Inked: My Latest Addition

Tattoos. People always want to know why. Why do you have it? Why do you want more? Why?

There does not always have to be a reason. Some people have them for the art of it, not really with a meaning behind it. Some people have them with a meaning because there is a story to tell. And some people just have them.

I have 1 tattoo that does not have a meaning and I purely got it on the coolness of it. The Llama, Kenny. No drama and he is just super cool. Okay, maybe he is linked to my sensor as my sensor is called Kenny, or maybe there is no connection. I just wanted the Llama.

My latest tattoo has a lot of meaning behind it just as the others.

There are three components. My initial idea was to have a huge tree with books and coffee, but I just could not bring the elements together without having it be almost the size of half my back. I sent my ideas to Warren, the only person I trust to do my ink, and this is what we (Warren, myself, and Etienne) came up with. I really appreciate Etienne being involved in this. It brings me great joy.

The Tree

It was supposed to be a Cherry Blossom Tree with light pink flowers. Instead of drawing the whole tree, we used a branch which will then symbolize the tree. It was never meant to be a specific tree and the meaning behind the Cherry Blossom Tree has no connection, just a tree in general, but I chose the Cherry Blossom Tree as it is just so pretty and soft.

A tree to me is life. Without trees breathing will be a challenge if not impossible. A tree grows where it was planted, it does not try and move itself. Some trees will just keep growing around obstacles. Some trees lose their leaves to prepare for the new season, but they do not change themselves. They serve their purpose, whatever it may be. There is nothing more peaceful than sitting underneath a tree, with a light breeze, good coffee and a good book. I found a quote on trees and this sums it up perfectly.

“I feel a great regard for trees; they represent age and beauty and the miracles of life and growth.” — Louise Dickinson Rich

The Book

I have always loved reading. It is like living hundreds of lives and just letting your imagination go. Creating your own pictures based on the writers’ words.

My friend’s mom used to take them to the library every two weeks, and I would pickle along. We used to join on the social evenings held during the school holidays and listen to the aunties reading us stories. I also wanted to take my own books, so I applied for a card. I had to get permission from my mom and if I remember correctly, it cost either R5 or R10 to get the card.

I still remember the first time I was able to borrow books from the local library. I felt like I won the lottery and from there my love for books and reading just grew. My friend and I spent countless hours in the library during our school career and again in university and each town I lived in I made a point to get myself a library card because that is where I felt most at home.

In 2015 reading was my refuge and part of my saving graces. I spent a lot of time reading and getting lost in the different worlds.

Reading gives me comfort and when life just gets too much I dive into my books.

Naturally this needs to be represented-hence the book.

“A book is a garden, an orchard, a storehouse, a party, a company by the way, a counselor, a multitude of counselors.” – Charles Baudelaire

The Coffee Cup

My sister once sent me a picture with the five love languages of coffee. It went like this:

Original Image found on – I made my own version. *not affiliated.

You want to bribe me-buy me coffee. You want to spend time with me, come have a cup of coffee with me. I am having a bad day-buy me coffee or make me a cup of coffee. When I am happy – just feed me more coffee. My favorite drink, coffee.

I love coffee. I am at my happiest when I am at my favorite coffee shop with a good book and all the time in the world. 

The tattoo would not be complete without coffee.

This tattoo pretty much summarizes me and I like it!

My artist of choice is always Uncle Black or then Warren. You can find him on Instagram and for appointments email him on this address:

Do you have a tattoo with a special meaning? Tell me in the comments below.


E xx

*links, referrals and references not affiliated.

My Reading Challenge for 2023

It has been said that buying books and reading books are different hobbies. I can confirm this.

I have a love for buying books that I cannot explain and at the same time a bigger love for reading but do not always have the time. There is just something about a stacked bookshelf and a library and a book shop. I cannot pass any of them. It is like a 1000 worlds and wisdom waiting to be discovered.

All right, enough lyrical dreaming.

What happens when you have such a big love for buying books, visit two warehouse sales in a matter of 4 months and buy at least 1 book from every bookstore you pass, with little time to read the books?

Well, the answer is you have a totally out of control TBR pile (TBR: To be read).

I try to make time to read, but I am not a fast reader and I choose to take in the story and sometimes ponder on a chapter, but I went wild.

Currently I have 30 unread books on my shelf. Oh, but they look so pretty with all the titles and covers and colors. I had to think of a plan to just grab a book and read and stop procrastinating on this pile.

I have decided that I am going to wrap all my unread books in newspaper or brown wrapping paper and only mark the ones that are part of a series. Then I am going to try my utmost best to make a dent in my pile so that I do not end up with the same number of books next year December again. This means, I need to set a higher goal than 12 books for the year, but at the same time I do not want to pressure myself. I get very anxious about completing goals. So, the goal will be set at 15 and everything more will be a bonus. This should then (almost) half the pile. Laugh Out Loud!

Just think about it. Every time I start a book it will be a complete surprise and you can follow my journey on Instagram to see how it is going.

What are your thoughts? Do you think I can do it? Let me know in the comments.

Here’s to a successful 2023 of reading as much as I possibly can, living 1000’s of lives and using my imagination.


E xx

How I accidentally went viral

Mindless scrolling on Instagram. We all do it. We all know what it is.

On one of my mindless scrolling evenings, I saw a super cool reel that I wanted to recreate. I mean, it is the easiest thing, my skill has improved a bit, I am also a knitter, and it will be easy peasy.

I ask Etienne to record the video but then realized I will need to speak while doing my little instructions and then add the music. Okay, tiny hiccup, but the second take is spot on.

I uploaded the reel to Instagram, feeling very chuffed that it was so quick and easy and so cool. I then forgot about it.

The Next Day.

Etienne asked me if I have checked the count of plays on the video yet and I say no. He tells me, go check it.

This video was posted on 5 November 2022 in the evening. In a matter of days, it reached over a million views and 1000’s of likes and it just kept on going. Every time I open Instagram its notification upon notification. It came to a point where I felt overwhelmed and then did not open it for a few days.

Etienne kept watching though and it just kept on going.

