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May 2010 Issue 53

Circulation 45 160


bes t

gu i d e

f or

p aren t s



of Joburg’s top party suppliers

let’s celebrate!

your must-have party guide


birthday recipes the perfect party

cheat sheet




I have spent many hours researching all things party. And my children have attended what must be at least 10 times as many. It seems like yesterday that the invitations involved ball ponds and push bikes and, now, my 15-year-old has been invited to a foam party at an under-18 club. When I phone the management to check on the club, they assure me it’s all “good clean fun”. No kidding! “No drugs, no alcohol, no leaving the club until home time.” Closing time? “Oh, 1am.” Great, I’ll be there at 10pm! Thankfully my youngest, being eight, is still very much in the realm of the good old-fashioned birthday party and, with her in mind, I’ve collected some great ideas that I plan to use for as many parties as possible (who knows what under-18 clubs will be offering in 2018?). Some of my favourites are: Make your own memories. Create your own studio with a home-made backdrop, digital camera and a colour printer. (You can easily upload images to to apply free, playful photo frames, which are great to use as thank you cards.) Create a bowling alley in your back garden. Take 10 clear plastic bottles, fill them with water and then add a couple of drops of food colouring to each. Stand them up on flat ground, and use party streamers as lane margins. Arrange your own fun fair. Have the party at your neighbourhood park and give each child tokens for taking part in the activities. Set up a face-painting booth, a “tattoo” table and games such as “throw the bean bag into the clown’s mouth” and “pin the tail on the donkey”. Serve hot dogs, popcorn and home-made lemonade. For other DIY party-activity ideas see page 42 or turn to our directory (see page 46) for people who can help you create the sort of celebration you’re looking for. But remember, it’s a birthday, not a wedding! Thankfully there’s still time before we need to be thinking about those. All sorted? I think so.

Hunter House P U B L I S H I N G

Publisher Lisa Mc Namara •

Editorial Managing Editor Marina Zietsman • Features Editor Elaine Eksteen • Calendar Editor Chareen Penderis • Editorial Assistant Lucille Kemp •

monthly circulation Cape Town’s ChildTM 45 158 Joburg’s ChildTM 45 160 Durban’s ChildTM 40 052

to advertise Tel: 011 807 6449 • Fax: 011 234 4971 Email: Website:

Copy Editors Nikki Benatar Debbie Hathway

Art Designers Mariette Barkhuizen • Nikki-leigh Piper •

Advertising Director Lisa Mc Namara •

Client Relations PUBLISHER’S PHOTOGRAPH: Brooke Fasani

Client Relations Manager Michele Jones • Client Relations Consultants Renee Bruning • Natasia Cook •

To Subscribe Helen Xavier •

Accounts Helen Xavier • Nicolene Baldy • Tel: 021 465 6093 • Fax: 021 462 2680


All our magazines are printed on recycled paper.

Free requested Jan 10 – Mar 10

Joburg’s ChildTM is published monthly by Hunter House Publishing, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. Office address: Unit 5, First Floor, Bentley Office Park, cnr. Rivonia and Wessel Rd, Rivonia. Tel: 011 807 6449, fax: 011 234 4971, email: Annual subscriptions (for 11 issues) cost R165, including VAT and postage inside SA. Printed by Paarl Web. Copyright subsists in all work published in Joburg’s ChildTM. We welcome submissions but retain the unrestricted right to change any received copy. We are under no obligation to return unsolicited copy. The magazine, or part thereof, may not be reproduced or adapted without the prior written permission of the publisher. We take care to ensure our articles are accurate and balanced but cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage that may arise from reading them.

May 2010


may 2010

upfront 3

a note from lisa


 ver to you o readers respond


14 reader’s blog a former Child Magazine reader tells us about her family’s new life in Melbourne

features 21 h  ome-made party Donna Cobban chooses the DIY route for her son’s second birthday

19 eating for sleeping Hannah Kaye explains how your child’s diet can influence his sleeping patterns

regulars 11 wins

24 m  anners maketh the minor Donna Cobban is all for a return to good old-fashioned manners 28 rash decision?  ith measles on the rise, the vaccine w is back under the microscope. Glynis Horning investigates 34 keeping it real finding the balance as a single parent requires some extra effort. Catherine Jenkin tells you how she survives 38 c  elebration time! in an extract from his cookbook Gatherings: A Year of Invitations, Nataniël shares special birthday recipes for children 42 hip, hip, hooray!

20 upfront with paul

some days should be cancelled, says Paul Kerton

46 r esource: the ultimate party guide we bring you Johannesburg’s most comprehensive guide to all things party related 62 a good read  new books for the whole family 68 what’s on in may

a list of easy, yet fabulous, ideas for party entertainment. By Elaine Eksteen

78 last laugh some white lies told to children, says Sam Wilson, are just plain dangerous

health 15 give it up thumb-sucking can be a hard habit to break, warns Donna Cobban 16 milk matters

18 d  ealing with difference Sally Hetherington looks at helping a child with Sensory Processing Disorder

the health benefits of goat’s milk

classified ads 68 family marketplace


17 skin deep all you need to know about teenage skin care

this month’s cover images are supplied by:

Brooke Fasani

May 2010

La CupCakerie 012 804 0183



May 2010


over to you battle with the bogeyman? dealing with difference Thanks for a great magazine, which I love. My daughter used to bring it home from school when she was in the lower grades, but now I get it from our library. Sam Wilson’s column is also a favourite of mine and I can so relate to her child-rearing ideals. She obviously lives in Cape Town and has a more laid-back approach to life, whereas here in Johannesburg things are more plastic and rushed – children don’t have a chance to just “be”. I thoroughly enjoyed your April article on Asperger’s syndrome. It made for interesting reading. I would like to learn more about how to teach coping skills to these children. Society should learn to be more tolerant of difference. Advertising and marketing companies stress how important it is to be different and to think out of the box, but the modern school system doesn’t teach children (or certain teachers) to be so tolerant. It seems it’s easier to send the child off to a remedial school or for intervention with therapists. Keep up the good work. Mary Anderson

May 2010

My five-year-old daughter has never had a problem sleeping on her own, in her own room. But recently this has changed drastically. When our second daughter was born in September last year, our routines changed dramatically and our five-year-old suddenly became insecure and latched onto me all the time. I decided that it was a phase and, once we had a new routine in place, everything would go back to normal. Six months down the line, she is still not falling asleep on her own or sleeping in her own room. When questioned as to why she will not sleep alone she says she just wants to be with us. However, she is with me from 12:30pm every day until bedtime and by then she should be tired enough to go to sleep on her own. She is reluctant to sleep in her room after getting back into the “old” routine of reading a story before bedtime, and now gets her pillow and lies on the couch with my husband and me every night. This has become annoying; after 8:30pm is my time with my husband. Our baby falls asleep around 8:30pm every night and sleeps in her own room, so why can’t our five-yearold? Could she be afraid of “the bogeyman?” What would cause her to behave like this? Sindi



May 2010

over to you continued... believe in the vaccine. Dr Trudy Smith, an expert on the topic, spoke at our life sciences teachers’ conference in February and she was most convincing: boys and girls should be vaccinated. Jenny Page, Head of Faculty, Sciences, King David High School, Victory Park

the cancer jab debate Last year – at the age of 41, after a routine Pap smear – I was diagnosed with cervical cancer and underwent a radical hysterectomy. If I hadn’t had that checkup, I would be facing far more stringent cancer therapy and a far worse year. I have one of the most virulent strains of HPV in my body. I’ve never had a promiscuous sex life and would not hesitate to give the new vaccine to my daughter.

May 2010

There are many other STDs, including HIV, which the vaccine will not save you from so the argument that this vaccine is a licence for promiscuity is utterly ridiculous. Heather Dodd I would like to commend you on the excellent article “life saver or lifestyle changer”, about the HPV vaccine, in the April issue. As a life sciences teacher, I wholeheartedly

Yesterday I received the April issue of Child Magazine when I collected my little boys from school. Being an avid reader of your magazine, which I thoroughly enjoy, I was horrified to read the article promoting the Gardasil vaccine. I urge you to google it and have a look at the various sites that are dedicated to warning people regarding its dangers. Your magazine reaches thousands of people, some of whom might be reading about the vaccine for the first time – surely what you print deserves investigation so the public can then make an informed decision. I have two precious little boys so I will never be faced with having to make this decision or being pressured into it, but if I had a daughter there would be no way to persuade me to give her the death sentence that is Gardasil. Please be the ones to expose this drug for what it really is. Geraldine Bosman

We believe the article we ran offered a balanced view on the topic, but have asked two people more qualified than ourselves to comment on Geraldine Bosman’s concerns.


Dr Jacky Searle is a gynaecologist and obstetrician based at Life Vincent Pallotti Hospital in Pinelands, Cape Town. I would like to congratulate you on your article “life saver or lifestyle changer” about the cervical cancer vaccine (April 2010). I am a gynaecologist and mother, and have always found your magazine helpful and informative (and sometimes thought provoking). The relatively new vaccines available to prevent HPV infection (Cevarix and Gardasil) are an incredibly important technology, and one of the challenges is informing the public thereof. An article like yours, which was accurate and addressed the issues in a relevant and well-balanced manner, will help meet this challenge. I was therefore surprised when I read Geraldine Bosman’s response. One of the marvellous aspects of the HPV vaccines is how incredibly effective they are, and how incredibly safe – something that is always an ideal, but not always a reality. Both vaccines have undergone rigorous clinical trials and were only launched once all the necessary criteria were met. I have no hesitation in prescribing them to patients who choose to take advantage of their availability. While I may not be qualified to respond to all the internet references Geraldine quoted, the following points are pertinent. Although there are hundreds of strains of HPV, there are only 15 strains responsible for causing cancer, and strains 16 and 18 are responsible for over 73% of cervical cancer cases. Thus, a vaccine against these two strains is highly effective in eradicating cervical cancer.


The ability to assess the effectiveness and safety of any medical intervention in an unbiased manner is a science in itself. As a health professional I rely on the opinion of reliable panels of experts for my information. Individual cases and experiences should not be used to make informed decisions. Thousands will have received HPV vaccines. Some of these may report possible side effects, and some may have died. It is vital that a causal effect is established before a relationship between the two is made. One case that Geraldine refers to reports the death of a young woman six months after receiving her last Gardasil vaccine ie eight months after starting the course of vaccinations. No other information is available. While this death is tragic, one cannot possibly link the vaccine with the death without further information. To conclude, I, too, am the mother of two boys. I will be vaccinating them against HPV (in fact I plan to use Gardasil since it provides protection against the strains responsible for cervical cancer and genital warts). Vaccinating boys as well as girls reduces the risk of the spread of HPV in any community, and HPV plays a causal role in penile and anal cancer. My hope is that I will raise boys who will make age appropriate and responsible sexual choices. I am not concerned that HPV vaccination will encourage promiscuity (does the use of safety belts encourage dangerous driving?), and I am grateful that they are able to benefit from its availability. Jacky Searle

Dr Tim Tucker is a medical doctor, a registered specialist clinical virologist with a PhD in molecular virology. Gardasil is a good vaccine. In multiple clinical trials, no major side effect was shown, and the vaccine showed nearly 100% efficacy in protecting against the four strains of HPV that most commonly cause cervical cancer, making it one of the most important public health opportunities ever. Cervical cancer is one of the most common cancers in the parts of the world where Pap smears are not freely available. A tragedy is the current cost of the vaccine, which makes it unaffordable in most developing countries. Every vaccine or drug has side effects. However, for a vaccine to be approved, it has to be safe. So, where do the stories about side effects come from? Things are taken out of context. To perform clinical trials, you need to enrol tens of thousands of volunteers. Half get the vaccine, the other half get a placebo. They’re all then followed up for a few years to see if the vaccine protected them or not, and whether there are side effects. While there have been limited minor side effects (such as redness around the injection site, headache), no major side effects have been found linked to the vaccine. All side effects are monitored on an ongoing basis to ensure that any vaccine with significant side effects is removed from the market. But, just because someone has a terrible illness or dies after receiving the vaccine, does not mean the vaccine is responsible. That’s potentially like blaming car crashes on breakfast, because so many car accidents happen within an hour or two of eating breakfast. Tim Tucker

May 2010

over to you continued... hold your horses I have decided to stop advertising in Child Magazine because the response is just too great and I cannot cope with the demand. Your publication is just amazing and the response has been so fabulous that I can’t keep up and can now just operate by word of mouth. Thank you for your great publication and your fantastic service. Monica Haralambous of Made by Monica

handed, why change this? They have many advantages over right-handed people. To hold a pencil or pen in the left hand has always seemed awkward, but try holding a signing brush and doing lettering – it’s amazing to watch. Over the years I have found left-handers in many ways more gifted than right-handers – sportsman, musicians, cooks, you name it. Blackie Sanders (78 years young)

proud grandma

advice needed

I have been looking after my grandson Chae while his mom is at work since he was four months old. He turned three on 26 April 2010. He is so precious and I am privileged to be able to contribute in raising a fun-loving, happy but caring boy. Nicky Murray aka Oumie Nini

I am the mother of two adorable girls, who are cherished dearly by my husband and myself. My husband is a fantastic father to our girls, but over the years our relationship has suffered and I feel that we are drifting apart. I realise that one day our daughters will grow up and leave home, then it will be just the two of us and I am desperate to recover the closeness we used to have. I would like us to go for marriage counselling but have no idea where to start. Perhaps some of your readers can advise me where to go? Anonymous

left is right I am writing in reply to your article “is left right?” in the February 2010 issue. I have been a sign writer all my working life. Over the years I have come across a few left-handed sign writers, but there aren’t many. Artistic, neat and creative, these chaps were all very good at their jobs. Many years ago I met a chap called Edgar Lovatt. This man could take a brush in either hand and write two signs at the same time! If a person is meant to be left-


May 2010

be car wise Thanks for your wonderful and helpful magazine. I would appreciate it if you could print the following as a warning to all parents: Yesterday when I fetched my

son Luke from school, we had only been in the car for a few minutes when the engine started smoking. Just five minutes later there were flames and my car was covered in smoke. In less than 20 minutes it completely burnt out. The car had been making a funny humming noise and I presumed it was only the fan belt, but I never expected this! It took the fire department 20 minutes to reach us and I only had time to save my umbrella, CDs and glasses. Believe me, the stench of burning car is horrible. No-one was hurt, but all I keep thinking is: “What if…” Please moms and dads, never, ever leave your children alone in the car. Things can happen so quickly. Bex

write to us We would like to know what’s on your mind. Send your letters to: or PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. We reserve the right to edit and shorten submitted letters. The opinions reflected here are those of our readers and are not necessarily held by Hunter House Publishing.




in may

a mother’s day treat Le Creuset has come out with yet another asset for your kitchen, a sturdy 30cm enamelled cast-iron roasting and baking dish. It is big enough to hold a whole chicken, fillet of beef or leg of lamb, and resistant enough to withstand the searing heat of the oven. It is also perfect for pasta, desserts or pies. While Le Creuset’s baker is great as a serving dish at the table (thanks to efficient heat retention properties), it is safe for the oven, grill, freezer and dishwasher, and versatile enough for everything from roasting and deglazing to baking. The baker is suitable for all hobs including ceramic, halogen, induction, gas and electric and comes with a lifetime guarantee. Get to their new boutique store in Bedford Centre (0861 773 321) or one of the boutique stores at Killarney Mall (011 646 6316) and Brooklyn Mall in Pretoria (012 346 2840) or visit Joburg’s Child’s readers can win one of six cast-iron rectangular Le Creuset bakers, valued at R963 each. To enter, email your details to with with “Le Creuset JHB Win” in the subject line or post your entry to Le Creuset JHB Win, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010 before 31 May 2010. Only one entry per reader.


May 2010



May 2010

hey, good looking!

party with paint

Naartjie clothing is playful, vibrant, colourful and natural. For a fashion-forward wardrobe for your children visit the Naartjie store closest to you and keep up to date with Naartjie’s in-store events by signing up to receive their newsletter and message alerts via Stores are situated in Clearwater (011 475 4587), Nelson Mandela Square (011 784 4923), Morningside (087 940 3899), Cresta (011 478 1503), Eastgate (011 616 7929) and Epsom Downs (011 706 8604). Call to enquire about their Pretoria store details. This month, readers of Joburg’s Child stand a chance to win one of 22 Naartjie gift vouchers valued at R300 each. All you need to do is visit Click on “about us” then click on “a true story” and watch the little tree grow. Count the number of naartjies on the tree and then email your name, contact details and the number of naartjies to with “Naartjie JHB Win” in the subject line before 31 May 2010. Only one entry per reader.

Artjamming works to a freestyle format that is perfect for a child’s energy and imagination. Simply walk in and create your own full-colour art piece to the beat of chilled-out music. Whether it’s playing, painting, sponging or spraying, Artjamming is about putting on an apron, facing a blank canvas and unleashing your creativity. For more information contact the Blubird Centre studio situated in Atholl: 011 786 0599 or visit One Joburg’s Child reader can win an Artjamming party at the Blubird Centre studio, for their child and nine friends, worth R1 350. The party is two hours long and includes a canvas for each child, aprons, brushes, tools and party packs. To enter, email all your details to with “Artjamming JHB Win” in the subject line or post your entry to Artjamming JHB Win, PO Box 826, Cape Town, 8000 before 31 May 2010. Only one entry per reader.


beautiful bedrooms

it’s time for a celebration Yeesh! is a fun indoor children’s venue with giant climbing frame, ball ponds, slides, obstacle course, jumping castles, trampolines and a mini soccer pitch. There’s a separate soft play area for toddlers, the Paint Pot where children can decorate ceramics and T-shirts, and a coffee shop for moms and dads to relax while the children are supervised by trained staff. Yeesh! offers a themed party venue, party packs, cakes, catering and décor. For more information contact Bryanston (073 230 6531) or Woodmead Commerical Park (083 923 2306), or visit In the name of good times, Yeesh! is giving away a children’s party to one lucky Joburg’s Child reader for 20 children and 20 adults (suitable for children up to 12 years). The two-hour party is valued at R2 000. Celebrations can be held on any Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday afternoon. The party package includes invitations, party tables and chairs, balloons, 20 junior party packs and the help of a dedicated staff member. To enter, email your details to with “Yeesh! Win” in the subject line or sms your entry to 073 230 6531 before 31 May 2010. Only one entry per reader.


Buttercup is a baby and children’s décor shop that stocks a large variety of furniture, linen and décor accessories as well as beautiful gifts for baby showers, christenings and birthdays. Choose from what’s in store, or order something custom made. The furniture includes beautiful cots and compactums for babies as well as beds and pedestals that will see young children through to their teens. They also offer a variety of storage solutions including toy boxes and under-bed trollies. From pretty embroidered linen sets to handmade wooden accessories and mirrors, Buttercup Kids stocks everything you need to complete the décor of your child’s room. The shop is in Blackheath (011 024 2213) or you can visit Joburg’s Child’s readers can win one of three personalised name cushions valued at R275 each, in the fabric of their choice. To enter, email your details to or post your entry to PO Box 1145, Honeydew, 2040 before 31 May 2010. Only one entry per reader.

Congratulations to our March winners Robyn Knocker who wins a Love Letters stationery hamper; Cornelia Bredenhand and Zahava Fisman who each win a SwimFin and Mona Pillay who wins a Kiddimoto push bike.

May 2010



home among the gum trees GEMMA FRANKS, a mother of two and former avid Child Magazine reader, writes about her family’s new life in Australia.


