Wednesday 31 October 2012

Present Me VS Future Me

This is a concept that my brilliant friend Chris came up with when we were tidying her kitchen. I wanted to throw something out and she said "No, Future Me will use that."
I have come to realise that Future Me is my biggest problem and here's why. This is a list of a few of the things that Future Me does:

  1. She is much calmer than Present Me
  2. Everyday she dresses creatively and takes care with her appearance. Nothing flashy, just a beaded necklace, a cute pair of knee-high socks or a lovely pair of shoes.
  3. She focuses her attention on one craft at a time She does this until she has completely mastered it (and lets face it, until she has become an expert in this field).
  4. She spends fun, quality time with her children, baking or facilitating a cool project (which she then blogs about).
  5. She plans creative healthy meals for the family (preferably using produce from her own Kitchen Garden).
  6. She HAS a Kitchen Garden.
  7. She exercises regularly and does not smoke or drink even half as much as Present Me (however she is a fun gal and will sneak a ciggie and a drink occasionally).
  8. She runs an overwhelmingly successful Internet business / shop from her small-town, country cottage (however she has not let this go to her head and remains humble and likable).
  9. She knows how to link Facebook, Blogger, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, and What's App together and make them work for her. 
  10. She often makes time for a romantic interlude with her beautiful husband (she definitely does not take him for granted).
  11. She does similar with her girlfriends.
  12. She has a great grasp of the English Language and knows all the right grammar etc (but doesn't rub it in your face when you get things wrong). 
  13. She makes time for herself; this might take the form of a quiet walk in the forest or a little treat at the beauty parlour. 
  14. Her home is an absolute delight; a welcoming, stylish, quirky yet clean lined space.
OMG I cant go on, she is making Present Me want to vomit and then admit myself for a hospa-holiday. So why don't I get rid of her? Because I think she might be all of the people I admire most in the world rolled into one. 

Future Me defiantly wouldn't procrastinate as much as Present Me is doing by ranting in a blog post about an imaginary being. Please tell me that you have a Future Me too and I am not the only one being driven insane by an overachieving alter ego.  

Dia De Los Muertos 3

I think there is a name for this kind of face painting, but I cant remember it. Does anyone out there know? Look at these beauties - inspiring isn't it?

Here are some snaps from our Day Of The Dead party last year.

Dia De Los Muertos goes to the I Heart Market

Don't you just love the poster for this month's I Heart Market? The very talented DominicStrauss designed it. We are very proud to say that our fabulous ONCE logo was also designed by Dom.
I hope there will be lots of Day of the Dead goodies on sale this Saturday.

The Day of the Dead or Dia De Los Muertos

Darren, Dee (Darren's mum), Sam and I love the Mexican custom of Dia de los Muertos and we celebrate it most years with a party and the making of small shrines to remember the people we have lost. I feel that our "western culture" really does not address issues like death in any way, and yet it is our only certainty.

Wikipedia defines the Day of the Dead as follows:

"Day of the Dead (SpanishDía de los Muertos) is a Mexican holiday. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. It is particularly celebrated in Mexico, where it attains the quality of a National Holiday. The celebration takes place on November 1st and 2nd, in connection with the Catholic holidays of All Saints' Day (November 1) and All Souls' Day (November 2). Traditions connected with the holiday include building private altars honoring the deceased using sugar skullsmarigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed and visiting graves with these as gifts."

This year we will not be having a party as it is just too close to the the horrid death of Darren's brother Brandon. We lost Brandon on September the 18th this year in the suicide bombing in Afghanistan.  However we will be having a small family toast to Brandon's wonderful life on Friday evening. 

Tuesday 30 October 2012

DUT Students Year End Show 2012 (Part 2)

Please try and make the opening of the student exhibition on Thursday evening. It will be held on the City Campus of DUT and the viewing of the work will begin around 18.30. The prize giving will be held before that at 18.00 in the Arthur Smith Hall.