On one of the evenings, I opened it up to a shock. Apparently, I am a thief now. I was named and shamed, and I received comments on my posts about stealing and giving no credit and then I received a personal message saying that I could have at least given credit and it is not cool. This individual took a screen shot of my reel and posted it to her feed with the instructions to her followers to feel free to name and shame.

I wanted to delete the reel. In Instagram world there is a grey area of when to give credit and when you do not have too. Don’t we all just copy each other and add our own flare to it? I can understand if it was the complete audio I used, but I recreated the video yes, but used my own voiceover. I have watched countless reels of the same thing and nowhere credit is given in the comms. The sound is the credit if you are using it, is it not?

In my case I saw the reel, thought it to be really cool and fit my sense of humor and the only thing I used was the music (which is not owned by this individual) but I did my own voiceover, the script is the same, but knitting is knitting and we all know some kind of rhyme to remember the steps.

I had three choices, I could delete the reel and just forget about it, tell this individual that I am not sure where the credit is due cause everyone can make a tutorial of knitting (there are thousands on Instagram alone) or just give the credit she wants. I was raised with good manners so I told her I am sorry if she felt I stole her idea and that I did not want to step on any toes, I will add the credit to her name.

Problem solved. Now she has the credit she wants, the ugly post was deleted, I have my reel and currently it sits on 744 00 likes, 22 257 567 plays and 11 000 comments. Missed it? Check it out here: The Viral Reel

I just wanted to have a lot of followers who I can chat with, do that little ask me anything blocks, polls, questions, chat in the comments and even do some DM’s. Most of this I have done lately, I tried to respond to every single comment, but let me tell you, it is very overwhelming, and I just keep thinking I am going to wake up and be back on my 200 followers again and silly old me will be back to normal, but still this reel gets more likes, and the followers grow.

I even reached a Diabetic and the reel is related to knitting. We chatted a bit and that was cool. I also got kind words from someone saying I should not stop posting and she likes my profile. So, maybe this is not just a good/bad dream, and this is actually happening.

What did I learn from this?

  • People find little old me interesting enough to give me a follow, even share my reels and tag me. They think it is the coolest thing.
  • Posting something random can be done at the right time, right place without even knowing it.
  • Going viral literally happens overnight.
  • If you are not sure about giving credit, just add it. It costs nothing and it will prevent any unpleasant surprises.

My biggest challenge now is to create another one for a different way of knitting (this was requested by quite a few new followers), but with the same dark sense of humor and something completely different but same.

Challenge accepted!

Till next time!

E xx

Betty’s Bay for my Birthday

It is the same story every year. I live for my birthday. Okay, not entirely, but I just love celebrating my birthday.

Last year I said I wanted to go somewhere and stay in a bed & breakfast or cottage or self catering unit, air bnb, anything in that line. The location was not super important, but I wanted to go to the Overberg area.

After much consideration and different types of accommodation we fell in love with a little house in Betty’s Bay. So, off we went.

Friends of ours, us as well of course, was in the mood for , as we say in Afrikaans, gatskuur. My sister and her husband joined us at the house, unfortunately they had to work full day and for some or other reason they did not make it onto any photographs. Hmmmkay.

Our first stop was at The Grille Shack on the R44 towards Gordon’s Bay. We stumbled upon this place a few years back and we suggested this one for lunch. Always a good idea. This venue is just a complete vibe on its own.

We had a delicious lunch, spent some time on the Happy Sak’s all around outside-those bean bags are so comfy. Most certainly on my list of things I want. We even took a 10min shut eye. They have little shops on the property (gifts and wine) and the restaurant forms part of the lodge. Have a look here.

We made our way to our accommodation for the weekend along the beautiful coast. The agent hosting us was Be in Betty’s Bay. Ellen, Lucille and the rest of her team was so welcoming and we felt very comfortable. The instructions given was clear and everyone was so friendly.

I knew I were going to love the place when we arrived. The house is open and with so much natural light. We all fell in love instantly with the day bed and the great big window overlooking the mountains. That was the prime spot in the house.

It was neat, quiet and the rooms were very comfy. The house is set up for a great cater-for-yourself stay and very central to reach all the important places.

Book your stay here.

The highlight of the stay was the house, seriously, but the penguins were equally entertaining and we even went for a little hike along the beach. I had to accumulate some steps. We even met a stranger that showed us a short pathway back to our accommodation instead of taking the long way.

On Saturday morning we took a short walk to visit the Stoney Point Penguin Colony. These guys are so freakin cute. We also saw some dassies with their little ones! It is worth visiting and paying the small fee to enter the sanctuary. Your best time to visit is between August and November. The weather can be very unpredictable. We got wind from all sides. Gates open at 08:00 and closes strictly 16:30. Your entry fee is around R28 the last time we visited. They only accept cash.

Read a bit here about the colony and what the entry fee is used for.

Let me just explain the last two shots. I got down on the ground so that I could get a better angle to take the picture of the penguin and Etienne took a photo of me and my friend took a photo of Etienne taking a photo of me. Anything for the shot!

There is also a café on the beach serving light meals and drinks. We did not visit this time.

We did a lot of lounging around in the house and chatting and just generally relaxing.

Sunday was Birthday-Day! We stayed awake till way past midnight and my people sang for me and I even had a cupcake with a candle to blow out. You can check my highlights/reels on Instagram to watch the videos.

We stopped at The Hickory Shack for lunch. It was delicious but sadly I was not super impressed. We were referred because they allegedly have the best pulled pork, but we have had better. The chips however was delicious. That being said, we still had a lovely lunch and drinks and would visit again and try something else of the menu.

I always have cake on my birthday but this day I was just so stuffed after lunch. My friend and I both said we just do not have the space. So we made our way home.

My friends surprised me by taking me to Tygervalley to have coffee and cake at my favourite coffee shop-Seattle Coffee Company. It was delicious and I felt so spoiled and what an end to my birthday weekend.

I am so grateful to have been spoiled so much on my birthday and I would love to go back. I can highly recommend this short, fun trip if you are just looking for a quick getaway.

