At A Bit Of A Loose End…

I was watching my favourite TV show today, which is now on season 5 – Parenthood.

I’ve spoken about it before because I enjoy the show immensely. Its a big family, like mine. There are adopted children, a (no longer) illegitimate child, a single mom, fertility issues, a special needs child, the family’s parents remind me of my own… I identify with the characters and their situations.

~~ CAUTION - SPOILERS IN PICTURE LINK ~~

~~ CAUTION – SPOILERS IN PICTURE LINK ~~

For some reason while I was watching today’s show, I had a bit of a revelation.

I raised my son on my own – with help from a loving close family – but I was a single mom. I also had special needs issues to deal with with my son’s ADHD Combined Type, so not only did I feel like I had to prove myself as a parent to teachers and doctors and a community at large, I also had to get my son the help he needed to get through school. I started working on support for other parents of children with special needs and creating awareness of ADHD, and I worked full day and weekends as our little family unit had only my income.
I worked my tail off every day.

Make no mistake – I love the life I have led, though I still wish I had been able to (or tried to) do more for my son…

Now my son is a grown up. He’s also doing something he’s loved all his life and he’s happier than I have ever seen him! Seeing and talking to him makes my heart sing!

But every other day I feel like there’s something I am supposed to be doing… I’m no longer fighting with schools and teachers and doctors. I don’t have all kinds of appointments to keep. I don’t get the phonecalls I used to dread…
I fill my time with the causes that are close to my heart – supporting other special needs parents and working with SA Guide-dogs – and I work from home so my time is very much my own, and every now and then I feel like I’ve let something slide.
I feel like something is not getting the attention I am supposed to be giving it, and I almost find myself feeling a little guilty about the fact that my son’s ADHD is no longer as HUGE a stress-about-it-how-can-I-fix-it-why-my-son factor in my life as it was just a year ago.

I still worry about him, and about his future, and I still wish I had done more when he was at school, but I have it easier now and once in a blue moon I have to shake myself and tell myself that thats okay.

Get Yourselves to the The SA Guide-dogs Gala Concert!

O F F I C I A L    P R E S S    R E L E A S E

Leading Stars For S A Guide-Dogs Variety Gala Concert

GalaConcert

The South African Guide-dogs Association for the Blind will be hosting their Gala Variety Concert at the Auto & General Theatre on the Square on Sunday 24 August.

The sought-after annual event has drawn together many of the finest entertainers for a music and comedy extravaganza.  The star-studded line-up will be truly historic, with more leading performers this year than ever before.  There will be only two shows, 15h00 and 18h30.

The stars of the show have kindly given of their time and talents free of charge, and entire proceeds of ticket sales will benefit Guide-Dogs.  To add to the generous spirit, Daphne Kuhn is proud to host the event at the Auto & General Theatre on The Square, with their amenities, staff and services also provided pro bono.

Producing the sensational concerts will be Chet Diepraam, joined by Claire Pacariz. “Using the same winning concepts of the Leading Ladies and Leading Men extravaganzas at the same theatre, we will treat Joburg audiences to the most remarkable line-up of entertainment variety never before seen on local stages,” adds Chet. “The finest available, some old and some new, performing their signature, show-stopper numbers, for one day only! It’s to be a concert that the discerning Joburg public dare not miss.”

