep, which also made me feel guilty (cause it was hard to connect with him when he so upset) . I felt anxious,and teary eyed most of the time. The stress started affecting my breast milk production which in turn made me more stressed! I then decided to put Malakai on Soya based formula (which I felt guilty about –lol never ending mama guilt!) .You see with Colic, there is nothing you can do but really just wait until your baby’s digestive system matures (Not the answer you were looking for? ) . Those days seem like such a blur, maybe because it was a blur from all the sleep deprivation but I remember one moment in particular that changed my attitude towards the Colic.

The light at the end of the tunnel

Malakai was crying  one day for about 5 hours and I was so tired of rocking him that I sat down on a chair holding him and I desperately started praying to God. I said “God out of all the things I asked not to happen , you let it happen”  (yeah , I was feeling VERY sorry for myself!). But in that moment I felt this sense of calm, comfort and peace like no other and I clearly heard him whisper into my heart “ It shouldn’t always be easy when youre a raising a legend!” . In that moment I started crying, and realized that I let the anxiety, the fear, the disappoint speak so loudly into my heart that it was crippling me emotionally and effecting my confidence as a mother. Soon after Malakai fell asleep on my chest, and I just felt this sense of my inner spirit rising up and saying “Bring it! Whatever it takes to raise a legend, I will do it!” and guess what , a few days later Malakai’s Colic cleared! Hello! I let it go, faced it head on and then it ran! It amazes me to this day, that whatever challenges we face , God knows we are SO capable of overcoming it! Its such a HUGE compliment that he has so much faith in us , even when we don’t !

Tips of advice that helped me through it 

Repeat with me 

  • You are a good mama, and you are doing your best with the sitation that you are in. Even though you feel helpless, and frustrated don’t let that effect your confidence as a mom!

Don’t let it define your child

  • Don’t let the Colic itself define your child. I remember sometimes wondering “I think Malakai will be a very angry, tense, and needy baby” . Once the Colic passed he became thee most relaxed, happy, chilled and independent baby!

Have a support group

  • Be open and honest with your family and closest friends with what you are going through, you will be surprised how they will go out of their way to help you! Which in turn helps you to be a better mama! Have a support group of people that you trust.

Cry me a river

  • It’s okay to cry with your baby, and have your moments too! Just don’t stay there for too long!

Just breathe

  • If you feel that you get to that stage where you feel so frustrated and angry, put your baby down in their cot (somewhere safe) step out of the room for second, and have a moment to breath. Reason being is because some times women have unintentionally hurt their babies whilst feeling frustrated. There were times were I would get so frustrated I would put Malakai down in his cot, put on the kettle and make some tea and gather myself. Then go back into the room for round two. It seriously helped.

Let it go

  • Once the Colic passes, don’t let the anxiety you once carried with you in that season stay with you! Let it go! Shake it off!

Speak life

  • Speak constant life into this situation. I remember I used to say to mom “Today he was a bit better, but I think the Colic is still there!” And she turned around look me dead in the eye (Greek Mama Style) and said “Speak life into it your situation Cas, your words have power!”  Which made me aware of what I was speaking over Malakai. Speak LIFE!

Power couple

  • Remember it’s easy to take out your irritation and frustration out on your partner. Remember they are on your team, besides you want them in your corner fighting with you not against you.

A few practical things

(Please note I am not an expert or a doctor, these were just a few things that worked for us).

  • We tried a few different bottles in the beginning , purely because Malakai drank really fast which would make it hard for his stomache to process the air bubbles. Eventually we started using Dr Browns (and we still use it) as it had the best results for Malakai.
  • We also switched to using Soya based formula, as we felt with the normal formula it was harder for him to digest.
  • The chiropractor helped quite a bit, especially with showing specific burping techniques for Malakai.
  • We also would Bennetts Colic Mixture (if it was really bad) .  We found out of all the products that were out there, that one worked the best for us.

Moms, all you can do is take one day at a time, even if you have to take it hour by hour , do so. I know I used to hate being told this “It will pass”, but looking back – It’s true , it does pass! Chin up, you’ve got this!

If you have any other extra tips or advice that helped you during a time like this, please share with us! We would LOVE to hear about it!

