Travelling through the green pastures


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Travelling through the green pastures

These days it seems if you are not growing and eating your own vegetables, recycling and living a life with minimal impact to the environment you are not the coolest kid on the block.

Many are aware that sustainability and climate change have been and still are enormously important issues which are affecting our planet in a treacherous way. The terms ‘Going Green’, ‘Eco-friendly’ and ‘Green Living’ have become so ingrained in our minds that it has shifted the way in which we do things.

The way people travel, consume, explore and purchase have changed over the years and even many companies are realising this and making changes in the way they do business in order to protect our environment and increase customer satisfaction. According to CCC Maldives ecotourism has been growing by 20-34% per year, and understandably so.

Honestly, I do not think that there is any greater feeling than going on holiday to a beautiful destination and knowing that you have contributed a bit to conserving these immaculate places whether it be rainforests or indescribable continents like Antarctica which is deteriorating due to global warming.

The following post will highlight the trends and tips of eco-travel and green living which many are often unaware of when travelling.

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Green Trends

Extensive travel research was conducted and there were many interesting insights of eco trends that were identified. There has been an increased interest amongst travellers to visit vanishing destinations. Yes, I said VANISHING! Due to global warming popular destinations like the Dead Sea in Egypt, or the romantic city of Venice and the tropical under waters of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia will no longer be around in the upcoming years.

Travellers have also shown more and more interested in the idea of travelling to eco-destinations which allow travellers to see not only the most extreme, but the most beautiful wonders of the world. The stunning country of Costa Rica is definitely a destination on the list which showcases beautiful coastlines and well-protected natural attractions like volcanoes and rainforests whilst staying in luxurious eco-friendly accommodation.

For the many travellers interested in visiting these intriguing green destinations I would say that it would be a great idea to try and find affordable fights to these endangered destinations before it is too late. There are great online travel agencies that you can keep updated with at any time they are known for offering great flight specials and competitions which could have you winning free flight tickets. Travel agency Travelstart for instance has a fantastic flight specials page which offers great deals that are constantly being updated, there is no reason not to see at least one of these destinations in your lifetime.

Green has definitely become the new black, and for those of you who have never heard of the term ‘green travel’ before this article, it does not refer to you going on holiday just to stay in a tree house or you consuming vegetables that you grew over your holiday. Going green simply means that you can still enjoy your vacation but in a different and more eco-friendly way, for example you could sign up for the many walking tours on offer when visiting a new city instead of using too many taxis for your commute whilst exploring new attractions.

 

Green travel tips

Many people are shocked at the countless ways in which their everyday habits and routines can impact the environment and most of the time when we are on holiday we end up forgetting about things like saving electricity or water and recycling.

Below is a list of the numerous ways we can all contribute to conserving our planet whilst simply indulging in the beautiful pleasures the world has to offer.

 

You can save by…

  • Using the Carbon Footprint Calculator while on holiday, this will give you several options to minimize/ balance your carbon footprint.
  • Staying in green accommodation, with thousands of places around the world that offer distinctive green accommodation you can vacation in true green style.
  • Fact: plastic bags can take up to 500 years to biodegrade so take a re-useable shopping bag with you when you go to local markets or shops.
  • The more a plane weighs the more carbon emissions it produces basically very kilo counts when flying so pack smart.
  • Trying to travel without any stops / less stops so taking direct flights would be perfect.
  • Taking showers instead of baths is also a way to save water.
  • Buying locally made products rather than those that have been imported
  • When scuba diving don’t touch or step on the coral or stir up sediment as it can damage the reef’s fragile ecosystem.

 

Click here and find out more amazing ways for being green and travelling clean that would be useful for any traveller.

By adopting an eco-friendly mind-set on your travels, you will be contributing to help protect not only the very places you visit but the places that you still have to check off your bucket list.

 

 

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Choose a Spindel this winter! It’s your #laundrylifesaver

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Hi everyone, Hope you all are keeping warm. I recently came across the Spindel laundry assistant on social media and was intrigued by it and thought I must share it with you all. Now that it  has already gotten cold getting the laundry dry becomes a  hassle. You are either faced with a horrifying electricity bill at the end of the month from the tumble dryer, or you have to endure that awful musty damp smell after days of waiting for laundry to dry indoors!

Rather choose a Spindel and skip the tumble dryer.  A Spindel uses spin power instead of heat to remove up to 80% of left over moisture from fabrics in just 3 minutes.

