Friday, October 31, 2014

My Halloween Costume...#Blogtober14 Day 31

So it's officially the last day of #Blogtober14, I have enjoyed this challenge so much and I loved linking up with other new bloggers, it was awesome!! Having said that, I can't wait to start a weekly series or two and get back to posting recipes, and lifestyle goodies.

As I mentioned over here, Halloween isn't really a thing in South Africa, and our group of friends have not planned anything this year, so no real dress up costume from me. I learnt an interesting fact today though, in the Southern Hemisphere it is actually Beltane (beginning of summer) today, it's kind of the opposite of Halloween which is also known as Samhain (beginning of winter) in the Northern Hemisphere.

According to this source, Beltane is a holiday of Union - both between the Goddess and the God and between man and woman. Handfastings (Pagan marriages) are traditional at this time. It is a time of fertility and harvest, the time for reaping the wealth from the seeds that we have sown. Celebrations include braiding of one's hair (to honour the union of man and woman and Goddess and God), circling the Maypole for fertility and jumping the Beltane fire for luck. They also say that Samhain (Halloween) is the Wiccan New Year. This is the time of year when the veil between the world of the dead and the world of the living is said to be it's thinnest. Spirits and souls of loved ones are said to have more power and ability to visit us. This is the time of year for remembering and honouring our dead, and many people will leave a plate of food and a glass of wine out for wandering sprits.

I found this really interesting, I didn't know that Halloween was actually a Wiccan celebration. Happy halloween to everyone celebrating!

If I were dressing up for Halloween this year, I would go full on Katy Perry!!

But instead, Riaan and I will be spending the weekend lounging alongside the pool at Sun City, soaking up some vitamin D, so the only costume I'll be putting on will be my bikini!!

What will you be getting up to this weekend??

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Facts about me...#Blogtober14 Day 30

I very excited today!! I got my UK Visa and it's now official that we'll be moving to London in January!! That's fact number 1! As for the rest of this post I am just going to tell you a bunch of random facts about me today, some might be super random and others you might already know since I did post a few facts about myself on my One Lovely Blog Award Post.

I love it when people get personal and reveal a little bit about themselves, it just makes them seem more real.
It also gives a bit of insight about what kind of person they are. Hopefully my facts give good insight to the type of person I am...Here they are:

- I really want to learn to take amazing photos, so we'll be investing in a kick-ass camera soon!!

- Riaan say's I went to Hogwarts because our school song was not your normal school song and I loved it there, I actually went to Colin Mann Primary School, I really did love it there,though!

- I won the Best Chocolate Cake in South Africa Competition last year, it was awesome!

- I have big feet...size 8 to be precise!

- In school I enjoyed sport, I played netball, cricket and soccer, I also did cross country running, swimming and shotput.

- My favourite TV show in highschool was Ugly Betty, I could relate to her. It was second to Grey's Anatomy though, which is still a firm favourite of mine.

- I prefer red wine to white wine.

- One day Riaan and I will run the 2 Oceans Half Marathon, it's claimed to be the world's most beautiful race.

- I love animals, especially giraffes, they're my absolute favourite!

- I enjoy being active, running, riding bike, exercising, you name it, I'm game!!

- My cocktail of choice is a frozen margarita.

- I love the sound of rain tapping on a window, I also love sleeping in a tent when it rains, it's so peaceful, haven't done it in years though.

- I love being creative, I bake, scrapbook and paint to release my creative juices.

- I'm a bit of a social media addict, not too much though.

- I love watching live bands, I hope to see Coldplay, Green Day, My Chemical Romance and Mumford and Sons live.

- I was born on my mom's 21st birthday!

- I am one of those girls that's lucky enough to have an awesome mom-in-law, we get along like a house on fire!

I think that's enough for now, hopefully you enjoyed it!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

My most embarrassing moment...#Blogtober14 Day 29

Only two days left of #Blogtober14, I can't believe it's almost over and that I blogged almost every day for 31 days straight!!

I think today's prompt could get quite interesting so head over to Helene's blog to find some more entertaining posts.

I have had so many embarrassing things happen to me in my life, mostly because I'm a complete ditz, so a good giggle is never far away, luckily I've come to accept it, and so have mine and Riaan's families.

