Jy blaai in die argief vir 2010 Julie.

Have you seen this dog? (JHB: Melville/Westdene/Brixton/Westbury)

Julie 31, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

A fellow journalist, Amanda De Lange, is heartbroken over her German Shepherd Dexter. He got out of their yard last night, and she has been searching all day today.

Here’s a small pic of Dexter,as well as a link to Amanda’s add on Gumtree (where you can see the pic as well) . Please send the link to anybody you know in the area and help Amanda find her little boy.


Ebenaeser will be on SABC 1 at 12h30 today

Julie 25, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Watch it if you can. This is such a wonderful charity – really a working model of what can be done when people are willing to extend a helping hand.

Enjoy the Sunday!

Even in death there is a struggle – update on Ebenezer

Julie 23, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Blogville!

After posting my plea for help for the good people of Ebenezer (they needed money to bury 4 people who died in the last two weeks) help is streaming in. The funerals were paid for immediately by a fellow blogger. Thank you HOP!  Another Day also promised a donation with more to follow when it’s her birthday (she said she will ask her sister for a donation to Ebenezer in lieu of a birthday present.) Other bloggers, like Madmom, also promised help.

I posted the plea on my facebook as well, and twisted my rich brother’s arm. He will from now on help Ebenezer on a monthly basis. By Wednesday, a whopping R9 500 has been paid into the centre’s bank account. Shirley will give me an update later today on what has been coming in.

Other money raised will go towards blankets, food and flu medicine. As you can imagine, it can’t be a joke to keep 135 people, most of them either very old or small children, healthy during the current flu epidemic. (Both my kids have been sick on and off for the two weeks since the school started. Being between a lot of other people simply gives the dreaded flu virus extra oomph.) A few years ago it cost the centre at least R1 000 a day to keep it’s doors open, and Shirley and Thomas not only manage to do that, but also look after about 40 toddlers from a nearby squatter camp in their daycare centre. As Shirley said, they had no choice, because when the mothers go out to look for work, the children are left in the care of strangers and more often than not get sexually molested. They also run a soup kitchen for the poorest of the poor in the squatter camp, and share all excess blankets and clothes with the squatters of Ennerdale and Kliptown.

I am taking a friend who wants to get involved with raising money for Ebenezer to the centre on Friday. Is there anybody else in Joburg-area who wants to go with us? If so, drop me a line.


If you want to contribute anything (blankets, food, toys, clothes) also let me know. I live in Alberton, but I’m sure we can make arrangements to get some stuff together.


 I promise you getting involved with Shirley and Thomas Merime and their work is a lesson in faith, love and hope. They are angels.

(Those that have paid in, please supply me with your e-mail details)

Job description for cats.

Julie 21, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Got this from a friend. A must read for those owned by a cat.



BATHROOMS – Always accompany guests to the bath room. It is not necessary to do anything. Just sit & stare.

DOORS – Do not allow any closed doors … in any room. To get the door opened, stand on hind legs & hammer with forepaws. Once door is opened, it’s not necessary to use it. After you have ordered an outside door opened, stand half-way in & out & think about several things. This is particularly important during very cold weather, rain, snow, or mosquito season.

CHAIRS AND RUGS – If you have to throw up, get to a chair quickly. If you cannot manage in time, get to an Oriental rug. If there is no Oriental rug, long-haired or Persian is good. When throwing up on the carpet, make sure you back up so it’s as long as a human’s bare foot.

HAMPERING – If one of your humans is engaged in any activity, and the other is idle, stay with the busy one. This is called helping, otherwise known as hampering. Following are the rules for hampering:

When supervising cooking, sit just behind the left heel of the cook. You cannot be seen and thereby stand a better chance of being stepped on and then picked up and comforted.

For book readers, get in close under the chin, between eyes and book –unless you can lie across the book itself.

When a human is working at the computer, jump up on desk, walk across keyboard, bat at mouse pointer on screen, and then lay in human’s lap across arms, hampering typing in progress.

