Me: A Work In Progress, Part 1

I am a work in progress.
I am taking a chance every day, albeit 5 minutes when I fetch my coffee, to the 30 minutes I spend at the end of my day rubbing out the calluses on my feet and painting my nails.
I, like so many others, have good days and bad days. But lately my approach to the bad days is completely different.
Lately, I greet my bad days with the same enthusiasm I greet a good day. No matter how hard it is. The difference it makes is remarkable.
And I see that my bad days grow less and less challenging, more like the daily obstacles I face and less like days where I have no power or strength.
I no longer fear my dark hours where I know I will feel alone and sad, I know I have the strength to get up and move on.
Ladies and Gentlemen, and all gentlefolk inbetween – this post isn’t to say I am better. It’s to say I am working on me. That my progress is important just like yours is. It’s to remind you… that YOU are allowed to be a work in progress. Nothing in this life is ever perfect or 100% done when it comes to the human nature and our souls. Everything is constant and changing and we need to be able to accept that in order to make it in a day in this life, we are allowed to be a work in progress. Remember… The greatest gift you can give yourself is love. And in order to love others this gift is so important. ♥

#workinprogress #selflove #human #sheispower #sheisgrace #sheisaworkinprogress

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The World of Trance, Mystical Illusion & The Team behind it:

Fellow bloggers, South Africans and humans that read this little blog on the web – let me introduce you to the world of Trance from a completely new and exciting point of view.

Insider stories and experiences from the mouths pf event organisers, the promo team and ticket sellers have revealed that many view the world of trance as a gateway to drugs, idiocy, basic lude and bad behaviour – This is not the heart of Trance, I promise. I discovered a world of being at one with yourself as well as others through sharing experiences and enjoying real people in the truest form. Now, I’ve only been a trance lover little over 2 years as I have not always had a love for it… Through trancing, I’ve discovered that many people I work with (and for) feel the exact same way…

One such oke, is my new friend Shaun – a really dedicated dude I met while promoting for Ultra Cape Town and now for the one and only Mystical Illusion Festival happening one week from now.

Here’s what Shaun had to say when I asked for some background on his story:

“Like many others, I started out with Progressive House, with a distaste for trance in general even though I had no idea as to what Trance is or was about – I simply didn’t understand the magic behind it all which became something I later discovered. I have always had a love for music, I just didnt know much about it, which is why I attended a course which was offered by SAE in conjuction with DJ Ready D & DJ Azuhl, to learn more.

I started promoting to get as involved in the industry as I could, which led me to Dragonroom, whereafter one night, on the right floor at the right time, I heard a “drop” which changed my perspective forever. Trance helped me, in so many ways, during a huge transistional stage of my life. I was suddenly where I wanted to be, both in my head, as well as in my life.

I threw myself into Trance & started attending every possible event, to see what each one was about.Making new friends is by far one of the best things a Trance Party has to offer, some of my deepest friendships and connections have stemmed from the festivals I have worked for or attended.

Well, now onto the Mystical Illusion Festival – the Trance party many of you have seen me promote with absolute passion and the Team behind the works.

Meet Melissa & Tristan: The brains behind The Illusion.

Melissa Dove “The planner behind everything” on How Mystical Illusions started:

“We were at a braai when Tristan said that he wanted to host his own outdoor festival and make it all about the music. Both of us know the kind of planning that goes into festivals like this from a one day through to a three day festival so we decided that we would work together and start our own thing. We want the festivals to be more about the music again due to the fact that music is the universal language which helps us all connect on a different level. We have bigger plans in mind but for now it’ll be smaller parties during the year until we have built our brand and spread the news. I believe that we can create an environment where everyone can connection on a higher level through their love for music”

Tristan Smith, “Avid DJ and soul behind the Illusion”

“I’ve always wanted to host my own outdoor festival, even more so after experiencing some of the parties I have had the honour to play at, Eg. Winter Wonderland and U-party.
I wanted to share the magic I had experienced through the music I play and decided that it’s exactly what I was going to do. I asked Mellissa to climb on board and started to create the magical idea behind Mystical Illusion. It’s a small start but a great party with some killer acts that truly embody what trance stands for. Mystical Illusion is a universal space where everyone is allowed to be happy and enjoy.

Now on to the exciting stuff!

Welcome to your insider view on Mystical Illusion: The Beginning.

Now this is set to happen one week from now, on the 7th April.

What can you expect?