E xx

(Links not affiliated)

My dogs got old?!

My dog is going to live forever. I am convinced this is what I believed until I started seeing changes when we went for our daily walk.

Our little guy just simply refuses to walk somewhere if he does not want to. Trying to pull him toward the intended path is fruitless. He will also randomly decide to stop walking and this makes me almost lose my middle as the harness is fastened around my middle. Then the big guy looks at me with a confused face. He also trails behind me. He does not pull out in front anymore. He also does not want to jump in or out of the car or on the couch. He now insists on being picked up.

The big guy just tends to be slacking. Instead of having to call him back because he wandered too far from me I have to call him to actually come along. It is like he is stopping and smelling the flowers, but then forget that he actually needs to walk. Half way he also seems a bit famished more than usual. 

At first I thought they were just being tardy and then one day it hit me like the blood drained from my face kind of realisation. 

My dogs got old. 

It dawned on me that there is a reason why they are acting differently or even strange on their walks these days. 

My 3 year old puppy is not 3 years old anymore. He does not look old, but he is older. He is turning 9 at the end of this year.

My little old guy is not 7 years old anymore. He is turning 11!

It is not like we have not been talking about their ages, but it just simply did not click that they are actually getting old.

I asked Etienne, listen is it not time that we start buying senior food for the doggies? He looked at me kind of dumbstruck and then realisation hit with “oh my word! Yes, I did not think of that”.

I had such a laugh. I think in my mind my dogs were still puppies.

I had to adjust our walks. We can not go for long walks like we used too which were between 6-10km’s. We have to stick to around 5km’s at a time and slower paces.

I started adjusting my fitness programme to help my doggo’s still get their daily walk, because even though they are older they are still excited like puppies when I pick up their leashes.  

So, I had to, very quickly, get used to my doggies being seniors now. Wham! In the face.

Now I do not call them “seun”, “hondjie”, “boude” or whatever pops into my head first. From now on they will be known as “ou man”, “senior” or anything age related. 

Dog's lives are too short. Their only fault, really.
-Agnes Slight Turnbull

E xx

Kirstenbosch through Etienne’s Eyes

You know what they say about assumptions, do not do it.

“Assumptions are made and most assumptions are wrong.” – Albert Einstein

So, I learned my lesson again on January,5th 2022.

My husband said that he was going to take leave for the day and then we can go do something to end my leave and before the new work year starts.

I had no idea what I wanted to do. He made a few suggestions and I played around with the idea of maybe visiting a wine farm, but I was just not really feeling anything. He then came up with the bright idea to visit Kirstenbosch.

I loved the idea instantly as we both said we wanted to be more active this year and what a great idea to start in this beautiful garden.

Now, I always assume that if you live in and around Cape Town that you must have been to Kirstenbosch at least once. Wrong! Here I found out that my husband has never been to Kirstenbosch and he is turning 42 this year! I got so excited! I could not believe that I was going to share this experience with him! He loves the outdoors as much as I and all I could think was this is going to be so, so good!

I struggled to sleep that night like you do before a birthday party when you were 5 years old.

We arrived just after the park opened and we grabbed a cup of coffee at Vida e Caffé first as we left our home early and did not have coffee before we left-the horror! Our gear for the day we left in the bakkie for the time being in the car. After we finished our coffee Etienne said that he is going to grab our stuff and meet up back at the table and then we can go.

As I sit waiting I see he is speaking to these two random people and I try to see if I recognise them. Keeping in mind I need glasses for distance viewing and it was a waste of time as they all were blurry. As they got closer the lady waved at me and then I saw it was my sister and her hubby! I ran like a child to the front and hugged her so close. This day was just getting better and better.

Etienne is like “Surprise!”. He conspired with them the previous evening to join us. This was perfect.

We were all ready to go.

I thought I am pretty fit for the excursion but again I was so wrong. We headed for the Boomslang first and after I led us astray as I thought I knew where I was going, we found the start of the Yellowwood Trail.

Let me tell you, it gets steep, but it is not difficult to climb. It is a short 3km which takes you about 1h30m (lots of steps) and you want to spend some time at the waterfall. I enjoyed it so much! You can read more about this trail and others here.

We had a lovely lunch at Moyo at Kirstenbosch and they got a 5 star from me only for the fact that they serve Redbull Sugar Free drinks! Man, I love that stuff. I was treated with sugar free ice cream at Kristen’s in Newlands. 

There are so many trails and different gardens within a garden and you can climb up Table Mountain from here as well. 

Etienne had a blast and he absolutely loved the garden. He said this was the first of many visits! 

I am excited!

Please visit Kirstenbosch website for all the info you need. 

E xx

Instagram Diary: Diabetes Awareness Month

Hmm, I really thought that if I can link the photo’s or subjects to Instagram then anyone can see it but Instagram is not playing nice. You will have to log in to see the post.

Not too worry for those who do not have Instagram, for you I will type it out. Okay, copy and paste but you will be a part of this.

Even though we are two weeks into December already (can you believe it?!) I want to share what we did in November here.

Some of the prompts I included blog posts on that I have written linking to that prompt, click on the “include blog post” to have a look.

{From Left to Right}

1. Diagnosis Story [incl blog post]

Diabetes Awareness Month 2021.

Usually I join @the.insulin.type for the #happydiabeticchallenge but it will not be featured this year. My heart is sad, but I understand.

I found this one instead from @type1toucan and I am excited to join the #diabetesawareness challenge this year.

I also decided to post a few things on my blog for this month and how fitting is it that day 1 is your diagnosis story.

So, on my blog you will find my story.

2. Pumps, Pens or Pills

I am on MDI which stands for Multiple Daily Injections which then means PENS.

Sometimes it hurts (using a needle for too long or hitting a vein) and sometimes not at all.

My endo have tried to convince me through the years to try the pump, but I am old school en just do not like change when it comes to Diabetes Management. My way of thinking is, why change it if what I am doing works?

I deal with a lot of pricks daily!

