Monday, 27 January 2014

{ lessons } from my inspiration

On the first page of my 2014 diary, I stuck a photograph of a young lady, sitting on the half wall of a chalet in the Kruger National park - ironically the place I've been calling home for the last 6 years...

The same lady features in a frame on my desk in my craft room. In this picture she is older and holds me - both of us with bed hair and clothed in our pajamas, taken one early morning on a farm somewhere...

The lady in both photographs is my beloved grandmother who sadly passed away 7 years ago... She surely is my biggest inspiration in life in so many ways, and although I miss her every day and think of her fondly and relive memories of her often - this post is not meant to be sad - as it is an absolute celebration of her life and the way she lived. And there are some lessons in it for all of us.

Ouma lived fearlessly - not scared of anything. No wonder, if you know that her favourite Bible verse was Isaiah 41 verse 10. { lesson 1 } Don't be afraid to live life. You only have one.

She kept us all on her toes as with Ouma you just never knew what was coming next but it was sure gonna be adventurous. { lesson 2 } Be adventurous. Close your eyes. And jump.

One night we were driving from somewhere and I dropped something in the car - to my rescue, Ouma hauled a torch from her handbag... I was baffled because for what odd reason would anyone carry a torch in their handbag... Today I carry a little torch in my handbag - in case of emergencies. And boy has that little torch come in handy at the most unexpected times. { lesson 3 } Carry a torch in your handbag; you never know when you are going to need it.

Every week Ouma bought every single magazine on the market. From Keur (today it's called Vrouekeur!), to Sarie and Rooi Rose, and religiously the Huisgenoot. When she was done reading them she gave them to me... I'm sure she just looked at the pictures, 'cos they were there just too quick to have been read from cover to cover. Today I buy 8 magazines every month (blush)... Tuis, Idees, Leef, Good Housekeeping, Women's Health, Marie Claire, House & Leisure, Elle Decoration. Sigh. I do have a problem. { lesson 4 } You can never buy too many magazines. (Maybe it's got something to do with my lack of self-control?!) { CLICK HERE if you missed it! }

Ouma was also the baker in town. Not only in town. In life. She could make anything your heart desired or mouth watered for. And if it was something completely new to her, she would still go out and make it. I remember how I wanted Petit fours and Ouma couldn't even pronounce it, let alone know what it was. But I showed her a picture and she tried. And although it was an epic fail and I had to settle for cupcakes, there was a valuable lesson in that to me. { lesson 5 } Try everything. At least once.

But the greatest lesson of all, lies in Ouma's love for the Lord. She loved Him more than life itself. Even through her sickness in the end, He truly was her Beginning and End. And to me that is my biggest inspiration: that I would love Him the way she did. { lesson 6 } Love God with all that you have. Put Him first. In everything. 

I have sweet and fond memories of her: the Madeira cake she always baked me, making Krimpvarkies when I came for a visit, her sitting at the dining room table surrounded by a thousand dictionaries, doing her crossword puzzle and how she would let me look up words for her, the Sweet Peas in her garden (still my favourite flower). No one can ever replace her but I feel super blessed as her only granddaughter because every morning when I look in the mirror, there are two blue eyes that stare back at me, and they are the same blue, as hers was... Maybe slightly darker but I would like to believe they are the same.


  1. Your Ouma sounds like she was a wonderful woman. Those lessons she left you with are really great...and I agree with each and every one of them! How lucky you were to have had her all to yourself :)
    I miss my granny(ies) very much after reading this post...I am very lucky to have them still around (all 4 of them...including my hubby's!) and I miss them so very much being here in Korea!
    Such a lovely post Theresa x

    1. I know Roxy! I was SO blessed to have her all to myself! And you are so blessed to have 4 of them - treasure your moments with them... Thanks Roxy! x