Stop the shaming 

Let’s talk about a topic we have been seeing a lot of in the past year, shaming. It has been the year of body shaming, fit shaming, mother shaming and now what a lot of us have been experiencing in various degrees, non mother shaming.

Stop the shaming!

Shaming

Me

 

So something happened this weekend and I gave myself a few days to cool off because I was so enraged I was going to say something that might have been a bit too harsh. People need to stop asking other people when they’re having a baby, or my favourite, why haven’t you had a baby yet? That especially makes it into a negative, as if saying that because you don’t have a baby yet, there is something wrong with you. Because surely that is all a woman is on this earth for? To get married and have a baby? What do you mean women can own a business or have a successful career? Surely not!

Shaming

Also me

An ex client of mine (of roughly 7+ years ago) saw a snapchat of mine holding my friend’s baby. I am pretty sure you know where this is going. She proceeded to say that it is time I had a baby and I must hurry up. My favourite. Hurry up. Well, as a 30-something with no child you must know that I get asked this a lot (by people who clearly don’t know me because those that do know how busy I am) and it basically annoys me to no end. I have been getting asked this question or told that I NEED to hurry up and have one, for the last 5 years now. It’s very old. It’s also VERY annoying. It’s also NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS.

I wrote something back to her that basically told her to shush and mind her own ovaries. My blood was boiling and I was so pissed off that I honestly wanted to say a whole lot more. This is not a friend, or someone I have even seen in the past 7 years, so to blatantly get involved in someone’s intimate business was highly offensive to me. I deleted what I was going to say and told her that I’m very focused on my career right now, and that I don’t need to “hurry up”. She said that she is 34 with 4 children already. I told her that our backgrounds are very different, and that most of us are starting at 34 these days, whereas I have  friends that started having kids at 18. Both of those are totally fine! No one should be judging either side or even asking or telling them that either way is wrong. I sure haven’t. It is very different and you can never compare the two, nor should you. She then decided to reply this back, which highly offended me, she said that they start out young so they don’t have fertility problems later on, or look like their grandmothers.

WOW. Ok so because we have kids over 30 we look like their grandmothers? Did you hear that guys? Better stock up on botox! I think that is a weak argument. I am very healthy and at a healthy weight. I am not overweight and I lead an active lifestyle. I don’t drink and I don’t smoke. There are no outside factors that I am doing to myself that would cause these problems. If I did have infertility problems, it would literally be out of my control, not because of my age or that I am unhealthy. I don’t tell her she needs to lose weight and should hurry up on that! No one should EVER say that to someone, and even though it is literally my job, I have never told someone to hurry up and lose weight or that they’re losing weight too slowly. Therefore you shouldn’t be telling someone they’re being too slow on having a baby! So I don’t know where these self righteous women get off trying to tell us what we “need” to do. I think its high time that everyone worries about their own ovaries and their own business.

STOP ASKING WHEN PEOPLE ARE HAVING CHILDREN!

What if we don’t want? What if our career is more important? What if we are having fertility problems and you are making it worse? What if we legit don’t care? What if we just had a miscarriage? What if we cannot have? What if we are pregnant right now? What if What if What if.

JUST STOP!

STOP BEING RUDE. STOP BEING NOSEY. STOP BEING A DICK. JUST STOP

Shaming

Definitely me

I sincerely hope you all stop asking us these invasive questions and worry about your own ovaries. When you ask people if they’re trying, you’re basically asking them if they’re having sex, and that’s gross. Stop that.

Think before you speak. Think before you ask questions. Stop asking things just to make conversations. Just stop. We as women are under enough stress as it is. We might be second guessing ourselves and our decisions on a daily basis and it doesn’t help having you and your questions making us stress more. I am perfectly happy with my choices right now and I don’t need your questions and prodding trying to change my mind OR undermining my authority over MY life. Please, concentrate on YOUR life and your dreams. Don’t put pressure on other people because you feel unfulfilled. Find some dreams and goals for yourself. Whether that is a health goal, getting in shape, getting into a sport, finding a hobby, starting a little side business, finding a passion project. Rather start focusing on yourself than looking to make snooping into other people’s lives your hobby. It’s healthier this way!

 

shaming

I hope those that are going through problems are doing ok and not being triggered by people asking these questions all the time. I am thinking of you.

xxx

 

Follow me on Instagram stories for more venting on a daily basis because now I am angry!