3. Cost Of Insulin

In South Africa we have a problem where this life giving liquid is not available to everyone. Some people do not even have access or cannot afford it. People are rationing their insulin and this should not be happening.

Our government provides insulin to Diabetics through the clinics but they do not offer the latest and sometimes they do not even have enough to provide which results in people having to purchase insulin out of pocket who can not afford the cost of it. People have to queue more than 6 hours a day and besides that it costs money to get to the clinic in the first place.

This just breaks my heart.

I have been on medical aid all my life. My dad had to support me by paying for it at one stage, but I have never had to worry where my insulin is going to come from. I have access to the best insulin options (which our government does not offer) and at the moment I do not have a co-payment. My insulin is covered as a Prescribed Minimum Benefits (PMBs) and are a set of defined benefits to ensure that all medical scheme members have access to certain minimum health services, regardless of the benefit option they have selected.

I am very privileged to have access to medical aid and it is sad that our government is not offering the same level of medication as medical aid does. Why should we go private if our government is supposed to look after their people?

To think that insulin was sold for $1 with the message that the insulin is for all and now it is being used by huge pharmaceutical companies and governments for prophet. You are playing with people’s lives here.

This needs to change!

4. Favourite Hypo Treat

I do not have a favourite hypo treat. We tend to not keep sweets and chips in the house because I have such a sweet tooth.

When a hypo strikes at home I go for the money, ag I meant the honey and on the road I have glucose tablets or super C’s with me.

I also use golden syrup, but not often and then whatever carb thing I have on hand I will use to stabilise the level.

But, should I have to choose a favourite I would have to go with Woolies soft gums or chocolate!

5. Type Of Diabetes [incl blog post]

What a fitting day to post my latest post.

I am a Type 1 Diabetic which means, in short, I am completely insulin dependant. My pancreas do not produce insulin.

@everydayisdiabetesday and I worked on this post, The differences between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes, to help lift out the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes. There are more types, but we focussed on these two as we get a lot to do with it.

Link to the post is in my bio.

6. Tag A Diabuddy

What a year it has been. Meeting SO many amazing people with 1 thing in common which makes us immediate family, Diabetes.

When I got involved in the community I had 1 person I chatted to a lot. @the.insulin.type and I have had many discussions and even did a colab post. I hope to meet you in person one day. I learned a lot from you!

Then I got to meet the one after the other awesome people.


You all impact my life in different, good and pure ways.

7. Is It In Your Family?

At the time I was diagnosed there was no history of Diabetes (any type) in our family whatsoever which is why it was a great shock for my parents to find out that their 10 month old is now a Type 1 Diabetic.

Later in my life I had an aunt diagnosed as a Type 2 Diabetic due to a unhealthy lifestyle and being morbidly obese and a few years later my uncle was also diagnosed as a Type 2 Diabetic due to health conditions. I also have a cousin with Type 2 Diabetes.

So, apart from me, there are no other Type 1 Diabetics in our family, a few Type 2’s and no other types.

8. Medical ID

I have been wearing a medical alert bracelet since day 1 of diagnosis. I was never allowed to take it off.

I used to hate it. I hated when people asked me what I am allergic too and it turnes out nothing and then had to explain I have Diabetes. In my head, it made me feel different.

I took it off once and I felt guilty. How bazar! I was trying to change who I was. I thought for that day, I am not a Diabetic. Well, it did not work like that.

I changed the look of my medical bracelet by adding a bangle instead of a chain, in silver-same as the disk. It is now a life saving fashion accessory!

.Apart from this I have a seatbelt cover as well for when I am driving.

This is my life saving alert. On the day that I am not able to speak, this will speak for me

9. Kit Bag

I do not have a kit bag persé, but I have a few containers around the house with my Diabetes stuff and when I leave the house I have my “kit” that leaves with me.

Pic 1: The entirety of my Diabetes stuff.

Pic 2: When I leave for more than a day and depending on how long I will be out of town, this will influence what goes in the bag. It is safe to say that this is what I would take if I am leaving for a night or two.

Pic 3: This is my daily kit whenever I leave the house and I am only around town.

Getting the kit ready is always stressful to me. I am always scared that I am going to forget something, but that is why my husband is there to remind me and why I like lists so much!

10. Decorating Diabetes

This can be interpreted in many ways. When wearing a sensor you have the cutest and coolest stickers and plasters and making Diabetes colourful.

I use to see Diabetes as a dark colour. Not completely black, but pretty close. In the 80’s and 90’s there were not as colourful options relating to Diabetes as there is today.

My interpretation is a bit different.

I never used Diabetic products or branded stuff because it was not always colourful, it made me feel sad, for a lack of a better word, but just look at these.

This beautiful bag and blanket gifted as part of a Diabetic conference and yellow is so so happy. And the plasters to keep your sensor in place (gifted by my friend).

I love using this bag and blanket en I am looking forward to using the plasters (just waiting for summer to really arrive).

It is a product I use and people will ask who the company is and that is when I can Diabetes relate this. This to me is decorating Diabetes.

11. CGM or Fingerstick

I am team #freestylelibre

But, I have not always been.

I pricked for 34 years. I hated it so, so, very much. I used to dream of the day when I did not have to prick any more. This dream came true in 2020 when the good fight was done and we won Discovery over with and @everydayisdiabetesday

Now, I can simply scan and know exactly what my levels are doing and I do not get any funny stares anymore.

This device change my life and my Diabetes management. I am eternally grateful!

My wish is that every Diabetic will one day have access to this device to live their best life!

12. Hypo Symptoms

As each Diabetic is different from the next Diabetes, so different is each hypo symptoms.

At the display of any of the following, I know I need to check my bg urgently:
– Mouth goes pins and needles
– Cold Sweat in my neck
– Blurry vision
– None responsive
– Nauseous
– Shaky
– If the room starts spinning but then it is almost too low.

I prefer a high bg above a low bg. The reason behind this being that a high you treat and then wait it out. I still feel absolutely horrible, but it feels to me this settles much faster.

A low makes me want to clean out the fridge, the cupboard, the freezer and anything that is edible. It takes so long to “normalise” again and what usually happens if I can not contain myself is a high afterwards. It sucks.