May 2010

brought home, from the resident “chooks”. “Chooks” we have learnt is Australian slang for hen or chicken. Holly, who turned five in January, is now in Prep at a local, co-educational government school. Children start school younger in Australia than in South Africa. In Victoria and Australian Capital Territory, children begin Prep if they turn five on or before 30 April of that year. If parents don’t think their children are school ready, and their birthday falls close to the cut off date, they can defer school for another year. In other states and territories such as New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia, children begin school even earlier. Holly loves school. She’s learning to read and write, add, subtract and socialise with children from China, India, England as well as native Australians. The number of foreigners in Holly’s class is almost proportional to national statistics. According to Australia’s official tourism website more than 20% of Australians are foreign born. Our son Connor, who turns three in August, will join Holly at her school in 2013. In the meantime, he goes to story time at the local library and a parent-run playgroup once a week.

Holly sang nothing but Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika for our first three weeks in Australia, which fell in mid-winter last year. Eight months have elapsed since and she no longer remembers the South African national anthem. She has yet to learn the Australian national anthem but the words are promising: “Australians all let us rejoice, For we are young and free;...” “…For those who’ve come across the seas, We’ve boundless plains to share; With courage let us all combine To advance Australia fair.” It was a heart wrenching decision to leave South Africa but we feel it was the right one for our family. We’ve now found a home among the gum trees.

Readers, this is your page – it’s a space to air your views, share a valuable parenting lesson, vent your frustrations or celebrate your joys. Send your writing to




ur first experience of possums in our garden was an eerie one. In the dead of night came a loud hissing, crackling sound. And then something stampeded across our roof. Now we just smile at being so close to Australian wildlife while living in suburbia. Our rented home in East Melbourne has several gum trees in the garden, at least one residential male brushtail possum, which we’ve identified from its nocturnal, territorial antics, an apple tree and half a dozen magpies. Possums are a protected species in Australia but are often considered pests due to their habit of eating fruit, vegetables and flowers from gardens, and nesting in roofs. Fortunately, possums don’t nest in our roof and haven’t eaten any of our vegetables. Our daughter Holly saw her first up-close possum last year during a wildlife day at her kindergarten. She said they had to wake the possum up to get a better look at it. Frogs, snakes and a wallaby were also brought to the school in boxes that day. Holly enjoyed her term, the last one of the year, at a local, council-run kindergarten. Apart from conventional playschool activities, she collected eggs, which she



give it up o

n my sister’s third birthday my mother got her to say cheerio to her dummy – for good. My mother watched proudly as my sister walked over to the dustbin and tossed in the dummy. She was a big girl now and with that announcement she popped her thumb into her mouth and there it remained for far too long. I soon followed suit, and together we sucked away for years, slowly but surely pushing our front teeth further and further out while the bottom row crept ever inwards. No amount of aloe juice (our mother used to dip our thumbs into the pot while we slept) or persuasion could convince us to give up our thumbs. According to the South African Society of Orthodontists (SASO), there are two types of thumb-sucking: the meaningless habit and the meaningful habit. The American Dental Association (ADA) says that when an active sucker removes his thumb, a popping sound can be heard – this is a sound I remember well and one I never want to hear coming from my son’s mouth. Cape Town-based orthodontist Dr Dominique Ferreira says that as long as the child is weaned from the dummy and/or thumb before the permanent teeth erupt, then the effects of the sucking will not affect the permanent teeth. Thumb, dummy- or even finger-sucking are regarded as normal behaviours, with the ADA claiming that it makes children feel secure and happy.

can be a hard habit to break, says DONNA COBBAN. So why do most drop the habit by the age of four, while others refuse to stop? Research shows that babies seen thumbsucking while still in the womb have a greater tendency to become long-term thumb-suckers, with SASO claiming that prolonged thumb-sucking may also be “rooted in a possible behavioural problem, in which the oral habit is only a symptom”. SASO cautions that the child “retreats to the habit when his security is threatened, and exhibits increased anxieties when the habit is corrected”. Children will often suck with an increased vengeance if there is pressure on them to stop the habit. If there isn’t a willingness on the child’s part to break the habit, it seems to result in more harm than good. Perhaps the most sage piece of advice I came across is from the University of Michigan Health System, which says: “Parents cannot eliminate the habit for their child. The habit belongs to the child and the child must willingly cooperate and accept responsibility if the habit is to be eliminated”. The thumb is clearly a powerful comforter for some, and whipping it out of the mouth is easier said than done. I finally quit the habit when my newly acquired orthodontist cemented a wire at the back of my four front teeth (against present-day thinking). My thumb no longer fitted snugly into place and the habit was lost. I was 12 years old!

thumbs up for quitting


Some problems associated with prolonged and frequent thumbsucking may include: • crowded, crooked teeth; • bite problems; • possible speech problems, including mispronouncing “t” and “d” sounds, lisping, and thrusting out the tongue when talking; • problems with swallowing • emotional problems due to the appearance of the teeth. Courtesy of South African Society of Orthodontists (SASO)


May 2010



milk matters We take a look at whether goat’s milk is a viable alternative for children who are allergic to cow’s milk.


oat’s milk is a nutritious, alternative dairy product that’s particularly valuable as a source of high-quality protein and calcium, and can contain significantly higher levels of calcium, vitamin B6, vitamin A and potassium than cow’s milk. But perhaps the greatest benefit is that goat’s milk may be suitable for older babies and children who are sensitive to cow’s-milk products. Goat’s milk has a different amino acid content and protein composition to cow’s milk, with more fat but less lactose. It also contains only trace amounts of the allergenic casein protein, alpha-S1, which is found in cow’s milk. These lower levels are perhaps the main reason why people who suffer from lactose intolerance or cow’s-milk allergies can often tolerate goat’s milk. A study in the USA in 1994 found that between 40% and 100% of patients allergic to cow’s-milk proteins were reported to tolerate goat’s milk. Some studies also indicate that goat’s milk is more easily digested than cow’s milk. However, goat’s milk is lacking in folic acid, with levels 10 times lower than that of cow’s milk. An inadequate supply of folic acid may result in anaemia in infants. For this reason, when used as a formula or milk substitute in infants or toddlers, goat’s milk must be supplemented with folic acid, as recommended by your paediatrician. As

children grow older and eat a varied and balanced diet, it is likely they will get the folic acid they need from other sources. Goat’s-milk infant formula contains already-added necessary vitamins and minerals. However, it is safer if goat’s milk is only introduced into a baby’s diet after six months, due to dangers of allergic response and indigestibility. In infants over one year, goat’s milk can normally be readily used as a substitute for cow’s milk. The taste of goat’s milk can be described as slightly sweet with a salty undertone – which some find an acquired taste. The fine globules of cream give it a smooth, creamy texture. While the goat’s-milk cheese market is fairly well established in South Africa, goat’s milk is not always easy to find. But since it can be frozen for up to six months, stock up your freezer when you find it. Just ensure that any milk you use is of the best quality and is not only hygienically produced but also pasteurised. *Please note: Always speak to your health practitioner before changing your infant’s formula or trying a product that might induce an allergic reaction.

“One of my family’s favourite outings is a visit to Swissland (033 234 4042), a Swiss dairygoat farm in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. While it’s hard to resist shovelling pellets of feed into the velvety muzzles of the frisky white goats, it’s the delectable goat’s-milk cheese that draws us back each time. Such hits with our young children, the chevin and feta rarely survive the hour-long trip home. Appeals to ‘save some for later’ fall on deaf ears. Indeed, one would have more luck asking Pooh Bear to keep his sticky little paws out of the honey pot.” – Joan Roberts


May 2010

where to find it Magaliesburg dairy-goat farmer Deon van Dalen recently set up a website to help consumers find goat’s-milk products and producers. For a list of farmers and suppliers of goat’s-milk products near you, visit



day trip


skin deep Following a disciplined skincare regime from a young



age has far-reaching positive effects.

ost teenagers regard any skincare regime that requires more than washing their face a waste of time. After all, their skin is “young and indestructible”. However, this devil-maycare attitude may be detrimental in the long run – incorporating a disciplined skin routine at this age will ensure a lifetime of healthy habits and can help prevent future skin issues. When we were growing up we were told that sweets, chocolates, biscuits and fatty foods were major causes of spots. This has since been discredited and it is now widely accepted that male-hormone levels play a pivotal role in pimples popping up. However, medical research has shown that certain foods can affect our hormonal balance – so a healthy eating plan during these hormonal years is essential. It’s important for teens to know their skin type: normal, oily or combination. Most reputable skin clinics should be able to do a free skin analysis for your child and help them choose the correct products –


from face washes, toners, moisturisers and exfoliators – best suited to their skin type. The good news is that your teen does not have to suffer the spotty-faced trauma you once did – if your child is disciplined and follows a good day-to-day skincare regime, with reputable products, acne and problem skin can become a minor teenage issue. That said, when spots do appear, the trick is to not try to “magic them away” with “miracle-cure” creams and pills. You should only become concerned if the acne is acute and starts to disfigure the face. Should this happen, there are a range of remedies to help clear breakouts, but remember not all treatments have exactly the same result for everyone. The best treatment for skin problems is, without doubt, prevention. A healthy diet, regular exercise and a skincare regime formulated specifically for their skin type will go a long way to ensuring that your teen’s skin remains beautiful and healthy. Depending on your teen’s skin type, a healthy skin programme includes cleansing

with a mild cleanser twice a day and using a good moisturiser followed by a sunblock with at least an SPF15. Actually, this should form the basis of everyone’s skincare plan, irrespective of skin type or age. If your teen has regular breakouts, washing more often, using very hot water, rubbing, scratching and popping spots will worsen the problem, as will exfoliating excessively with astringents and harsh masks. Adding benzoyl peroxide, alpha hydroxyl acid or salicylic acids, which are found in cleansers, ointments, creams and lotions, can help to improve and lessen breakouts and scarring, but because these agents are potent exfoliators and contain bleaching chemicals they can also result in the skin becoming very dry and flaky. Acne occurs when blackheads, whiteheads and folliculitis develop into swollen tender papules and pustules. The problem with acne is the blockage of sebaceous glands along the hair shafts, which leads to a build-up of oil and sebum – the perfect environment for bacteria

to thrive. The choice of treatment then depends on the stage of the problem. Obviously, the worse the problem, the more drastic the treatment, but even then potent drugs such as Retin A (Roaccutane, Accutane) can still be avoided. Information supplied by Dr Kamlen Pillay.

visit your GP or a reputable skin clinic when: • The acne becomes inflamed • The acne is not responding to over-the-counter preparations • The acne is causing scars • The acne is affecting your teen’s self-esteem • The acne is associated with coexisting medical problems and medications

May 2010


dealing with difference

making sense of the world

SALLY HETHERINGTON looks at living with Sensory Processing Disorder.

processing differently Most people with well-regulated sensory worlds are able to receive sensory stimuli from outside and organise them into appropriate motor or behavioural responses – sensory integration. Someone with SPD cannot process this information correctly and therefore behaves inappropriately. Here’s an example that might explain it: when I go shopping I have my goal – my shopping list – in mind. My brain automatically gathers all the outside sensory information, such as music, cooking smells and vibrant colours, and processes these to the background so that I can concentrate on my shopping. My daughter on the other hand takes it all in like a waterfall rushing at her. It all gets “stuck” in her brain and she can’t process it properly. Eventually it all comes crashing down and ends up with what I call “a meltdown”.

further reading • S ensory Intelligence by Annemarie Lombard (Metz Press, 2007) • The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive when the World Overwhelms You by Elaine Aron (Broadway Books, 1997) • Too Loud, Too Bright, Too Fast, Too Tight: What to do if you are Sensory Defensive in an Overstimulating World by Sharon Heller (HarperCollins, 2003) • Helpful websites: and


May 2010

Cape Town OT Gudrun van Heukelum explains that we all connect with the world through our senses: sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch, as well the two “hidden” senses. The first of these relates to movement and our position in relation to gravity (vestibular sense); the second is concerned with our internal body awareness, where we respond to feedback from muscles and joints (proprioceptive sense). Says Gudrun: “Each individual has a unique sensory-processing style and OTs study how children respond to sensory experiences to see if they are over- or under-responsive, which manifests respectively in behaviour that is sensory avoiding or sensory seeking.” She goes on to explain that both require parental understanding and mediation to facilitate an appropriate state of alertness and help with feeding, sleeping and routine cycles. This support programme is most beneficial when being used under the guidance of a professional sensory integration-oriented OT.

where to from here? My daughter has been visiting an OT for nearly a year and we are winning small battles every day. It has been a huge relief to understand that she is not a “difficult” child but that she has genuine difficulties processing her everyday world. We have implemented various strategies to help her cope, including a sensory diet (limited TV and computer time, shorter play dates, only one activity per afternoon and allowing lots of space for quiet activities and outdoor play) and stricter routines. We have also learnt how to prepare and calm her for over-stimulating events, such as a show, so that we can all enjoy it without the tantrums. It is a long process and not something that will ever “go away” but with love, support and patience we will help our daughter to learn to self-regulate so she can grow into a secure and happy young adult.



his time last year I was at my wit’s end. My five-year-old was more than impossible. Tantrums, yelling, lashing out, fighting bedtime… I could go on. It was a pretty miserable environment for all of us to be living in. Some friends told me, “Don’t worry, it’s normal for her age”; teachers reported her to be sweet, confident and quiet… was I missing something? My little angel became a monster at home and I could not in my heart believe this was “normal” five-year-old behaviour. I eventually took her to see an occupational therapist (OT) hoping to shed some light on the issue. After an extensive session we had a diagnosis: Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD). It was like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders – I was not a bad mom and it was nothing that I was or wasn’t doing. Home was just her safe place where she could let it all out.



eating for sleeping Your child’s diet might just be the key to putting those wide-awake nights behind you, says HANNAH KAYE.



aving a child that sleeps through the night seems to have become a reflection of good parenting. Admitting to a group of moms that nighttime crying or the pitter-patter of little footsteps towards your bedroom in the early hours of the morning frequently occur in your home, can make you feel like a failure. Especially if they’re looking bright eyed after another eight hours of uninterrupted sleep. You may be asking yourself what you’re doing wrong. You’ve read the books; you’ve established a regular sleep routine; you’ve tried controlled crying, and co-sleeping. Yet sleep, or lack thereof, continues to be a major problem. “People often ask me if Maya (age three), is a good sleeper,” says her mom, Dani Bergman. “For many months I used to laugh and say no, but she’s a great eater. After seeing a nutritional therapist,


I learnt how I could use Maya’s strength to play into her weakness. Making some dietary changes has had a remarkable effect on her sleeping patterns, and I can honestly say she is now sleeping through the night – just in time for the arrival of our next baby.” Perhaps, as was true for Maya, the answer might lie in your child’s diet. But where to begin? Even subtle changes can make a difference. Here are some suggestions: Keep a food and sleep diary. Analysing this information may help you find some patterns in your child’s sleeping habits. Once you identify them, you may be able to find a solution. Cut out over-stimulating foods. It’s best not to give children food and drink that contain caffeine, such as hot chocolate, tea, cola and chocolate desserts. Even caffeine early in the day can disrupt your child’s

sleep cycle. Foods containing tyramine, a brain stimulant, should be avoided close to bedtime. These include tomatoes, bacon, cheese, potato, chocolate, sugar, sausages and Marmite. Investigate healthier options. Reduce your family’s intake of refined carbohydrates such as bread, pasta, cakes and crisps. Swapping to complex carbohydrates such as wholemeal pasta, oat or millet porridge, buckwheat pancakes and pulses will help to stabilise blood-sugar levels. (Low blood sugar is often the cause of the 3am wakeup, the result of too much glucose being taken out of the blood after a highly refined meal. This drop in the blood-sugar level, following the initial high, leads to the early morning wake-up call.) These carbohydrates, which include fruit and vegetables, are much higher in minerals like calcium and magnesium, which have calming properties.

Read food labels. Get into the habit of examining the ingredients of the things you buy. Additives and preservatives are highly stimulatory. For example, tartrazine and MSG are both excitotoxins and will disrupt sleep. Try an exclusion diet. Continual waking and crying at night can be manifestations of food intolerances. The removal of dairy or wheat could bring your family longawaited relief within a few weeks. Lowgrade inflammation associated with wheat and dairy intolerances initiates a stimulatory process, affecting neurotransmitters involved in sleep. Other possible clues to food intolerance can include a regular sore tummy, ear infections and a constant runny nose. Perhaps the smallest dietary changes or exclusions may bring about what both you and your child need most: a good night’s sleep.

May 2010


upfront with paul

sorry, today is cancelled

Paul, Sabina and Saskia


ou know those mornings, fellow parents, when you just don’t feel like it? They don’t happen often, thank goodness. But you lie there and, though there’s no feasible or legitimate excuse for not feeling like it, you just don’t. You went to bed early; your body is sound; your emotions are stable; you are well fed and watered; you haven’t got the tummy bug that is going around (which it has been for centuries), ditto the flu; and an asteroid hasn’t landed in your back garden… But, you wake up and just don’t feel like it. It is the unbearable lightness, or in our case, weightiness, of being. The


May 2010

responsibility we heap upon our own shoulders on a daily basis is unreal. We all pack 48 hours into 12, or try to, and we do this semi-unconsciously since we have programmed ourselves to accept that this is the norm. No wonder the world is splattered with the dropped balls of good intentions and the burnt out minds of once smart young people reduced to gibbering wrecks. You are the CEO of a small but busy company, The Family, which is open for business 24/7. If you don’t function properly, nothing happens. Yet we cannot do what we set out to do in 24 hours. It is not even remotely possible. Our grandparents spent all day deciding whether or not to buy a wholewheat loaf or a white loaf, while modern parents make a thousand decisions a minute. We bite off far more than we can chew.

Can’t-say-no mothers commit to another set of unselfish tasks: ferrying half the school across country, baking cakes for 400. Dads make promises to be at the ballet, the concert, the game. Even as they say it, they’re thinking; “Jeez, how am I going to make this one work?” It’s a wonder we ever complete any task. Getting children to school at all, never mind on time, is a massive achievement. And that’s if there are two of you and a super-Gran riding shotgun. I take my hat off to all the single parents out there who do all this on their own. Events conspire against us. These days it is impossible to get anywhere fast. It’s no longer possible to circumnavigate our cities, forget something and casually go back and get it. Today there is no going back – so

everything has to be planned down to the finest nano-detail, with military precision. So I suppose I’d better get out of bed, pull on my uniform and assume the collective role of taxi driver, restaurateur, psychologist, paramedic, carer, lovegiver, protector, story-teller, entertainer, fixer… as parents there is nothing we cannot do. So, sit down, put your feet up for five minutes, leave preparing the packed lunch until later, and give yourself a pat on the back. Having children and maintaining their happy survival is an incredible achievement. You are a hero. What? I forgot the bread for the girls’ sarmies? So shoot me now. Paul Kerton is the author of Fab Dad: A Man’s Guide to Fathering.