WALKING – As often as possible, dart quickly & as close as possible in front of the human… especially on stairs, when they have something in their arms, in the dark & when they first get up in the morning. This will help their co-ordination skills.

BEDTIME – Always sleep on the human at night so he/she cannot move around.

LITTER BOX – When using the litter box, be sure to kick as much litter out of the box as possible. Humans love the feel of kitty litter between their toes.

HIDING – Every now and then, hide in a place where the humans cannot find you and .. do NOT come out for three to four hours under any circumstances. This will cause the humans to panic (which they love) thinking that you have run away or are lost. Once you do come out… the humans will cover you with love & kisses, and you probably will get a treat.

ONE LAST THOUGHT – Whenever possible, get close to a human, especially their face, then turn around and present your butt to them. Humans love this, so do it often.

Pop psychology from children’s movies

Julie 20, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

My youngest is sick in bed with a severe sinusproblem. Took him for x-ray’s yesterday, as the doctor was concerned about the nose bleeds, vomiting, fever and headaches. The good news is that medicine should do the trick, as I can’t imagine what a visit to the ENT will cost. (Or what he will want to do…)

So, he’s lying in my bed watching movies, while I’m trying to write deep and intellectual articles. (Nah, I just write articles.) In between writing book reviews and an article on the sandwich-generation, I am bombarded with the joyful sounds of movies like Barnyard, Ice Age and (last night, with his sister) even a Hannah Montana-movie.

And what do I learn?

“Life is a climb, but the view is worth it.” (from Hannah Montana, the movie)

“The greatest leaders are not the strongest ones, but the ones who cares the most for their people.” (Barnyard)

Now stop reading blogs and go and earn your bread and butter.

PS: A great big hug and lots of thanks to HOP and Another Day for their donations to Ebenaezer Care Centre for the funerals of the three old people and the baby (see my blog yesterday). Guys, may God bless you for paying kindness forward!

Even in death there is a struggle

Julie 19, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

I haven’t ever asked for anything like this, dear bloggers. But this morning I received an SMS from a charity that takes care of the unwanted people of society. They need to bury three of their old people and a baby who died during the last 2 weeks. (They have a kindly undertaker who will do all 4 the burials at R3 500, and he is putting pressure on them as he can’t storie the bodies any longer.) 

I have mentioned them before in a blog or two. Ebenaezer Care Centre is situated on a small-holding just on the other side of the Grassmere Toll Plaza.

Pastor Thomas and Shirley Merime has been running this haven for the last two decades out of their own pockets. They literally take in all the unwanted people from society. Some of the things I have seen there really breaks the heart. The residents are mostly old (70 plus) or very young (from newborns), all with one thing in common: they have been abandoned. Some of the old people were found on Park Station, some found wandering the highways around Joburg where families simply stopped and forced them to get out. Others were hospitalised, only to be left there. Yet some others came out of hospital to find that “family” moved into their room, taking what little they had left in life and then chasing away the old person.

The babies are mostly abandoned. Some next to a railway line close to Ebenaezer, some left at state hospitals who then phone Shirley to fetch them. The parents simply don’t care or don’t have the material means to take care of the babies.

At Ebenaezer they find a loving home, as well as place where they can live with some dignity.

They also find a place to die in dignity and amidst loving people who became family.

Five minutes ago I received the following SMS from Shirley. I MUST ADD IT IS ONLY THE SECOND TIME IN THE LAST FIVE YEARS SHE HAS ASKED FOR ANY HELP WHATSOEVER. At Ebenaezer they work hard for every sent, producing their own vegetables, baking their own bread, teaching people skills to help earn an income.

“I am so very humbly asking for your help please. To bury a body which I’m struggling with. There are also 2 other bodies plus a baby who was so very ill of aids and tb. Things are so very hard. This is a test from God, but I stay on my knees. Please help me. God bless u in a mighty way. Shirley.”