The time I ripped a light fitting out of the a bar!

Let me start of by saying this probably would have been much less embarrassing if I had been a little drunk, but unfortunately that's not the case. A couple of years ago we met up with a couple of friends at a local bar, it was a rather busy evening and the bar was buzzing, everyone was in a good mood and the music was good, there was a live band playing - this resulted in me and my two best friends dancing on our chairs, and then on the table. We had only had a drink or two each, it was still early in the evening (I promise!!).

So there we were, shaking our behinds, waving our hands in the air, really enjoying the music and having the best time, the song ended and we promptly hopped of the table, we were so busy laughing and singing that I never realised my bangle had hooked onto the light fitting - I wouldn't call it a chandelier, it's one of those old school pub lights that takes three globes (you can see in the background of the picture of hooligan Caitlin below - taken on the night) - anyway, as I hopped off the table, hands still in the air the light fitting ripped out of the ceiling and we shrieked in shock, then we had a good laugh, I untangled my bangle from the light and apologised to the waitress.

Riaan and I - We've changed alot!
Hooligan Caitlin
It was so embarrassing, we moved to another table outside, where no one had seen what happened, people kept laughing at the situation and making comments the whole evening.

We still laugh about that evening to this day, these are the things memories are made of after all!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Superstitions...#Blogtober14 Day 28

Things I am superstitious about, there are a few...Friday the 13th is definitely one of them! Crossing paths with a black cat isn't...more on those two in a few.

I think there are certain superstitions that are a load of rubbish, but some of them I stick to, just because it makes me feel better.

Like I said I'm not superstitious of black cats, I have one, Arya, and she is the cutest, most playful little thing. I love her so much, she makes us laugh all the time and we haven't had any bad luck since we got her (Touch wood!).

Here are a few of the things I am superstitious about:
  1. Saying touch wood & preferably touching something wooden in order to avoid tempting fate after making a favourable observation.
  2. Friday the 13th - My brother has broken his leg and been involved in a car accident on Friday the 13th.
  3. Making wishes - I believe in making wishes on dandelions, eyelashes, birthday candles (only if you blow them all out in one breath), wishbones and shooting stars. And you can't tell anyone what you wished for!!
  4. Good luck - Finding a four leaf clover and crossing your fingers, apparently these bring good luck, and for some odd reason I believe it...
  5. Bad luck - Walking under a ladder or breaking a mirror, these are things I try to avoid.
  6. Frogs/toads cause warts - Gross, anything to not have to touch a frog!!
  7. You must put money in a wallet/purse when giving it as a gift, otherwise the recipient will have bad luck with money.
That's just a few, but the ones I believe most.
YAY!! I'm back on schedule!!  Can't believe we only have 3 days left of blogtober, this makes me quite sad, I have made so many blogger friends along the way!

A letter to my younger self...#Blogtober14 Day 27

Hello Mony (Hahaha yes this is your nick name at four, it is said with love and fondness, but don't worry, you outgrow it!)

Mom plays Billy Idol's song Mony Mony for you all the time - that's your song!! I still listen to it now, it's great!!

Listen, you need to be more careful, you're a 4 years young little lady, perhaps you should calm down a little, nah you have a great childhood, carry on, just be careful, you break, crack and fracture so many bones in your youth. It hurts! Believe me!!

I know that by now you have already broken your right thumb, I don't know if you've had stitches in you chin yet though...if you haven't then great, no chin scar! (P.S. building a tower of chairs on your pink play table, scurrying to the top and jumping off is not a good idea!! Don't do it!) If you have done that already, I'm sorry, you're going to have that chin scar for the rest of your life!

I'm not saying don't have fun, I'm just saying if you carry on like this you end up breaking your wrist - that wasn't you fault, some silly girl tripped you while you were playing netball, you also crack your right elbow, fracture the same elbow and crack the left wrist in one shot. I think that's about all, but don't worry you're not alone, your little brother ends up breaking a lot more bones than you do!

I know you probably want to go play with your little brother now, he's got a lot of new toys from his 1st birthday party last weekend.
Lots of Love,
Future you

I know I'm behind, but I'm catching up!!