Although the symptoms are not the same for everyone, someone being unresponsive is usually a tell tale sign and if the person is weak or shaky. Another sign is usually if the person is pale. Always keep an eye on your Diabetic friend for signs of that low sneaking up.

13. Favourite Diabetes Book

I have 4 favourite Diabetes-related books.

My go to guide for assistance on carb counting is the Kilojoule Carb&Fat counters and The South African Glycemic Index & Load Guide – Gabi Steenkap RD (SA), Liesbet Delport RD (SA). I use them a-lot. The fact that they are based on South African food is an absolute win. It makes my life SO much easier when trying to calculate my units to be injected.

Diabetes: A Practical Guide to managing your health – Rosemary Walker & Jill Rodgers is another go-to. My dietitian, Anel, from @paarldietitians actually suggested I get this book as I had some questions,and I found almost all my answers in this book. I still refer to it quite often. This is a very good starting point.

I have a few on my Kindle I still have to read, but I have only heard good things about these particular books. I just find it a bit hard to read “medical” types of books. Watch this space. Maybe one of these days I will rave about them as well.

14. World Diabetes Day

What a freakin fantastic day.

We had the best Diabetic Friendly cup cakes, the greatest laughs, sharing stories and the most awesome dance for Diabetes!

Thank you @abbottglobal and for our diaries and I am in there! What an honour!!

Jordy, You are making waves and I am excited to see your work. Thank you for my super cool merge from your new company and the honour to be part of your work.

Kirsten, thank you for opening your home and hosting us on this beautiful day.

My Diabuddies, I really, really love you all so much!

15. Monday Motivation

𝒮𝒽𝑒 𝓇𝑒𝓂𝑒𝓂𝒷𝑒𝓇𝑒𝒹 𝓌𝒽𝑜 𝓈𝒽𝑒 𝓌𝒶𝓈 𝒶𝓃𝒹 𝓉𝒽𝑒 𝑔𝒶𝓂𝑒 𝒸𝒽𝒶𝓃𝑔𝑒𝒹-𝐿𝒶𝓁𝒶𝒽 𝒟𝑒𝓁𝒾𝒶𝒽

I want to live the healthiest life I can. I want to achieve my HBa1C goal. I want to live an active life. I want to grow old. I want to have grey hair and sit on a stoep with my husband.

This is what motivates me.

Diabetes challenges me so much in many, many ways. I struggle with the muscles in my legs, my shoulders and some times I am in a lot of discomfort. But, I am determined to reach a goal and it does not matter how hard it gets, I remember who I am and try again.

I am strong and fierce!

16. Your Test Metre

I use an Accuchek Instant Metre for the last few years. It is small, fast and my medical aid covers the test trips. So, its a win.

I do not use it regularly though because I am on a CGM, but I do check to see how accurate my CGM is especially with a low or a very high reading.

My first metre looked pretty much like the second picture and it took ar least a minute to give me a reading. We use to treat my lows in the meantime while it was loading. I also needed to almost draw a vile of blood to cover the sponge on the strip. I am so happy the metres got better over the years.

17. Mental Health

Apart from managing our pancreas, we need to look after our mental health as well. This can not be said enough.

We did an event a few weeks ago on The Emotional Side of Diabetes. Please check the link in my bio. It is very informative and covers some of the aspects of Mental Health and Diabetes.

We all have our struggles and it can get so overwhelming. I just want to tell you that you are not alone. Please reach out if you feel overwhelmed, alone or need to talk, this community will carry and support you!

Thank you Kirsten @everydayisdiabetesday and Daniel @daniel.j.sher for the info slides.

18. Lancet Change

There are quite a few reasons why you should use a new needle every time, but hey, I am not perfect and I am lazy as hell when it comes to lancet changes.

I used to use my needle until it is so dull it wont go in *cringe*. As a child I just thought I need to save, why waste it if it is not dull yet. It felt like a waste to throw it out after one use,

I am way better at it than what I have been. I change my insulin pen needles regularly, but as I am on a cgm the lancet gets change not so often.

But, for Diabetes month I will make it an event and change all at once.

Swipe to see what my needles look like and the last picture got some action for you! Look at it goooo!

Side note, most times it does not hurt, but obviously the more dull the needle, the more it hurts. Except if you hit a vain, then I want to die. Injecting into a vein burns like hell! Whatever that might feel like.

Remember to change your needles often! It is necessary.

19. Top Tips

I never had tips, I hated Diabetes so much, but as I worked through the resentment and anger-learning how to accept it, I got my tips.

1. Learn how to carb count-this changed my Diabetes management and my levels got so much better.
2. Get down deep into the Diabetic community. They are a bunch of good eggs and the support is out of this world.
3. Build a relationship with your endo. You are going to spent a lot of time together.
4. If you struggle-speak!
5. It is okay to not be okay. Take your time and process it. Get up and try again.
6. Exercise every day! At least 30min. Your body will love and thank you and your Diabetes even more so.
7. Live your best life! Go for it.

20. Favourite Fake Cure

I love how everyone think that:
– Sprinkling cinnamon over your porridge every morning will cure your Diabetes
– Using copious amounts of cinnamon in any form will cure your Diabetes
– Advising that my friends, grandma have been using Cinnamon and it cured her Diabetes

It does not matter whether I eat, drink or sniff cinnamon, and I love the taste of cinnamon, it is not going to cure my Diabetes. Might help as a holistic approach to stabilizing sugar levels, but it will not make my pancreas miraculously start producing beta cells again.

I completely understand that advice like this is not with a malicious intent, but it does more damage than it does good.

There is no cure for any type of Diabetes.

Instead of trying to convince us to eat cinnamon (which I already do), try asking a Diabetic questions like,
– What is Diabetes?
– How do you feel if your levels are low?
– How do you treat it?
– What works for you?

Please be kind to Diabetics. We deal with enough pricks.

21. Diabetic Confession

I have to admin that this is a hard one for me. I know what I can confess, but I do not really know how to put it into words.

I will try my best.