Some mornings we’re just not in the mood, says PAUL KERTON.


home-made party Donna Cobban decides rightly or wrongly not to outsource her two-year-old son’s PHOTOGRAPHS: THINKSTOCKPHOTOS.COM, ILLUSTRATIONS: MARIETTE BARKHUIZEN

birthday party and to make everything herself!


or weeks I had been meaning to call the local animal farm and book my son’s party. I had trawled through their menu and, even though my two-yearold had never touched pizza, I thought, hey, he may well like it and surely not all pizzas have processed cheese? Yet try as I might, every time I reached for the phone, something stopped me. When I reached inside to discover the reason for my delay tactics I hit on it at last – I wanted to have his party at home. So what if I have a tall, small and very narrow doublestorey Victorian home totally unsuited to crowds, let alone little crowds. No matter, I thought, I would manage somehow. And


then my thoughts evolved even further: if I was going to have it at home, then why not have everything home-made and homebaked? There would be no hidden MSG, E numbers or preservatives and, heaven forbid, processed cheese! Yup, this whole party idea was just getting better and better, or so I thought at the time. The party was on a Saturday afternoon from 3pm to 5pm. I’d hosted many a dinner party in my day – how hard could this be? Just to be sure, I started preparing on Tuesday evening. I put on some music and kneaded dates into balls. I soon had a large bowl of neatly rounded coconutdusted date balls. They were delicious!

May 2010


My son sat in a pile of torn wrapping paper, delighted with what he’d found within. Utter chaos abounded as the balloons were spotted and handed out to roars of delight.

I went to bed exhausted and reeking of dates. The next night, Wednesday, I made cheese straws – so much easier than date balls. I packed them away in airtight containers and went off to bed. Thursday night I rested, but Friday, being the night before the grand event, I was hard at it again: baby quiches, homemade hummus, carrot and cucumber sticks. My son’s father and I (who don’t live together but are still fabulous friends – most of the time) had many a harried phone call that night surrounding helium-balloon collections (always take a duvet cover!) and infant drinking options (I suddenly realised that perhaps not everyone would be partial


May 2010

to my homemade lemonade). The father kindly mentioned back-up food options in case mine failed. I scoffed; I had it all under control! The day dawned and, at around 2:45pm, pandemonium hit. What about chairs and sun umbrellas for outside – the temperature was soaring? What about cold beers? There was no room in the fridge. Mini pita breads to go with the homemade hummus had been forgotten; the fruit hedgehog had no spikes and, I knew it, I should have bought sweets. There were going to be some older children, some aware ones… what would they think? Perhaps they’d be glad I was not their mom – one positive

spin on it. I started having mild palpitations at the total lack of preservatives, when my son came tumbling down the stairs backwards, his hands still firmly gripping the video recorder he had just found. We scooped him up screaming and welcomed the first guest. And in they streamed, one tot following another. Soon tots were falling over tots while adults stepped over them gingerly. My son sat in a pile of torn wrapping paper, delighted with what he’d found within. Utter chaos abounded as the balloons were spotted and handed out to roars of delight. People found places to perch, and if there was a raised eyebrow in the house

over the absence of Smarties or Gummy Bears, I didn’t notice. Food was consumed (there was far too much), wine and tea ranneth over (blessed are those with two-year-olds, as organised games are but a thing of the future). Later neighbours poured through the door and the merriment continued. That evening, as I sat with a few remaining neighbours and fed carrot sticks and hummus to my child (I was too tired to think about dinner), and a few leftover balloons started to descend from the ceiling, I was glad that I had not made that call to the animal farm, even if the father and I were so busy that we forgot to take a single photo!



date balls • ½ cup minced dates • 2T orange juice • ¼ cup ground almonds • unsweetened coconut, as much as needed for coating the balls

cheese straws • puff pastry (pre-frozen from local supermarket) • grated cheese (Parmesan works best) • 1 egg, beaten Roll out the pastry and brush the surface with egg. Cut into short or long strips (short ones are easier for younger children to manage). Sprinkle the cheese over the pastry and pop into a very hot oven for about 10 minutes. Lesson learnt: a winner, easy to make and easy to eat.


Combine all ingredients – except the coconut – and mix well. Shape the mixture into small balls, then roll each in desiccated coconut. This makes about 12 balls. (You can alter the size, depending on the children’s age and, therefore, hand size.) Lesson learnt: date bars are so cheap! When you prepare something days in advance, remember to take it out of the fridge. I found the fruits of my labour, tucked away at the back of the fridge, hours after everyone had left.


fruit-and-cheese hedgehog • • • •

wooden skewers half a melon various firm fruit various firm cheeses

Cut the fruit and cheese into smallish squares and thread onto the skewers. Push the skewers into the shell of a melon and add two grape “eyes” and a strawberry “mouth”. Lesson learnt: I thought it was going to be quick to make, so I only assigned 15 minutes for the job. The hedgehog lay abandoned as guests began to arrive!

• 2 tins chickpeas (traditionalists will shoot me for using tins!) • 4T lemon juice • 3 cloves crushed garlic • ½ cup tahini Drain chickpeas and reserve juice. Rinse chickpeas in cold water to remove the skins. Put chickpeas in a bowl with the other ingredients (excluding the juice from the tin) and use a hand-held blender to mix well. Add juice from the tins slowly until you have a creamy consistency. Place in small bowls and pour a little olive oil over the mixture. Decorate with some chopped parsley, extra garlic and green peppers. Lesson learnt: This is still the best hummus recipe ever – and children love it!

May 2010




maketh the minor DONNA COBBAN looks at what it takes to uphold century-old traditions.


recently had a British house guest. He’s a friend’s fiancé and she arrived from distant lands with said man in tow. They stayed with me for a few nights and at times he was so well mannered I thought he might be sending me up. He washed dishes, baby-sat, cleaned the bath, made tea, shopped and cooked, ate with his mouth closed, kept his elbows off the table and the toilet seat down. I studied him in much the same way Jane Goodall might have studied an ape. My aim here was personal: I want my son to grow up to be a little like this. I ask him about his mother: “What did she do to make you this way?” “Oh, not a lot,” he tells me. “I was raised by a fairly strict mother who, despite

success. “Our children learn their first words from us, so use ‘thank you’ and ‘please’ from the day they are born and remember to say things like ‘Thank you for being so patient while I changed your nappy’”. Fouzia directs me to a quote from Wisdom: Peace: The Greatest Gift One Generation Can Give To Another by Andrew Zuckerman. It’s a book containing magical pieces of wisdom gathered from all corners of the globe. Jimmy Little, an Aboriginal Australian, shares a piece of wisdom told to him by his father: “Son, there are three words that will open any door: the door of a building, the door of the mind, the door of the heart, any door you like. Three words; don’t forget, always use them. ‘Thank you’ and ‘Please’”.

her mutterings of: ‘You could get a bloody tank through there’ to dithering motorists, wouldn’t stand for backchat, excessive profanity or even slang like ‘ain’t’”. I am impressed. When his best man and best friend arrives a few days later, the two of them seem cut from the same cloth. So I pose the same question to the best man. He believes it was a combination of his Islamic upbringing, strict parents, and a steady stream of visitors in and out of the family home. In addition to this they both subscribe to the “Do unto others as you would have done unto you” school of thought – a simple yet effective navigation tool in this life, I muse, while watching them wash my dishes. Again. I have a long way to go before my son will be jumping up to do dishes and display his fine manners, but I am told by Fouzia Ryklief at the Parent Centre in Cape Town that starting early is the key to long-term


May 2010

Fouzia adds to this: saying thank you is more than just words; it is about the acknowledgement of another person’s contribution. “We all need this acknowledgement because it encourages us to continue sharing and contributing towards the wellbeing of others,” she says. “Saying ‘please’ automatically softens our requests. Without it, requests become orders or commands, neither of which do anything for sustaining relationships.” This all sounds very simple in practice, so why aren’t we being overrun with smiling children doffing their caps at us as they pass? A brief stint spent teaching at innercity schools in London had me believing that ill-mannered children were products of ill-mannered parents, yet the adults I encounter in life are by and large wellmannered beings, both there and here, so long as they are not behind the wheel of a car. joburg’s


He washed dishes, baby-sat, cleaned the bath, made tea, shopped and cooked, ate with his mouth closed, kept his elbows off the table and the toilet seat down.

manners training So what has caused such a swift decline in the manners stakes over the years? I turn to Wendy Mogel’s book The Blessing of a Skinned Knee for a few answers. She thinks we are breeding disrespectful children largely because parents do not demand respect from their offspring. The reason, according to Mogel, is that “deep down parents don’t believe they deserve it, or that they can master the struggle”. Likening dog training to child rearing, Mogel says: “a democratic system doesn’t work very well for dogs or children; it just makes them feel insecure”. And if you are in any doubt, according to Mogel, dogs that are allowed to become dominant over their owners are known to be both timid and bossy. It’s the same, she says, for children. I love well-mannered dogs and I also love my friend Sarah’s son Daniel. When he was around five years old I went to the Eastern Cape to visit them. He was in his room working on a Lego creation. We stood at the door and I was introduced. He looked up at me and said “It’s a pleasure to meet you”. I nearly fell over and asked Sarah what she had done to raise such a well-mannered five-year-old. “He lives by example,” she laughed as she put on the kettle. “And it’s a response joburg’s

I have encouraged since he could talk,” she added. While I am striving to do the same, I am from time to time met with defiant refusals when I ask my two-year-old to wave good-bye. Fouzia assures me that at around two years of age, children needing to make their own decisions and refusing to comply with our idea of how they should behave is normal behaviour. When it comes to greeting people, we are all creatures of different habits and our children may well differ from us. “Trying to force a child to give a hug or a kiss when they don’t want to can be an intrusive act for the child and the other person,” warns Fouzia. In addition, she cautions that: “Hugging and kissing should be something natural between the child and someone he is very close to – such as the parents or grandparents. It must happen only within the context of a healthy, close, on going relationship.” Speaking of grandparents makes me think of how my junior-school class used to visit a nearby old-age home each term. I can still remember lining up in front of a sea of delighted, wizened faces and singing my heart out to various songs from The Sound of Music. Following this we would be treated to tea and biscuits and had to mingle among the residents. I loved these visits and am glad they form May 2010


part of my memories. I am also glad to hear that it’s still common practice today, with many schools “adopting” homes and going on regular visits. It’s a vital step in learning to respect and appreciate the older generation and, more than this, to value their presence in this world. Perhaps as Mogel suggests, we “need to need” the older generation more than we do. “Asking our own parents to do something for us demonstrates to our children that you cherish the unique contributions your parents make to the family,” she suggests.

meet, greet and eat Manners seem to fall into two camps: social and table. So, while your children may have mastered “please” and “thank you”, stopped interrupting you, and even offered to pour you some juice while doing the same for themselves, the elbows sadly still dig into the table, and bits of food still fly from their mouths as they recount their latest adventures. As a child I was taken to a swanky restaurant about once a year where waiters wore suits, straws were not offered, and three courses were the minimum fare. This necessitated being taught the difference


May 2010

between a fish, dinner and butter knife, a soup spoon and a dessert spoon, and that you tear a bread roll and don’t cut it, and butter it – bit by very small bit. Those evenings spent in disguised etiquette training have proved invaluable over the years and I plan on doing the same for my child. If nothing else, it will render him comfortable in any setting – be it a formal work function or dining with royalty. But in the meantime, while he is still very little, I shall remain mindful of my own table manners in the hope and belief that he will follow by example. For, as any etiquette trainer worth their weight will tell you, it’s all about modelling, modelling, modelling. And I shall keep checking in with my friend’s fiancé. I had reason to call her last week and she told me that I might want to include this: when he flies he refuses to put his seat back even when he needs to sleep, as it might be uncomfortable for the person behind him. This reminds me of a quote by the late Emily Post, the American author of etiquette and manners, who said: “Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter which fork you use.”

a starting point A few general manners your family might like to adopt: • Don’t interrupt someone when they are on the phone, or speaking to another person. • Greet your guests at the door and look them in the eye. Escort them to the door when they leave. • Offer refreshments to your guests. • Send a thank-you card or email for gifts received. • Knock on closed doors and wait for an answer before entering. • Treat people the same way you would like to be treated. • Honour and respect your parents.

And when you’re not at home? While your child may have mastered manners in your own home, visiting other people, particularly when they are of another culture, brings with it a whole host of brand-new manners needing to be learnt. Every home is different so encourage your child to take the lead from the host and if shoes are removed at the door, they should follow suit. Or if men and women are seated in different areas, they need to take heed of this. Greeting people in the language of the home is courteous and will endear your child forever more, so it’s well worth encouraging them in this regard.

Encourage the use of the following magic words: • Please. • Thank you. • It’s a pleasure. • Excuse me. • Nice to meet you. • May I? • I’m sorry.


inspiration from a 100-year-old manners chart • Keep your face and hands clean, and your clothes and boots brushed and neat. • Do not be selfish, but share all your good things. • Be respectful to your teachers, and help them as much as you can; their work is very difficult and trying. • Never let another be punished in mistake for yourself; this is cowardly and mean. • Do not jeer at your schoolmates, or call them by names they do not like. • Salute all your ministers, teachers and acquaintances when you meet them; they will salute you in return. • Do not make fun of old or crippled people, but be particularly polite to them, as well as to strangers and foreigners. • Always show attention to older people and strangers by opening the door for them, bringing what they require (a hat or a chair), giving up your seat to them if necessary, and in every possible way saving them trouble. • Wherever, therefore, you are in doubt as to how you should act towards others, ask yourself this question: “How should I like them to act towards me if I were in their place?” and then do what your conscience tells you is right.

books to back you up •M  anners can be Fun by Munro Leaf (Universe Publishing, 2004) (age 9–12) • How to Behave and Why by Munro Leaf (Universe Publishing, 2002) (age 4–8) • How to Speak Politely and Why by Munro Leaf (Universe Publishing, 2005) (age 4–8) • Dude, That’s Rude by Pamela Espeland, Elizabeth Verdick and Steve Mark (Free Spirit Publishing, 2007) (age 8–12) • 365 Manners Kids Should Know: Games, Activities, and Other Fun Ways to Help Children Learn Etiquette by Sheryl Eberly (Three Rivers Press, 2001) (family).


May 2010



rash decision? vaccine safety back under the microscope. By Glynis Horning


May 2010


Free Hospital in London published in The Lancet in 1998, linking MMR (the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine) with autism – the distressing disorder that impairs social development and thought processes. Suddenly alternative-health advocates, including certain homeopaths, naturopaths and chiropractors, were ranged on one side, with most mainstream doctors and scientists on the other, and alarmed and confused parents in the middle. A number of these parents have since opted not to have their children vaccinated, or to put it off until they are older and have “naturally

a feeling “There’s that there’s no smoke without fire. Parents should decide for themselves. – Jill Stacey, director, Autism SA strengthened” immune systems, as one Durban mother put it. (Her firstborn had a convulsion after his first vaccination, so she insisted on waiting until her daughter was two before taking her for any shots.) Yet, by trying to avoid possible vaccination side effects, health authorities say parents are exposing not only their own children to infection, but others who may be vulnerable (see “recognise high-risk factors” on page 31). The World Health Organisation had hoped to eradicate measles entirely from Europe by 2010, but to do that, vaccine rates must be 95% in every country – and fears over the MMR controversy are reported to have triggered a sharp drop in vaccine compliance. In Ireland compliance

dropped as low as 60% in places, and 1 500 cases and three measles-related deaths were reported in 2000. By 2006 the measles incidence in the UK was 13 times higher than in 1998. There have also been measles outbreaks in Europe (more than 12 000 cases in 2008 and 2009 alone), and in other countries from Israel to Romania, Bulgaria, Japan, New Zealand, Canada and the US, which had its largest outbreak since 1997 in 2008. The current South African measles outbreak is one of the most serious and widespread, and while fears from the MMR controversy may not have factored directly in cases in deprived communities, where a basic lack of information, education or motivation will need to be addressed, Puren believes it has “a possible role in communities that may well be aware of the vaccine controversy. These islands of non-vaccinated individuals are part of the chains of transmission.”

studying the study Ironically, the Wakefield study behind the controversy has been extensively discredited in the interim. “But it’s not easy to change people’s perceptions,” says Puren. The study involved only 12 children, eight of whom showed signs of autism. More substantial studies since, including one of more than half a million Danish children, 82% of whom had received the MMR vaccine, showed no causal link between MMR and autism. “If anything, the risk of developing autism was marginally lower in children who had been vaccinated,” reads a NICD report. By 2004, 10 of Wakefield’s 12 co-authors in the study had distanced themselves from it after charges that the results had been manipulated. It also emerged that Wakefield had been hired to carry out another study joburg’s


outbreak has put

ust when we thought modern immunisation campaigns had given measles the needle, a rash of cases has rocked the country. Since January last year, the National Institute for Communicable Disease (NICD) has reported more than 8 240 cases, affecting every province but particularly Gauteng (4 498 cases by March this year), KwaZulu-Natal (884) and the Western Cape (671). Yet in 2008 there were just 40 cases countrywide, and in 2007, 33. What’s going on? “Comprehensive immunisation programmes under the government’s Expanded Programme for Immunisation are key to preventing measles outbreaks,” says Adrian Puren, deputy director of Virology at the NCID, a division of the National Health Laboratory Service. “The current infection rate indicates that a high number of vulnerable individuals have not been inoculated, leaving them susceptible to circulating measles or importation from other countries.” Reasons for the “immunity gap” range from children simply not presenting for immunisation to missed opportunities for vaccination, he says. But there are also parents who make a conscious decision not to have their children vaccinated. This is based on religious objections (see “beyond belief?” on page 31) and, something that continues to frustrate medical and scientific professionals worldwide: suspicion that vaccination is unsafe. There have been pockets of vaccine dissent since it was first developed by Edward Jenner in the 1790s. But in the past 12 years it’s become a worldwide epidemic, spread by more than 30 dedicated anti-vaccination websites, shelves of books, and talk shows from Larry King Live to The Oprah Winfrey Show. The catalyst was a controversial study by Dr Andrew Wakefield of the Royal

The recent measles


May 2010


at the same time, to establish if parents who were claiming their children were harmed by the MMR vaccine had a case. Some of the same children were used in both studies. The Lancet announced that had this been known, it would not have published the study because of conflict of interest, and in February this year it retracted the paper. Wakefield remains adamant in interviews that the scientific results of his study are valid, and there are many who support him still. Some more vocal individuals accuse government

that the immune system can handle thousands of viruses at the same time, adding that vaccines make up a fraction of the pathogens (potentially disease-causing germs) a child naturally encounters. The second argument is that thiomersal (or thimerosal), an ethylmercury-containing compound in some vaccines, is toxic to the central nervous system. Gerber and Offit contest this and report that even after thiomersal was taken out of childhood vaccines, autism has been on the rise.

There is absolutely no evidence to “support an MMR–autism connection.

– NICD deputy director Lucille Blumberg departments and the vaccine industry of cover-ups and collusion for financial gain through vested interests. Critics of the MMR–autism link counter that alternative practitioners profit financially from expensive alternative medications, supplements and treatments, such as chelation therapy (to remove heavy metals from the body). Recently two key arguments linking MMR vaccination and autism have been addressed by vaccine researchers Jeffrey Gerber and Paul Offit in “Vaccines and Autism: A Tale of Shifting Hypotheses” in the University of Chicago journal, Clinical Infectious Diseases. One argument is that giving multiple vaccines overwhelms the immune system. Gerber and Offit found that even “conservative estimates” show

be measles-aware

spot the signs • Flu-like symptoms one or two weeks after exposure • Dry cough • Runny nose • Reddish eyes • Sore throat • Mouth sores (“Koplik’s spots” with white centres) • Fever • Swollen throat glands • Sensitivity to light • Joint pains


May 2010

There is “absolutely no evidence” to support an MMR–autism connection, says NICD deputy director Lucille Blumberg. “Diseases like measles can lead to severe complications and death,” adds Puren. “Any concern about the possibility of complications needs to be put in context, and seen against the greater good for yourself, your family and your community.” Yet public fears remain. “Autism South Africa (ASA) doesn’t have a stand on the matter because our members are divided,” says its national director Jill Stacey. “For all the scientific arguments, there’s a feeling that there’s no smoke without fire. Parents must decide for themselves.”