Confirmed stars include:
Sam Peo (award winning theatre artist, including Chicago, Cabaret and Aspects of Love)
Keith Smith (Hello Dolly, Aspects of Love, Egoli)
Carly Graeme (Mamma Mia!, We Will Rock You, Starlight Express, Boys in the Photograph)
Mark Banks  (one of SA’s most respected comedians, Comedy Choice Lifetime Achievement Award)
Michael de Pinna (funny man, singer, stage and screen actor, Yebo Gogo fame)
Cat Simone (solo shows include tributes to Barbra Streisand and Ella Fitzgerald)
Timothy Moloi (velvet voiced star that performs with big orchestras, recently the genie in Aladdin)
Cito (front man of Wonderboom, also lead in Queen at the Ballet and Jesus Christ Superstar)
Brenda Sakellarides (The Sound of Music, King and I, Menopause, and director of Youth Ballet)
Kiruna Devar (lead in Sweet Charity and star of Leading Ladies concert, NSA top achiever)
Fiona Ramsay (iconic actress and singer, film credits include Hotel Rwanda, Bang Bang Club)
Tony Bentel (pianist and entertainer extraordinaire, also of Doo Be Boobies fame)
Helen Desbois (SAMA nominee and MTN Radio Award winner, We Will Rock You)
Bongi Mthombeni  (Idols SA finalist and Panto star, session musician and conductor)
Holly Diamond, aka Neil Holland (one of The Dreemz drag trio, better than Celine Dion herself)
Live music with the dynamic Sandton Jazz Sextet, featuring Andre Behnke (piano), Nippy Cripwell (Double Bass), Tony Yoko (Drums), Pam Mortimer (Alto saxophone and Flugelhorn), Albert Burger (Guitar) and Philip Stapelberg (Harmonica).

With special guest artist appearances by true legends and iconic names in the SA entertainment arena: Des & Dawn Lindberg, Annabel Linder and Judy Page.

Daphne Kuhn, director of The Auto & General Theatre, enthused “We are excited to host some of SA’s finest and most well known artists, all rallying together for this fundraiser for the S A Guide-Dogs for the Blind.”

Parking is available at the Mandela Square or Sandton City Parkades.

TWO shows only: 15h00 or 18h30. There will also be raffle, with a new car as first prize – tickets for the illustrious variety concert are just R250, and are available at Strictly Tickets on 082-553-5901 or online www.strictlytickets.com

Find the Auto & General Theatre On the Square on Facebook and Twitter.

Why Do We Need Animal Rescue Organisations Like Lab Rescue & Wetnose?

We need rescue organisations like Wetnose, Barking Mad, Kitty & Puppy Haven and Labrador & Golden Retriever Rescue because people continue to buy animals from breeders!

I know I’m going to be treading on more than a few toes here, but I really feel strongly about this, today in particular.

Last week I found a dog on the side of the road, and I took him to my vet to stay over for a few days while we tried to make a plan for him. I feel like this makes me more than a little responsible for him.
Tomorrow it will be a week, and my vet can no longer keep him. No one has been looking for him, no one who has been to the vet in the last week is willing to take him on – even as a foster – and I can’t afford to bring him home with me.
He’s now going to the Animal Anti Cruelty League in JHB – THANK GOODNESS – who will be fetching him from my vet tomorrow morning. I am beyond thrilled that he won’t be going to the SPCA, but of all the no-kill rescue organisations in Gauteng, the AACL is the only one with space! I called all of them!

Someone cared about this dog. Even if it was just a little bit. He had a collar, and he had been tied up somewhere. He wasn’t underfed even though he was filthy dirty and he has a few scars. He looks like a small Lab but he has a thick neck like a Staffie. He’s a really sweet, placid boy and the staff at the vet have become quite fond of him. I had no trouble leashing him and leading him to the car.
It makes me sad that he no longer has a home, and I do hope he will be adopted while at the AACL, but what are the chances? He’s not a cute little puppy and he’s not a recognised breed.

And before you bring it to my attention – I’m not referring here to dogs that are bred for a specific purpose, like SAGA’s Labs and Goldens.
Whilst breeders may sell their puppies “to approved homes only” thats the extent of their responsibility, whilst SAGA monitors the health and welfare of every dog they breed for as long as they are alive.

And with that I add another rescue organisation to my donation list (Wetnose and Lab Rescue are the other two).

Please people, adopt don’t shop!
Think hard before you spend thousand of Rands on a dog from a breeder.
Rather donate those thousands to a worthy organisation and adopt a dog already in dire need of a home and love and attention.

Can I Have A Bit Of Tantrum Here Quickly?

Everything shrinks, but the price continues to go up.
Its like everyone took a leaf out of American Airlines’s rule book after they started saving $70K a year by putting one less olive in their first class in-flight salads.