I do not have a healthy relationship with food.

I struggle with food everyday.
I struggle with my decisions around it.
I struggle with calculating how much insulin I need even with knowing my carb-insulin ratio.
Food decisions and thinking about food makes me anxious.

In the face it looks like I got this down, but behind closed doors this consumes me from the inside.

Everyone have their own struggle. Some days you actually got it and everything is smooth sailing and the next it is a tornado of emotions, struggle and questions.

We can not have the perfect control on everything all the time. We are just human with a lot to juggle.

I know and believe, it will all be okay.

22. Favourite Low Carb Snack

I love fruit. Fruit are most of the time very good on my BG levels as well.

I stick to fruit with a lot of fibre and my favourites include Apples, Oranges, Peaches, Strawberries, Mangos and Raspberries.

I have to be careful though as the natural fruit sugar does impact my levels and it is always wise to keep my intake in the normal portion range of 1-2 per day. I usually combine this with a meal, but if the hunger strikes out of nowhere they come in quite handy.

23. Diaversay [incl blog post]

My diaversary is 3 October 1986.

What is a diaversary? Diaversary=Diabetic+Anniversary. This is the day that you were diagnosed as a Diabetic.

Why do you celebrate it?
That is a valid question and I talk about it on my blog. Please click on the link in my bio and I will tell you all about it.

24. Hyper Symptoms

As each Diabetic is different from the next Diabetic, so different are each hyper symptoms. Although, in discussion we have seen that we are not SO different after all.

At the display of any of the following, I know I need to check my bg:
– Irritability / Irritated (For no reason)
– Snarky / Sarcastic (For no reason)
– Very, very thirsty which results in a lot of weeing
– Angry for no reason
– Nauseous
– So, so sleepy that I am unable to keep my eyes open
– My mouth feels pasty

You will notice some of the signs are related to the signs that indicate that you might have Diabetes.

I prefer a high bg above a low bg. The reason behind this being that a high you treat and then wait it out. I still feel absolutely horrible, but it feels to me this settles much faster.

I feel a hyper is more difficult to recognise especially for people that do not know you, but your loved ones will know. As my husband has said before, I turn into a nasty person.

Short story, I was so rude to my mother once that my dad gave me the order to check my blood glucose -which was high of course- and I had to apologise to my mom. I didn’t mean to be rude to her and it was not on purpose. It is like I do not have control over my thoughts or expressions.

Nowadays I warn my husband if I know something is not right, to let me be. I do not want to be rude to anyone but on a high I am super irritable and most of the time do it without thinking.

My best advice when your friend or loved one or even a stranger is experiencing a high is to just let them be.

25. Burnout

What is Diabetes Burn Out?
Diabetes burnout is the term given to the state of disillusion, frustration and somewhat submission to the condition of diabetes. It can be characterised by a person’s complete disregard for their blood sugar levels.

They may also miss doctor appointments, forget or avoid taking insulin injections or other diabetic medication, or switch back to unhealthy eating habits.

Often it will be a state of mind that is reached after years of dealing with the condition.

What does diabetes burnout look like?
It looks different for each individual but there are some common signs and symptoms.
These include:
· Strong negative feelings (e.g.,overwhelmed, anger, frustration) about diabetes
· Feeling controlled by diabetes
· Isolation, or feeling alone with diabetes
· Avoidance of some, or all diabetes management activities and being unmotivated to change this behaviour

This can last for days, weeks, months, even years.

When I saw this prompt I had to think a bit and I most definitely have experienced burnout more than once. I think at the time I just did not know what it was as it did not have a name. I just thought at that time I was a bad diabetic, because how can I have such a disregard for my condition. This usually led to a sick carousel of feeling bad, making promises, trying again, burnout, feeling bad and you get the idea.

It is inevitable for someone managing a chronic condition to reach burnout even care givers reach a stage of burnout.

I think the most important thing to remember is that this happens to everyone and that we will be okay and that we need to look up and keep going.

Being part of the amazing community in South Africa most definitely helps make the burden lighter, it did for me.

When you feel tired, reach out, you have a whole community behind you. You are not alone.

If you are a friend of a Diabetic experiencing this, just be there for them. Support them the best you can. Hold their hand and give them a hug.

26. Adjusting to Diabetes [incl blog post]

We as Diabetics make adjustments every day with regard to our Diabetes.

When am I exercising, what am I having to eat, when will I eat, what times are my breaks at work, how much time do I have before meals, I am going to a function – I need to prepare (what will I eat, what will they have to drink, is it buffet etc.), and you get the idea.

Based on the above we need to make adjustments throughout our day to accommodate the Dia-beast but what do our partners do to adjust?

My husband, then fiancé, wrote this post to explain how he found adjusting to me being a Diabetic. It gave me a better understanding from his perspective of what adjusting to me, with Diabetes, was like.

It is a fun read, promise. – Link in bio.

27. Diabetes Celebrity

I remember as a younger version of myself during a time where I thought I was the only Diabetic on earth, I found out that Halle Berry is a Type 1 Diabetic.

I thought it was so great because we think that celebrities are untouchable human beings and here was an actress announcing she is Diabetic. They are after all just normal people. At one point I cut my hair as short as her hair was in The Bond movie. It was not the best idea I had.

Fast forward to now. I did not keep track of her Diabetic journey and I thought let me see where she is at.

Well, turns out that she is not so loved in the Diabetic community. She allegedly cured herself of Type 1 Diabetes by following a strict diet and then weaned herself off insulin which she no longer needs.

This led to a lot of controversy and people asking the question if she was not diagnosed as a Type 2 Diabetic.

Needless to say, she ruffled some feathers , as we all know there is no cure for Type 1 Diabetes and this made her very unpopular.

I do not have a Diabetic Celebrity that I follow or keep track of at the moment. I have a whole community that I see as local celebrities that is doing a stellar job of advocacy.


28. Resource [incl blog post]

I am lucky to have access to quite a few of the best resources enabling me to manage my Diabetes the best way I can.