A mind blowing and soul awakening by so many amazing and humble artists. A few I know from seeing them myself at festivals – Headroom and Mogey.

Headroom:

http://soundcloud.com/headroomusic

Mogey:

http://m.soundcloud.com/dj-mogey

A friend of mine nearly died of happiness just knowing that Cody Meyer is playing.
http://m.soundcloud.com/codymeyer1992

Then there’s the most Mystical, Dang3r: An artist I now actively listen to via soundcloud while working.

Click on this link below to listen to the magic this incredible human creates:
https://soundcloud.com/dang3rsounds/welcome
http://soundcloud.com/mysticalillusion_sa/sets/dang3r

Come and connect with hundreds of fellow stompers and music lovers alike who will be there to share the experience with.

I hope to see you all there!

Please click on the event link and join us while we dance the night away.
https://m.facebook.com/events/162738114456604/

For more Mystical Music:
http://soundcloud.com/mystical_sa

Conquering Cape Town’s Lion’s head Sunrise Hike:

Saturday, 17th February.

(My photo)
My Hiking Partner & I decided to try and conquer the Famous Lions Head Sunrise hike. What exactly does this all entail? Well. A 4 am wake up, a power breakfast of oats bars and bananas and heading to the bottom of the hiking trail at 5:10 sharp.

(Photo above: Credits to Braam Du Plessis)
We headed up at a pretty decent and steady pace. Armed with a torch each, and a burning eagerness to race the sun to the top.

Now the first time we attempted this very same hike, we (a) started late (5:34 if memory serves correctly) and (b) did not make it up in time to watch the sunrise.

(Photo above: Credits to Braam Du Plessis. Photo from our first attempt)

So this time round, we both made it our goal to see the sun come up while sitting on top.

And Up we went.

Conversation was light and minimal on the way up. We each had our sturggles on the way up – My fear of heights and his one foot making “mountain goating” a goal we were going to have to work really hard for.

That being said, the view was irresistably gorgeous to look at, even with a fear that nearly tips me over every single time I look down.

We managed to get at least half way by torch light, up to the more difficult side of lions head by the time the light around us became enough for us to pack away the torches and continue hands free.
With our legs burning and our laboured breathing, we made it to the top with 20 minutes to spare.

54 minutes. That was a record for us. The last hike, took us a good hour and a half. So in the 3 weeks between the two hikes, we had shaved a good 45 minutes off our time, and we had made it with more that enough time to sit, relax, enjoy an ice cold drink of water and watch as the sky’s colours changed from dark grey to white to a baby blue. We watched in awe as the sun, a glowing bulb peeked over the distant mountains and mornign clouds. Rays of sunshine spilled over and greeted the Cape, warming it to the new day and all the new possibilites. We sat on a rock, drinking our Game and water, indulging in the incredible sight before us and relished in the glory that we had done it. We had conquered the Lion, and ticked off a major biggie on my bucket list, all before sunrise.

(Photo credits: Braam Du Plessis)

After Sunrise, we decided to try and skip the morning hike traffic and head down before it got too warm. We headed down and then into town for a well deserved breakfast and coffee at the one and only Truth Coffee Roasting Company. It was definitely worth it.

Keep checking in to see what adventures I share next!

Sending love and Light to all my awesome readers ♥

Mustacchio: A hipster Sunday Breakfast with Friends

So for little over a year I had been dying to go to this decidedly hispter coffee shop, on the corner of Kloof street in Cape Town. It was however, my dear, gorgeously bearded friend, Joshua, who suggested we have our now ritual “sunday breakfast” there.
Man, was it an experience. The whole place is fantastic. From the amazing breakfast deal – A coffee and a croissant for under R40, to the offer of a free craft beer with any burger from 2pm as a lunch special? I was blown away.

We sat on the little well-shaded porch (because, well, Cape Town in summer) and proceeded to playfully bicker over what we felt like, french pastries or breakfast beer?
This took us on a meander through the entire menu only to find one or two amusing language errors, as side notes (Joshua being a language aficionado, made a point of creating a ‘punny’ moment out of it).

We eventually settled for the Croissant and Coffee deal, I mean who doesn’t want a delicious French pastry for breakfast? Everyone at least thinks about pastries for breakfast, even if it’s not great for the thighs. Granted… after my Mustacchio experience I did run an extra 2 kms for an entire week… But man was that croissant so frikken worth it
Ever heard the expression, “the more it flakes, the better it tastes”? Well, that perfectly describes the fluffy, baked-to-perfection pastry that was placed before us that Sunday morning. Wowie.