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Gulfood 2017

Gulfood is the world’s largest annual food and beverage event, taking place in Dubai. I was lucky enough to attend this year with Vit Hit and it was overwhelming!

Gulfood has:

  • Over 95 000 visitors
  • Over 5000 exhibitors
  • Over 1000 first time exhibitors
  • Over 120 trading countries
  • 90% of visitors confirm that Gulfood fulfils their business objectives.
  • 89% of past visitors will attend Gulfood again.
  • 52% of visitors attend Gulfood with a predetermined list of products to purchase

 

I was quite excited to get to the healthy and gluten free hall, expecting stall after stall and delicious products I could bring back for us here. Well, I walked through it in 5 minutes flat! Lets hope that next year there will be a few more, then a few more, and eventually have a full hall full of gluten free, sugar free goodness. The world is waking up to the benefits of healthier food, so hopefully we see more of it at these events too.

 

What I noticed was a lot of pre-made, frozen desserts for the hotels and hospitality industry. We don’t see that here too much, but Chateau Gateaux are probably our front runner here. I have never see so many pre-made brands in one space as I saw there. It’s definitely a huge market over there and my favourite was Pro Bake. It may have had something to do with their gorgeous stand and their amazing staff! I quickly made friends with Amber, and basically popped in there every day. Coffee and treats followed by chats, a good week if you ask me 😉 Their ice cream was INCREDIBLE! I loved the cookies and cream, but oh my word the strawberry cheesecake flavour was out of this world. So innovative with real ingredients and real taste. I’m salivating thinking about it!

Gulfood

ProBakes whoopie pies

Gulfood

ProBakes macarons and donuts!

Gulfood

ProBakes!

Gulfood

Yup, ProBakes

Gulfood

The ProBakes ice cream was next level!

Gulfood

Doing my Vit Hit duty!

Gulfood

The best health drink out there!

Gulfood

It’s true!

Gulfood

Vit Hit in a can

Gulfood

Breakfast with the South African ambassadors in UAE

Gulfood

Representing!

Gulfood

Some of the gluten free section

Gulfood

More gluten free

Gulfood

Not tooooo bad but I’ve had better gluten free goodies

Gulfood

All types and flavours of honey

Gulfood

Some more gluten free treats

Gulfood

This chocolate looked so interesting!

Gulfood

More pre-made frozen goodies

Gulfood

This is just the entrance. There are 9 HUGE halls that are about the size of the ICC, EACH

Gulfood

This was the entrance quiet!

 

Have you been to Gulfood before?

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World Doula Week

Since it is World Doula week, I thought it was only apt to feature someone who has used a Doula 8 times! Debbie Calo lives in Durban and has had a home birth for each of her children. I have seen her in action at yoga and I never imagined she had 8 children, she is a yoga master and looks incredible!

 

What does healthy mean to you?
For me health begins in your head!  You can eat well, exercise daily and take the best supplements but in the end if you are not happy then none of that matters. Being stressed or negative all the time does not support good health.  Besides that my family and I are vegetarians and we treat anything from the common cold to meningitis homeopathically, and as a result our immune systems are pretty strong!

 

What is your chosen form of exercise?
YOGA!!!  If my mat could talk!  My practice keeps me sane! I started practicing 27 years ago as it is the only exercise other than walking that I would recommend conception and during pregnancy. I also find it very grounding not to mention humbling.

Every pose has a meaning for it either releases what no longer serves a purpose in my life or strengthens me for what is still to come!  For me yoga is not only a physical exercise, you could go to the gym for that, it’s a spiritual, emotional and mental exercise. I always leave the studio with a great feeling of accomplishment.  I practice mainly heated Vinyasa yoga so I get a good detox at the same time! I also try and get to sculpt classes twice a week. Sculpt is a combination of yoga and medium to high intensity workout with weights.  It’s a lot of fun and you feel euphoric after burning up your yoga mat!  I do both yoga and sculpt at Tree Natural.

 

What does your way of healthy eating look like?
We are all vegetarian at home and my children have all been raised as vegetarians.  I have never been one to follow the latest trends in diets, I prefer to go with what I want to eat and I listen to my body. I always make healthy choices its just my way of honoring my body and good health.  My motto is “Eat when you are hungry, eat clean and the more organic the better”.