• Small bright-red spots that double in size and join in a blotchy rash, starting behind the ears and on the face and spreading to the body, arms and legs. take action • Isolate until the fifth day of rash to protect others. (“One positive case can quickly spread to up to 17 unprotected and non-immunised cases,” says Fidel Hadebe, director of public information at the Department of Health.) • Bed rest in dim light • Lots of fluids • Soft, bland foods • Lukewarm sponge baths to lower fever • Flush sore eyes with plain saline solution (use an eyedropper, or wipe crusty eyes with damp cottonwool) • Measles is a notifiable disease, so by


beyond belief? Vaccination




when the major religions were founded, but some followers see immunisation as something that goes against their beliefs. Tim O’Shea, author of The Sanctity of Human Blood (NewWest), explains that objections are often based on vaccines being made from blood products and animal tissue. There are Jehovah’s Witnesses who reject vaccinations along with blood transfusions because they believe that Biblical texts prohibit them putting anything from an animal into their bodies. There are also some Buddhists who




because there is no vaccine that is vegetarian. “All vaccinations have to be cultured on animal and human tissue and blood products,” says O’Shea. Certain Jews and Muslims reject vaccination because vaccines may be made with animals that are not kosher or halal. Various religious followers also see vaccination as interfering with God’s plan, or blasphemously implying that God did not create people










Jenner British Edward diseases

were sent by God to punish sin, so to try to prevent them with inoculation was “diabolical”. And recently Islamic academic Dr Aisha Hamdan, author of Nurturing Eeman in Children (International Islamic Publishing House), wrote: “We must believe in the perfection of Allah’s creation and understand that immunisations are in no way able to improve upon it.” But these are not mainstream religious views, and most religions leave it to individuals to decide.

law you must report even a mild case to your doctor or clinic • Positive cases should receive at least two doses of vitamin A, and patients with eye complications a third. beware of complications • Pneumonia, chronic lung disease • Diarrhoea • Croup • Otitis media (middle-ear infection), deafness • Mouth ulcers • Eye complications, blindness • Convulsions, brain damage recognise high-risk factors • Young age (under a year) • Malnutrition • Over-crowding • Immune deficiency (especially HIV) • Vitamin A deficiency


look at vaccinating children The measles vaccine should be given at nine months and 18 months, and is free at public clinics. Mass-immunisation campaigns like the one just launched (in April 2010) offer additional protection even to children who are fully immunised. For more information visit or call the Vaccine Helpline 0860 160 160. your rights Vaccination is not compulsory in SA, says Lee Baker, MD of Amayeza Info Systems, who runs the Vaccine Helpline. “However, the Department of Education can refuse children entry to schools if they have not had their shots,” she says. These include measles vaccinations, which are part of

the government’s Extended Programme for Immunisation. The three-in-one MMR vaccination is not part of this, and parents must have it done privately if they want their children protected from mumps and rubella. Single vaccines used to be available for mumps and rubella, but this is no longer the case. “It’s better to have one jab than three,” says Baker. “All vaccines, just like your toothpaste, have potential side effects,” says Dr Paul Sinclair, a paediatrician at Life Vincent Pallotti Hospital in Cape Town. “But they get safer through better technology and formulation. MMR does not cause autism, but if you are concerned, there is little harm delaying MMR until three years of age, as long as the measles vaccine has been administered early,” he says.

May 2010



May 2010



May 2010



keeping it


If parenting is an obstacle course, single parenting requires a survival strategy. The best way to cope, says CATHERINE JENKIN, is to be real…


May 2010

My friends keep me sane. In all my pre-maternal life I never thought I would be a mother – until I found out differently one Christmas Eve in the spare bathroom of my parents’ home. My friends accepted my maternal role far sooner than I did; they keep me laughing and still hold my hand when I feel alone in all of this.

straight up For me, the best survival technique is emotional honesty. It’s not easy telling the person you work for that you are exhausted because you’ve been up the whole night with a sick child and a faulty geyser. It’s not easy telling your daughter that Mommy just needs five minutes to get dinner going, conquer her inbox and dash to the toilet. It’s not easy telling your friends, who are desperate to see you and catch up, that you’d much rather have a hot bath and get into bed. It’s not easy. But it is essential. Getting real about you is the only way to survive the jungle juggle. From jungle gyms to corporate jungles, being unashamedly who you are, is the only way to get through it. joburg’s



ingle parenting was a choice for me. There came a time when staying with my partner was no longer the best option for me, my daughter, or him. So, we split. I know I’m lucky to say this… Cameron’s dad and I have a more than amicable relationship, fuelled by having known each other all of our lives. I am supported in every aspect of my parenting life, and Cameron’s extended family is a solid force in our lives. Our friends, her teachers and my colleagues are boundless in their support for us. That still doesn’t make single parenting easy. I have learnt a few things over time that enable me to survive it, thrive in it and enjoy the many insane moments juggling the jungles of playground and boardroom. My work keeps me busy and inspired. To cover the bills and kick-start my career, I have two jobs. The synergy is that both of the people I report to are amazing, inspirational and committed women. Both are moms and one of them, a single mom too. Both understand and accept that there are times where I have to care for Cameron when she is ill. They trust me enough to get the job done. And they keep me going when life runs less than smoothly.

just you and me, babe My time alone with Cameron is precious. We get silly – one night we decided everything must be done back-to-front. We came home from work and school, had a nap and a bath, ate dinner on an upside-down plate, walked backwards everywhere and wore our pyjamas inside out. We bake, we laugh, and bath time is our special time. There’s something about the bubbles that keeps us smiling on tough days. Getting real with my bank account was harder. To give Cameron the security she deserves, I have to watch my pocket, and work hard. But we get by. Being fair with Cameron’s dad is paramount. Cameron needs her dad as much as she needs me. I’m lucky to be able to communicate openly with him. And Cameron is blessed to have a dad and family that love her to the moon and back. But the thing that really keeps me going? It’s not money, or love from other people. It’s the ability to go home, sit down with Cameron and cuddle. It’s the emotional honesty that we share in our special bond that keeps me going. It’s her arms around my neck that hold on so very tight. It’s when she says, “Mom, you are the gift of my life”, that I know I am doing the best that I can.

curiosity call You have to learn how to roll with the punches of questions that come with the territory. I was shocked when Cameron joburg’s

first asked why Mommy and Daddy have separate homes, because single parenting has been our way of life since she was just older than a year. I’d assumed she would just accept it as our way of life – but children question everything. And I am so thankful that my daughter has a curious mind. My answer came in such a simple way, I am amazed I hadn’t thought of it sooner. “It’s not that Mommy and Daddy don’t love each other – they made a gorgeous child! It’s not that Mommy and Daddy don’t love her – she is their gorgeous child! It’s just that it worked out better for everyone that Mommy and Daddy have two homes.” Her father and I work hard at our relationship as parents. We’re committed to ensuring that Cameron feels our love every step of every day. That’s what is truly important. I miss Cameron when she spends time with her dad. The house is quiet and I sometimes feel an intense need to fill it with noise. Lately though, I’ve been enjoying the silence. It’s time just for me. To watch a movie without having the channels changed by an overzealous four-year-old princess, read a book or see some friends. Just as my alone time with Cameron is precious, so is me-time – I have to take care of myself too. By the time she returns on a Sunday afternoon, I feel refreshed – ready to get silly and dance around the lounge with my precious daughter. And that dance... is the most important dance in the world. May 2010


We bake, we laugh, and bath time is our special time. There’s something about the bubbles that keeps us smiling on tough days.

survival tips for single parents • Set realistic expectations – rather than focusing on the things you feel you’re doing wrong, remember all the good you’ve done. Striving for perfection or trying to be a “super parent” can lead to burnout. • Manage your time effectively – make lists, plan the week ahead, get the most out of shopping trips by buying in bulk, for instance. • Set limits for your children – in order to grow into happy, self-respecting adults, your children need the security of clear, consistently enforced boundaries and rules. • Learn to be assertive – exercise your right to say no – at work and at home. Saying “no” to your child won’t stifle their creativity. Don’t allow feelings of guilt to tell you you’re being mean. By drawing lines you’re helping your child feel safe. • Keep a good balance between work, parenting and recreation – again, plan ahead. Make sure your me-time is scheduled ahead, it’ll help you be a better parent.


May 2010

• Organise effective routines, effective planning and shared duties • Give each child special time with you – this helps them to feel loved and will ultimately make them less demanding. • Enlist the help of family, friends and the co-parent. • Develop relationships with other adults – meet up with other single parents at your child’s school or day care. This will open up opportunities for relationships that may lead to play dates, lift clubs and other shared activities. • Build your own self-esteem, self-confidence and trust – if you feel good about yourself you are less likely to allow other people or circumstances to control your life, and you will be more resilient facing the challenges of life. • Join single parent organisations or parent courses – these are a great way of making new friends and can give you empowering parenting tools. Put together in consultation with Liz Dooley, The Family Life Centre (Famsa), 011 788 4784



May 2010


book extract

celebration time! In an extract from his cookbook Gatherings: A Year of Invitations, NATANIËL shares recipes from the birthday parties of two children close to his heart – his godchild George and George’s sister, Dali.

George is one of my godchildren and definitely one of my most favourite people on this planet. He is confident, energetic, super-intelligent and very talented. Unique and totally unpredictable, he has changed my life in many ways. Since George’s birth I have been involved in the preparations for every one of his birthdays. We have constructed gingerbread castles, baked trucks, trains and superheroes, and decorated rooms in every possible theme. For his ninth birthday I decided on a galactic theme with stars, planets and spaceships in black, white and silver. Everything had to be fantastical and fun, but masculine and mature. The menu had to reflect his favourite foods, prepared in a delicious but healthy way.


May 2010

menu alien juice oven chips with yoghurt dip birthday burgers chocolate star cakes

alien juice (per serving) 125ml clear apple juice 125ml white grape juice handful of black

PHOTOGRAPHS: Clinton Lubbe

george turns nine

grapes, frozen Pour juices into a tall glass and add grapes


birthday burgers 1T butter 2 medium onions, chopped sea salt 250g lean bacon 6 panini, 6cm x 15cm each 120g cheddar, grated

oven chips with yoghurt dip 2kg potatoes 2T vegetable oil sea salt Set oven to 180°C. Peel potatoes and cut into thin slices. Toss with oil and arrange on a baking tray. Bake in preheated oven for 45 to 55 minutes. Remove from oven and season lightly with salt. Serve with yoghurt dip (see below). yoghurt dip 2T tomato purée 2T brown sugar 2T balsamic vinegar 2T water 1½ cups plain yoghurt Heat first four ingredients in a saucepan. Stir until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool. Stir into yoghurt.


Heat butter in a saucepan. Add onions and caramelise over low heat, for about one hour. Remove from heat and season lightly with salt. Place bacon in a cool pan. Fry over medium heat until golden brown on each side. Slice panini in half horizontally. Spread onions over bottom half. Top with bacon strips and grated cheese. Cover with other panini halves. Grill on both sides in a hot griddle pan until cheese has melted. Cut into smaller portions and serve.

chocolate star cakes 1 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature 1 cup castor sugar 1t vanilla extract 4 eggs 1 cup self-raising flour 3T cocoa powder ¼ cup milk Set oven to 180°C. Beat butter, sugar and vanilla with an electric mixer until soft and creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and cocoa, and beat well. Beat in milk. Spoon batter evenly into 15 lightly greased muffin-pan cups. Bake in a preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove muffins from pan and cool on a wire rack. Decorate with snow icing (see below) and silver balls. snow icing 2½ cups icing sugar 5T boiling water Sift icing sugar into a mixing bowl. Add water and mix until smooth.

May 2010


princess’s picnic Dali is George’s younger sister, a beautiful, gentle, fairy-like little thing. When she came to Earth we all fell in love with her immediately. Dali has always loved anything pink and girlie and has always been treated like a princess, so when I started planning her sixth birthday party, there were only three

words: pink, princess and picnic. The food had to be beautiful and as natural as possible – half the world’s children are hysterical because of the toxic things they are fed at parties. We also had to include some of the birthday girl’s favourites, thus the meringues.

menu strawberry milk chewy meringues small cheeseand-onion pizzas butterfly cakes

strawberry milk (per serving) 200ml low-fat milk 2T strawberry syrup (see below) Whisk together until foamy. Pour into a tall glass or mug. strawberry syrup 500g fresh strawberries, chopped ¼ cup sugar ¼ cup water 1t vanilla extract Heat ingredients in a saucepan and let it simmer for 10 minutes. Allow to cool, then purée in a food processor. Cover and refrigerate.

chewy meringues (Makes 24) 3 egg whites 110g castor sugar ¼t cream of tartar 1 drop red natural food colouring 2T cornflour 1T icing sugar 100g strawberry wafers, crushed Set oven to 110°C. Beat egg whites in a clean bowl with an electric mixer until foamy. Add cream of tartar and one teaspoon of the castor sugar, and beat for one minute. Add remaining castor sugar, one teaspoon at a time, beating for at least 30 seconds between additions. Add colouring and beat for six more minutes until egg whites are very smooth and stiff peaks form. Sift cornflour and icing sugar together and fold in gently. Fold in the crushed wafers. Line a baking sheet with wax paper. With a teaspoon, drop mounds of meringue onto it. Bake in preheated oven for one hour. Turn off heat and leave meringues in the oven while it cools down. When completely cool, store in an airtight container.


May 2010


small cheese-and-onion pizzas 1T butter 1 onion, chopped sea salt 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed 2T finely chopped fresh parsley 1 cup grated cheddar 8 cherry tomatoes, sliced extra chopped parsley for garnish Set oven to 180°C. Heat butter in a saucepan, add onion and caramelise over low heat for about 1 hour. Remove from heat and season lightly with salt. Roll out pastry and cut out 8 circles of about 10cm in diameter. Use a knife to mark the edges, and pierce the insides with a fork. Spread a small amount of onion over each. Sprinkle with cheese and arrange slices of tomato on top. Place on a baking tray and bake in preheated oven until golden, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with a little parsley. (For adults, freshly ground black pepper can be added to the mixture and more parsley sprinkled on top.)

butterfly cakes 1 cup butter, softened at room temperature 1 cup sugar 3 eggs 1t vanilla extract 1 cup self-raising flour ¼ cup dried cranberries 1½T cocoa powder butterfly sprinkles paper or silk butterflies, mounted on toothpicks Set oven to 170°C. In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Sift in flour and mix. Stir in cranberries. Divide batter in half and mix cocoa into one half. Fill 12 small ring moulds with chocolate mixture until they’re a quarter full. Top with the same amount of vanilla mixture. Bake in a preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the moulds and let them cool on a wire rack. Fill holes with soft vanilla icing (see below). Decorate with butterfly sprinkles and paper or silk butterflies. soft vanilla icing ½ cup butter, softened at room temperature 2 cups icing sugar, sifted 1T warm water 1t vanilla paste Mix together until creamy.

about the book Nataniël loves to cook. He cooks “for love, for peace, for fun, for hunger, for richer, for poorer…” In his fourth cookbook, Gatherings: A Year of Invitations, the much-loved South African singer and entertainer celebrates “a year of special events”, from birthday parties and dinners for two, to midweek entertaining ideas and chilly-evening meals with friends. Gatherings is published by Human & Rousseau.


May 2010



hip, hip hooray! Your birthday party cheat sheet – a list of easy-to-organise, fabulously


bike and balloon rally

what’s potting

ready Children will need to bring along their pushbikes, so remember to send out a request with the invitations. Borrow a couple of bikes and have these as backup for those who forget theirs. You’ll need as many helium balloons as there are guests (plus a few in reserve), and chalk to mark up a course on your driveway. get set Map out a track and include a stop street or two and a traffic light (enlist a parent’s help – green plate for go, red for stop). age 2 to go Kick off by handing guests a helium 3 balloon when they arrive; these are then tied to their bikes. Children can scoot around the course at leisure, or parents can help them along. A talking stop sign (Grandpa might like this job), chatty traffic lights (perhaps Dad has the sense of humour for this one?) and a human tunnel will add to the fun.

ready You’ll need a couple of punnets of seedlings (try herbs like basil or flowers such as pansies or marigolds), potting soil, small terracotta pots, a watering can or two and, spoons that can be used as little spades. Then something for decorating the pots – for younger children: ear buds, acrylic paint and strips of ribbon; for older children: sequins, mosaic tiles, craft glue, beads and raffia. Ask children to bring an apron, otherwise you will need to provide something to protect their clothing. get set Arrange the equipment outside, or in your family room with lots of newspaper on the table and floor – somewhere you don’t mind mess. go Children can decorate their pots. Little ones can use an ear bud to create a polka-dot design on the body of the pot and then, with help, tie a piece of ribbon of their choice round the neck. Older children can stick mosaic tiles round the rim, or decorate with sequins, or thread beads onto raffia and wind round the pot. When they are done they can select a seedling and plant it, which they then get to take home with them.

