Our Shining Stars Indeed

 Liz Robbertze,  Follow my blog:

As we settle into the new year with Easter eggs and Valentine’s choccies in every supermarket, it would seem the new school term is steaming ahead. Those first day anxieties a distant memory, covering of the school books completed for another year, and interschool sports being the greatest priority in every school in the Lowveld (or is it just me who hasn’t noticed the passion for interschools?)

Hazardous book covering

I do need to mention at this point though, the thankless task of covering books each year. Being a proud mom of two boys, every year I gather all the books (text- books included) make myself comfy as I indulge in my favourite soapie and cover books, which has proved hazardous once or twice. Those textbooks, whilst I am so engrossed in the program, after completing the covering and having written my son’s name and grade on it only to realise I have it either upside down – or have written their name on the wrong side! Breathe in, breathe out, count to one thousand, count backwards to one! Take off the plastic, brown paper and start again. With a little less focus on the soapie this time.

The problem with covering in plastic; when you cover a textbook and you didn’t stand the book up as you cover it, and you stick down the sticky tape, and the book doesn’t close! You know what I mean – when you think you’re done you try to close the book and the cover hovers in the air! What about when you cannot find the sticky end of the sticky tape! You feel around and around for tape and never find the end bit! (Sigh sigh) I cannot tell you how many times I have tossed aside that roll of tape and gone looking for another one. Yes, because there always seems to be more than one roll hanging around in odd drawers – until of course there isn’t. So, you go out to buy another roll and the next day you find all those rolls that you knew you had but couldn’t recall in which drawer!

Magical Valentine’s day

With Valentine’s also being a big feature on the school calendar, choosing a chocolate or adequate gift for the little special human who is flavour of the moment in your little (or big ones’) life can also prove hazardous. “Mom it definitely must not be too emo BUT it can’t be too casual” and never mind the new outfit that is an ‘essential’ for the Valentine’s ball – I guess it is all part of growing up and definitely memories in your children’s lives albeit extremely hazardous for my bank account – especially having just survived Christmas.

However, I do need to add, how times are a- changing! 

I recall when we were at school it was as big (or small) as a Valentine’s card, no names – in my eyes it seemed so special, almost magical for want of a word. I kept those cards for years; they were yellowed and the ink feint, but they were given to me once in a magical younger world.


I often ponder as to how many moms out there have the exact scenario as me each day. Fetching your children – them clambering into the car, looking like they were dragged through a bush backwards (boys I am meaning); once or twice even a shoe already missing! Anyhow as you battle your way through the end of the school day traffic you casually ask, “how was your day?” to which my boys always reply “Fine”. Fine that’s it! Not a word more! So of course, I press on, with another question. “What did you do?” – to which they reply another single word in monotone “nothing”. To which I reply: “NOTHING! I pay school fees for you to do nothing” and of course I get the extremely irritated tone “Ah mom you know what I mean?” – erm, no I don’t! I haven’t a cooking clue!

Friends with daughters

My friends who have daughters. Their pickup from school (especially on the first day is a total, I mean TOTALLY different scenario to mine). Mom doesn’t even get an opportunity to excitedly asked how was the first day. Her daughter, still perfectly intact wearing her new uniform, her hairstyle as perfect as it was this morning, school shoes still shiny and both on! A few creases on her uniform but nothing too dramatic! She steps enthusiastically into the car whilst she calmly places her suitcase, lunch bag and all her school goodies in the car. Her daughter excitedly and passionately explains second for second, minute for minute exactly how day one went down! And then! She thanks her mom for her delicious lunch which consisted of grapes, yoghurt, cheese sandwich etc.

 Little girls … worlds apart from my little boys.

A train wreck awaits me

My sons on the other hand … if they haven’t forgotten their little cooler bags on the playground, I retrieve them from the back seat, open them …. and what a train wreck awaits me. 

An open yoghurt which probably was tasted and decided a definite no-no, so said yoghurt is now spewed all over the sandwich which has exactly one bite out of it; grapes untouched and covered in yoghurt. While I wipe down the cooler bag, throw out the yoghurt covered sandwich and grapes, my sons will come through asking what’s for lunch “I am starving I haven’t eaten all day!”

I remember my best friend, oh my giddy aunt she would bring the wildest lunches – one of her favourites was roll mops – yip Herring roll mops! To this day when I see a jar of herring roll mops I think of dearest Charmaine. My mom – she would occasionally give us ….wait for it … baked beans, tinned bladdy baked beans on bread! I know, in this topsy turvy world we live in we should be grateful for each meal….but be honest….dried dates or baked beans! Be honest dear reader!
And somehow through all these little daily stresses of worrying and caring and loving our children unconditionally, we all survive. They grow up, live their beautiful lives as we proudly stand by – as powerful as this is – they are the future – and from where I am sitting, I reckon its going to be a wonderful one with our kids as our future leaders.

Shining stars

Thanks dear moms for taking the time to read my blog. Remember always be kind to yourself. Till next issue, take care and be safe out there. And always, always show your children how beautifully they shine in this world.

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