 

What is your passion project?
Actually my latest passion project is yet to begin!  It will be my yoga teacher training that I will begin early next year. Up until now it has been raising my eight children and I still have a way to go, I think one could definitely call that a ‘passion project!’.

 

What does a typical day look like for you?
Ok so I wake up with the birds which is pretty early! Morning is my best time of day. I love getting as much of it as possible. I go straight into fifth gear with cleaning up after my midnight snackers, packing school lunches, organising breakfasts, feeding the dog and then before waking up the troops I do a 20 minute mini workout in our gym at home, nothing hectic just a warm up for my day with some rowing, yoga stretches and a little dumbbell work.

Then it’s getting kids ready for school and doing the school drops. I walk my Rotti every morning on the beach, this is when I finally breath out! After that it’s a quick walk on the promenade (you can’t live in Umhlanga and not walk on the promenade at some point in your day!) then it’s my morning Yoga practice at 9am.  Tree is my little sanctuary, it’s my ‘happy place’. After class I get to sit with friends and get my caffeine fix.  By now I so have my ‘bliss’ on even the taxi drivers can’t get me going! Only now its back to the real world and the reality of having eight kids. To be fair though, one is in California and one is studying law at UCT so I only have six at home.  Next it’s the grocery shopping, then the school pick ups and sport spectating, homework and then a lot of kitchen time preparing dinner.

 

What would you like people to know about you?
That just because I have had eight kids I do not profess to ‘know it all’. I am open minded and believe that no matter how old you are or how much ground you have covered in life there is always something you can learn from everyone you meet. I have been practicing yoga for 27 years but still I have so much to learn. Life is a journey and we can learn from a 5 year old just as we can from a 50 year old. It’s about being humble and always, always keeping the ego at bay.  I chose to have my babies at home, not because I’m superwoman or have an above average threshold for pain, just because it felt ‘right’. I never put it out there simply because there was and still is such a stigma towards home birthing. I was considered primal and was  cast out of the pack so to speak. Sadly women have never been educated or encouraged to trust their own bodies. If there was one thing I could be given the chance to do, it would be to endorse having your baby at home, the greatest gift you can give your child.  That and beginning your childs education at home. I home schooled my kids during their formative years and it really payed off. As a result they all have a love for learning because they were gently and lovingly eased into schooling, they have a positive outlook to education.

So what do I want people to know about me?  I believe in being authentic to myself. I never wanted to talk the talk, I needed to walk the walk and lead by example. Anyone can talk about it, you gotta do it! My children are the ‘fruits of my labour’. I certainly don’t know it all, but my message to all you beautiful ladies out there is ‘Trust your bodies, trust your instincts, turn up the volume of that little voice within you and drown out the fear!


Favourite workout song?

Anything by Sia

 

Favourite quote/advice?
When thinking about life, remember this: no amount of guilt can change the past and no amount of anxiety can change the future.
Favourite quote: well I have a few so I had to narrow them down and just couldn’t stop at one!
“Healing doesn’t mean the damage never existed, it means the damage no longer controls our lives.”
“Face your past without regret, handle your present with confidence, prepare for the future without fear, keep faith, drop the fear.  Don’t believe your doubts and never doubt your beliefs.  Life is wonderful if you know how to live it!”

 

What was your experience with your doula?
I had a doula all eight times. The benefit of having a doula is that although you have the intimacy of your partner along with the expertise of the midwife, a doula brings about a calmness, she chases away your fears and empowers you with her words. My doulas were very gentle souls there was no judgement, no pressure, just reassurance that I could do this. I was perfectly able to bring this child into the world, I was designed for this, I was given the strength to do this and very soon I would be holding my beautiful baby in my arms. To me doulas are sent from heaven along with all the midwives that do home births. They should all be honored for the work that they do and the big hearts that they have.

 

 

Doula

Doula

Doula

 

Doula

Doula

Doula

Debbie today!

 

Have you used a doula?

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Love Local – Damn Vandal

Our next Love Local Durbanite is Damn Vandal aka Shaun Oakley. He is the most talented graffiti artist and designer, and the person I trusted with making over my very own studio in January! He took my cute studio to beautiful in about 7 hours. I loved my space before but now I can’t get enough of it.

 

Tell us a bit about your background in Durban
I am born and raised in Durban. I have a 3 year degree in Brand Communications from Vega and have been doing graffiti for almost 15 years now.