Monday, October 27, 2014

What a weekend!! & #Blogtober 14 Days 25 & 26

This weekend was pretty awesome and super busy!!
We celebrated the wedding of close friends of ours, Derick & Mariaan.
The setting: A farm-style rustic, vintage wedding. It was beautiful, the colour scheme was black, white and grey. All of the accents were wooden with a vintage vibe.
Mariaan made a beautiful bride and Derick looked handsome, they suit one another so well!!
We partied into the wee hours of the morning, and after a brief 4 hour power snooze we were up and about, we had breakfast at the venue and chatted about the evening's events.
What a lovely way to spend a weekend!!

As a result of the awesome celebrations on Saturday and the lethargic Sunday I missed days 25 & 26, so now it's time for a little catch-up!!

My favourite book - Day 25
Well that's just unfair!! I can hardly remember the names of 15% of the books I have read in my lifetime!!
There are just so many good ones!! At the moment I am reading The Fault in our Stars and The Book Thief, I regret watching The Fault in our Stars before reading the book, I have yet to watch The Book Thief, not making that mistake again!!

My favourite is definitely the Harry Potter set. My Gran came back from London when I was about 13 with the first 3 books for me, I was so excited. I read them within a couple of days. As the books came out I read them, my aunt/great gran were sending them to me from the UK, I love that I got my set from the country in which it was written. Hopefully someday I'll get them autographed!

Who would play me - Day 26
I can think of a few, if we were going on personalities I would say Kate Hudson, Emma Watson or Lea Michelle. They are straight-forward, hard working ladies. What I like about Kate is her quirky, gutsy attitude and her fun, bubbly sense of humour, Emma is a feminist and I grew up watching her grow up, also she's smart and down-to-earth, Lea on the other hand sings, dances and is a determined, strong young woman...All of which are traits that I see in myself.

If we're going on looks, right now it'd be Katy Perry, thanks to the purple hair!!
Otherwise Kaley Cuoco Sweeting, or Mila Kunis. I've also been told I look like Drew Barrymore. I don't see it though...

Friday, October 24, 2014

One lovely blog...Awesome!!!

So yesterday there I was, getting my Blogtober on, when I got the sweetest surprise from Charlotte in my comments box!
Charlotte's blog is one of the latest that have been added to my reading list (she's over at A love triangle), what I love about Charlotte is that she is so sweet, but straight forward with every post. Although she's very young she has a mature writing style, no beating around the bush, no niceties, just plain honesty. I think what draws me to her blog is the fact that we actually have quite a bit in common but still alot of differences, which makes for interesting reading!!

So what was the surprise?? Charlotte nominated me for the "One Lovely Blog Award"! I had no idea what it was, so I've looked into it a little. Nominations are chosen by fellow bloggers for newer or up-and-coming bloggers. The goal is to help give recognition to, and also help the new blogger reach more readers. It also recognises blogs that are considered to be “lovely” by the fellow-blogger who chose them. So it's pretty much like a chain letter of the blogging world, but what I love about it is that it encourages new bloggers to keep posting their content because there is someone that enjoys reading it.

Charlotte thank you so much for nominating me. You put the biggest smile on my face yesterday and I really appreciate the nomination! You are awesome!

The rules for the nomination are as follows. You must:
  1. Thank the person who nominated you. - Done!
  2. Add the "One Lovely Blog Award" logo onto your post/blog. - Done!
  3. Share seven facts about yourself. - Done! See below.
  4. Nominate 15 bloggers you admire/read and inform them bu commenting on their blog. - In progress!
7 facts about myself:
 - I still sing my primary school anthem every now and then. I loved that place.
 - I can blow bubbles out of my right eye's tear duct.
 - I am ridiculously clumsy. A couple of weeks ago I fractured my toe while skipping!!
 - Every pet I have had's name contained the letter Y (except for my first dog, her name was Princess).
 - I have a weakness for chocolate, especially dark chocolate - if its Lindt even better!
 - My favourite fruit is watermelon.
 - I'm a proper mixed breed! My father's family's bloodline is French & English/Afrikaans(South African), my mother's family's bloodline is Portuguese, English (London) & Afrikaans.