I phoned Shirley, and she needs R3 500 to bury the baby and the 3 old people. (They were 85, 75 and 70 years old respectively.  The baby was 19 months and was abandoned at the age of 3 months. Shirley gave him a loving home for 16 months, but his little body was simply too riddled with disease to survive.)

Can you help? (They also always need food, clothes, blankets and furniture, as the need is increasing all the time and during the winter times even more old people and children are kicked out by families who can’t/won’t take care of them.)

Their banking details are:

Ebenaezer Care Centre



Branch: Lenasia

Cheque Account

This is an article 21 organisation, so you can get a receipt for tax purposes. You can phone Shirley on 082 956 7459.

I can assure you this is a legit organisation. I have been helping them get publicity for the last 9 years.

Shirely is also one of the 31 Clover Mama Africa’s. You can read more about her here: http://www.clover.co.za/245/social-responsibility (Click on “meet the mama’s, and you’ll see Shirley Merime’s pic and something about Ebenaezer.)

Monday morning funny

Julie 19, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

A funny to start your week with. I hope it’s a good one!    

 The FBI had an opening for an assassin.  

 After all the background checks, interviews and testing were done, there were 3 finalists: two men and a woman.

For the final test, the FBI agents took one of the men to a large metal door and handed him a gun.

‘We must know that you will follow your instructions no matter what the circumstances. Inside the room you will find your wife sitting in a chair .. . . Kill her!!’

The man said, ‘You can’t be serious. I could never shoot my wife.’

The agent said, ‘Then you’re not the right man  for this job. Take your wife and go home.’

The second man was given the same instructions. He took the gun and went into the room. All was quiet for about 5 minutes.

The man came out with tears in his eyes, ‘I tried, but I can’t kill my wife.’ The agent said, ‘You don’t have what it takes. Take your wife and go home.’

Finally, it was the woman’s turn. She was given the same instructions, to kill her husband. She took the gun and went into the room. Shots were heard, one fter another. They heard screaming, crashing,  banging on the walls. After a few minutes, all was quiet. The door opened slowly and there stood the woman, wiping the sweat from her brow. This gun is loaded with blanks’ she said.  ‘I had to beat him to death with the chair.’

MORAL:  Women are crazy. Don’t mess with them!

Why the remote control was invented (funny)

Julie 15, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Sorry for the french, but I thought this is too good not to share!

The Karate Kid: don’t miss this movie!

Julie 14, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Was lucky enough to see the preview last night. With “real” film critics, no less.

Will post about it later today, but let me just say this: here comes a few Oscar-nominations, and you should see this movie on the big screen. Jaden Smith (son of Will and Jada Pinket Smith) is definitely going to get nominated for an Oscar for his portrayal of 12-year old Dre Parker. A tour de force. He didn’t play Dre Parker, he BECAME Dre Parker.

And the music is awesome. I must agree with Leon van Nierop who says this soundtrack will be mentioned on Oscar-night.

Talk later!

OBE: Would the one’s responsible please stand up?

Julie 13, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Jonathan Jansen in vandag se Burger.

Die argitekte van UGO het nou skielik verdwyn
2010-07-12 20:23

As die rampspoedige gevolge van uitkomsgebaseerde onderwys (UGO) op die televisie uitgebeeld kon word soos miljoene siek en sterwende kinders, sou ons met afgryse vervul wees oor die uitwerking van hierdie verderflike proefneming.
Maar aangesien onderwys-letsels nie onmiddellik waarneembaar is soos dié van ‘n gesondheidskrisis nie, maak ons niks van die ramp wat uitkomsgebaseerde onderwys oor ons kinders gebring het nie.