Let me give you some examples.

  • Boxes of tissues used to come in packs of either 100 or 200. Now its 90 or 180.
  • Iced Zoo biscuits used to have an animal shape stamped into the underside of the cookie as well as the icing animal on the top. And there used to be twice as much icing on top.
  • Pringles have shrunk. You know the “once you pop you can’t stop” chips? For one thing the tube is no longer tall enough to hold your spagetti. And for another thing – when I used to buy Pringles, the corners of my mouth would get raw because the chips were so big. No more.
  • Filled biscuits like Lemon Creams and Jolly Jammers have maybe half the filling in they used to have. As for twist-lick-dunk, have you tried it lately!? Don’t make me laugh.
  • Coldrink and beer used to come in a 340ml can. Then Coke had a “gas shortage” in 2005 or 2006, and after that the cans were 330ml.
  • And did you know that South African legislation states that bread should weigh 800g unless otherwise stated either on a label. What a cop out. When last did you weigh your bread?
  • Even eggs have been downsized. In South Africa an XL egg is a good 10g smaller than the ones classified as XL in the USA, Europe and Canada.

Quite frankly, it pisses me off.
I wish a simple blog post would be enough to tell big business and manufacturers just how much I hate being ripped off.

Cirque Éloize iD @MONTECASINOZA

Sheesh… If these video highlights don’t make you want to go and see Cirque Éloize I don’t know what will!
I just love this description: mind-blowing fusion of new theatrical circus arts and urban dance

The following is an official press release:

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Cirque Éloize iD extends Montecasino season to four weeks

cirque eloize

For 20 years now, Cirque Éloize has been taking the public and critics by storm in more than 440 cities around the world. Cirque Éloize’s dazzling and energetic show entitled “iD” comes to South Africa for the very first time at the Teatro at Montecasino opening onTuesday, 19 August. Showtime Management, SA promoters of this unique visual spectacular that combines contemporary circus arts and urban dance announced the show is extending by a week to accommodate public demand. “iD” must close on 14 September.  With a limited season of only four weeks, patrons are encouraged to book now to avoid disappointment.

This astonishing modern circus transports audiences to a vibrant urban streetscape. The stage comes alive with the boundless energy of acrobats, break dancers, and contortionists, who perform against a kaleidoscope of eye-popping video projections, building to a stunning finale on a one-of-a-kind video trampowall. Everyone will love this mind-blowing fusion of new theatrical circus arts and urban dance! It’s like no other show ever seen before in South Africa. You don’t want to miss it!

Based on the multidisciplinary talents of its artists, Cirque Éloize expresses its innovative nature through theatricality and humanity, and combines circus arts with music, dance and theatre in a path-breaking and original manner. With iD, Cirque Éloize presents a show positively crackling with daring and modernity. Cirque Éloize’s iD is a blend of circus arts and urban dance: b-boying/b-girling, breakdance, hip-hop and more. The scene is set in the heart of a city, in a public space where people seek refuge and a chance to shed their anonymity; a place where identity is forged and individuality is expressed to a stimulating soundtrack created by composers Jean-Phi Goncalves (Beast) and Alex McMahon.

The mesmerizing integration of multimedia gives this show a unique feel. Fourteen performers from twelve disciplines help create iD’s entertaining and resolutely urban universe, in keeping with Cirque Éloize’s tradition of using multidisciplinary performers from around the world.