15 Blogs I read, only 15?? Ha! This is proving to be quite difficult!
 - Wonderfully made
 - Blue Giraffes and Concrete Jungles
 - Our Journey to Everywhere
 - The Best of Intentions
 - Sincerely and Sarcastically
 - Mason Jars and Peanut Butter 
 - Absolutely Arkansas 
 - Quintessentially Me
 - The Parisian Wannabe
 - London Lotta
 - Becky Boops
 - Going the distance
 - Musings of a wanderer
 - XO Kerry
 - Polished tickles and beauty

And that's it, I'm done!!

 P.S Thank you again Charlotte, such an awesome little surprise to find in your comments!!

One beauty product I can't live without...#Blogtober14 Day24

I'm late, I know, but with good reasons! Note: REASONS!!

1. I've been toying with the idea of changing my hair colour for a while now, for about the past three months every time I see a girl on pinterest with purple hair I feel like "I need that in my life!".
So! Today I took the plunge. Purple hair!! Oh yeah!!

Let me know what you think??

2. I spent my day baking a wedding cake! Its a 3 layer vintage cake, vanilla, red velvet and carrot cake with a cream cheese frosting. I obviously can't post any pictures of the cake until after the wedding. So you can expect a few snaps on Sunday!!

3. It's my father-in-laws birthday! So we went out for a lovely dinner to celebrate.

Now that I've finally got a break I can do my Blogtober post.

The one beauty product I can't live without is a nude eyeshadow palette. At the moment I'm using Avon (it's in the car because that's where I normally do my make up lol), the eye shadows I use usually vary between Yardley, Avon and Rimmel. I'm not really a make up girl. I prefer a natural make up look. My usual look would be a nude shadow, with eye liner and mascara. That's it!

I have recently discovered Garnier BB Cream, it's amazeballs! I was at the supermarket to by my usual even tone Garnier moisturiser but then I found the BB Cream, which does exactly the same as the even tone cream but has a tint to it so it provides a light coverage. No extra time spent applying foundation! Perfect!!

What's your number one beauty product??

Thursday, October 23, 2014

My favourite editing apps...#Blogtober14 Day23

Today we're talking about editing apps. If you want to join in on #Blogtober14 link-up with Helene & Tay, it's never too late to start! The more the merrier!
Editing photos takes up alot of time, especially when it comes to the blog.
I seriously had no idea what a mission it can be editing photos until I started this blog, sure I've worked with photoshop a couple of times but I am by no means an expert!
When it comes to editing photos for my blog I'm a picmonkey junkie!! What I love about picmonkey is the user friendliness and ease of use.

On 2 Broke Girls Max said "Twitter is stupid and Instagram is Twitter for people who can't read", that made me laugh so hard! But I love instagram, really I do. I like seeing what my friends are getting up to. You can follow me on instagram @ simmyvos.

My typical instagram process goes like this:
I take a photo using my phone camera - never the instagram camera.

I then edit it in Photo Grid, this is a free app and it's super handy. You can edit single pictures, and put a coloured background/frame around it so that the entire picture fits into the instagram frame. You can also make photogrids, collages and video slides on it. It has some awesome filters and is super easy to use.

If I want to add some words to a picture I use InstaQuote, it's a fairly simple app but has a few pretty fonts and does the job so why complicate things??

At one stage I was using Cupslice and Snapseed aswell, Cupslice is a bit limited in terms of it's capabilities while Snapseed has some really cool filters as well as editing options.

Then I go into instagram, upload my photo, hashtag away and post!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Whyyyyy?? Just why????...#Blogtober14 Day 22

I have a couple of pet peeves, but not too many, thank goodness. There are days when I am way more irritable than others, on these dreaded days EVERYTHING will tick me off. From a sidewards glance to some idiot in the traffic that is driving like it's Sunday.