 

Mom to Mom with Liezel Kriel

Mom to mom Liezel KrielI am very EXCITED about our second “Mom to Mom ” interview with a very inspiring mom in the making : Liezel Kriel! Liezel Kriel or as I know her via Twitter and Instagram as @Elle_K I met through other “Twitter moms”, through some “mama tweeting” over our baby boys! It’s been so awesome following her journey with her gorgeous son Ben, she is real , and honest in her approach to “mom hood”, and I find that to be so inspiring, and relatable ! She has a gorgeous blog : ellekaydiary.blogspot.com that you should definitely check out!

Right, lets get straight into shall we? Grab a cuppa ladies, sit back , and relax.

About Liezel :

  • I am 31 (32 in September) and have officially reached the stage where I feel the need to start lying about my age.
  • I am originally from the small town of the De Doorns and moved to Stellenbosch after high school to study Drama at the University of Stellenbosch.
  • I’ve lived in Taiwan for a year, then Cape Town, but eventually found my way back to Stellenbosch.
  • I am a wife to the most handsome of men, mom to the sweetest 3 year old Golden Retriever Knox and then of course my pride and joy our baby boy Ben. Man I love this little guy so much.

Tell us a little bit about the season that you are in :

I’ve always hoped to be a “stay at home” mom. I wanted to be present for every minute of my children’s live’s. In October 2013, 2 months after Ben was born my husband had to close his business and find a new job. I wasn’t employed at the time and financially we took quite a hit. Eventually I had to give up on my dream of staying home with my baby and had to go back to work . It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. But I found a great daycare and Ben is really enjoying the days spent with friends. He is 9 months old and I must say I am loving this phase. He is so adventurous, and loves to interact and explore. Being a mom has given me such a sense of purpose. Yes, I am beyond tired and there are many frustrating moments, but there are far more awesome moments.

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The Challenges 

“Married with kids”

The biggest challenge so far has been maintaining a healthy marriage. We’ve always been the “perfect couple”and we hardly ever fought. Marriage came easy to us, then we had a baby and suddenly everything changed. I had no time to cuddle with my husband on the couch. We were constantly comparing who was doing the most work and who was more tired. In between the utter exhaustion we lost the ability to laugh together. We were so serious, ALL of the time. Sometimes I would feel lonely and a little neglected by him (I’m sure he felt the same) all of our time and energy went into Ben. Things have returned to normal (somewhat) and we are back to laughing and joking, but it’s definitely harder than before.

“Mo money Mo problems”

The other challenge being: Money (Or lack thereof). Not being able to afford the R10 000 Pram or the “best” car seat on the market eats at you. Then you start thinking about school and university fee’s and suddenly your are struggling for air and breathing into a brown paper bag.

The Blessings 

For me a big blessing was being able to fall pregnant, and then to experience pregnancy . Another blessing; being a mom to thee most gorgeous little boy. It has made me feel so worthwhile and special. I also love the fact that I can share this journey with both of my parents. They are SO obsessed with him, and seeing the bond form between them is so special.

Advice for other moms

A week after I had my baby I had to go see my doctor for a checkup. Getting both of us ‘dressed and ready’ for my 11:00 am appointment created so much anxiety that I phoned my husband at work crying and asked him to meet us at the doctor’s office. That first trip driving my baby was so nerve wracking. I was such an emotional mess when I got to the doctor’s office, that he ended up prescribing me a mild anti-depressant. When I got home I saw a fellow new mom’s Instagram post of her sitting at a coffee shop with her newborn looking calm, polished and put together. I felt like such a failure. In comparing myself to this mom I put so much unnecessary pressure on myself.

My advice would be to just focus on you and your baby. No comparing yourself to others!!! Go at your own pace. No new mom or baby is alike. Do what works for you.

Thank you Liezel for sharing with us, your honesty is SO refreshing! Ben is such a gorgeous boy and is so lucky to have you as his mama! I loved how you ended this post off by saying “Don’t compare yourself with others” , as women we tend to do that ALOT. We bring ourselves down without even realising it! It reminds me of this quote : “Comparison is the thief of joy” – Theodor Roosevelt. I’ve often found that when I start comparing myself to others, I start feeling down and thats when I KNOW I need to count my blessings and be grateful for what I have !  A Thankful heart, is a happy heart.

 

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Photography by : Nikki Meyer