Ceramic works by Nomvula Lembede and Luwanda Kwanele
Beautiful portraits by Sakhile Mhlongo
Installation view  of Mhlo Chiliza's work

Monday 29 October 2012

DUT Students Year End Show 2012 (Part 1)

I love lecturing at the Fine Art Department of the DUT. I teach third year, fourth year and masters painting. I will so miss the journey I make with the students each year. The third and fourth years of study are the most rewarding because it is here that the students begin to find their own voices. All of the skill acquisition of the first two years starts to pay off and a real understanding of the union between medium and message begins to emerge.
On Thursday evening at 18.00 pm the Fine Art Department will hold their annual prize giving and student show. Here is a sneak look at some of the work that will be on offer.

Views of Karla Nixon's show
Details from Dikeledi Maponya's work

Sunday 28 October 2012

Xmas Shopping 2

One of the most exciting things about moving to Australia is being closer to LARK. I am sure you all know the fabulous store, but have you considered these items on your Xmas shopping list? I am sure if you order now they will arrive on time in SA.
It is our show house today, hold selling thumbs please.

for her
for teenage her
for him at home
for boys
for girls
for spinster aunts
for the Xmas table

Xmas Shopping 1

Sam and I went to the "Maul" today to begin our Xmas shopping. It was the last Saturday of the month and so was pretty hellish but we had fun all the same. I found some great little things. I am trying to keep pressies under R100 this year as we are just too poor to be extravagant. Generally hand made gifts are best but I couldn't resist these items:
We found some great stick on lacy gel nails from Dis Chem for R30 and these Barbie glitter nail files from Woolies for R30
Also from Dis Chem I bought these "Art Deco" nail polishes with a fine brush for detailed work on nails. They were R30 a bottle. I tried it out on the boys who would not sit still for either the painting or the photographs. Fun to have candy stripes on ones toes tho!
Sam found these great lacquered wooden hangers in candy colours from Boardmans for R50 a pack of five.  They are beautiful for those with open hanging spaces.

Saturday 27 October 2012

Our House, In The Middle Of Our Street

Thanks so much to those of you who visited the new site yesterday, and especially to the two ladies who joined up, I am so appreciative.

Here are pics of the rest of our house.
The Kitchen
The Bedroom
Leith's Room
Other bits and bobs

Next week, I say goodbye to my lecturing position at the Durban University of Technology. I have worked there for nine years and have had the honour of working with some really talented staff and students. I will give you a sneak peek at some of the talent you will see on the year end show which will be opening next Thursday evening.

Friday 26 October 2012


This is the new blog to record our new life. I thought we would start at the tail end of our old life, which we are to say goodbye to soon. Darren (my lovely husband) and I (Bronwen) are about to embark on a brand new adventure in Melbourne, Australia.

We will begin the migration (I prefer this word to immigration which is so politically charged here in SA) in January. We have lived in many counties and hope to live in many more, but for now have decided to give the boys (Leith who is 8 and Kian who is 3) a chance to get to know their maternal grand parents (while they are still fit and well).
We are all also very excited to get to know our little niece / half sister Eloise, who came into being as a wee egg inside me that was captured and taken into the outside world to join with a wee sperm from her dad (Glen, my brother in law) and planted in her mummy's tummy (Karen, my sister). She is now two years old and needs other little people with whom to gang up against the grown ups.

For the past ten years we have live in Durban, South Africa, in a beautiful 100 year old house in the suburb of Morningside. Darren has run a film and video company and has worked as a photographer. I have lectured at the Fine Art Department of the Durban University of Technology and have been a practising artist, selling my work both nationally and internationally.

Now it is time to change. ONCE in a while you get a fresh start and this is how we plan to use it. ONCE is a little idea we have had for a long time. It combines Darren's brilliant photography skills with my crafty endeavours and our united obsession with collecting.  We will explain more about the concept of ONCE as it unfolds but we begin with this little blog about stuff we like and adventures we will have along the way. It is a means of keeping our beautiful friends updated on our journey and a way to introduce ourselves to new people.

Sadly we have to start this journey by selling our lovely house. Here are some pics of our living spaces inside these beautiful, old, thick walls.

our front door - it says "a life lived in fear is a life half lived"
The lounge is my absolutely favorite room, mostly because of the beautiful brick fire place.

Tomorrow I will show you the rest of the house.