Here are a few of my pet peeves:
 1. People that don't know how a traffic circle works.
 2. People that click/crack their knuckles.
 3. People that wear crocs or worse, sandals with socks. WHY???
 4. Slow drivers.
 5. People that post attention seeking statuses on facebook - this is not your diary.
 6. Guys who think they are God's gift to women and can't take a hint.
 7. When my nails are wet and I smash them or they chip 2 days after being painted.
 8. People that have no idea what personal space is, they come right up to your face to talk to you or they stand against you in a queue, seriously, what's that all about?
 9. People that don't know the difference between two, to, too / there, their / were, we're.
 10. People that think they are better than everyone else because of their beliefs or religion.
 11. Facebook game requests!
 12. People that stop the microwave when there is 1 second left.
 13. Tangled cables, headphones or necklaces.
 14. Being judged on your taste in music.
 15. People that don't wash their hands, you know when you're sitting on the loo and you hear someone flush, the door opens, then the exit door closes, but the tap never goes I have to touch that same door handle you touched with you unwashed hand? GROSS!!
 16. When Riaan watches me putting my make-up on.
 17. Couples that don't share their food at restaurants...mostly because we do it alllll the time.
 18. When people take forever to put their stuff in the overhead compartments on the plane causing the mother of all traffic jams.
 19. Traffic cops.
 20. The South African justice system along with the Government.

OK...So I actually do have alot of pet peeves, I could go...but I won't. These things make me feel like this.

Am I the only one or do these things annoy you too? What other things get your panties in a bunch??

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

My dream vacation...#Blogtober14 Day 21

I have a bucket list of destinations, there are so so many... but here are my top 10!

I'm super excited that in January I'll be crossing off numbers 1 and 7 of the top 10! Although we don't have time to do my dream France holiday in January, one day we will!

My dream holiday in France would start with a week in Paris, seeing the sights and spending at least a day in Versailles and a day in Montmarte. Then we would hire a car and drive through the country to Marseille, spend a few days there, spend a few days in Nice, and go right down south to a little fishing village called Meillon which is where my great grandfather was from!

Nice - France
One of the places that I would love to go to that isn't on my top 10 list is Bora Bora! Definitely worthy of the dream vacation title!! I mean just look at it!!

It just doesn't get much better than this!! I could easily spend 2 weeks lounging aroung here!

Ah, enough dreaming now, time to get back to planning the January trip!! Paris here we come! Allons-y!!

Monday, October 20, 2014

My biggest fear...#Blogtober14 Day 20

I most definitely don't suffer from FOMO (Fear of missing out), I'm too busy making my own memories to be worried about missing out on what's going on in everyone else's life.

I have a ton of stupid fears, I am petrified of sharks, I hardly swim in the sea, and when I do there better be shark nets! I am scared of dying young and not living my life, which is in total contrast to my fear of getting old (Weird - I know!). I'm scared of loosing all the photo's I've taken, there are so many precious memories.

My biggest fear would have to be regret. I don't want to wake up one day and realise that life has passed me by and I will regret not taking a chance, or living a life in fear of all the what if's... I want to live a life that leaves an impression on at least one person.

I found this very fitting quote - be brave, be fierce and be free!!

I think my stupidest fear is the fear of growing old, I really don't want to get old. I love old people, they're always so sweet but I always feel so so sorry for old people when I see them struggling to walk or anything like that.

I'm also scared of getting Alzheimer's, my gran had it and it's the most terrible thing, she couldn't remember who any of us were, she couldn't remember that she always drank tea not coffee, the smallest things would confuse her.

What are your fears? Biggest? Smallest? Silliest? Don't be shy!

*Image sourced from Pinterest

Sunday, October 19, 2014

What makes you happy?...#Blogtober14 Day 19

Baking. I love it, I pretty much spent my weekend in the kitchen.

I baked a Nutella Torte Cake for my Brother's 21st and a Malva Pudding, also for my Brother's 21st, teacup cakes for my Mom-in-Law's birthday, a Thomas the train cake for Ewan's 2nd birthday (Riaan's nephew).

It was such a busy weekend.

Next weekend I'm baking a wedding cake for friends of mine's wedding. So exciting!!!

Also, music makes me happy.
Living a healthy life, being active and working out.
Spending quality time with family.
Arya drinking water out of anything but her water bowl.