 

When did you start your business/craft/brand?
I started my company “Damn Vandal” in 2014 but have been painting commissioned jobs for sometime now.

 

Tell us about your business/craft/brand
Damn Vandal is a professional mural company that I run on my own. I custom paint anything you want. Most of my work is bright, vibrant and grabs your attention with my unique style. I have painted a lot of agencies, private company interiors, cars and walls within the country.

 

What is your favourite thing about your business/craft/brand?
My favourite thing about my brand is that I get to do what I am passionate about. I get a lot of freedom within my job and most clients are open to my ideas and like to show off their walls or cars so it gets plenty of attention. It also gives me the chance to change one persons life at a time as a bit of colour goes a long way, especially with the kids.

 

What would you like people to know about your business/craft/brand?
That I am always willing to do new things and make our country beautiful.

 

What do you love about living and working in Durban?
I think Durban has a lot to offer in terms of variety. There are a lot of creative people and people willing to be different, which is a great thing as it pushes our city in the right direction. We also have great weather which helps when painting outside. Haha!

 

How can people support you? 
People can support me by liking my page or by spreading the word about what i offer.

 

Where can they stalk you on social media?
I have a Facebook page  or follow my Instagram @thatdamnvandal

 

Damn Vandal Damn Vandal Damn Vandal Damn Vandal

Damn Vandal

Source: Ape Automative Photography

Damn Vandal Damn Vandal

Image source: Damn Vandal Facebook Page 

 

Have you seen his work around town? Which is your favourite? (You’re allowed to say my studio😉)

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How daring are you? Its time for the Daredevil Run!

Be prepared to spot a Speedo-clad Daredevil or a few hundred as they take over Durban roads on Friday afternoon, are you ready?

 

Things are going to get heated in Durban on Friday as the city’s most daring men prepare to run cancer outta town at the Hollard Daredevil Run. The Run aims to raise awareness of male cancers and the importance of early detection by encouraging men of all ages, shapes and sizes to run (or walk) along a five-kilometre route in support of the cause.
The Daredevils of Durban will set off from Your Communications College Rovers Rugby Club in Kings Park Stadium, running through peak-hour traffic, past lush greenery and along the stunning Snell Parade Beach promenade on a five kilometre route as they make their way towards the finish line.
“We are thrilled to be able to spread the Daredevil spirit throughout the country to encourage support for this important cause,” says Warwick Bloom, Marketing Communications Manager at Hollard. “The Hollard Daredevil Run has seen such tremendous support and turn-out in the past, and we challenge every man of any age and shape, to join the fight against cancer – and have a little fun in the process!”

Daredevil

Cancer stats to scare the pants off you

While the Run has had a remarkably positive impact on cancer awareness around the country, statistics indicate an alarming increase in male cancer incidences in South Africa. According to research from the National Cancer Registry, there has been a 32% rise in prostate cancer cases in the past year alone, with one in 19 men at risk of developing prostate cancer in their lifetime. 

Even though figures for testicular cancer have declined, the number of men diagnosed with the disease is still alarmingly high. However, testicular cancer and other cancers can be treated if they are detected early enough.

Daredevil

Registered Daredevils over the age of 40 will also be able to have a free Prostate Specific Antigen test done on the day of the event, having to endure just a tiny prick to the finger to check for any signs of prostrate cancer. All proceeds from the Run will go to the Cancer Association of South Africa (CANSA) to fund cancer awareness programmes as well as its MANVan initiative – a mobile health clinic which travels across the country providing free cancer testing to underprivileged communities.

Elize Joubert, CANSA CEO says, “Following the success of the 2016 Hollard Daredevil Run, we were able reach and screen an impressive 8,112 men throughout the country. We encourage all men to take part in the Hollard Daredevil Run to not only help raise awareness of male cancers, but also to help save lives.”

Daredevil

Men of all ages, shape and Speedo-size can enter by visiting https://daredevilrun.nutickets.co.za/ to register. They can also nominate a friend, relative or colleague to join them in running cancer clean outta town.

Runners are welcome to bring their loved ones and fans to cheer them on from the side-lines on the day, as the run is restricted to Speedo-clad men and boys. Donations in support of the cause can be made here.

 

Have you registered yet? It’s THIS Friday at 3pm so get online and register!

 

Hey guys, here’s a video you should watch!

Visit the Event Facebook page for more info!

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