💉I have access to insulin.
💉I have access to a glucose metre.
💉I have access to the @freestylediabetes CGM
💉I see my endo twice a year.
💉I have access to a psychiatrist and psychologist.
💉I am part of an awesome community in Cape Town and South Africa which enables me to learn more and new information all the time.
💉I have access to a dietician and I have to make a special mention to my dietician Anél at @paarldietitians . We have been on this journey for more than 12 years. She has impacted my life immensely. I did an interview with her a few years back and the info is gold. Please visit the link in my bio. It is another good read-promise!

None-human resources include access to books, websites, Wattsapp- and Facebook groups(like ).

I am very, very lucky to have access to all these resources and my hope is that every single Diabetic will have access to the best possible resources to manage this condition and live their best life.

29. Complications

With any chronic condition there are complications, but it does not mean you are set to have complications. If you look after yourself you are able to manage your condition and live a healthy life.

Diabetes can cause quite a few complications for example, the more severe ones include, but is not limited to, kidney failure, heart disease, amputation due to blood flow loss/infections or losing your eyesight.

The less severe, although this can be severe in some cases, include eating disorders, mental health problems, anxiety or panic attacks.

I struggle with an eating disorder. I am not ready to speak about it yet, but with a whole team I am working through it.

I was diagnosed with severe depression in 2016, but I am currently in remission which I am very thankful for. I do see my psychiatrist regularly to keep tabs and keep my mental health healthy.

I remember I was so afraid of losing my eyesight as this is something I have heard a lot about when living with Diabetes. I burst into tears at a school gathering where the poor team did not have a clue what to do or say and eventually they calmed me down. I am better now, but it is in the back of my head constantly. I see my optometrist once a year to check up.

We, as Diabetics, carry quite a load and we are very aware of the complications linked to this disease. Our own immune system is attacking our bodies and killing cells, but we are strong individuals and the thing we all know how to do is how to survive and strive.

There is a saying from the movie Cinderella Story which just hit me today, but it can be applied to life. It goes like this:

“𝔻𝕠 𝕟𝕠𝕥 𝕝𝕖𝕥 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕗𝕖𝕒𝕣 𝕠𝕗 𝕤𝕥𝕣𝕚𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕠𝕦𝕥 𝕜𝕖𝕖𝕡 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕗𝕣𝕠𝕞 𝕡𝕝𝕒𝕪𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕘𝕒𝕞𝕖”

30. Hopes For the Future

I can not believe we are at the end of November. What a wild month this has been.

It is quite fitting to end Diabetes Awareness Months with Hopes for the future.

My hope for the future is:
💉Access to insulin for everyone in any quantity as needed and that our government will supply the required amount for a specific individual without compromise.
💉That every Diabetic will have access to a CGM device and that the medical aid/government will cover this in full. It has been proven that with a CGM you have much better control on your blood glucose levels.
💉Access to Diabetic resources and care without any obstacles.
💉A cure for Diabetes.

𝐼𝓃 𝓉𝒽𝑒 𝓌𝑜𝓇𝒹𝓈 𝑜𝒻 𝒜𝓃𝓃𝑒 𝐹𝓇𝒶𝓃𝓀 – 𝒲𝒽𝑒𝓇𝑒 𝓉𝒽𝑒𝓇𝑒 𝒾𝓈 𝒽𝑜𝓅𝑒, 𝓉𝒽𝑒𝓇𝑒 𝒾𝓈 𝓁𝒾𝒻𝑒.

Happy World Diabetes Awareness Month!

E xx

Dear Traveller: An open, honest letter

Dear traveller, Hi.

I understand that you are desperate to see a friend, your family, move to a different country to get away from our shit or return home. I understand that you are tired and frustrated with the COVID situation. I understand that you are frustrated with the delay in responses and I can understand why you throw the lack of service card at us. It is not that I do not understand, actually I do.

Can I tell you a secret?

While you were baking banana bread and trying out the air fryer, reorganising your home, we were working. We were trying to figure out airline policies, fighting for better refund options and trying to figure out exactly what can and cannot be offered.

We are tired and overwhelmed. There was no 3 week break where we could read, eat the banana bread or garden.

We are tired opening an email, a message, answering a call and the first thing you see or hear is your service is pathetic, oh great a human, finally thank g**, f*ck off, you motherf*ckers, your company is a fraud.

No one wakes up in the morning with the intention to provide bad service. In fact, we wake up scared of what awaits.

You have 1000’s of travellers which is manageable when it is “travel as usual”. Imagine all of them coming at you at once because Covid hit and the globe closed down.

Here is another secret.

I have a family member that have been trying to go on honeymoon since last year, who had to move a wedding, rebooked the honeymoon just to be told now, sorry you cannot go. Both my parents ended up in ICU at the same time with COVID. They are alive and well, but imagine the stress and worry. I lost colleagues and friends as a result of downsizing. I have been working tirelessly, doing over time and trying to cope with the situation myself while you blame us for everything wrong in the travel industry.

Every time you take out your anger or frustration at a person you leave a mark. As much as we try to distance ourselves this infiltrates every aspect of our lives.

We are trying and fighting to assist you as quickly as possible and not keep you waiting, but we are human.

You forget that we are someone’s mother, father, brother, sister, child, husband, wife and that you have no right to be so rude and so angry at us. You have an even less right to swear and verbally abuse us like you do. There is no reason for 1 human being to speak to another like that. Think about how you would feel if someone spoke to you the way  some people speak to us.

I will share a last secret.

We are a middle man. We do not sit around the round table with the airline/suppliers/tour operators and discuss what is going to be offered. We are sent directives and because we are a third party, we have our own rules that is different from the airline’s rules (as written by the airline) and we are forced to adhere to the directive sent. Can we do anything about this or change the directive to suite your needs? The answer is no.

We know this is not your fault or your doing or your decision. You need to understand that is not our fault, our doing or our decision either. The same goes for the airlines/tour operators/suppliers etc. It is not their fault, their doing or their decision. There is a lot more to this than what you can see.

We need a little more patience, just for the time being. We need your understanding and above all, we need you to stop being so self righteous.