We were a little skeptical about not being offered jam or butter (Even if they did offer a pot of organic marmalade for an additional R60). But honestly, the croissants were so well (marma)made that we all agreed that they didn’t need anything extra. As for our coffees, I thoroughly enjoyed my cappuccino and can probably say that whatever roast they are using there, as far as coffee goes, I think it comes pretty close to perfection. The plain cappuccino was fantastically bitter (I am a sucker for a strong, bitter roast) and I discovered they offer a cream cappuccino… Can anybody say return visit?

On a less foodie note, they have a crate of used coffee grounds in the window for free use as compost, and some ingenious water saving methods. And for those of you who are still in search of the perfect Instagram photo, they have some adorable little moustaches on sticks to use and free WiFi, so post away my lovelies! (I quite like that they’re relying on their hipster clientelle for their marketing)
All in all, from their amazing specials to their green practices, I was thoroughly impressed by this place, and suggest it to anyone looking for their latest chill zone.

Living in Gratitude

So I recently started a journey into living life with love, gratitude and peace. All very important aspects to living a happier life and so I decided to share some of the steps I’ve discovered while taking this amazing and life changing journey.

I’ve often fallen into the “negative mind, negative life” pit; it’s easy and we are all guilty of just staying there too.

So step one? Actively decide on being positive and happy.

Easier said than done right? Actually no, as long as you put your mind to the smallest of details. Like… smiling as you wake up. Not a morning person? Try getting straight up and going for a run with your dog or even a neighbor. This will start your day with physical activity and immediately brighten the “morning” mood, us non morning people are all prone to. Remember to be thankful that you are able to get up and out of bed.

Another easy detail to forget is to be thankful that you got up this morning. When you’re in that pit and it seems like there’s no way forward, remember that there is always light at the end of the tunnel. It’s the small things that bring light to your life, and it’s up to you to recognise and appreciate them.

Step two: a little bit of kindness goes a long way.

Big or small, each and every act of kindness has a positive effect. A smile, a handpicked flower, even a handwritten note – it’ll go a long way while on this journey. Not only do you feel happier but you are also spreading kindness.

I also recently started a 30 gratitude challenge. Like the one shown below

And there are so many different versions of this challenge that you can just keep doing it – with a new one every 30 days! How cool is that?

Here are few other gratitude activities to try:

I downloaded a gratitude journal app in order to remind myself to make my daily gratitude list, and to help by reading something on gratitude every morning. Here are a few apps you could try 🙂

Remember this journey is completely dependent on you and how you approach it. So approach it with a light attitude, a sense of love and most importantly a sense of gratitude.

Another step I am learning to take is to thank everyone in my life for being part of it.

You made me smile with the smallest of gestures? Thank you. It means the world to me. It’s part of the bigger picture. You remembered a small detail about something that doesn’t seem important? You have no idea how much it means that you remembered.

And all those seemingly not important small things of every day life. Trust me, they mean the world and you will start to notice them all when you start this incredible journey of living life in gratitude. ♥

To those who inspired me to restart this journey and take it more seriously – my dear friend; Crischelle, My mother; Tina and my old friend; Uncle Giepie. And last but not least Joshua for always helping me write.

Living healthier and better in 2018

Everyone is swearing to get fitter, healthier and better. How many of you actually do anything? What changes have you made? They’re easy to read and say but to actually change? Takes real work that everyone struggles with.

Here’s a few small but important changes to help you break your bad habits.

1. Start small.

Want to drink more water? There’s no way you’re going to start with a 2l bottle. Buy yourself one of those 500ml reusable bottles and start with the task of finishing one little bottle a day. Once that becomes habit, make your next goal a two little bottle.

Same goes for getting fit. There’s no way you’re going to run 5km on the first day. Start small. 100m no rest. Remember to stretch before every exercise session.

2. Set reachable goals.

You’re a couch potato that wants a summer body worth drooling over? It’s not going to happen over night or in two weeks. No matter what the headline of your chosen exercise routine on pintrest says. You have to work to your strengths. You don’t like to run? Swim rather. Cycle. Start aerobics. I’m serious. Like the ladies in the ’80s did with the aerobics dvds go for it! It’s for you. No one else. I can guarantee you will feel better once you get started and the endorphins start flowing.