It’s time for a dance fuelled adrenaline rush. Get ready to be blown away by the pulsating and captivating performances that make Cirque Éloize iD the not to be missed family entertainment happening of the year. Hurry, book now at Computicket. Special family packages available via Computicket. For Montecasino Group Hospitality and Show and Stay Packages please dial telephone 011 367 4250

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SHOW INFORMATION

VENUE
Teatro at Montecasino

DATE
From 19 August until 14 September 2014

SHOW TIMES
No Monday shows
Tuesday to Saturday @ 20h00
Saturday @ 15h00
Sunday 14h00 and 18h00[GP1]

TICKET PRICES
TuesdayWednesdayThursday @ 20h00 & Sunday @ 18h00:
R120, R150, R250, R350
Friday @ 20h00Saturday @ 15h00 and 20h00 and Sunday @ 14h00:
R150, R200, R300, R400

FAMILY PACKAGES
Family Package (4 to 6): R300.00 per ticket
Valid Tue – Thu at 20h00 & Sun at 18h00 – Top Price Only
Only available at Computicket stores or the call centre on 083 915 8000

STUDENTS DISCOUNT
50% Discount on top price only – subject to availability
TuesdayWednesday and Thursday 8pm performances ONLY. Available after 2pm on the day of the performance.
Part-time and full-time students, including visiting international students. Student must be present with their student card. One show ticket only per valid card that must have a recognisable original photograph. Only available at the Teatro/Montecasino Box Office.

BOOKINGS
Computicket by calling 0861 915 8000 / 011 340 8000, visit www.computicket.com or visit your nearest Computicket service centre.

CORPORATE BOOKINGS
Strictly Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm ONLY
Contact: Beth McKey
Landline: 011 476 5456
Cell: 073 321 2191
e-mail: sales@showtime.co.za

ONLINE
Cirque Éloize iD:   http://www.cirque-eloize.com/en/shows/id
Montecasino:  www.montecasino.co.za,
Showtime Management: www.showtime.co.za
Follow Cirque Éloize iD on Twitter @showtime_SA
and Facebook /showtimemanagementsa

MONTECASINO HOSPITALITY PACKAGES:
For Group Dinner and Show Hospitality Packages please contact montecasino.reservations@tsogosun.com or telephone 011 367 4250

MONTECASINO SHOW AND STAY PACKAGES:
For Show-and-Stay Packages at one of the Montecasino Hotels (available for Friday 8pm and Saturday 8pm performances only) please contact montecasino.reservations@tsogosun.com or telephone 011 367 4250

ABOUT CIRQUE ÉLOIZE (Canada)
Since the founding of the company in 1993, Cirque Éloize has been expressing its innovative nature through theatricality and humanity. By combining circus arts with theater, dance and music in an original manner it has positioned itself at the heart of the renewal of circus arts. With ten original productions to its credit, Cirque Éloize has presented more than 4,000 performances in 440 cities, in some 40 countries around the world. The company has also been presented in international festivals around the world and has won numerous awards including 10 medals and prizes at the Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain in Paris. In addition to its touring shows, Cirque Éloize develops custom made concepts for international special events. To date, more than such 1,300 events have taken place. Cirque Éloize currently has two shows on tour: iD and CIRKOPOLIS. For more information about the company, please visit cirque-eloize.com.

ABOUT SHOWTIME MANAGEMENT (SA) 
Originally founded by Hazel Feldman and now with her son and partner, Tony – Showtime Management has set the benchmark for the presentation of quality, international-standard shows and events, many of which have been presented throughout Asia, Europe and Las Vegas. Concert productions include: The Rolling Stones; Frank Sinatra; Elton John; Rod Stewart; Pavarotti; Seal; Diana Ross; Liza Minnelli; The 3 Tenors; Black Eyed Peas; Deadmau5; 50 Cent; George Benson; Swedish House Mafia, the FIFA 2010 Kick-off Concert with John Legend; Shakira and a host of international and local artistes; Tap Dogs; Hardwell; the Electric 2014 NYE Ball featuring the legendary Carl Cox and this year’s line-up features Eminem’s Rapture SA Tour, Ultra, Disney on Ice and Cirque Eloize. Musical Theatre productions include FAME; CHICAGO; WE WILL ROCK YOU, BEAUTY & THE BEAST; HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL; RENT; MAMMA MIA!; DREAMGIRLS; MENOPAUSE THE MUSICAL; BEAUTIFUL CREATURES; DIRTY DANCING and JERSEY BOYS.

~~as per my Ladybloggers pledge, I state clearly that I was not paid to post this media release~~