Where the Light Gets In

Last week I wrote about the need for expressing gratitude and thankfulness in order to bring positivity into your life. This got me thinking about my own past and how long it took me to reach this point. It reminded me to not judge others, we are all evolving at our own pace.

I have touched on some of the trauma from my childhood and my past relationships and two things which I heard this week really resonated with me.

The first is the Buddhist philosophy that the path to happiness starts from an understanding of the root causes of suffering. Or as ‘Marcus’ said to ‘Ginny’ in season 2 of Ginny & Georgia:

we suffer so we know happiness

Buddhism pursues happiness by using knowledge and practice to achieve mental equanimity. In Buddhist teachings, equanimity, or peace of mind, is achieved by detaching oneself from the cycle of craving that produces “dukkha” (suffering). So by achieving a mental state where you can detach from all the passions, needs and wants of life, you free yourself and achieve a state of transcendent bliss and well-being.

Basically, living in the present, being content and grateful and not craving what others have. Not looking at your perceived past failures, not focusing forward on your future until the future is the present. I know for me both of those cause me anxiety. What’s done is done, so dwelling on the past just creates unnecessary sadness for me. What is to come will arrive soon enough and if we take it moment by moment then we will get through it.

The second is a quote by Leonard Cohen. It is a powerful lyric from his song “Anthem,” off the 1992 album “The Future“.

“There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”

I take that to mean that only by having been broken can we have context on being healed.

Cohen himself said about this song, “The future is no excuse for an abdication of your own personal responsibilities towards yourself and your job and your love. “Ring the bells that still can ring”: they’re few and far between but you can find them.

This situation does not admit of solution of perfection. This is not the place where you make things perfect, neither in your marriage, nor in your work, nor anything, nor your love of God, nor your love of family or country. The thing is imperfect.

And worse, there is a crack in everything that you can put together: Physical objects, mental objects, constructions of any kind. But that’s where the light gets in, and that’s where the resurrection is and that’s where the return, that’s where the repentance is. It is with the confrontation, with the brokenness of things.”

Nothing is ever perfect, we must accept our lot and be grateful for it. In every situation you can find something to be grateful for, even if it is just that you are alive! That gratitude begets more reasons for more gratitude. Like most things, it is a circular path.

I am not saying that we must not focus any energy on manifesting things in our lives. But we must not obsess about them and we must not constantly focus energy on them. We put out our needs and the universe will provide in its own time. We have to let go and trust.

With that in mind, this week I created my vision board and set my intentions for 2023. This Chinese New Year started on the 22nd of January, celebrating the first new moon in 2023. With the New Moon being in January, the Chinese new year started before Lap Chun (4th February). This phenomenon increases the possibility of business luck and personal wealth.

My intentions and things which I want to manifest are: Good Health (normal blood pressure and cholesterol), grandchildren (my 1st one in July and then for Caitlin to fall pregnant easily when she is ready to do so), a lovely Italian honeymoon for Cait and Wes, Happiness, Travel, Study of the Shamanism course I want to study, Love (strong marriages for me and the girls and a loving relationship for Trevor), Drumming, Wealth, Prosperity, Kindness, Friendships, and finally, new windows for the house as well as renovating the downstairs and replacing the floors.

My vision board of my intentions and manifestations worked brilliantly last year so I am trusting that it happens again this year. Norm has already gotten a new piece of work that came on the same day I did the board! We are on that final push to be like squirrels and store away as much as we can for retirement. So we will both work hard for the next 5 years and then hopefully we can retire with enough money to support a reasonable lifestyle.

Last weekend was so exhausting but it left me feeling so thankful and happy! In my last post I mentioned that I did a house clearing for a friend on Friday and attended my women’s circle on Saturday morning. Then on Saturday evening we attended a party which was hosted by Wes’s parents Susan and Jose that was held to celebrate Caitlin and Wes’s wedding.

Jose is Portuguese and has a huge family! They all seem to be gorgeous too so there are some good genes in that lot which bears good omens for some beautiful grand-babies. It was a really relaxed evening and it was lovely to spend time with Cait and her new in-laws who seem to all love her, quirks and all. I am so happy because I know what it is like to have in laws who do not like you, it can be horrid. My first mother in law did not like me, she thought her family was better than me since ‘they descended from Robert the Bruce’ and I was a little Tennessee hillbilly with no manners and ‘red Indian’ grandparents.


Anyway. I digress.

Wes’s family are all really lovely people. Both sets of his grandparents were there and they were so adorable. I wish my Mom could have been there too. Caitlin wore her wedding dress and Norm wore his wedding suit. I wore the new linen dress I bought from BENA.

We took an Uber so that Norm could have a drink and we took a cooler bag of vodka seltzer drinks for me so that I could avoid the wine which does not agree with me. The food was catered and there was loads of cheeseburgers, cheeses, meats and various other little snacks. It was all delicious and plentiful. We mingled and chatted to lots of nice people and really enjoyed ourselves.

When we got home we found that Finn had been really well behaved and had not destroyed anything. It seemed as if he slept the whole time we were out.

We also had such a lovely Sunday. I lay in bed until noon and Norm brought me coffees in bed. Finn kept me company. He is so silly.

Eventually I got up and showered and went downstairs. We decided to watch a film and we chose ‘The School for Good and Evil‘. It was a fantasy film based on a novel of the same name by Soman Chainani. It stars Laurence Fishburne as School Master Rhian, the incredibly beautiful Kerry Washington as Prof. Clarissa Dovey the Dean of the School for Good, and Charlize Theron as Lady Leonora Lesso, the Dean of the School for Evil. The two girls who are the main subject of the film are played by Sophia Anne Caruso as Sophie and Sofia Wylie as Agatha. The film was good for a lazy Sunday and I give it 4 Kitten Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐.

