Something special on the way…

A few months ago we received some very special news… our duo is becoming a trio! I’m pregnant, and so so excited!

It’s funny how something of this magnitude can cause such a rush a different emotions. I went from “OH MY GOD!”, to “damn… no travelling for a while” (we were planning on going to Peru in 2016…), to “BAAAAABY!!!!!”, back to “OH MY GOD!”, to “we’ve got this”, and then all the feelings courtesy of hormones, of course.

I wasn’t sure if I wanted to share any of my pregnancy on the blog, but then a friend encouraged me to get back into blogging because it would be a nice way to journal the process and look back at my experience one day.

So here are a few things I’ve learned so far, and a few things I’ve experienced:

  • The amount of information out there is overwhelming, as is the amount of cuteness… thank god for Pinterest. Pacing oneself is essential.
  • While I’ve tried to stay healthy, sometimes you get a craving! I’ve found that over-eating and especially over-eating crappy food, makes me feel awful. Like, laying-on-the-bed-with-a-stomachache awful. My solution: healthy and lighter versions of whatever I’m craving. Currently, this means baked “fried” chicken. Gimme dat.
  • The pickle thing is real. Why are they so good???
  • I’ve never missed my family more, yet at the same time, in my nearly 7 years away, I’ve never felt closer to them.
  • A few pieces of advice from other mommas that have helped me wrap my head around this entire experience:
    • “There are a lot of ways to get parenting right, and only a few ways to get it wrong”
    • “There aren’t enough books to read to prepare you for parenthood”
    • “Trust your instincts”
  • I didn’t realize I would see Matt so differently, and I’m sure I’ll go through that all over again once the baby is here. Love really is infinite, and I really am lucky.

baby elephant

(can’t wait for our little South African baba)

Hurry up, August 🙂

xo,

Natalia

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Friday Delight: Animal Spotting

South Africa is an interesting place. There are daily challenges here that I never considered when I was living stateside and unfortunately, most of these challenges sit within social issues and a government that is so corrupt, your faith in humanity can’t help but die a little. On the other hand, it is one of the most beautiful places in the world, is culturally rich, is home to some lovely people, and has a big piece of my heart.

Living here for 5+ years in cities and globalized areas like Cape Town and Sandton, I’ve often forgotten I live on African soil. Now that we’ve moved out of the city and to the country, I get little reminders almost daily:

zebra

These guys were chowing grass outside our bedroom window the other day.

giraffe

I encountered this beauty and her friend while I was on a run this morning

I basically go into tourist mode every time I see them, they are just amazing 🙂

Enjoy your weekend!

xo,

Natalia

Homemade Ginger-Turmeric Beer

Hi there, long time no write 😦

2014 proved to be one of the most challenging but also exciting years of my life. There have been many changes, some wonderful, some not so much, but overall, I think 2015 has a lot of good things in-store.

Some changes:

1) I’m engaged! This was obviously super exciting and I am so happy. Exciting times ahead!

2) We moved! We are now living in the beautiful Lowveld, and I am loving the small town vibe, along with the relaxed atmosphere of country living. I think I might be a country girl at heart after all.

3) I am now, very proudly, a contributing writer on greendock.com, a green and healthy living portal that is currently focused on South Africa, but making its way into the world. It is chock-full of interesting articles and information, a calendar of events, a directory, and more. Check it out!

Another change, or rather a discovery: this Ginger-Turmeric Beer. This creation was a light-bulb moment one very hot day, when I was craving something refreshing and fizzy but not water or some sugary soda. This drink is refreshing, healthy, and the perfect thirst quencher when water just won’t do. It can also be made in a pinch!

turmeric beer

Homemade Ginger-Turmeric Beer (side note: beer=ale… this is non-alcoholic)

serves 1

  • sparkling water
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
  • 1/4 of a lemon
  • pinch of ginger
  • stevia or honey (I add about 6-7 drops of stevia, but sweeten to your liking. When I tried it with honey 1TBSP was nice)

Place turmeric, ginger, juice from 1/4 of a lemon, and stevia (or honey) in a glass. Slowly add sparkling water (it will fizz up very quickly) and carefully stir to incorporate all the ingredients. Add ice and enjoy!

Some benefits of Turmeric:

  • Immunity booster
  • Can relieve Arthritis
  • Reduces Cholesterol
  • Good for weight management
  • Supports brain health
  • Improves digestion
  • Has anti-aging benefits

I’m down with all of those benefits, and at the very least, this drink is tasty and refreshing. Let me know if you give a shot!

see you soon, promise 🙂

xo,

Natalia

Friday Delights: Summers in South Africa

Happy Friday! I trust everyone is looking forward to the weekend? Si? If you’re in Johannesburg, I hope you’re embracing this heat wave with a little love rather than allowing your body and mood to roast like I did yesterday in my un-airconditioned car….  Side story: when I first got Diego (my car) insured, the insurance lady was properly SHOCKED that I lived in Joburg without air conditioning in my car, I told her it was the only thing I didn’t like about summer. Anyway, this weekend Diego and I will give each other some space, and I will stay cool with some vino and hopefully a pool. No-air-conditioning-in-Diego aside, I love summers in South Africa and felt like they deserved their own post especially amidst the heat wave.

When I moved to South Africa 4.5 years ago, I wisely chose Cape Town as my new home. Cape Town is my favorite place in the world, it encompasses everything that I love yet never ceases to amaze me or introduce me to something new and special. I think what really did it for me, was the combination of the outdoors and nature, with also completely being a lifestyle city. I became a wino and outdoorsy all at the same time, and both have stuck with me.

The city sits against mountains but along the sea and beyond the mountains are the famous Cape Winelands, and along the sea are little seaside villages, both are truly breath taking. Imagine living in a city where no matter where you lived, you had a million-dollar view. That’s Cape Town. Some of the best parties, beaches, hikes, and restaurants that I’ve ever been to, have been in this gorgeous place. Cape Town, you will always have my heart.

V&Awaterfront

V&A Waterfront with Table Mountain (source)

Franschhoekwinelands

Franschhoek, Cape Winelands (source)

Eventually the wind took me to Johannesburg… the opposite of Cape Town in so many ways, but not without its own unique perks. Joburg is a business hub and in some ways the capital of Africa. Work-wise: awesome. People-wise: great. Very cosmopolitan. What I love about living here though, is that when summer shows up, so do the thunderstorms and the unbelievable sunsets. The thunderstorms are HECTIC but so beautiful and the sunsets are unlike anything I’ve ever seen. African skies are something else, and I’m not sure why, but in Joburg they really are out of this world.

joburgsunset

Sunset over Joburg CBD, photo by Walter Knirr

lightning sandton

Lightning over Sandton (source)

Between the lifestyle, good wine, fresh foods and weather, South African summers are delightful and very very special 🙂

Have a great weekend!

xo,

Natalia