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Save money

One Spindel cycle uses 100 times less electricity than a tumble dryer.  Because it uses spin power, not heat, there is also no costly, irreversible damage to fabrics like shrinking or fading.  It is ideal for your winter woollies!

Save time

In removing excess moisture, laundry can be hung out to air-dry much, much faster; even inside on a rainy day.   This means clothing is ready to iron, fold and pack away rather than endlessly draped on clothes-horses around the house.

Spindel is available in 4.5kg and 6.5kg models and is compact enough to pack away in a cupboard after use.

It’s your #laundrylifesaver

Buy one from home stores (Hirch’s, Tafelberg Furnishers, Wakefords) and online at www.takealot.com

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Mother’s Day

I would like to start by wishing all you Mommy’s a joyous Mother’s Day. I hope this day brings with it fond memories, celebrations and a whole lot of love.

Mother’s Day to me is a day where we acknowledge and give thanks to our Mother’s. I think once I became a Mother that I really have a deeper respect and understanding of what a Mother is and their pivotal role in life.

This is my mum and I on my wedding day. When I look at this picture, the feelings inside well up inside of me and I feel so emotional, as I am transported back to my childhood. So many fond memories. I am fortunate to say I have been blessed with the best mum in the world. She is the epitome of gentleness, kindness and love.

Her constant love, guidance and support over the years has moulded me and made me into the women I am.I know I wasn’t the easiest and I’m just blessed and feel so lucky that I have a Mother who loves me and understands me.

This is my second Mother’s Day and I am looking forward to spend time with my son and relaxing as much as possible.

Being a mummy has transformed my life. From being laid back and carefree to becoming a busy body, over worked Mummy. One of the most valuable things in my life right now is Time. I treasure every spare moment with Keshav. The second most valuable thing has to be sleep. I miss having a full night sleep…the joys of motherhood. 🙂

I give thanks to God for blessing me with a child and trusting me with this responsibility. I’m thankful for my son, who brings me so much happiness that once I walk in the door and see his face, all else is forgotten.

Hope you all have a wonderful Mother’s Day!

Cheers 

All you need is Leather

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While doing some online retail therapy, in search of a bag to add to my collection. I came across the MAHI Leather collection. I was in bag heaven. As a working women and mother, when I shop for a bag I consider the following:

  • Durability
  • Style and Shape
  • Tenure of bag
  • Price
  • Quality
  • Size

For women that use their bag on a daily basis or those who plan to keep their bag for a long time you may want to consider a leather bag because of its strength and durability. Leather is one of the fabrics that is least likely to get torn, stained, or ruined from liquid.

Leather matches a variety of different styles and may be dressed up or down for a casual day purse or a trendy night bag and for me I think that makes leather sophisticated and timeless.

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Leather has such a luxurious appeal. The texture of the leather should be noticeable and you should be able to feel the roughness of it pretty easily.

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I came across this article while searching for my new leather bag and found its enlightening and I thought I would share it with you: Here are 10 Facts About Leather You Didn’t Know . While doing my research I also found out that MAHI donates $1.50 from the sale of each bag to FRANK Water, a UK based charity which has helped over 300,000 people gain access to clean water since 2005, which is something I love. Be sure to visit MAHI’s website and follow them on Instagram and Facebook for more information.

DISCLAIMER: This post is in collaboration with MAHI Leather, but as always, all thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are completely mine, and of course, honest.

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Competition : myMOSTbeautiful.com BABY 2017

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Hi everyone!

I want to tell you about myMOSTbeautiful.com BABY 2017 competition which starts today 1 May 2017 and entries closes 12 June 2017. Your BABY can win a share of R151 000 with the first prize being a whopping R100 000! No, that’s not a typo. They are really giving away R100 000 to the winner, and the remaining Top 9 finalists will also receive cash prizes.The winner also gets a 6 month modelling contract!

What I loved about this competition is that it’s in aid of charity. The myMOSTbeautiful.com BABY 2017 will be supporting all 25 charities  and mMb.gives will take no commission from the myMOSTbeautiful.com donation. In other words, a portion of all the sms votes on myMOSTbeautiful.com will go straight into the pockets of these 25 charities in real need!