Norm knows how much I love chocolate and sweets. He found some which are acceptable on a keto diet. This one is low carb, gluten free, contains collagen and has no palm oil. It was really tasty! They usually taste like cardboard. I found these online at Faithful to Nature and I have now ordered a variety of them to have as treats.

For dinner on Sunday I had sushi from K1 in Hout Bay. It was so delicious. I had salmon roses, prawn roses, and bamboo roses topped with prawns.

Load shedding has continued and Sunday night the power was off from 10pm when we went to bed and off at 6am when we woke, it is so stressful to work around it. Sometimes it is off for 4 hour stretches and sometimes for two. We have lived off of take away meals most of the week as a result. On Monday he went to Massimo’s and I had the calamari tapas and the starter of figs, mozzarella and salami which was on special. I love figs and I think Massimo’s have the best calamari in town.

Vanessa came to give me a pedicure on Tuesday and it was about 30℃ so I popped in for a quick swim before she arrived. After she left Norm got a take away for us from a place we go often and they got my order wrong once again so I had a strop on social media but they phoned and apologised and offered to comp us so I calmed down and took down my post. I have a bit of a temper and always react when I am annoyed. Since I have one meal a day, I want that meal to be what I want!

On Thursday Norm popped to the shops so I was able to cook that night. I cut up chicken breasts into nice sized pieces and fried them in olive oil and butter and seasoned them with salt, pepper and paprika. In another pan I fried sliced mushrooms in butter and then added them to the chicken once done. I added a few spoonfuls of cream and a spoonful of an onion relish I had in the fridge which has a light curry taste to give it a bit of love. I sliced red cabbage thinly and fried it in butter and balsamic. Finally, I steamed some broccolini and tossed it in lemon juice. It was all high fat and low carb and delicious!

On Friday afternoon I cooked a beef curry which we will have tonight. It is a very hot day which suits a nice hot curry.

I was paid on the 28th and so in turn I paid mom back for various things she had paid for while we were on holiday and I paid off my credit card, so I am now clear on the debt front but I’m already feeling broke shortly after getting paid. But I hate being in debt or owing money. Mom would get special deals for shops where she was a member so it saved for her to buy on her card but I had to pay her back obviously (although when I was younger and she was richer I did not always do so!).

However the state of my account has not stopped me from spending. I bought some cushions from Mr Price for the chairs I found on marketplace a few months ago. They are cute but the metal seats really hurt your derriere. Now if I have coffee in the shade I can be comfy. These are perfect and go nicely with the other cushions I bought for my main outside table and chairs. My daughters have beaten my crow like love for sparkly things and bright colours into submission and I am living my best beige life. #MoreClassLessSass

I also stocked up on candles to cater for load-shedding as you can never have enough candles when you are in the dark so often. #FU_Eskom

I ordered a new keyboard and mouse since I have once again broken my keyboard by spilling water on it. Since I needed to top up the cost of my order to get free shipping I bought a little pink Minnie Mouse bowl and utensil set for The Pickle.

I ordered some cute baby shoes and a few outfits for Pickle too. They are being delivered directly to Lily so I will have to wait on a picture.

I also ordered a baby stroller and carry cot for Lily’s baby and they arrived at her house this week. We had found the one she wanted on Takealot and it was crazy expensive, then I spotted the same one on Instagram and it was over R1k cheaper! So we ordered it and just prayed that the website was legit and that we had not been scammed. The supplier is Bundle Babies and I really recommend them for anyone looking for baby goods. They also gave me a discount code as a first time customer and a percentage off of a large order is worthwhile.

We also found a lovely little carry bag that converts into a cot.

I had one of these with my babies and I used it to go to the beach when Caitlin was a baby and Trevor was a toddler. It was perfect as I could carry all of the things a baby needs and then pop out the bed for her to nap. They are all in grey so all of the different components will go nicely together.

I also found a second hand cot on Facebook marketplace and it has a compactum and mattress and bedding and everything she needs. Norm went to pick it up today as the previous owner lives in Stellenbosch.

This means Lily has everything she needs and a lot of what she wants as friends also donated various things too. She can get everything washed and set up in the nursery. I’m so excited for her.

I was given a voucher for a Thai Massage at the Protea Day Spa here in Hout Bay and today while Norm was off foraging for baby goodies I went to redeem it. I was told to get undressed and lie down and a tiny little Thai woman climbed up on to the bed and did a deep tissue massage and almost a back readjustment. He pulled every joint and rubbed every muscle. She used tons of oil so my skin feels divine. She was like a chiropractor and a physiotherapist combined. I loved it so much. I really recommend you give it a go. If you are a single woman it might save you from sleeping with an unworthy dickhead as you will be so relaxed you will not need anything else.

Their website says: “Traditional Thai massage uses ancient yoga techniques, which incorporates intense stretching in order to loosen muscles and relieve tension”. And the actual specific treatment I had says: “A massage therapy using a heated herbal compress, which is placed on aching muscles. The combination of Thai herbs and heat allows muscles to relax and as a result relieve tension, aches and pains.” It was just a little bit of heaven.

I hope you have all had a lovely week and weekend and that your week ahead is fabulous.

Until next time, Kisses from the Kitten xoxoxoxox

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