May 2010

age 4 to 6



fun activities plus a party-planning check list. By ELAINE EKSTEEN

age 5 to 8


racing car relay

create a cupcake

ready You’ll need some large cardboard boxes (ask your local supermarket if they have any packaging you could recycle), paint, brushes, scissors, glue, colourful paper, plastic packaging for decorating; red-and-white danger tape and tent pegs; a few cycling helmets. Ask children to bring an apron or old shirt to work in, otherwise you’ll need to provide something to protect their clothing. get set Use danger tape secured in place with tent pegs and make lanes (to match the number of teams) in your garden or the neighbourhood park. go Divide the children into teams, and get them to build and decorate their “racing cars”. It’s probably a good idea to serve the food once the cars are built (this’ll give time for the glue to dry – and you can add the odd staple to secure things before the race). This is also a good time to take a photo of each car – they probably won’t look quite their best after the relay! Then arrange half the team at the one end of a lane, the rest at the other. In turn, each team member must first put on and fasten the helmet, jump into the car and carry it along with them down the lane. When they reach the end the driver hops out, hands over the helmet and the next driver continues. Award prizes for best-looking car, most-sturdy vehicle and winning team.

ready You’ll need sufficient un-iced cupcakes (if you’d prefer to avoid the hassle of baking your own, store-bought chocolate or blueberry muffins will work just as well); ingredients for making a few colours of icing, and sprinkles, chocolate buttons and other bits for decorating the cupcakes. get set Prepare the icing and set up a table with all the goodies for decorating, plus some palette knives or sucker sticks for applying the icing. go The children can decorate their own cupcakes. You could get them to vote for their favourites or just take a photo of each (to send with the thank-you note) and allow them to munch on their creations.

age 3 to 8

May 2010


photo trail ready This is the techno take on the nature/treasure hunt. Instead of bringing back the item, teams must return with a photo of each object or activity on the list. You’ll need a few fairly indestructible point-and-shoot digital cameras. (Perhaps some of the children are able to bring their own. Chat to parents when you hand out the invitations.) get set Visit the venue to familiarise yourself with what’s there. Make a list of the things the guests will need to capture on their cameras and print out a copy for each team. If you are having the party at your local botanical garden, for instance, include a particular tree, a sculpture, a bird that’s a common resident, and so on. At your own home you might include a close-up shot of an ant, something purple, five round items of different colours or a funny face. You can also get the children to snap themselves making a human pyramid, for example. For safety sake: if you are in a public place, you’ll need an adult to dash round with each team. At your home you age 7 to 10 might want to stipulate no-go areas. You probably don’t want your wardrobe unpacked in search of that feather boa your son saw you wear to a fancy dress last year… go Divide the children into groups and send them off to find the things on the list and photograph them. Give prizes for the best photo, first to complete the assignment or funniest picture. If you’re at home you could show the children each other’s images by loading them all onto a memory stick and playing it through your music system on the TV.

backwards bonanza

age 8 to 10

(or should we say, Aznanob Sdrawkcab) ready You’ll need a few old rice bags for sack races (try your hardware store), sticky tape in a dispenser, as many sheets of wrapping paper as there are guests, and a small gift wrapped in tissue paper. get set Set out the party food on the tablecloth under the table. Have a music system with an appropriate CD at the ready. go Greet children with “goodbye”; start by eating the food under the table; sing happy birthday backwards – you can stick the words underneath the tabletop: “You to birthday happy, you to birthday happy,” and so on. Play the birthday child’s favourite party games backwards and reward the “losers” as the winners. Hop sackrace relays in reverse. Play pass the parcel, getting the children to each wrap the gift in a layer of paper when it’s their turn, the child left with the last sheet of wrapping paper gets to keep the gift. Play musical statues, but the children need to dance when the music is off and freeze when the music is on. Send them all home with a cheerful “hello”.

pretty pamper

age 8

ready You’ll need a few large plastic bowls, nail-polish remover, bubble bath, cotton wool, towels, nail files, foot cream and a variety of nailpolish colours. You’ll also need to enlist the help of a few moms (“beauty therapists”) and hire a DVD that the children will enjoy. get set Fill the baths with warm water and mix in some bubble bath. go Put on the movie and let the girls soak their feet as they watch. The beauty therapists can then dry off the guests’ feet, tidy up their nails with a file, apply foot cream and paint their nails in the to 13 colour of their choice.

music mania ready You’ll need a music system that can take a microphone, and a CD of the birthday child’s favourite songs (or consider hiring a karaoke machine). Come up with a list of song titles and write these on little slips of paper. You could also find someone to teach the partygoers some cool new hip-hop moves, for instance. get set Make sure the music system is working and set it up in the room where you are having the party. go Let the guests take turns singing along through the mike, the less outgoing can sing in pairs. Run a game of charades with the song titles you have prepared and get them to try out a few dance moves with the help of your guest hip-hop “star” or a current music video.


May 2010

age 8 to 13


party-planning check list the month before Choose the venue. Home or away? Indoors or out? Public venue (such as your neighbourhood park) or hired venue? Book and pay any necessary deposit. Set the date and time. Consider the activities you’re hoping to include and at what time of day these will work best. Draw up the guest list. Some suggest inviting one guest for each year of your child’s age (one little friend to a first birthday, two to a second birthday party, and so on). It can be overwhelming, especially for younger children, to have a house full of people all showering them with attention – and gifts! Remember: just because you’re an extrovert and love crowds, it doesn’t mean your child does. Decide on a theme. Of course you don’t have to have one of these, but themes do narrow things down, which can be helpful if you’re doing everything yourself. Older children will have stronger ideas… perhaps have a few suggestions up your sleeve and then present these at the same time as asking for their ideas. Send out invitations. Snail mail, hand delivery, email… you choose. Remember to include a finish time, whether siblings and parents are also invited, find out about allergies or diebetes, an RSVP date and anything the guests need to bring with them. Decide on the games or activities. Will you run these yourself or will you call in the professionals? Will you hire equipment or hire an entertainer? If you’re going it alone, you have a bit more time to gather ideas (see the first part of this feature for a start), ask friends what worked best for them and surf the web for ideas. Call in a few favours: perhaps your sister-in-law is a dab hand at face-painting?

two weeks before Order or plan the cake. The easiest DIY option for a summer birthday cake is to buy a couple of tubs of ice cream, like chocolate and vanilla. Let these melt a little, then throw a few chocolate chips into the one and some crushed meringue into the other. Layer the two in a spring-form cake tin or Pyrex dish, cover with clingfilm and freeze. (Tip: wrap a hot cloth around the dish to help loosen the cake.) Or you can get the children to make their own (see create a cupcake on page 43) on the day. Decide on decorations. A handful of balloons might be sufficient. Or perhaps you want to splash out at the party shop? It might seem too early to look at this, but if your child is set on Hannah Montana, you won’t want to screech into the store one hour before the party and end up having to leave with Barbie paraphernalia. Plan the menu. Will your food match your theme? Alien Juice, Monster Pies, Spider Cookies, anyone? Will you make it yourself, buy pre-prepared food from the supermarket or deli, or enlist the services of a caterer? Plan party packs. Do you want to send the guests home with something? Will this be a craft item they make at the party or a little bag of edible goodies? Add the contents to your shopping list.

one week before Plan the games and activities. Make a list (and suggested running order) and allocate responsibilities. Add the prizes and any props needed to your shopping list. Do the shopping. Compile your list from the menu. Buy all the non-perishables now, so you have less to do later. Make sure you have drinks (tea, coffee, wine and juice) and eats for any parents who’ll also be there. Don’t forget serviettes, candles, matches, as well as the decorations you need. Check catering supplies. Have you got sufficient crockery, cutlery, tables and chairs? There’s still time to borrow what you need from friends. Follow up on missing RSVPs. Prepare any food that can be made in advance. Or confirm drop-off or pickup times with your caterer.

the day before Get photo ready. Charge your camera; have a memory card in backup. Or, if you’re old-school, like I am, make sure you have enough film (believe me, it’s particularly hard to find on a Sunday afternoon). Check your first aid kit. Better over- than under-prepared. Bake or collect the birthday cake. Purchase any last-minute perishables. Assemble the party packs. The birthday child might like to help with these. Get cooking. Sort out any last-minute food and beverage bits and pieces.

party time Set up the party table, games and decorations. Older children can help by blowing up balloons and decorating the table. Put up a welcome sign. If your house is hard to find, tie a balloon on your gate to help direct people to your home. Enjoy!


May 2010



the ultimate party guide

ACCESSORIES AND SERVICES A for Design Will design party invitations (from R200) and take photographs of the party. Contact: 083 557 7337, 082 449 9194 or ABC Kids Party Time Specialises in well-priced party packs filled with good quality sweets as well as toys in buckets, boxes and loot bags. Cakes, cupcakes and platters on request. Children’s tables, chairs and linen for hire. Contact Debbie: 082 301 6875 or A&T Castles and Party solutions Offers a wide range of jumping castles, themed décor, foil balloons and party packs suitable for children 1–8 years. Children’s tables and chairs as well as bubble machines for hire. Delivery, collection and setup available. Johannesburg South. Contact Angie: 011 682 2753, 083 558 5627 or A–Z Creative Entertainment Mobile entertainment for all ages includes African dance shows, Djembe drumming, Easter bunny and friends, green thumbs and more. The chef and staff offer interactive cooking workshops and show children how to create their own pizzas, sushi, hamburgers and cakes. Chocolate fountains, Slush Puppy, bubble-blowing, candyfloss and popcorn machines to hire. Party décor and boxes supplied; platters made to order. Contact: 011 682 2660, 072 373 8963, 079 697 7745 or visit About Party Hire Rents out marquees, trestle tables and chairs, cutlery, crockery and glasses as well as catering equipment. Contact Bry-anne or Paula: 011 462 0791, 076 688 0986, or visit Absolute Fun Entertainment Provides jumping castles, Ferris wheels, farmyard animals, clowns, magicians and face-


May 2010

painting at your home or a venue of your choice. Party packs and cakes also supplied. Contact Debbie: 083 447 3866, or visit Ally Art Creative ideas, gift solutions and party packs. Johannesburg North. Contact Sally: 082 885 6370 or allyart@ B-Day Parties Children’s themed party décor delivered nationwide. Themes include Barney, Kung Fu Panda and Winnie-the-Pooh. Contact: 021 853 1727 or visit Balloon Magic Supplies balloons, centrepieces and birthday boards. From R6,50 per helium-filled balloon with ribbon, excluding delivery. Contact Cindy: 011 892 4219, 083 276 2747 or cindy@ Birthdays For a wide choice of greeting cards, photo frames, candles, toys, glassware, giftwrapping, ribbons and bows. Pretoria and Johannesburg. For more info: visit Bubble Ball Children can play on water, without getting wet. Bubble Ball is great entertainment for all seasons and enables healthy fun. The balls and pools are made of durable materials and on-site supervision is provided at every event. Contact Belinda: 083 201 1853, or visit Bumpy Jumpy Castles Large range of jumping castles. Children can play in the Dragon’s Hideaway, the Wishful Wizard’s Castle or escape in a choo-choo train. The team will deliver, set up and collect. R450– R750. Contact: 082 227 8537, fun@ or visit Chameleon Party Packs Fun gift alternatives to sweet-filled party packs. New stock weekly. Contact Kirsten: 011 883 6617, 072 249 8790 or

Charlie Bucket’s Toy Exchange Offers quality, affordable gifts as well as partypack fillers and helium balloons. Contact Vanessa: 011 787 1128, 084 589 0887 or Crazy Concepts Imports and distributes high-quality playground equipment, ball ponds, rock climbing walls, rides, jumping castles and electric trains. Delivery and installation countrywide. Contact Lizelle: 082 826 1786, or visit Delite Foods Provides tasty sugar-free, low-fat goodies such as sweets, jellies, biscuits and hot chocolate, which are perfect for hyperactive children. Also has a diabetic range. Countrywide. Contact Fran: 021 702 0721, info@delitefoods. or visit Doodle Projects Supplies crafty party packs as well as craft boxes specially packaged for the party; age and gender appropriate. Options include beading, soap-making, chocolate painting and more. R45–R110. Contact Candice: 082 926 2193, or visit Enchanted Creations Supplies cakes, party packs, themed décor and accessories as well as personalised invitations, banners and T-shirts. Furnishings and jumping castles for hire. Contact Michelle or Brenda: 084 567 5220, 072 765 1207, info@ or visit Extreme Theme Parties Online shopping for party paraphernalia. Contact: info@ or visit Fabulous Party For party décor and accessories, party packs and catering, with a delivery and set-up service. Specialises in themed parties with a wide range of gifts and toys. Shops in Midrand and Centurion. Contact Malie: 012 667 3081, or visit

Fantasy Fun & Crafts Plans and manages craft and fancy-dress parties for children. Appropriate accessories and costumes available to purchase and costumes to hire. Parties from R35; party accessories from R15 per child. Contact Ela: 084 450 7143, or visit Fun O’ Rama Supplies jumping castles, water slides and a variety of inflatable play centres. Also manufactures and repairs inflatables. From R400 for the weekend. East Rand. Contact Estelle: 011 826 5275, 083 457 7749, info@ or visit Geppetto’s World Designs and makes soft-play gross-motor-skill training apparatus. Contact: 073 218 8633, or visit Glacier Design Studio Custom-designed stationery for any occasion. Contact: 079 707 6353, or visit Gladiator Inflatables Hires out a variety of inflatable jumping castles, water slides and mini obstacle courses. From R345. Contact: 011 672 4861, rentals@gladiatorinflatables or visit Goodie Two Shoes Offers goodie boxes for 1- to 10-year-olds containing activityrelated stickers, crayons, puzzles, beads, clay fun and toys. Different sizes and themes available. Delivery countrywide. From R30. Contact Memre: 082 466 3182, or visit Ideal Images Will capture the event and present you with a soft-cover photobook and disk of images. R1 500 for a two-hour party. Contact Lindsey: 079 756 2019 or iJump Kids Provides high-quality, themed jumping castles and water slides. R450–R600. Private parties only. Contact: 0861 44 43 32, or visit joburg’s


Having a party? Here’s who to call. Compiled by CHAREEN PENDERIS


May 2010


ImageAge Photography Takes care of all your party photographic needs as well as family portraits. Contact Monica: 011 326 1563, or visit In Style Studio Photographs for every occasion including birthdays. Contact Chrisette or Delynda: 011 792 9059, 072 645 3550 or visit In-zane Kreeyations Hires out jumping castles, inflatable structures, water slides, ball ponds, tables and chairs. Includes delivery, setup and collection. Contact: Midrand and Centurion 082 449 4197 or northern and western suburbs 082 418 0155 or visit It’s Mine Labels Supplies personalised labels for lunch boxes, juice bottles, books, bags, clothes and shoes as well as themed party invitations, partypack stickers and personalised tattoos. Contact: 011 646 3640, admin@ or visit Jeremy Kusner Productions Party suppliers of rentals such as carousels, mini trains, candyfloss and popcorn machines, entertainment, lighting, sound staging and audiovisual equipment. Contact: 011 608 1485, 0861 112 876 or visit Jump Junction Offers a wide variety of jumping castles for parties and functions. Randburg. R300–R430, excluding delivery. Contact Brenda: 072 298 4024, or visit Just Labels Specialises in customised self-adhesive gift labels. Contact: 031 266 1738, or visit Kadies Bakery Supplies Carries over 2 500 lines associated with baking and cake decorating. Fourways. Contact: 011 465 5572, or visit Kiddie Rides Automated children’s rides (like those in shopping centres) delivered and set up for your party. From R500 for two rides. Contact: 011 822 9265, 072 245 7708, or visit Kids Ahoy Assists busy parents to organise the party so that they don’t have to spend hours looking for themes, party hire, décor, entertainment and refreshment. For more info: visit Kids Labels International Stocks a wide variety of fun gift labels, personalised gift wrap and ribbons to help you save on expensive cards. Create your own labels with numerous colours, shapes, icons and fonts. Deliveries countrywide. Contact Dawn: 021 794 6637, 082 450 8966, info@ or visit Kids Party Stuff Organises all the food and fun for children’s parties from inflatable structures, face painters and photographers to pony rides, a carousel swing, train and engine, drumming and birthday cakes. Present this listing for a 10% discount. Contact: 083 409 8003, info@kidspartystuff. or visit Knight’s Fairytales Rents out children’s tables and chairs, tiebacks, crockery and cups as well as candyfloss machines,


May 2010

hula hoops and ball ponds. Also supplies helium balloons and prepares party packs. Contact Natasha: 079 848 5097, or visit Little Occasions Children’s Designer Partyware Offers a collection of partyware including invitations, paper cups, plates, napkins, balloons, colourful greeting cards, wrapping paper, gift bags, tissue paper and gift tags that suits your child’s birthday party theme The products can be viewed and ordered online. Purchases delivered to your door, countrywide. Contact: 011 791 7436, 083 415 6162, or visit Love Letters Online store offering a range of locally produced modern and creative personalised stationery as well as things like placemats, menus and organisers. Contact: 083 651 8074, or visit Money Box Party Packs Novel, affordable party packs that double as gifts for the children to take home. Four ranges available, including a DIY option that provides an arts and crafts activity for children to do at the party. From R8. Agents countrywide. Contact: 082 422 7872 or visit My Gas – Balloon Time Supplies easyto-use portable balloon and helium kits with 30 or 50 balloons as well as foil balloon kits. Contact: or visit Nox Designs Specialises in personalised labels, including birthday and partypack labels. Shipping countrywide. From R35. Contact Nicky: 082 496 2930, or visit noxdesigns. Oodles of Doodles Personalised and customised gifts, linen, fabric and wooden products. Contact: info@oodlesofdoodles. or visit Packages of Joy Prepares birthday letters and sweetie bags, which are delivered to the birthday child on his special day. From R60. Contact: or visit Paint My Face Provides face-painting and airbrushing of temporary tattoos for any occasion (birthday parties, family days). Paint My Face is a member of Face and Body Association of South Africa. Contact: 083 550 2547, or visit Parties4Africa Online shopping site offers a wide range of party products. Over 50 children’s themes to choose from. Each includes plates, cups, serviettes, hats, party blowers, loot bags, table cloths and invitations. Countrywide. Contact: Cheryl 083 635 5353 or Penny 084 406 6313 or 035 772 6592, or visit Party in a Box All your themed party supplies available at this Sunninghill store. Also rents out tables, chairs and jumping castles. Contact Natalie: 011 803 7970, 087 808 8998, natalie@piabsunninghill. or visit

Party Katz Party shop in Douglasdale that supplies balloons, costumes, party packs, jumping castles and entertainment. Cost varies. Contact: 011 704 0024 or Party Packs ’n Piñatas Party packs, cakes, cupcakes and biscuits made up to your party theme. Piñatas, party packs, cakes and cupcakes also available. Countrywide. Contact Kim: 087 805 9977, 082 683 5766, info@ or visit PartyPix Photos of parties, special occasions and sporting events. R450 per hour, includes all post-production and a CD. Contact: 082 428 4802, partypixsa@ or visit Piñata Africa Custom-made piñatas in any shape or size to suit your theme. Fill them with sweets, suspend them from a string and hit them with a stick to release their contents. Posted throughout South Africa. From R220. Sweets extra. Contact Marianne: 082 457 2276, mgwyther@ or visit Sally’s Party Services Jumping castles, clowns, face painters, magicians, puppeteers, animals, crafts, rides, cakes and party bags. East Rand. Contact Sally: 011 974 9520 or visit Sir Bounce A Lot Jumping Castles Rental of themed jumping castles such as fairy castles and pirate ships as well as inflatable water slides and children’s chairs and tables. Jukskei Park. Contact Janine: 011 462 8520, 083 353 5010, or visit Sky Toys A wholesale balloon company with a wide variety of balloons, from plain and printed to novelty and foil, as well as helium balloons and trendy inflatables. All available online. Deliveries countrywide. Contact: 011 837 3924, 083 377 3786, or visit Smilemakers A party planning and equipment supplier offering a broad range of party entertainment plus entertainers. Options include jumping castles, children’s carousels, quad-biking, camel rides, clowns and more. From R550. Contact: 011 640 6096, or visit Smith & Olive Toyshop in Morningside Shopping Centre, which offers imported gifts and a wide variety of party pack treats. Contact: 087 940 3817 Star Castles Supplies fun inflatable play centres for all ages as well as themed birthday cakes. Contact: 011 679 5699, 082 372 9177, or visit Stick With Us! Personalised party invitations, party-box stickers, thank-you cards, gift stickers, banners and posters. Also clothing labels, school stationery labels, lunch-box and shoe labels. Contact Mandy: 082 377 0513 or Sunrise Sweets Bulk buys at this Roodepoort sweet store will bring you loads of yummy treats. Contact: 011 475 8366 or visit