The myMOSTbeautiful.com BABY contest is the biggest baby contest in South Africa and this year celebrity judges include Kia Johnson, Siv Ngesi, Lisa Raleigh, Ryan Botha, Donne Le Grange and Laurette Batstone will assist in determining the TOP 10 babies. Big sponsors also step upped in aid of this contest: King Price, Rage Model Management, ICE models, GLAD, Cherubs, PUR, Skinsano, Beaucience Baby, Artistick, Tea4kidz Rooibos and many other great brands.

Real Life Mum site will be giving away three vouchers worth 90 votes to three lucky entrants from my blog.

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All you have to do is :

  1. Entrants need to enter the myMOSTbeautiful competition and post a link of their baby’s profile on this post in comments section and share to Real Life Mum Site on facebook post.
  2. Share Real Life Mum site page on Facebook with #ReallifeMumsite.
  3. Winners will be announced 13 June 2017.

Remember guys, that babies between 0-36 months can enter. And its all about votes so get your friends and family involved.

Goodluck!

Nivi takes on Mount Everest

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“There is no force that is equal to a women determined to rise.” -W.E.B DuBois.

Majestic Mount Everest, also known in Nepal as Sagarmāthā and in China as Chomolungma, is Earth’s highest mountain. Its peak is 8,848 metres above sea level. So when one of my closest friends, Nivedeta (Nivi) Chatroogoon informed me about this amazing adventure that she was embarking on, I knew I had to tell you all all about it.

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I’m sure you are thinking how and why would this petite young women want to take on such a daunting trip. However, Nivi is no stranger to climbing. In 2015 she trekked up Machu Picchu which is approximatly 4800m above sea level. Everest base camp is 5500m above sea level. The trek to Everest Base Camp (EBC) is not particularly for the faint of heart, but is one of the most rewarding and unique experiences out there. The trek is about 12 days altogether, 8 days to get to base camp and four days to come back. It is especially tough on your knees. Nivi has been on a good training regimen and keeps a strict vegetarian diet.

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What drives someone to suddenly wake up one day and want to climb a mountain?

Climbing Mount Everest is part of a bucket list that Nivi has. She loves adventure and wants to live a purposeful life and that is why this trip is in aid of charity. Animal welfare is something that is very close to Nivi’s heart.

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She has chosen Animal Ambulance  as her charity which is a non profit organisation run by one family who have sought the calling of their hearts to rescue and rehabilitate sick and abused animals.Every animal is shown so much love and care and are in desperate need of a proper warmer shelter for the winter. So if you have any spare cash please Please visit their site: http://www.animalambulance.co.za for more information and use ref: Nivedeta. Please support this worthy cause, they really need our help.

Wishing Nivi a wonderful expedition and safe travels. Cannot wait to hear all about your travels when you get back. We are rooting for you and enjoy every moment of it!

I leave you with this thought provoking quote from John Muir:

“The Mountains are calling and I must go.”

Real Life Mum visits Hey Gorgeous!

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Its #TravelTuesday and I want to tell you about my visit to the Hey Gorgeous pop up store at the Crescent, Umhlanga. I visited their pop up store over the Easter weekend so in most of my pictures you will find Easter eggs 🙂

So what is Hey Gorgeous? What are their products? Hey Gorgeous is a 100% chemical free skin, body and bath care products made from choice organic ingredients to delight all the senses.

I learnt so much about the products just in one visit. Hey Gorgeous products are all organic and not tested on animals, meaning beauty without cruelty. Another interesting fact I learnt about them is that their products are all Vegan friendly, Vegetarian and freshly made.

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Hey Gorgeous has a wide range of products from Bath care products which include Rose petal bath salts, bubble baths and bath milks to Shower Jellies. All of the scents are natural and fruity, which really excited my senses.

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As a mother I was really excited to learn about their kiddies and baby range that included a baby balm cream that doubled over as a baby bum cream.

 

What I really loved is the fact that Hey gorgeous believes that if you would not eat it, why would you put it on your skin. So that means its 100% natural and good for your skin.During my visit at the pop up store, I met the franchise owner, Noeline Rajbally who enlightened me on the product range, benefits and uses. I tested their range on my skin, and enjoyed the fruity fragrances and the texture of the products on my skin. I am so excited and cannot wait to visit their store when it opens later this month to have some luxurious treatments with these amazing products.

Hey Gorgeous The Crescent is currently running a competition for tickets to their exclusive Grand Opening!