3. EAT BETTER!

This is a very important step. You’ve probably heard every gym coach and self help YouTube gym enthusiast say that a fit lifestyle is something like 10% routine and 90% diet? Well they’re not kidding. I used to think because my metabolism is super fast “ag poppy man” well… as I reach my mid20s and my body is starting to settle, no hormones etc I see I can’t just eat anything any more. I now drink coffee with no sugar, I cut out saturated fats and processed meats (those lovely viennas? Yeah those too.) All fully processed canned foods as well. I try to eat fresh and have as little (not none) fat on my meats as possible. I strive for 3 fruits (not a fan…) and at least 3 veggies a day. I only eat protein at lunch time and then it’s only a portion the size of my clenched fist.

How to get into it? Well, my family makes work lunches in the evening. Sort of a “meal prep”.

Start by swopping all breads with healthier alternatives – provita, rice cakes or even cut out completely.

Fruit – if fresh you can make a fruit salad and add some plain yoghurt. Add some seeds or nuts for some crunch. Super healthy and filling!

I found so many amazing healthy recipes on pintrest. Take a look!

4. Follow a schedule.

Remember school days? Exercise was easy because it was part of our schedule. I promise this works. My sister is way better with it than I am but learning from her I saw setting aside a time everyday in my day to day dairy to go walk briskly or 10 minutes to skip rope to stay fit, makes my life so much easier. Try it. Find the time close to the time you usually watch TV or movies. We’ve even watched our favourite series while running on the spot! It works I promise. AND if you encounter one of those days where you had to skip the morning jog because you overslept? An evening jog or a 10 minute aerobics session at lunch should suffice. Just don’t skip a day completely.

Let me know what you do to make the change from couch potato to healthy lifestyle. I’d love to hear from you!

P.s none of the images are mine. All were found on Pintrest

Resolution? I don’t think so

My family has never been the type to follow the hype that follows the “new years tradition” of making resolutions. In actual fact my family is actually one of the few families who puts their minds to something and gets it done.

A few good examples, my sister. A couple of years ago she decided to get fit and stay fit. She has now got 5 different exercise routines, though Zumba and some youtube video channel by a Rebecca make up the bulk. She’s still going and has the figure to prove she made a promise to her self and nothing has deterred her.

My Pa has vowed to get healthy after a scary heart operation at 53 and has kept this promise to himself drinking more water, going for brisk early morning walks and cutting out all junk food and saturated fats.

A good friend of mine chose to cut out alcohol 2 years ago as a promise and hasn’t looked back. Healthier, fitter and quite a bit more money to spend on business and traveling he is still very happy with the promise to himself.

I firmly believe in the power of a promise. A self promise is incredibly scary because the minute you break a promise to yourself you are cheating yourself and you are the only one to blame.

I make myself daily promises – I will be less critical of myself, I will be kinder to myself and I will get through this day are amongst the few I have to repeat to myself.

A pretty big promise I made myself on the 2 January 2018 is not to live by others’ rules and regulations for my life any more. I will no longer allow the critism of others who are not happy get me down. I am going to start living for me by me. There is no way I’m going to be 53 one day and regret that I’ve done nothing I wanted. No way José.

Fellow humans, old and young don’t forget to promise to love yourself and to care for yourself. And don’t over extend yourself with your resolutions. Start rather with small promises and start there.

Sending out love and light to you all ♥

“Dolce far Niente”…

On my short but so well deserved break from the daily hustle and bustle, I was reminded of the truly perfect Italian mantra that explained exactly how I felt on my few days spent a stone throw away from the salty ice cold waters of Melkbosstrand.

The company was welcoming and quiet and my passtimes? Endless hours of reading, playing with my ever loving companion, Eddie the Yorkshire terrier, pleasantly cool walks on the sea sand and indulging in way too many holiday treats. In the end, it was Eddie who reminded me I was on holiday and to relax.

My miniature protector, my evening cuddle buddy, my ever present tail and eager ‘walkies’ companion.

I spent the bulk of my time in this little “Eden” feeling at peace with the sound of the waves crashing against the shoreline as my morning alarm and my evening lullaby.

Occasionally feeling lost in time however it felt good to look up at the clock and see that my imagination and the pages of the books I read had created a vacuum in which I escaped the reality and the day to day activities that a normal busy life entails.

Daily treats with one my escapes.

Tanning at 11 in the morning, on the front porch, properly enjoying this radiant sun and summer heat.

But for now, I must depart from my haven and rejoin the real world .

Happy holidays and safe travelling home. ♥