The Baker’s Warehouse One-stop shop in Bryanston for all your baking and catering supplies and ingredients. Contact: 011 706 5010, apadop@icon. or visit The Crazy Store A discount store for all you may need for your child’s party. Contact: 021 505 5500 or visit The Fairy Factory Fairy and pamper parties, indoors or outdoors. They will arrange costumes, fairy décor, cakes, party packs and creative workshops. Treat your daughter to a birthday pamper with mini-spa treatments, beauty and creative workshops. Gift packs available. Fairy and pamper parties from R1 000. Contact: 083 463 8838, 073 204 0977, or visit Toddlers Warehouse Sells party-pack toys at wholesale prices. Wooden pens, pencils, spinning tops, clown whistles, bug boxes, notebooks, musical instruments, games and more. They have toys for boys, girls and babies. Shipping countrywide. Contact Tania: 011 979 1676, 072 398 8053, tania@ or visit Vanessa Rout Biltong Supplies Children’s biltong and droëwors for party packs and birthday snacks. Contact: 074 179 5558 or Vividimages Photography For parties, functions as well as studio shoots. From R1 200 for birthday shoots. Contact Jacqui: 083 395 3953, jacqui@vividimages. or visit Whizzbang Party store in Pineslopes with a large selection of themed party accessories as well as suit and tuxedo rentals. Contact: 011 467 3906, 083 242 9224, or visit Wizards Jumping Castles A large selection of jumping castles and water slides. Contact Karon: 011 679 1546, 082 564 1420, wizardsjumpingcastles@ or visit An online shop offering tableware, décor, themed plates, cups, hats, party blowers and more. Contact Paul: 082 461 3216, or visit X-Treme Foam Parties Provides bubbling fun for children’s parties. Contact: 082 462 2001, or visit

ANIMAL PARTIES Abingdon Yard Secure garden setting in Beaulieu with ample shade and covered play area for all weather conditions. Offers indoor and outdoor play equipment as well as an animal touch farm. Catering can be arranged or you may provide your own eats. Contact Rowann: 082 900 4078 or joburg’s


May 2010


Bear Country Party Place This country venue offers a touch-and-feed farmyard, trampoline, jungle gym, swings, pony rides, face-painting and more. Survivor and pool parties for older children. Catering optional. From R850 for up to 30 children. Muldersdrift. Contact Kathy: 082 446 8456 or bearcountry@ Cedar Farm This family-run farm in Fourways has free-roaming animals. Children can run freely in this safe setting. Contact Derval: 083 383 7819, or visit Croc City Crocodile Farm Touch or hold a crocodile hatchling under professional supervision. Catering and entertainment provided. Fourways/Lanseria. Contact Marietjie: 083 657 7561, 083 321 1016, or visit Drakes Party Farmyard An upmarket, all-weather animal-petting farm in Linbro Park with sandpit, water slide, jungle


May 2010

gyms and tree houses. Saturday, Sunday and public holidays, from R2 000; weekdays, from R1 500. Includes venue hire, tea and coffee, staff to assist with setting-up and cleaning. Party packs from R20. Contact: 011 608 2703, or visit Farmyard Frendz Country venue in North Riding with a touch-and-feel farmyard with geese, chickens, bunnies, cows, pigs, sheep, ponies, horses and an emu. Also offers jumping castles, jungle gyms, swings, pony rides, train rides, three private lapas with chairs and tables for children and adults. Contact: 083 307 0790, anna@farmyardfrendz. or visit Farmyard Friends Children can touch and feed a pony, pig, goat, sheep, chicken, rabbit and guinea pigs at your party venue. Adult supervision. R1 100 for 90 minutes, including first 40km of round trip. Contact Cheryl: 082 673 6441 or

Horse Haven Offers two party options. You can hire the Kyalami venue with an instructor to assist with a few games that don’t involve riding, such as making carrot cakes, obstacle courses and decorating horse shoes. Plus there is gymkhana and pony rides. Venue and riding instructor, R1 350 and R20 per head after the first 50 people. Venue, instructor and planned activities, R2 000 and R50 per head after the first 15 children. Contact: 011 702 2169 or Johannesburg Zoological Gardens Birthday party options include ferry, moonlight, sunset and behind-thescenes tours. Catering and party packs provided by on-site restaurant, Café Fino. Suitable for all ages, except behind-the-scenes tour, which is best for children older than 7 years. All tours to be booked and paid for in advance. Contact: 011 646 2000 or visit

Jungle Tots Farmyard Kyalami farm venue with ponies, cows, dogs and sheep. Children can feed the animals and enjoy pony rides or spend time in the playground. Tea and cake for parents. Contact Jenny: 083 377 7571 or Lory Park Animal and Owl Sanctuary Offers self-catering braai facilities or set menus. Free use of jumping castle and jungle gym. Hot Diggity Dog option includes hot dog, crisps, cold drink and ice cream, R25; party buckets with lots of hidden surprises, R25; small lapa, R300; big lapa R600. Contact Matty or Marina: 011 315 7307, info@lorypark. or visit Mac’s Party Farmyard This party venue in Johannesburg South has an indoor hall, picnic and braai facilities, jungle gym, jumping castle and lots more. Venue is exclusive to one party at a time. Contact: 011 948 8752, 082 657 6817, info@, collette@duosapphire. or visit


Montecasino Bird Gardens – Flamingo Café Children can share an exciting party with their friends, over 200 birds, more than 600 other species of animals and the Flights of Fantasy Bird Show. From R81,50 per child, which includes invitation, entrance fee, a meal, party box and mask. Contact Richard: 011 511 1203 or visit National Zoological Gardens of SA Take the party to the Pretoria Zoo and set up on the lawn. Order tailor-made children’s party packs that include animal masks, pictures to colour in, sweets and drinks. Lion or hippo theme cake available. No balloons or noisy toys permitted. Contact Tamsen: 012 326 7092, tamsen@nzg. or visit Old MacDonald’s Party Farm This Lanseria venue is home to ostriches, emus, donkeys, horses, goats and pot-bellied pigs. Facilities are specially designed to host children’s birthday parties. Tables and chairs, jungle gyms,


swings, trampoline, jumping castles and sandpit available. Contact Ian or Raul: 082 851 9351, 082 775 5146, or visit Outrageous Pets Show-and-tell animal demonstration where children can touch and hold the animals while learning about them. Photos are provided on a CD. The birthday child gets a lucky packet with an Outrageous Pets T-shirt and cap and becomes a member of their Kiddies’ Club. Contact Richard or Ryan: 083 342 8200, 082 877 3002, or visit Rhino & Lion Nature Reserve This Kromdraai spot provides five jumping castles, trampolines, a zip slide, jungle gyms, mazes, swings, rope-climbing, a suspended net and a large grassy area for play. A restaurant serves light meals. From R1 425 for 15 children and six adults. Contact: 011 957 0347, 011 957 0349, or visit

SA Lion Park Allows children to get back to nature in a safe and secure environment. Children can play with the lion cubs, feed the tame resident giraffe and go on a game drive through the main park. Lanseria. From R80. Contact: 011 691 9905, or visit Sun Valley Pony Parties Offers safe pony parties in a friendly environment at their Kyalami stables. Includes party venue with play equipment, pony rides and games, a pony activity, tables, chairs and tea or coffee. R1 000. Contact: 082 571 0309, info@sunvalleystables. or visit

ART AND CRAFT PARTIES Artjamming Funky, new art studio in Athol where children can express their creativity on a blank canvas by

sponging, spraying or painting their own masterpieces. From R90. Contact Kayla: 011 786 0599, or visit Art+Soul Studio Offers art sessions for parties and runs workshops during the school holidays, mid-term breaks and weekends. Create a masterpiece on blank canvas using professional art equipment. Paint, play, sponge or spray your own work of art. All materials supplied. From R140. Contact Megan: 083 272 0213 or Bead-worx A popular party solution for children 4 years and older. Activities vary from making bracelets, cellphone and bag accessories to key rings and mobiles. From R25, materials included. Beading kits from R45. Countrywide. Contact Muriel: 083 479 5527 or Cindy’s…“A little bit of this and that” Arranges wonderful arts and crafts parties for children. Activities include painting, beading, baking, puppet

May 2010


shows and face-painting. From R70. Contact: 011 802 1497, 083 408 7150 or Color Café A ceramic-painting studio and coffee shop in Hyde Park where you can choose a piece of raw pottery to paint, select your colours and accessories, and design away. Paint, glazing and all accessories used, R95 per hour. Catering is charged separately. Contact Samantha: 011 341 0734, 082 906 5557, colorcafe@ or visit Crafty Corner Entertains with a variety of age- and gender-appropriate children’s party crafts, according to a theme. Party-pack craft kits range from R15–R45. Full party planning R75 per child, minimum 10 children. Linden area. Contact Winnie: 011 782 0351, 082 780 3673, or visit I love Sandart Sand-art parties hosted at your venue or you can hire all equipment and host the party


May 2010

yourself. R150, equipment rental only. R300, equipment rental and party host. Additional R10 for every completed sand-art card. Contact: 011 022 7525, 083 278 0101, or visit Moyo at Zoo Lake Two-hour interactive African-themed children’s parties with dancing and games, storytelling, facepainting, art activities and food. Parents can dine while the children are entertained and supervised. Suitable for 3- to 12-yearolds. Contact: 011 646 0058, kabele@ or visit PolkaDot Art Studio Deluxe birthday cakes, painting fun outdoors in the secure Polka Park and pampering at the Sparkle Spa for girls’ party. Contact: 011 447 9892 or visit Pottery Junxion Caters for children’s parties as well as other functions. Workshops on dry-brushing, paint techniques, antiquing and mosaics. Dowerglen. Contact: 011 453 2721, or visit Scrapbook Emporium Caters for parties of 10 children from 9 years and older. A variety of projects to choose from and parties can be personalised. Scrapbooking parties also arranged at a venue of your choice. Fourways. Contact: 011 465 9349, or visit Smudge Offers a private-party room with tailor-made themes and art activities supervised by qualified artists. Children also have access to the dress-up room, music room, book lounge, play dough and felt area. On-site coffee shop for parents. Craighall. Contact Sandra: 011 501 0234, or visit The Fairy Factory Indoor and outdoor fairy and pamper parties. They arrange costumes, fairy décor, cakes, party packs and creative workshops. Treat your daughter to a birthday pamper with

mini-spa treatments, beauty workshops, and creative workshops. Gift packs available. From R1 000. Contact: 083 463 8838, 073 204 0977, gisele@ or visit kidspartydirectory. The Fun Factory Plans and manages parties at which children can get crafty in the studio or ice cakes. Party packs, helium balloons, face-painters, cakes and catering can be arranged. Parkhurst. Contact Lara: 083 626 3877 The White Paper House Buy a house made of six pieces of recycled paper, build it into a Wendy house and decorate it with poster paint, kokis and stickers. Birthday child gets to keep the house as a gift. R399 per house. Additional charge for paints and party host. Contact Lauren: 083 616 0044 or Toby Tower This range of educational stickers and DIY activities includes sticker albums and pictures; 3D


pop art; reward and height-measurement charts; colouring-in puzzles; gel, sand and scratch art. Contact: 0800 22 04 88, or visit

CAKES AND CATERING ABC Kids Party Time Personalised cakes and party packs. Cost varies. Randburg. Contact Debbie: 082 301 6875 or Annica’s Customised cakes for every occasion. Contact: or visit Baking Memories Offers pre-mixed and prepared muffins, cakes, biscuits and mousses. Also cookie and cake accessories such as tins and stands as well as serviettes, plates and cups. Northriding Square. Contact Nikki: 083 458 6111


Big Cake, Little Cake Cakes and cupcakes to order. Kempton Park. Contact Fiona: 083 387 0500 Cakes & Castles Jumping castles, birthday cakes, themed décor, helium balloons, party packs, little tables and chairs. Contact Tessa: 083 450 2525, or visit Chapati Catering Fresh, home-made Indian sandwich and snack platters for 6–8 people from R220–R280. Contact Baiju: 083 307 0505 or chapati. Chlo Lo Catering Customised cakes, cupcakes and party entertaining for adults and children. Food for youngsters contains no additives, colourants, preservatives, added salt or sugar. River Club. Delivery can be arranged. Contact Robyn: 072 659 8919 Coffeespoonz & Afternoons Offers ready-to-use frozen muffin batters, scone, biscuit, brownie, savoury tart,

pancake, waffle and crumpet batter. No extra ingredients required – defrost, snip, pour and bake. Wholesale prices on request. Contact Gina: 011 849 4273, 083 233 0896, coffeespoonz@telkomsa. net or visit DLish Offers services from specialised novelty cakes to party and function catering. Cakes from R250, party packs from R20, cupcakes from R8, platters from R270. Gauteng. Contact: Graeme 082 378 5677 or Jeni 082 940 6812, or visit Eskimo Hut Create themed ice-cream cakes for any event. Contact Hayley: 072 733 4320, or visit Indulge Decadent Dining and Confectionery Boutique Master confectioners create decadent, novelty cakes for all occasions. Also offer “createa-cake” boxes for children to design their own. Novelty cakes from R380. Create-acake party from R120. Rivonia. Contact:

011 234 4437, or visit Juicy Lucy Offers a platter menu perfect for parties. Options include gourmet sandwiches, mini cheese grillers, dips, mini wraps and veggie sticks. Platters ready within two hours of order. To find a store near you visit Just Chocolate Specialises in customdesigned smash cakes: a hollow cake made out of chocolate, which is filled with sweets and small gifts. R580– R2 000. Contact Nicky: 082 331 8605 or Kauai Healthy food for children’s parties. Wraps, sandwiches, canapés, fruit smoothies, fresh fruit juices and more. There are 13 outlets throughout Gauteng. Contact Nuraan at head office: 021 552 0222 or visit Made by Monica Specialises in cakes and cupcakes, invitations, party packs and catering. Cakes and cupcakes are quoted according to the size and

May 2010


detail required. Bryanston. Contact Monica: 083 297 7977, monica@ or visit Pick n Pay The Pick n Pay Entertaining Range is elegantly presented in disposable food trays or baskets. A range of party platters are available instore or online and offer a choice of hot and cold snacks. Selection includes roast meats, breads, salads, cheeses and themed cakes as well as catering meals such as lasagne and chicken a la king. Delivery fee R50. Browse the catalogue online or in-store. Orders must be placed before 10am and at least two days in advance. Contact: 011 574 4643 or visit The Bread Basket Customised cakes and platters for birthdays and other occasions such as Easter. Johannesburg and Pretoria. For more info: visit The Cake Company Supplies all types of novelty cakes for parties and any other occasion. Randburg. R185–R300. Contact Flavia: 084 916 1572 or Yum Yum Cupcakes Specialises in cakes and cupcakes for all occasions. Cupcakes are packed in clear cupcake trays with folding lid for freshness. R8–R10 per cupcake, minimum order 12 cupcakes. Weltevredenpark.


May 2010

Contact Paula: 072 622 7078, paula@ or visit Zoe Cakes for fun Supplies themed and character cakes for children’s parties and special occasions. Contact: 011 706 7332, 073 046 8460, or visit

COOKING PARTIES Angelo’s Kitchen This popular Italian restaurant offers pizza-making facilities for children. Also has a jumping castle to help work off excess carbohydrate energy. Peter Place, Bryanston. Contact: 011 463 5800 or 011 463 9498 Little Cooks Club Cooking classes and parties for children 2- to 12-years-old. From R150 plus R20 for a specialised party pack. The classes are held at a Little Cooks Club location. Contact Christine: 083 556 3434, christine@littlecooksclub. or visit Tots n Pots Offers tailor-made baking parties. Choose from a menu of themes and recipes. Various packages available, including party packs, hats, aprons, ingredients, crafts and all equipment for baking. Various locations. Contact Angie: 083 400 1288 or visit

uShef Cooking parties for 6- to 16-yearolds. Younger children wear chef’s hats and aprons and make pizzas and underthe-sea themed gingerbread treats. Parties start at 10:30am and 2:30pm. Older children enjoy non-alcoholic cocktails and make a three-course meal, which they enjoy with non-alcoholic sparkling wine. Parties start at 11:30am and 5:30pm. Randburg. R185–R205 per child. Minimum 12 children. Contact Gill: 011 462 8964, or visit

EDUCATIONAL PARTIES Atom Ant Science Fun Parties Soon to be launched in Johannesburg. For more info contact Ann: 082 570 5796 Bug and Science party fun The creepy crawly show involves an interactive talk as well as an opportunity to get up close to some live insect and arachnid specimens and a snake. The science show presents experiments like hydrogen rockets and more. Creepy-crawly show R700, for ages 4–12; science show R800, for 15 children 7 years and older; R40 per additional child. Contact Alison: 011 793 5896, 073 260 5371 or Equal Zeal Educational birthday parties and self-development programmes based on the book, Zeal the Zebra Shows his True

Colours. Contact: 082 447 3343, admin@ or visit Experilab Scientists entertain and enrich children with bubbling solutions, lava motion, flaming balloons, slime and more. Each party has a number of demonstrations, competitions and handson activities. Children keep the things they make. Parties hosted at your home or at Experilab stores in Pretoria and Johannesburg. Visit Pop Idols Party Children can sing their hearts out in a sound-studio environment and record a personalised CD. Monday– Thursday R1 850; Friday R2 000; weekends R2 500. Parktown. Contact Laurika: 011 697 2933, 082 339 4733, or visit Pop Star Parties A creative day spent recording a favourite song with friends. The recording is interspersed with swimming, games, dancing and lunch in the garden. Children design their own CD cover and at the end they all take home a recording of themselves and their friends singing. Other themed parties include: disco, hip-hop, fairy and High School Musical. Contact Sue: 011 880 5205, 083 230 0319 or Sci-Bono Discovery Centre Interactive children’s science and technology museum. Parties include a supervised visit to the exhibits and a science magic


show. Bring own snacks and a birthday cake. Contact: 011 639 8400, or visit Strange Blue Duck Novel stop-frame animation parties (aniparties). Children make their own animated films using Plastecine (aka Wallace and Gromit), plastic insects and various other objects. Each child receives a CD of all the completed clips at the party, a certificate as well as additional information on animation techniques and how to make animated films at home. Suitable for children from age 9. From R3 500 for a 2–3 hour party. Contact Richard: 082 815 3918, richard@strangeblueduck. or visit SuperStars Pop Music Parties Parties are tailor-made to your requirements and include hip-hop, karaoke, rock, alternative, teen-themed disco parties and themed parties such as Camp Rock, Hannah Montana and High School Musical. From R1 500. Contact: Candice: 011 728 2641, 074 105 0757 or visit The Planetarium Space travel shows on Saturday mornings. Bring your own eats and enjoy a picnic outside. Hot dogs and coffee available. Suitable for children 5–8 years. Entry fee R18 per child; party pack with 10-minute space-travel music CD, R14. Contact: 011 717 1390, planet@ or visit


Trophy Computers and Robotics Hosts Lego parties where children can choose what they’d like to build. R40–R100. Minimum numbers apply. Additional fees: travel to Johannesburg R150; travel to Pretoria R200. Contact Zelda: 082 851 8892, z.pretorius@mweb. or visit

ENTERTAINERS Aalwyn’s Funtainment Ventriloquist, magician and balloon artist. R750 per hour for parties, R1 600 per hour for corporate events. Contact: 083 354 8726 Airborne Adventures Supplies inflatable flotation suits called airbots, airbrush tattoos, bungee, carousels, carnival games, “parachutes”– big or small, water balls and more. Contact: 011 969 4507, 082 572 9861 or airborneadventures@ Andy’s Action Parties Action birthday entertainment for children from the age of 6. Themes include army, Survivor and Star Wars. From R1 200. Contact Andrew: 082 447 3613, andrew@aaparty. or visit Balloony Face-painters, magicians and balloon artists. They dress up as clowns, fairies and more to fit in with your theme. Contact: 083 951 3941, balloony@balloony. or visit

