Second Leg In The CIMA Diploma

Wednesday, August 29, 2012
I don't know if I should be disappointed that my notoriety in recent years was never enough to get me onto any of the pages, nevertheless, the front page of a newspaper. The last time my name was published, it was in 1993. I had just graduated from high school and the education department decided to let everyone in the town know. I bought my own copy of that paper and had the page laminated. I still have it to this day.

My recent brush with publicity also has something to do with my studies. I've been studying CIMA for the last couple of years and finally, last May, completed my Managerial Level subjects and am receiving an Advanced Diploma in Management Accounting. But instead of just sending over the diploma (like last time when I finished the first leg), CIMA emailed to say that my name will also be published on a listing as a passed student. And since it's the new age of technology,  the published name will be on their website and not the local papers.

Shame that I couldn't laminate this post....but I was still excited! I just had to blog about it. Now I can't wait to finish off the Strategic Level subjects. I hope to do this in one go in November. Wish me luck!

Click to enlarge


VTT - Elephant Back Safari

Monday, August 27, 2012

Of course the whole trip was memorable but nothing feels quite like a truly satisfied child.

In contrast to our early morning canoe trip, our afternoon elephant back safari experience that same day was amazing. My youngest was thoroughly beside herself with excitement, being so close to the elephants. We even got to pet a "domesticated" cheetah.

We arrived at the Wild Horizon Sanctuary and were treated to welcoming drinks. While waiting for the elephants to arrive, our host spoke of the ride and safety precautions we must take while mounted on the elephant's back.

Once the elephants arrived, we were introduced to each one and their history. The guests got excited and we were all given enough time for photo opportunities with the elephants.

After the photos, we were then led to the field where we prepared to mount the elephants. Hubby and eldest rode on one elephant, while youngest and I shared another. Our elephant, Tendai, was a mother elephant who was still nursing her kids. On our ride, Tendai's 2 baby elephants tagged along and were never too far away from us.

Our guide was very knowledgeable about all things elephant....and other things as well. We spoke about everything under the sun. The ride took an hour and we travelled all over the sanctuary, up and down, through some streams and tree branches. Youngest was taking everything in and loved every minute of it. She loved watching one of Tendai's baby, Ntombi, run around gathering branches for food. When thirsty, Tendai nursed her and made funny sounds underneath.

After the ride, we got to interact with the elephants. There were pellets ready for us to feed our elephants. We were briefly taught how to give the pellets to the elephants and off we went.

And if we thought that the day was over, we were wrong. We were visited by a "domesticated" cheetah and its trainer. More photo opportunities, goodie!

After all the events, we were taken to a viewing room where we viewed all the photos and videos taken of us. Youngest urged us to buy the video. And we acquiesced. It was, after all, a perfect day to remember.

My First "Professional" Cut

Wednesday, August 22, 2012
So my husband got tired of being the resident barber. After many, many years since our wacky experience with cutting hair, hubby has put his foot down and decided that it's high time. Our youngest daughter, his little princess, deserves a hair salon cut now.

We made our way down to Bruma in Johannesburg (dubbed our local chinatown). Hubby had been having his haircut at one of the Chinese hair salons and he's decided to recommend them for youngest's first ever "professional" cut.

We were greeted at the door and after much funfare and hand signals, youngest was ushered onto a chair. Her hair was shampooed and washed. Youngest was a bit pensive. I think she was a little scared of what she would look like after.

The hairdresser then started pointing to several photos of hairstyles hanging by the ceiling at the back of the salon.

some of the style choices...we chose the 4th one on the left

The stylist snipped and chopped. And then it was time for blowdrying.

And voila! The end result! Not bad. All this for R50 ($6).

VTT - Zambezi Breakfast Drift

Monday, August 20, 2012
So this, out of the whole Victoria Falls planned activities, was the most boring one. I was supposed to have planned to do some white river rafting but hubby thought it too dangerous so we settled on canoeing instead.

This activity also had a very early morning start. We missed the hotel breakfast as we were going to have breakfast whilst canoeing. Our transfer arrived and we were whisked away to our venture point along the Zambezi River.

Our starting point was somewhere in the Upper Zambezi River. We were strapped with life vests while one of the guides gave us some safety briefings with regards the rules of the river - what to do if the canoe tips over, which the guide swears never happens. The canoes we had were Canadian canoes and they are known to be sturdy and stable. We were warned against putting our hands in the water. The river is serene but it houses many dangerous creatures. Crocs being one of them.

Our tour guides were also our canoe paddlers. The trip was early so that we could catch the sunrise while we were canoeing down the river. After which, we'd have some continental breakfast on one of the islands. The trip finishes just within sight of the spray of the Falls.