Try and place yourself in any travel agencies shoes and try and imagine just for 5minutes how we must feel and how our heart sink with every ban or new regulation being applied.

We are human. We are tired. We need an ounce of understanding and we need kindness.

Stop being a bully! 
E xx

A Day in the Life (of a Diabetic)

A day in the life of a Diabetic differs from person to person. Not one Diabetic’s day is the same. We all have our own routine and things that needs to get done, but what we all have in common is the pricks, scans and injections.

There are so many different factors that will have an influence on how our day goes. Today you might have to scan/prick and inject 5 times, tomorrow it is 8 and the next all of a sudden 10 times.

I tend to scan more when I have a busy day and when I am anxious or stressed I inject more as I need to correct the whole time.

Apart from just thinking about our day, we have our own little child called Diabetes.

This is what a day off from work looks like for me.

06:05 My alarm goes off. I am struggling to open my eyes as I got to bed late after my late shift. I usually lay in a little longer, but this is the time for my first scan of the day.

06:30 – 07:00 Up and out of bed. I get dressed and take my first jab for the day. My long acting insulin. I am not taking my short acting just yet as I am not having breakfast now and my levels are stable. I need to go drop Etienne off as I am taking the bakkie and going out to town.

I read a bit to pass the time.

07:45-08:45 Off I go to town. Traffic was not okay for this time of day. At 8:30 I was standing still on the off ramp to get onto the high way. Unusual for this time of day. I arrived safely and now the day can really start. I did my second scan of the day and as my level is bit higher than I want it I took my first jab for the day to even it out. I do not have any insulin on board at the moment so need to start adding.  Time to mask up and go find a public bathroom! The need is big!

08:50 – 09:50 Spent time in the mall, ran some errands and now off to meet up with my diabuddy!

10:00 Meeting time! 3rd scan of the day as now I will be having brunch and coffee! Second jab to cover the carbs.

11:30 After wonderful time, it is back home we go.

12:34  4th scan of the day. I think I miss calculated my breakfast. Oh, I most certainly did. Granola is not my friend, but it was worth it. No bread and so delicious! So, 4th jab of the day.

13:45-13:55 I arrived home safely, did a food stop, dropped off lunch at Etienne, filled die bakkie with diesel (the price is about to spike tomorrow morning) and then got the doggies ready for their salon visit. Also, I filled my own tank with water. I was super thirsty because of the spike in my level.

14:00 5th scan of the day. The correction I gave seemed to have done its thing. It is time for lunch. So, first what am I eating and then to calculate the amount I need to inject to cover the amount of carbs I will be consuming. 5th jab of the time and the timer is set to 15 minutes.

15:00-16:50 I really did not do much in this time .I read a bit, took a 30min power nap (these work, I promise), had a cup of sadness water (decaf coffee)  and then went to collect the doggies.

16:55 6th Scan of the day and it looked all good. Now to fetch Etienne from work as I have the wheels!

17:30-18:30 My levels dropped a bit too much and I felt wonky. I did not scan but I could tell. I took 2 glucose tablets, an apple and some peanut butter. I took quite some time to get my level back up. I was on my way to go for a walk, but I had to sit it out. So, let the dinner preparations begin.

18:30 7th Scan of the day. Almost a unicorn! Now to calculate the amount of carbs again and then take my 6th jab of the day.

18:30-20:00 Dinner is served. We watched some music videos on YouTube, had a chat doing our normal dinner time routine. After dinner I waited a bit for the food to settle. No one can exercise on a full stomach

20:00-20:45 I did a step class in the comfort of my own home. Thanks YouTube!

21:00 8th scan of the day just to check and now to finish my book I was reading.

21:50     9th and last scan of the day and I took a 7th jab as I had some shortbread cookies. Etienne baked! It was lovely! Off to take a shower and good night everyone!

In this day I scanned a total of 9th times and I had to inject myself 7th times. Apart from just managing my day I need to manage my Diabetic baby. It is a full time job 24/7/365 – no holiday, no break, no time off. What a horrible boss-hehe.

I am mighty thankful that I have access to the Freestyle Libre, if I did not I would have had to prick 9 times and I only have 10 fingers. This device really changed my life and Diabetes management style. My finger tips used to look horrible! Go Kenny! (I call my sensor Kenny).

What do you think? Can you blame us for going a bit cranky and talking about or Diabetic baby all the time?

Cheers to life!

E xx

The Diabetes Dictionary

Diabetics speak their own language and I am convinced you have heard abbreviations, acronyms or words used that you have no idea what we are speaking about. Do not fear, I have found the person who is going to guide you through our language.

Meet Lurina, or as we know her in the community, The Glucose Glitch. Lurina has been a Type 1 Diabetic for 21 years. She uses MDI and a GM to manage her T1D (see what I did here – search below for explanation). She has her own Youtube channel where she posts fun filled videos to teach you more about T1d and with some very handy tips on living with this condition.

So, here you go, a Diabetes dictionary for easy reference.


These are only short descriptions of acronyms, abbreviations and phrases used within the Type 1 Diabetes community. It would be beneficial if you researched each of the listings on your own time. The information was compiled from various diabetes related websites as well as a large variety of members of the global diabetes community. It is off course impossible to list each and every word related to Type 1 Diabetes, but this list will surely be of some help to many.

I’ve seen loads of T1D related discussions on social media with so many abbreviations, acronyms etc. that I needed to look up some of it, just to be able to understand what they were talking about.

Type 1 Diabetes is definitely not for the faint-hearted and by creating our own lingo, almost like our very own super cool sign language, we get to share in each others trials and tribulations. By just quickly hitting a few letters on the keypad, we all get to be on the same page and become part of the T1D community, understanding and helping each other, because #togetherwearestronger

Your FOMO can now be put to rest, because with the Diabetes Dictionary you can look up a word in a jiffy and you don’t have to take a SWAG about what the topic is about-LOL 

You can find Lurina on Instagram as @TheGlucoseGlitch

Do you have a word or abbreviation/acronym that we missed? Or maybe you made your own one! Please tell us in the comments.

E&L xx