Bat Man Kidz Cricket Host cricket parties for children aged 5–12, either at your home or a venue of your choice. Equipment is provided and birthday cakes and party packs can be supplied on request. Soccer and rugby added by arrangement. Contact Sandi: 082 338 7968 or info@ Body and Beauty Clinic Pamper Party Treats little princesses to manicures, pedicures, facials and glitter make-up and also supplies party packs to take home and enjoy. R100. Minimum 6 children. Contact: 011 497 6876 Clowning Around Zimbo the Clown and Cowboy Zim offer magic shows, balloonsculpting and face-painting. Contact: 084 597 7655 or visit Creative Faces Offers a wide range of detailed, face-painting designs, body paintings, temporary airbrushed tattoos and glitter tattoos. Contact Surina: 073 631 0578, or visit Duo Sapphire Entertainment Offers a comprehensive database of entertainment and equipment suppliers who will travel to your venue. Contact: 011 948 8752, 082 657 6817,, or visit FaceART Offers professional face- and body-painting and temporary airbrushed tattoos. Face-painting: R600 for first hour, R350 per hour thereafter. Tattoos: R700

for first hour, R400 per hour thereafter. Contact Cora: 083 434 9880, cora@ or visit Faerie Folk Experienced entertainers come to your home or party venue and provide dress-up activities, facepainting, games, music and stories for children. Themes include faerie and wizard, mermaid, princesses and Harry Potter. Johannesburg: R1 050; Midrand: R950, Pretoria R850, per hour and for a maximum of 15 children. Contact Muriel: 012 460 6894 or 082 885 0207, faeries@ or visit JayJay the Clown Offers balloonsculpting, juggling, magic, fire-walking and walkabout entertainment. R800 for first hour, R450 per hour thereafter. Contact JayJay: 082 454 6843, jayjay@ or visit entertainment Laugh Kids & Family Entertainment Specialises in entertaining children and family audiences. Also arranges inflatables, balloons and candyfloss machines. Contact: 011 787 3688, 011 789 9485, bookings@ or visit Lil-Tings Hosts diva, theme, pizza and foam parties at your venue. Also supplies party packs. Contact Tammy: 083 671 4770, or visit

May 2010


Magic Kids An interactive 40-minute magic show, for young and old. Contact Ryan: 082 336 9287, ryan@illusionists. or visit Miles of Smiles Provides entertainment such as clowns, face-painting, stilts, puppets, dance shows and more. Contact: 011 875 2085, 072 143 4003 or Ollie the Clown Ollie entertains with his magic and singing act. He rides the unicycle and, together with Jollie the Monkey and Lulu the Rat, keeps all ages entertained. Contact Ollie: 012 331 8894, 083 694 1479 or Pamper Me Parties Offers a pamper party in your own home. Packages include manicures, pedicures, facials, temporary tattoos, make-up and party packs. From R125. Contact Alice: 082 780 1467, alice@pampermeparties. or visit Puppets & More Puppet shows using large, colourful puppets, incorporating ventriloquism, music, drama and tricks. Johannesburg and Pretoria. Contact Ann: 082 293 6097, parkersofbluehills@ Puppet World Interactive puppet shows with music, lighting and puppet characters to enthrall young audiences. Themes include animal stories, fairy-tales and their popular 2010 World Cup Show. Contact Marie: 012 991 7644 or 082 926 7335 Remember Me Face-painting for children’s parties, plus organisation of personalised invitations and party packs. Face-painting from R550. Johannesburg North. Contact Dawn: 083 305 1237 or Teatime Tales Arranges tea parties for little girls. Décor, miniature crockery and bite-sized snacks will turn the party into a sophisticated high tea. Parties arranged at your home or a venue of your choice. Contact Naomi: 082 926 9530 or The Incredible Dog Show Great entertainment for your child’s birthday party, any other function or for animallovers. This show can be presented in English, Afrikaans or bilingually. Contact: 084 500 0415, or visit Trevor the Magician The Interactive Magic Shows are done with balloon modelling. R980–R2 200. Contact Trevor: 011 849-5847, 083 413 1272, duffys@ or visit or Unforgettable Parties Entertains children with fun games and sports such as soccer and cricket. Variety of jumping castles for hire. Contact Collen: 011 333 9991 or 072 804 4596

FANCY DRESS HIRE Abracadabra Clothing Supplies customised fancy dress, school concert and theatre costumes as well as specialoccasion dresses and dancewear. Contact Annalize: 083 448 3570 or


May 2010

Jozi Costumes A selection of fancy-dress and special-occasion costumes for hire and sale. Rental from R80 per day. Randburg. Contact: 011 476 7341, info@jozicostumes. or visit Pirates and Princesses Tailor-made costumes for fancy-dress parties, ballets or school concerts. Contact Val: 082 716 9732, val@piratesandprincesses. or visit Pirouette Costume Hire Supplies costumes and apparel. Garments are available for hire or for purchase. Special garments can be made up to requirements. Contact Geraldine: 011 792 1661, or visit Sinderella’s Costume Hire Rents out fancy-dress costumes, wigs, hats and masks. Linden. Contact: 011 782 0622, or visit Snog the Frog Offers any party-related services from costume hire, purchase and customisation to party supplies and toys. They will source what you need. Bryanston. Contact Candy: 011 463 5187, 076 259 9434, or visit Zoe Costumes Supplies quality character costumes that are durable and easy for children to wear. Contact Samantha: 011 794 6799, 083 231 1652, or visit

INDOOR PARTIES Build-A-Bear Workshop’s Build-A-Party Offers entertainment for children aged 3 and older. Each party is assigned its own bear builder associate to get the party started. Sandton City, Clearwater Mall, East Rand Mall, Menlyn Park. From R89. Contact: 08611 BEARS (23277) or visit Dipsy Dots Offers a party venue, party shop and party hire. Various themes to choose from. Centurion. Contact: 012 755 5526, 084 654 1115 or Jimmy Jungles Supervised and secure adventure indoor playground in Edenvale for children from 6 months old to a maximum height of 1.4m. A coffee shop offers adults hot and cold meals. R95 per child includes invitations, hot dogs, party packs, birthday cake, two hours in the party room and a two-hour gift voucher for the birthday child. Contact: 011 452 2180, or visit Kids Wonder World Indoor party and play venue in Boksburg with jumping castles, jungle gyms, ball ponds, slides and plenty of room to run, jump and play. R45–R62, depending on your option. Contact Kirstie or Jessie: 011 826 5093, or visit Let’s Go Bowling For children aged 5 and older. Parties include a game, party pack and food. Cresta and Brightwater Commons. R80. Visit joburg’s

MG Raceway Africa’s largest indoor go-kart track situated in Cedar Square, Fourways. Suitable for children aged 4 and up. Contact: 011 465 7778 Mungolistix Indoor party and play park in Centurion offering full party planning and catering services. R80, includes fruit juice, hot dog, crisps, sweets and balloon. Platters and cakes on request. Contact Marlese: 012 663 2798, info@mungolistix. or visit National Children’s Theatre The birthday child is invited on stage to receive a gift, a photograph of the cast and everyone sings “Happy birthday”. Venue hire R150; R60 per child with a minimum of 20 people. Parktown. Contact: 011 484 1584 Piccino’s Playground Large soft-play area as well as climbing gyms with a party room. Norwood. Contact: 011 728 0928 or Randburg Action Sports Arena Fun and active children’s cricket, netball, soccer or hockey birthday parties that last two hours. Take your own decorations, snacks, cake and cool drinks or they can organise party packs for you. Contact: 011 792 6313, or visit Randburg Raceway Suitable for children 1.2m and taller. Party includes a 10-minute go-kart race (20–25 laps) with optional catering and party packs. The venue can also be booked on an exclusive basis at an additional cost. R120. Contact: 011 792 2260, info@randburgraceway. or visit Spur Steak Ranches A safe venue for children’s parties. Selected children’s meal, soda, ice cream and party cup (filled with sweets) for R39,95. Invitations are available to send to friends and balloons, headdresses and play canyons are available on the day. For a Spur near you contact: 086 000 7787 or visit Star Kids Café All weather, childfriendly environment in Pineslopes with supervision. Party options are either selfcatered or fully catered by the venue. There is also a party supply shop in-store. R1 150, self-catered venue hire. Catering options R95–R139 per child. Minimum 12 children. Contact Anna: 011 465 9904 or visit The Enchanted Castle Parties Offers a wide range of fairy-tale characters to make your child’s party a magical experience. The trained party team comes to your home, office, school, club or you can make use of their venue at Mugg & Bean, Broadacres. Contact: 082 415 2842 or The Ice Rink Northgate Take to the ice for an exciting ice-capade. R60 per person, includes entrance fee and skate rental. Groups of 10 and more pay R45 each. Self-catering permitted. Randburg. Contact: 011 794 8706 Wonderwall Indoor climbing gym in Randburg for active, wall-climbing fun. R52, admission only; R100, includes admission, hot dog, cool drink and crisps. Randburg. Contact: 011 708 6467, or visit joburg’s

Yeesh! Fun for kids Indoor fun party venues in Woodmead and Bryanston with ball ponds, slides, giant two-storey climbing frames, obstacle courses, jumping castles and trampolines. From R800 for 10 children. Contact Sandy: 073 230 6531, 083 923 2306, yeesh@ or visit

INDOOR AND OUTDOOR PARTIES Avalanche Offers two-hour party sessions for children to bum-board down a 25m sliding slope. Includes a private decorated table, party packs, popcorn, balloons and baseball cap for the birthday child. Fourways. From R1 500 for 10 children. Contact: 011 467 2426 or visit Boswell Wilkie Circus From 4 years old, children can experience the magic of the Big Top as professional circus performers get them to participate in tightrope walking, trapeze acts, juggling and more. A hot dog, candyfloss, popcorn and cool drink are included. From R1 000. Minimum 10 children. Birthday cakes and party packs can be arranged. Randvaal. Contact: 016 365 5330, 083 226 1213, or visit Buddy Bear Bear-building parties in their Bedfordview store or they bring the party to you. Select a range of bears or animals from only R69. Special offer: R170 for any bear and any outfit with voice module included. Call Leanne: 082 664 7107 Clamber Club Clamber Club parties for children 1–9 years: they’ll come to your home or chosen venue with loads of exciting equipment to clamber and climb on and entertainers to keep the children entertained for 1½ hours. The Clamber Club party venue for children 1–5 years is in a beautiful garden setting with swings, a sandpit, Clamber Club climbing equipment and more. Contact Clamber Club head office: 011 325 2031, headoffice@ or visit Earth Kids Secure all-weather party venue with jungle gyms, bike track and trampolines. Can also arrange catering, birthday cakes and party packs as well as entertainment such as magicians, face painters and adventure games. Crowthorne. R1 400 includes coffee or cappuccinos, cutlery and overlays. Contact Nikki: 011 468 2431, or visit Egoli Café The venue is suitable for children’s parties as well as other functions. From R40 per child. Edenvale. Contact: 011 609 4755, 082 467 2345, café or visit George & Lucy’s Party venue in a country setting in Chartwell with indoor area and farm-style patio. For the little ones there is a large play area with jumping castle, bike track, covered deck for setting up the party, sandpit, jungle gym, trampoline and zip slide for the older children. From R1 100 weekdays; R1 300 weekends. Contact: 011 708 1326, 082 578 0468 or visit May 2010


Gold Reef City Theme Park Offers birthday packages with free entrance for the birthday child, reduced prices for five or more friends, access to all rides and attractions, and a meal from the children’s menu with a soft drink. Adults and children under 12, R120; children under 1.2m R80. Contact Grace: 011 248 6986, 011 248 6800, or visit Grannies Garden Play venue in Blairgowrie with a bike track, party room, party kitchen, craft room, computer room, dress-up room, fantasy room, modular play room, trampoline, playhouse, jungle gym, outside playhouse and tent as well as a coffee shop for parents. R75 per child includes a hot dog, cupcake, juice and crisps. Party packs R20–R30. Contact: 011 326 4265 or visit Hoots and Toots Parties Theme-party venue situated within the Lifestyle Garden Centre in Randpark Ridge with a playground, jumping castle, Robinson Crusoe jungle gym, sandpit and other toys as well as a baby jungle gym and Astroturf. Party hostesses take children to the animal farm and on pony rides. Also sells party accessories and birthday cakes. Suitable for children 1–10 years. From R1 050 for a standard party for 10 children. Contact: 011 792 0460 or 074 116 5444 I-Play Toddler and pre-school play area and coffee shop in Randpark Ridge. Soft-play area, baking corner and a craft corner as well as jungle gyms and a Wendy house to explore. Contact: 011 792 0377 Imagine Children’s Parties All-weather venue for children’s parties. Offers party planning and off-road remote control track. Chartwell. Contact Gail: 082 928 7474, or visit Kidzville Exclusive use children’s party venues situated in a safe, clean environment. Offers the Party Farm, Boot Camp, Pirate Park and the Adventure Park as exclusive-use venues. Lots of play equipment and organised activities and secure parking. Between Benoni and Kempton Park. Contact Beth: 083 463 1429, or visit Kinderland Party Venue This party venue in Pretoria includes two private party areas with function halls and a sports bar with braai facilities. Full party-planning service includes themes, party packs, cakes, entertainment, balloons and catering for adults. Also rents out party accessories like tables, chairs and table cloths. Contact Annalize: 082 680 1368, annalizelouw@ or visit Lemon Thyme Café Set among beautiful gardens in Honeydew with a cosy country atmosphere, this is a delightful party haven for all ages. Contact Yolanda: 011 794 2352, 083 280 0608 or Lola Park Safe family park with lots of imported rides and attractions. Offers an educational petting zoo with exotic animals, tranquil fairy garden, walkways and fountains. Wide variety of entertainment. Party themes include Wild


May 2010

West town, fairy garden, castle, Barbie, Aladdin, knights and Old MacDonald’s Farm. Boksburg. Contact 011 918 0854, or visit Mico’s Party Place Mico’s provides a tranquil private garden venue, which includes a jumping castle, trampoline, wooden playhouse, sandpit, jungle gyms, plastic bikes and numerous toys. Sandown. Contact Michelle: 082 789 5110, or visit Oki-doki Play and Party Venue Children can get imaginative and shop at the grocery store, dress-up in the theatre, play mommy and daddy at the Pink Cottage or be a teacher at the school. There is also an outdoor playground and a coffee shop for parents. Venue hire R600 for up to 20 children. Child-minder R120. Catering, party packs and decorating can be arranged at an additional charge. Linden. Contact Mariske: 079 817 4413, or visit Precious Poppets Pre-School & Party Place Self-catering venue situated on a country estate. Offers a well-equipped outdoor play area, jungle gym with sandpit, kitchen and indoor dining area, tables, chairs and braai area. Pony rides can be arranged on request. R750 per three-hour session. Contact Darylanne: 082 573 5798, info@preciouspoppets. or visit Serendipity This full service venue in Parkwood offers the party space, catering, décor and entertainment such as face painters, ponies, magicians and jumping castles. Also arranges themed parties in the leafy garden. From R750 for the basic party option for 10 children and their parents. Contact: 011 447 7386 or Ski Deck Bum-boarding, ski and snowboard parties as well as a zip-line slide. R1 200 for 20 children. Randburg. Contact: 011 781 6528, 011 023 3210, or visit Skysweeper Party Venue Safe and wellequipped play area as well as a baby’s change room. Verandah with panoramic views for parents. R1 000 for three hours. Includes tea and coffee for 35 adults and juice for 35 children. Child-minder to assist with children. Chartwell North. Contact Heather: 082 920 2714, heatherorpen@ or visit The Secret Garden Tea garden and separate party venue in Norscot Manor with an enclosed children’s play area, sandpit, Wendy house, swing boats, black bikes and slides. Themed party packages for maximum 40 children include décor, linen, food, an option of two party packs and extra activities. Full catering service for children and adults. From R50 per child. Contact Ricky: 071 366 8927 or Toadstool Town Party Venue Provides a jumping castle, trampoline, sandpit jungle gym, tractor and pony rides, large manicured lawns, braai facilities, themed décor, personalised invitations, party packs and entertaining activities. Swartkops. Contact: 011 957 3633 or joburg’s

Très Jolie Restaurant, Conference, Function & Wedding Venue Fully licensed, child-friendly venue with floodlit playground, jungle gyms, jumping castles and sandpit. Features a touch-and-feed animal farm as well as pony rides. Optional extras include balloons, beverages and catering. From R2 500. Ruimsig. Contact: 011 794 2473, 082 976 0762, info@ or visit Words Bookstore A small intimate venue offering a play area, specialised party packs, vintage tea, pamper, animal, and art and crafts parties. Catering can be arranged. Midrand. R60–R200. Contact Maria: 082 896 0182 or maria@

OUTDOOR PARTIES Adventure Golf Mini-golf adventures with water features. Parties are held for 1½ hours. From R500 for up to 10 children; R45 each for additional children; R140 for the party to be supervised. Includes two games, a packet of crisps and a can of cold drink. Fourways, Randburg and Modderfontein. For more info: visit Battlezone Three-hour paintball parties. R100 includes mask, marker, jacket and 115 paintballs. Minimum 10 per group. Bryanston. Contact: 0861 468 242, or visit Boot Camp SA Military-themed, 2½-hour children’s parties, covering everything from invitations and venue to the cake. Suitable for 5 years and older. Fourways. Contact 084 234 2668, or visit Café Blu This outdoor party venue in Pineslopes does catering and décor. Venue hire is free but food, entertainment and décor are quoted accordingly. Contact Jane: 011 022 4575, info@ or visit Chuckles Garden at Chuckleberry’s Garden venue with trampolines and jungle gyms. Catering for children includes burgers, corn dogs, toasted sandwiches, a sweets table and beverages. Adult platters available on request. Victory Park. Weekdays, R40 per child; weekends, venue hire, R200 and R40 per child. Contact: 011 888 3088, Daytona Adventure Park Bike and quad adventure park north of Fourways offering children’s quad-biking parties. Suitable for ages 7 and older. R80–R110 per child. Contact Greg or Vic: 083 625 1537, 072 202 7434 or Dirt Ryders Adventures Outdoor adventure centre in Lanseria offers go-karting, paintball, archery, pony rides, a swimming pool and play area. Choose the adventure activities appropriate for your child. Suitable for children older than 6 years. Contact: 082 458 3634, 071 677 8673, clive@ or visit Elf’s Hill Party Yard This party venue in Chartwell allows children into a magical joburg’s

world of fun and make believe. Themed party accessories, party packs and entertainment can be arranged. Weekday parties R950; weekend or public holidays R1 300. Contact Estelle: 082 573 5386, or visit Fantasy Park The five-acre venue in Chartwell provides a fun-in-the-country experience for both adults and children. Consists of two venues: Aeroplayin, which includes a real passenger airliner, the Hawker Siddeley 748; and Enchanting, which overlooks a large sports field that’s perfect for soccer parties. Contact Nicky: 072 256 7834 or visit Footloose Trout Farm and Conference Centre Offers fishing parties for all ages in trout, carp, barbel and bass dams. The centre also has a swimming pool, jungle gyms and play area as well as a restaurant and lapa bar. R100 includes entrance fee, rod rental, bait and lunch. R40, entrance fee only. Fourways North. Contact Kim: 011 466 9911, 083 462 2779, kim@kendals. or visit Frogs & Freckles Party Venue This exclusive venue in Ruimsig offers swings, sandpit and a jungle gym. Choose from many party themes and additional activities. Customised packages arranged. Cost: weekend venue hire R950 and R45 per child for theme parties. Contact Inette: 083 456 0342 or Garden World Offers an enclosed, outdoor area with age-appropriate partythemed tables, farm animals, playground equipment and a jumping castle. Parties include use of the playground and putting green, feeding of farm animals, tractor ride and visit to the aviary to feed the birds. Muldersdrift. R95. Contact Zelda: 082 353 6038 or visit Hedgehog Lane Includes access to mini fairground, Hedgehog Express train, Ferris wheel, mechanical swing and carousel, trampoline, black-bike track, maze and sandpits. In-house catering, birthday cakes, cupcakes available. Helium and balloons also available. Entertainment on request. Bryanston. Contact Shirley: 011 463 8692/3, or visit Honeydew Mazes Giant mazes with secret gardens and quiz boards. Challenging for all ages, especially older children. R65 per child includes crisps, cold drink and ice cream. Contact Judy: 073 795 2174, or visit Jozi-X Action, adventure parties with trapeze, jungle swings, bubble balls, tightrope-walking and loads more adrenalin-inducing activities. Bryanston. Contact Marco: 082 456 2358, info@ or visit Kinglets & Queenies Country setting with trampoline, jumping castle, jungle gym, pony see-saw, rocking horses, rounda-bout as well as access to the animal farmyard. Toilet facilities have babychanging area. Use the party planners or you can create your own party. Venue hire from R650. Contact Yolandi: 079 736 7113, or visit May 2010