Check out their page for more details:

https://www.facebook.com/HeyGorgeousTheCrescent

and to learn more about Hey Gorgeous range:

https://hey-gorgeous.co.za/

 

 

 

Commuting Mum in 2017

Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been and there you will always long to return. Leonardo Da Vinci

Whenever I have a great experience of service and experience I am almost giddy with excitement to write about it. Yesterday  afternoon (31 March 2017) we flew Mango Airlines from O.R Tambo International (Johannesburg) to King Shaka International (Durban).

This was a planned weekend away at the coast for a friends wedding and we had booked in advance online, and had checked in online to save time. When it comes to traveling, as a Mum it’s a mission, packing a huge bag full of essentials plus just in case to prepare for any eventuality. 

To add to the anxiety and stress we chosen to Uber from home to Gautrain station and then take a train to the airport with a one year old mind you plus it was Keshav’s first time Ubering and using Gautrain.

So you’re probably wondering how did it go? And I will take you through step by step. I had downloaded the Uber app in advance and figured out how to order a vehicle to suit our needs. The app was simple to use and luckily for us, the car arrived within 3 minutes. The driver assisted to load and unload our bags, and was friendly and talkative. The vehicle was clean, neat and he drove us safely.

Upon reaching the Gautrain station, Brandon quickly went ahead to get our cards loaded. Keshav is still sitting on my lap so there was no charge for him. We have used the Gautrain on numerous occasions and it’s always punctual. Brandon had checked using Gautrain app on the time of the train and we had 3 minutes before the next one arrived which gave us time to snap some selfies.


We did one change over of trains at Marlboro station and then disembarked from train at the airport with no issues.

Friday’s at the airport is crazy, and we had to do a bag drop.We were assisted by a friendly gentleman at the Mango counter who put us at ease. Keshav by then was getting restless by now and was getting worried how he would behave in flight.

The flight between Johannesburg and Durban is usually 60 minutes, but with a restless child it can feel like 3 hours.We boarded the flight a little early and the friendly Mango hostess arrived with a seat belt attachment for Keshav and checked on us. 

Whenever I fly I reminisce about the days before Keshav when there used to be other kids onboard who were noisy. As a mum now, it has really put into perspective how challenging it is to be traveling with babies and how helpful it is to be surrounded by supportive crew and passengers. 

The flight left on time and Keshav slowly settled for a nap, which gave me time to open up the Mango’s inflight magazine called the Juice Magazine.

For a mummy this little time doing adult like things like reading is very pleasurable. 

Juice had a great line up of appealing articles from Travel to books to music that kept me entertained for the rest of the flight. I loved that they included contributions from social media interactions. I also loved that the material was diverse covering various tops to satisfy the wide range of readers. My article that really tickled me is Rejuvenate at Hydro…. something every working mummy needs. The best part is if you want you can take the magazine home with you… After quick disembarkation we were safely in Durban and ready for a fun filled weekend!

Commuting with a baby is stressful but with efficient friendly service, we are sure to do it again and again.

 

9 months – Start to Life

A mothers joy begins when new life is stirring inside…when a tiny heartbeat is heard for the very first time, and a playful kick is a reminder that she is never alone.

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Congratulations to you if you have just found out you are pregnant. I know for some it may come as a surprise. The moment I saw the two little lines appear on the pregnancy test, I immediately felt a mixture of feelings relief, anxious, excited. If its your first time, this is normal. You have to give yourself time to adjust to this new reality.

There is a lot to consider here and I have put together some of my advice on what to do and how from my own pregnancy experience:

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What to do when you think you are pregnant? Buy a pregnancy test from any pharmacy and do a quick test to confirm it. For me you want to be sure, and the best way to do that is to see a gynecologist. From my understanding the doctor usually does a blood test as well as an internal exam to confirm pregnancy and determine how many weeks you are. Its always wonderful to have support of your partner, family member or friend at this appointment.

Doctor Visits?For the duration of the pregnancy you may have several visits to check on baby growth and your health as well.  A 4d scan is usually done around 26-32 weeks and will show baby in a 4-dimensional view and this is usually in a movie format with sound.

Sharing your pregnancy? Sharing your pregnancy with others is always a controversial topic. The general guideline is to wait for 12 weeks to be sure that all is well before announcing pregnancy to everyone. However, this trend has been evolving over the years and people are announcing their pregnancies in fun ways as well as on social media, at baby showers and gender reveal parties. I love the shared suspense and excitement of these events and there are some great ideas on how to plan for these on Pinterest.