I must admit that the river is very boring on this activity. It was so calm and quiet. All we could enjoy were some birdlife and lizards that we saw on the river banks. Whilst on the canoe though, I was always pensive, watching the water for any signs of crocs and hippos. I suppose I should be happy that we never spotted any of these creatures, then I'd have to say that we had such a harrowing experience whilst canoeing.

My youngest and hubby also got the chance to paddle on the river. Youngest was so eager. I wonder if she'll take canoeing when we get to Canada?

The rest of the trip was uneventful. We finished about 3 hours later and we headed back into town to grab some lunch.

A Blog Celebrity Grows Up....Part 2

Wednesday, August 15, 2012
Well, I can't very well say that only one of my daughters is growing up.

Seriously. If my youngest is turning out to be a young lady, it is safe to say that my eldest is doing the same thing. There'd be something oddly wrong with my genes if my eldest is staying put at 13.

As eldest is having her turn at growing up into an independent woman, this beckons that it's time for me to alter her ABOUT page as well.

For keepsake, here's her one before the change.

VTT - Elephant Hills Hotel

Monday, August 13, 2012

Elephant Hills Hotel

We decided to take it easy after our helicopter ride. After all, this was our first day of activities and you don't wanna overdo it. The kids wanted to try out the pool at the hotel and so we made our way down to the pool area.

The hotel offered several pools of different size and depth. Eldest taught my youngest some new swimming manouevres but it was a bit breezy so we didn't stay out long.

Dinner was offered from 7pm sharp at the hotel restaurant. There was a dinner buffet on offer but the family felt that the food was just a bit too much. So we decided to try the ala carte menu. The food was exceptional. Dinner was pricey but I suppose one can't skimp on food.

Breakfast the next morning was served buffet-style, available from 7am to 10am.

The rooms we got were spacious. We got 2 double rooms. Hubby and I shared one room and the girls shared another. Our rooms had a small verandas overlooking the Elephant Hills golf course. And in the distant, you could see the tiny smoke that exudes over the Victoria Falls.

The rooms were equipped with aircons, kettle, electronic safe, TV with some local and satellite channels available.

The staff were accommodating and pleasant. We had some issues with the TV sets in our room and it was fixed promptly after we reported it. We were also treated to welcome drinks on our arrival.

We even had a visitor the one morning. He was on our veranda, taking in the view. Just like us. Of course, we were behind the glass sliding door, watching him taking in the view.

All in all, a very nice stay.

A Blog Celebrity Grows Up

Wednesday, August 8, 2012
So she ain't as innocent as I'd painted her to be. Well, not anymore anyway. My little girl is all grown up now and of course, I am due to change my ABOUT page about her. And soon.

For keepsake, I am putting a pic of her old ABOUT page here. Here's one for remembering....

VTT - Flight Of Angels

Monday, August 6, 2012
I didn't really want to overload the family on the first day of our vacation. After all, this was a vacation, right?

So I actually only had plans to go to the Victoria Falls National Park in the morning and the afternoon was to be spent at the hotel. I squeezed in an appointment for hubby and I to go on a helicopter ride for an aerial view of the falls. I didn't include the kids as the price of the ride was slightly expensive. It costs US$130 per person, regardless of age. There was another ride offered for 25 minutes and that costs US$250 per person.

Our transfer came at 2.30pm sharp to take us for the ride. The helicopter base was just a throw's away from our hotel. We arrived and waited for a further 30 minutes to board the helicopter. There were a total of 6 passengers on the ride and the best seat for photos was on the passenger side of the pilot. We didn't get that spot but we still managed to capture the moment on film.

The 13-minute ride that we took was more than enough to see the Zambezi and the Victoria Falls scenes. To say that the view from above was magnificent was an understatement. I think I'll let the photos do the talking from here.

The Victoria Falls (waterfalls)

The Victoria Falls (full view)

The Victoria Falls (front view)

The Victoria Falls (with National Park on the right)

View from the Zambezi River, the cloud up ahead is where the waterfalls are

So I'm Leaving On A Jetplane With My Teddies

Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Me and my teddies

Our trip to Victoria Falls marked the first time that my youngest rode on an airplane. One that she remembers anyway. She rode it once before but she was about a year old at the time so did not really remember the experience.

It was rather very exciting for her, and at the same time nervous as she tells me that she does not want the airplane to go down in flames. I reassured her a bit and told her to look at the safety instructions that the airplanes provide so she can familiarise herself with procedures should something like that happen. Of course, I did not think that anything bad will happen, I quickly added. It is just precautionary.

Follow the exits

I also let her bring some of her stuffed toy so she could have "company" to hold her hands.

She enjoyed learning about the ways of the "airplane" world and on our way back to Johannesburg, via an airplane again, she was quite comfortable and happy with the flight.