And of course...this face makes me happier than anything in the whole world!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Spilling the beans...#Blogtober14 Day 18

Its been a baking weekend so far, I have made a dozen teacup cakes for my mom-in-laws birthday which is today, I have also baked a funfetti cake for Riaan's nephew's 2nd birthday for tomorrow, I'm still busy icing and decorating it, and I've made a Nutella Chocolate Torte cake for my brothers 21st birthday, which is also today!! I promise I'll do a post on all of the cakes tomorrow!

I love a good secret - who doesn't. I am so good at keeping secrets because I forget them! Well most of them... I figured that spilling the beans, or sharing a secret as per today's prompt, doesn't necessarily have to be something that no one knows, maybe just something that you guys don't know. So I'm going to share 3 things with you - 1 that alot of people know, 1 that only my close girl friends/family know, and 1 that I think only Cindy and Riaan (and maybe Melanie) know.

The one that alot of people know
I am OCD! It's bad! Especially when it comes to papers being punched skew! My juniors never hear the end of it if they punch papers skew. I'm also OCD when it comes to measuring ingredients for my baking, it has to be precise! Nothing more, nothing less.

The one that only my close girl friends/family know
I hate going to the gynae (Sorry boys!). I wouldn't say I'm petrified of going, I get anxious, I seriously hate it! I would rather visit the dentist, or go for a full body wax, or go on a 10km run than go the lady doctor. This stems from my first experience going, I was only 15, I had ovarian cysts, not one but many on both ovaries. They were treated and are gone, but I'm scared that whenever I go for a check-up they may find something else. Cancer runs in my family.

The one that hardly anyone knows
I want children, everyone knows that! I love babies and they love me. I don't want them just yet though, we're going to give it a couple of years. What everyone doesn't know is that I'm petrified of not being able to have them. Due to said issue above. It also contributes to my fear of the lady doctor. Also, I want at least three, and one must be a girl! Riaan's family has strong male genes so we'll have to keep having babies until we have a girl!!

Well that was weird, getting so personal on the blog... I have a few other secrets, but they are not mine to tell. I do believe that in time everything gets revealed.

"What you can't say owns you. What you hide controls you." Unknown.

Any secrets you feel like spilling?? I'm turning on anonymous comments for the next 24 hours, so feel free to spill the beans!

*Image sourced from pinterest

Friday, October 17, 2014

Things I'm an expert at...#Blogtober14 Day 17

I have a thing about people that like to blow their own horn, it annoys me because they usually come across as self-important and pompous. I would never claim to be an expert at anything unless I know absolutely 100% about said topic... Having said that, I have come to the conclusion that I'm not really an expert at much, so here goes:

I am an expert at being me! Nobody else can do Simone quite like I can and I wouldn't want to be any different from the way I am. I have an outgoing personality which I love and I have some darn good talents.

I'm really good at being optimistic, I always try see the positive side of a situation and there's always a smile on my face!!

I'm an expert at being on holiday, I nail that 100% EVERY TIME!

I'm an expert at letting plants die, I cannot keep them alive. Last year September I got the perfect plant for me, it's called an Impala Lilly, they grow in the Kruger National Park, that's where I bought it, they only need water like once a month, it's perfect for me!

I'm an expert at eating vegetables, seriously I would eat vegetables everyday if possible, the one time I even got a bit (maybe more than a bit) upset because we hadn't had vegetables for like a week. It was holidays and who cooks vegetables over holidays, it was more like burgers and hotdogs etc all the time. So I got so upset that I started crying and made Riaan take me to Woolies so I could get a huge microwavable bowl of spinach and butternut! I love all the vegetables, except brussle sprouts, they are Satan's spawn!!!

I am really good at remembering song lyrics, and at correcting Riaan when he's singing the wrong lyrics!!

I'm really good at baking, I love it, one day I might tell you about the time I won the Sunday Times Best Chocolate Cake competition. I'm also quite good at cooking.

I'm an expert at brushing my teeth anywhere BUT in the bathroom. I dunno, I just really like to wander around the house while I brush my teeth. I even do it when we sleep over at friends.

I'm an expert at loving animals, especially giraffes and fluffy animals! Excuse the high quality of the picture!

So that's just a few of the more interesting things I'm an expert at. I'm also an expert at being clumsy, just FYI!