Die leuens, huigelagtigheid en skreiende oneerlikheid van politici en vakbondleiers nadat die minister van basiese onderwys, me. Angie Motshekga, die vanselfsprekende aangekondig het – naamlik dat UGO dood is – was enersyds vermaaklik, andersyds verontrustend. Mnr. Kader Asmal het aan ‘n koerant gesê dr. Blade Nzimande moet die blaam dra, nie hy nie. ‘n Vooraanstaande figuur in onderwysgeledere het ontken dat hy die vader van UGO is; dit was iemand anders. ‘n Beampte van die Suid-Afrikaanse Demokratiese Onderwysersunie het ook op die lawaaiwa gespring en gesê sy organisasie was van meet af teen UGO gekant. Genade! Dit het my herinner aan die NP-politici in die middel van die jare 1990: Nie een van hulle het ooit apartheid gesteun nie. Die feit is, UGO was die ideologiese projek van die ANC-regering.

Maar wat is die minder sigbare letsels van UGO? Ek kan aan ses dink.

Een, die geldelike koste vir die land.

Honderde miljoene rande is bestee aan die opleiding van onderwysers, die ontwikkeling van onderwysmateriaal, die opleiding van kurrikulum-fasiliteerders, die gebruik van internasionale kundiges, die uitvoer van duur hersienings en evaluasies, die skryf en herskryf van konsep-leergidse, die reël van massa-konferensies, ad infinitum.

Twee, die geleentheidskoste, naamlik die dinge wat ons in die afgelope 12 jaar kon gedoen het om deurdag en metodies ‘n nuwe skoolstelsel op ‘n sterk grondslag te vestig. Dié gulde geleentheid is onherroeplik verby, omdat die geld en die geesdrif doodgewoon tans skaarser as destyds is.

Drie, die motiveringskoste. Die beginjare van ons demokrasie is deur opwinding en verwagting gekenmerk; die stelsel was gereed en ontvanklik vir verandering. Onderwysers het besef dat die apartheidskurrikulum vervang moet word, en hulle het hulself op verandering voorberei. Hoewel onbeholpe, het talle UGO verwelkom as die kuur vir apartheidskennis.

Nou sal hulle ons nie weer so geredelik glo nie. Professionele onderwysers is afgemat, en talle voel hulle is mislei.

Vier, die regskoste. Een van die mites oor dramatiese kurrikulumveranderings is dat ‘n senior woordvoerder, soos ‘n minister, bloot ‘n aankondiging kan doen en die kurrikulum verdwyn eensklaps. Die probleem is dat UGO nou gevestig is in die bewussyn van die meeste van ons onderwysers. Dit sal nog baie jare ‘n negatiewe uitwerking hê op wat onderwysers en leerders in der waarheid in hul klaskamers doen.

Vyf, die ekonomiese koste. Al hoe minder studente, met of sonder naskoolse opleiding, kon daarin slaag om in die arbeidsmark opgeneem word.

Dit sou insiggewend wees om ‘n onderwysekonoom te vra om die ekonomiese koste van UGO te bereken.

Ses, die belangrikste, ingrypende menslike koste. Reeds benadeelde kinders is blootgestel aan ‘n kurrikulum wat ‘n brose leeromgewing nog slegter gemaak het.

Pleks van die aanleer van die onmisbare vaardighede van lees, skryf en reken, is hulle onderwerp aan deftige konstruksieteorieë wat talle van hulle ongeletterd gehou het. Die newegevolge hiervan het nie net baie uit die skoolstelsel weggedryf nie, maar ook al hoe swakker studente gelewer aan universiteite, waar hulle moes sukkel om sukses te behaal.

Daar behoort natuurlik ook ‘n politieke prys te wees. Koppe behoort te rol. Die slegte nuus is: Die onaantasbaarheid van ons politieke stelsel bring mee dat nie een van diesulkes aanspreeklik gehou sal word nie. Nie een van die senior burokrate wat UGO gepromoveer het, het kundigheid gehad in die teorie, ontwerp of inwerkingstelling van die kurrikulum nie; hulle was ontplooide kamerade wat ons land meer as 30 jaar teruggesit het met die afdwinging van dié onbesonne kurrikulum.

– Die Burger