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Family budget and home planning?

Here I will not mince my words, having a baby is costly. There is plenty to consider here. If you are considering having a baby, start saving now. The bills start adding up quickly from medical costs to the baby and home essentials : A cot, pram, carry cot, change station, a comfortable chair for breastfeeding and a breast pump.

I visited the Mama Magic baby expo while I was pregnant to get an idea of what I needed and costs and caught some great bargains too. Before baby arrives its good to budget how much you would like to spend on each of the items. There is so much variety out there in the market and online, you can be left overwhelmed.

The home improvements and adjustments: decorating and sorting out the nursery. There are wonderful themes that are available when planning the nursery. If you are planning to have baby in your own room, my tip would be to keep the baby cot as close as possible to your bed. It makes your life so much easier when you have to wake up frequently at night.

Working Mum? Stay at home Mum? It is best to advise your line manager of your pregnancy so that they can plan your maternity leave and a replacement for that time. Legally in South Africa pregnant women are entitled to 3 months maternity leave. There are other companies that offer more time and others that just give you unpaid maternity leave. For entities that do not pay you any benefit, some of your salary can be claimed from the Unemployment Insurance fund. The application process can be done online.

Starting your maternity leave at least two weeks before baby is due to arrive is a great way to settle into the nest and complete all the necessary arrangements on the home front.

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Your Pregnancy is your unique experience, and a very special time.Bond with your baby, it is the only time you have this precious baby all to yourself. Do get as much rest and sleep as you can. Take your pregnancy vitamins and enjoy being spoilt. Motherhood is about learning about your strengths you didn’t know you had and dealing with fears you never knew existed.

Mira

 

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Real life Parenting 


Children learn more from what you are than what you teach.” W.E.B Du Bois
It’s a tremendous privilege to raise children, though for a quite different reason than most of us who are parents imagine. Now that I am a parent to a one year old, let me tell you it is no easy task.

The last few months, my son has just grown and changed so much. He has become a picky eater, moving around much faster now and has become very vocal. It’s hard to keep up with all of these changes.

Keshav is still breast fed, and has become clingy. I am trying to wean him from the night feeds, however it takes a super human effort to say no him and this is my daily woe. Keshav is still sleeping in our bed, and I know many people may frown upon this, but I love that he is close to me, I love watching him sleep and waking up to his beautiful face plus it’s such a breeze to breast feed this way.

It is amazing to watch this little human grow and have his own personality, however I recently started thinking I have to start training him to get the right behavior, moulding his beautiful mind.

I started asking questions.How to get the right behavior? I have recently started reading blogs and books on this topic and came across this revolutionary book by Dr Shefali :The Conscious Parent The Conscious Parent: Transforming Ourselves, Empowering Our Children and this has opened my eyes. Every parent should read this book, I certainly found it insightful.


Every parent wants the secrets to raising well-behaved, educated, successful and joyful children however there is is no one fit formula to raise kids.The book goes on to explain that we should not aim to control our children. Discipline is teaching not controlling.

The summary of the book: In order to be the parents our children need us to be, we must be open to the possibility that as much as we, as parents, are here to teach our children, they are also here to teach us. I think once we accept that, the learning will start our own journey of becoming better adults.

So I have opened myself up to this advice, and have tried to implement some of Dr Shefali advice and it has changed my perspective.

I am calmer, I am fully engaged and I handle parenting from a conscious perspective.

What works for me:

1. Remain calm (Children are very much in tune with our moods and tone of voice)

2. Don’t cry over spilt milk. Meaning kids dropping a glass in a restaurant is going to create a mess, but handle it delicately.

3.Repeat. Teaching a child is through repetition. You may have to do something 50000 times before they learn it.

4. Comparing breeds contempt. Don’t compare your parenting journey to others. Each child is unique and you will have to change your tactics as you go.

5.Spend quality time teaching, playing. Block of time like you would a meeting for uninterrupted time with your child and family.

6.Praise good behavior. I love it when I praise my boy. My face changes. I smile and my eyes crinckle up at the sides. Positive reinforcement is what motivates us to do even better.

7. Don’t give up! When I feel down or overwhelmed I remember that this too shall pass.

I am learning so much on this parenting journey and as I go through it I am so grateful for my own parents and their excellent parenting skills and thankful that I have this opportunity to be a parent myself.

Enjoying every moment with my little guy.

Until next time…

Mira