Lilliput Kids Children can play among fairies and elves in a lovely garden in Kyalami, and be entertained by jungle gyms, sandpits and an old Beetle called Buster. Tailor-made to suit your budget and needs. Contact Sonja: 073 175 3104, info@ or visit Party Planet Set in safe, beautiful surroundings in Ruimsig and offering fullservice party planning, entertainment and catering. R700–R2 000. Contact Laura: 072 949 6655, or visit Post House Parties Situated in Chartwell North with lots of space to run or enjoy a game of cricket. Also offers a jungle gym, see-saws, swing and trampoline. Children can touch and feed the ducks, geese, rabbits and tortoise. Pony rides, jumping castles and other entertainment can be arranged. R1 500 includes tea, coffee, crockery, cutlery, chairs, tables, two staff members to assist you, and use of the sound system. Contact Nicole: 011 460 1024, 082 417 1395, or visit Predator World Activities include treasure hunt, party boxes, reptile demos, animal interaction, photos and feeding the goats. Sun City. From R25 per child and from R50 per adult. Contact San-Mare: 014 552 6900, 076 817 6869, info@predatorworld. or visit


May 2010

Real Trees adventure farm Children can climb trees, venture through an obstacle course with foefie slide, high swings, rope bridges and net crawling or go canoeing or swimming. Party arrangements include face-painting, horseshoe-painting, party packs and pony rides. Kyalami. Contact Leigh: 011 702 1223 or 083 675 7979 River Café Outdoor venue in the heart of Sandton. Facilities include jumping castle, water slide, jungle gyms and huge beach volleyball sandpit. Additional entertainment on request such as pony rides, go-karts, face-painting, soccer parties and foam pits. Venue hire R650. Contact: 083 625 2223 or visit Runnin’ Rebels Soccer Two-hour soccer parties for boys and girls from ages 4–13. Includes technical instruction and World Cup match play. From R800. Contact Alan: 082 920 0730, info@runninrebels. or visit Sundowner Adventures Offers children’s fly-fishing parties. Contact Wayne: 011 315 4503, 083 414 0391, sundown@ or visit Sunset Mountain Party Venue Situated in Muldersdrift, it has a large thatched lapa for adults and a host of activities for children including trampolines and jungle gyms. Contact: 072 850 3956 or chantall@ Survive or Race the adventure Designed around the popular television programmes

Survivor and The Amazing Race, parties provide fun-filled entertainment for all ages while teaching life skills in a healthy, outdoor environment. Near Hartbeespoort. Contact: Debbie or Cuan: 082 895 2513, or visit The Mighty Jungle Large venue for exclusive hire with jungle gyms, sandpit, merry-go-round, foefie slide, mini-soccer field, scooter-bike track and teepees. Covered patio for all weather. Fully equipped kitchen. Venue hire R1 300. R600 deposit; includes party invitations. Themed décor and party accessories on request. Bedfordview. Contact: Nadia 082 880 9335 or Sonia 083 452 8120 or mightyjungle@ The River Cabin Tranquil venue on a farm on the Jukskei River. Indoor area can be adapted for any theme and the outdoor area accommodates ball sports, water slides and jumping castles. The playground has a wooden jungle gym, Wendy house, sandpit, see-saw, trampoline, swings and monkey bars. Venue hire R1 250. Chartwell. Contact Ana Paula: 082 445 8436, therivercabin@ or visit Wild Cave Adventures Children from 8 and up can explore the wonders of an underground cave. Cradle of Humankind. Contact Sandy: 011 956 6197, 082 486 2464, or visit

Wild Waters Nine thrilling water activities provide loads of wild water fun. Take your braai or picnic hampers with you for a day of outdoor play. Children 2–5 years R50; children 6 and older R90. Boksburg. Contact: 011 826 6736 or visit Wimpy Parties 4 Kids Includes a children’s meal and choice of three craft activity packs as well as a balloon and activity sheet. R37,95. For more info: visit Zwartkops Quad Centre Fully supervised and suitable for children aged 4 years and older. Jumping castles, trampolines and large jungle gym with swings and slide surrounded by sandpit. Quad rides, hot dogs and party packs or loot bags. Cakes, hostess platters, face-painting and professional photography on request. Venue hire R700. Includes marquees, table cloths, balloons and braai facilities. Contact Linky: 082 688 6046, bookings@ or visit

PARTY PLANNERS ABC Birthdays Does all the planning to make your child’s party easier for you. Contact Wendy: 074 104 6607 or wendy_ Allergenius Provides a one-stop allergyfree party shop. They’ll plan your allergy-


free party from start to finish. Contact Kim: 083 564 6746 or visit Bring on the Party Upbeat party hiring and booking service specialising in all aspects of children’s birthday parties from furniture, linen and water slides to candyfloss machines, catering and facepainters. Contact Nicky: 072 256 7834 or visit Cheeky Chickens Specialises in active parties with running, singing and jumping games. Try the new Soccer World Cup party. Also provides theme parties such as Harry Potter, Ben 10, butterflies, fairies and more. Randburg and northern suburbs. Contact Kirstin or Reinhard: 079 884 4724, or visit Crazy Chameleon Kiddie Parties Specialises in children’s themed parties and provides all the décor. Additional services include cakes, party packs, balloons, accessories and jumping castles. From R400 for 10 children. Countrywide. Contact: 0861 543 343, or visit Fandabidozi This professional partyplanning company assists with venue hire, decorating, catering and entertainment. Also creates fun party packs and arranges exciting, affordable gifts. Contact Brenda: 011 458 6079, 082 442 0033 or


Jumping Castle Mania Offers a full party planning service, providing cakes, jumping castles and rides as well as themed décor. Cost varies. Contact: 084 563 2996, info@jumpingcastlemania. or visit Kiddiliscious This party planner provides services from invitations to entertainment and everything in-between. Party setups, children’s catering, themed cupcakes and cakes, personalised party packs, themed and non-themed tableware and jumping castles. Cupcakes from R5; party setups from R250; party packs from R20. Contact Antoinette: 082 785 4917, kiddi@ or visit Kids Only Goodies Provides you with all you need to plan your children’s parties. Cakes and cup cakes, party packs, games, décor, jumping castle hire, children’s tables and chairs and more. Contact Lisa: 083 232 5876, llouw@ymail. com or visit Kids Party Stuff Organises and arranges children’s parties, from food to fun. Contact: 083 409 8003, or visit Kids Wonderland Party planning, setup and delivery of themed décor. Deliveries made in East Rand. Contact Rosalynn: 082 442 0221, kidswonderland@absamail. or visit

Ladybug Events Takes care of the A–Z of all your party planning in line with your budget. Contact Tania: 082 940 2986, or visit Little Lees Specialises in children’s themed parties. Provides tables, chairs, table cloths, chair covers, décor, accessories, party packs and piñatas. If you would prefer to set up the party yourself, they supply party kits consisting of themed party cups, plates, serviettes and more. Contact Lindsey: 071 512 9399, or visit Monkey Magic Kiddie Parties Specialises in planning and setting up themed children’s parties. Arranges décor, cakes and party packs as well as accessories, entertainment and games. Pretoria and Bedfordview. For more info: visit Party Bliss Professional party planning for themed parties such as Spider-Man or Barbie. All accessories, catering and décor can be arranged. Contact Celene: 011 849 9889, 083 792 5176, info@ or visit Piece of Cake Full party-planning service from accessories, catering and party novelties to photography and venue decorating. Contact Jessy: 082 347 1143, or visit

Supakids Children’s Parties Plans and implements themed children’s parties for any age and theme, plus they offer fun teenage disco parties. Halal catering on request. Contact head office: 021 556 6177 or visit supakids. to find your nearest branch. The Party Pros Caters for parties big and small. Choose from full party packages or select specific elements to suit your budget. Contact Adi: 083 483 6781, or visit Ultimate Functions Party boxes delivered to your doorstep, including themed plates, cups, serviettes, party hats and blowers. Additional items such as party packs and buckets, flagged birthday/ personalised canvas/photo paper banners, helium balloons, tables, chairs, table cloths, overlays, tiebacks, chair covers, runners, jumping castles and gazebo also available. Contact Joey or Nicky: 011 234 8016 or visit Wonder Parties A full party-planning service assists moms and dads to plan their little one’s birthday party. From R30. Contact Fiona or JeanMari: 082 859 7871, 084 511 4658,, or visit

May 2010



a good read for toddlers Say Hello to the Dinosaurs! By Ian Whybrow and Tim Warnes (Macmillan Children’s Books, R90) Bestselling children’s author Ian Whybrow is hugely popular, with over 100 books to his name. Say Hello to the Dinosaurs! is the fifth book in the Say Hello to the Animals series, which also includes Say Hello to Baby Animals. Young children will love to stroke the bumpy scales of the brightly illustrated dinosaurs on every page. Let your child travel with Baby T Rex, meet the other dinosaurs, and have fun joining in with their “chomp, chomp”, “kaaark”, kaaark” and “roaaaar!” noises.

Busy Little Bugs: Pop-Up Toadstool and Pop-Up Garden Illustrated by Benji Davies (Campbell Books, R117) These stunning hardcover books come with over 30 flaps, which lift and pop up. Toddlers can discover secrets and surprises as they look behind the flaps. The books help with visual development, encourage creative thinking and build vocabulary. Children aged three to five will particularly enjoy discovering what Mr Spider is building or which insects are doing somersaults, handstands and cartwheels. Young readers will be delighted by the surprise at the end of each book. Davies also brought us the very popular Hodge the Hedgehog last year.


May 2010

My Magnetic Space Station Illustrated by Joy Gosney

read & play

(Campbell Books, R186) This book-and-game set – four fabulous booklets and a space station to fill with magnets – will make a great gift. Your children can read the stories, zoom around in the rocket, arrange the cosmic furniture, and then tuck the magnets back into the galactic attic when the fun is done. In addition to enjoying themselves, children develop manual dexterity. Plus the set introduces new environments that encourage creative thinking. The stories included are Robot Rex, Cosmic Cookies, Dogs in Space and Alien Hideand-Seek.


for preschoolers Terrible Trolls By Delphine Durand

old favour ite

(Macmillan Children’s Books, R105) With their googly eyes, warty skin, scratchy feet and matted hair, these trolls and their strange world offer a fun and entertaining story for young children. There are fantastic touch-and-feel elements on every page and a surprise smelly scratch-and-sniff ending. The cartoon illustrations are lovely. This book encourages toddlers to interact with the story and it introduces them to rhyme and rhythm. This is one adventure that will keep “fearless readers” coming back for more.

Return to the Hundred Acre Wood By David Benedictus On Our Way Home By Sebastien Braun (Boxer Books, R107) Join Dad and his little one on their journey home, and share their experiences along the way. They take a walk through the forest and see many wonderful things - the golden leaves falling from the trees, the big yellow sun setting and the beautiful stars twinkling overhead. When they get home Daddy tucks his sleepy baby bear into bed. This warm celebration of the relationship between parent and child is a great bedtime read. Sebastien Braun has the rare ability to combine rich painting techniques with soft and tender observational drawing, perfect for picture books.


(Egmont UK Limited, R153) More than 80 years since Winnie-the-Pooh first delighted readers, David Benedictus takes you back to the Hundred Acre Wood for new adventures. From the excitement of Christopher Robin’s return, to the curious business of learning to play cricket, the book allows readers to spend a few more treasured hours with the Best Bear in All the World. Young book-lovers will enjoy having these stories read to them. Return to the Hundred Acre Wood is the much-anticipated official sequel to Winnie-thePooh and The House at Pooh Corner.

May 2010


for preschoolers

The Happiest Hippo in the World By Danielle Steel (HarperCollins Publishers, R164) There are many things that are green: grass, leaves, four-leaf clovers and lettuce… but not hippos. Hippos are supposed to be grey. Unfortunately for Greenie, a big, brightgreen hippo, everyone at the circus thinks he’s just too different. So Greenie sets out on a journey to fit in and winds up in New York City. Just when it seems Greenie will never find a true friend, a boy named Charlie comes into his life. This heart-warming story, from one of America’s bestselling storytellers, is all about acceptance and celebrating difference.


May 2010

Love, Splat By Rob Scotton

Wake Up! Topple Down Town By Vaughn Hay

(HarperCollins Publishers, R72) It’s Valentine’s Day and Splat has a special card for a certain someone in his class. Her name is Kitten and Splat likes her even more than fish fingers or ice cream. But she doesn’t seem to like him at all. And then there’s Splat’s rival, Spike, who also likes Kitten. Will Splat’s heartfelt card win Kitten’s paw? In this funny follow-up to Splat the Cat, Rob Scotton captures the highs and lows of a first crush with humour and understanding. Even Mom and Dad will giggle at Splat’s antics.

(Topple Down Town Entertainment CC, R65) This inspirational story promotes healthy life choices for children. The twins – Super and Duper – set out on an heroic and determined quest to revitalise and motivate their falling-apart neighbourhood, which has lost its heart and soul. It’s an engaging story packed with energy, hope and motivation. The book comes with an interactive audio CD, which creates atmospheric sounds and songs to sing along to. This truly South African tale not only educates young ones, it also inspires them to want to go out there and make this world a better place.

My first book of Southern African Wildlife and My first book of Southern African Birds – Volume 2 By Erroll Cuthbert, Peter Apps, Bill Branch and Jennifer Schaum (Random House, R175 and R76) These books introduce young people to a selection of southern Africa’s most fascinating and commonly seen mammals, reptiles and birds. Striking full-colour illustrations are accompanied by brief descriptions in English, Afrikaans, Zulu and Xhosa and there are visual clues to the diet, size, habitat, nest and footprint of each creature. These books will appeal to pre- and early readers, and will help foster their interest in the natural world.


for preteens and teens

Allie Finkle’s Rules for Girls – Stage Fright By Meg Cabot (Macmillan Children’s Books, R90) Meg Cabot’s very popular character Allie Finkle is back with even more wit than before. When Allie’s class puts on a play, every girl in Room 209 wants to try out for the part of the princess – including Allie, Sophie and the dreaded Cheyenne – but not everyone can be the leading lady. Who will try to steal the show? Who will get scared? And who will feel a tiny bit jealous? Some not-so-friendly competition puts Allie Finkle’s rules for dealing with drama to the test, as she realises: (1) There are no small parts, only small actors; (2) May the best man – or woman – win; (3) If you want to get anywhere, you can’t play by the rules.


pick of the month

(DK Publishing, R390) Your children can dive into the wonderful world of Disney Pixar with this comprehensive guide to Pixar features and short films. Get to know the characters from each movie and explore their film locations. The book also shares fun and fascinating facts, and you can find out from the filmmakers themselves what makes Disney Pixar films so unique. This coffee table book contains stunning visuals. Films covered include Toy Story, A Bug’s Life, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, Cars, Ratatouille, WALL-E and Up.

Lost Worlds By John Howe (Macmillan Children’s Books, R245) In Lost Worlds, children can learn about Atlantis, Troy, Camelot and Avalon – longabandoned worlds, buried and forgotten in the mists of time. Now eminent Lord of the Rings illustrator John Howe has delved into the secrets of history to unearth cities from hidden depths and mysterious pasts. His wise words and glorious illustrations give the lost worlds a chance to live again. This hardcover book is sure to become a collector’s item for any young (and even adult) fans of ancient worlds.


A Field Guide To Fairies By Susannah Marriott (Macmillan Children’s Books, R225) This book is simply beautiful. Explore the secret world of the fairy realm with exquisite pop-up scenes and stunning illustrations. Folklore has it that there is probably a fairy very close to you right now – in the raindrop on the window, within the shaft of sunlight or beneath rustling leaves. Readers discover fairies’ secret hiding places, so they’ll know where to look next time there’s a strange perfume in the air, or the tinkle of tiny bells can be heard…

May 2010


audio books

for us


The Book of Jacob – A Journey into Parenthood By Lisa Lazarus and Greg Fried

The Wizard of Oz (dramatisation), Treasure Island (dramatisation) and More Just So Stories By L. Frank Baum, Robert Louis Stevenson and Rudyard Kipling (BBC Children’s Audio Books, R209,95, R209,95 and R132,95) A full-cast dramatisation of the classic tale of Dorothy and Toto’s adventures in Oz, featuring Maureen Lipman as the Wicked Witch of the West. The two-disc CD was especially dramatised for BBC Radio. Treasure Island is the classic pirate adventure, which will appeal to both the young and young at heart, and features the voices of Jack Shepherd and Iain Cuthbertson. In the third CD, three classic fables from Rudyard Kipling – The Beginning of the Armadillos, The Cat that Walked by Himself and The Butterfly that Stamped – are read by Johnny Morris. All three of these audio books are great as gifts, or invest in them to make long journeys much shorter. They are available from leading bookstores as well as The Listeners’ Library.


May 2010

(Oshun Books, R125) When Lisa and Greg embark on the life-changing journey of becoming parents, they discover that nothing could have prepared them for the overwhelming changes a baby would bring. In this candid and often amusing account of their child’s conception, birth and first year, the couple share their experiences of adjusting to life with a newborn. Parenthood affects every facet of Lisa and Greg’s previously serene and secure life, irrevocably altering their own relationship as well as their relationship with others. Witty, warm and moving, this true-life story illuminates the frustrations, the joys and, above all, the love inspired by the birth of a child.

Sea of Poppies By Amitav Ghosh (John Murray Publishers, R144) Short listed for the 2008 Man Booker Prize, Sea of Poppies has received rave reviews since it was first published. On an old slaving ship named Ibis, fate has thrown together a motley crew of sailors, convicts and down-and-outs, including a bankrupt Raja, a French runaway and a widowed opium farmer. As their old family ties are washed away, they come to view themselves as jahaj-bhais or ship brothers. Set against the backdrop of the Opium Wars, this remarkable saga is profoundly moving and a masterpiece from one of the world’s finest novelists.

Partnership Parenting By Kyle Pruett and Marsha Kline Pruett (Da Capo Lifelong Books, R170) This book looks at how men and women parent differently, why this helps your child and how it can strengthen your marriage. You’ll learn why children need the influence of both mom and dad, how to create a positive, nurturing co-parenting environment, the rules for healthy negotiation, effective communication, fighting fair and much more. You’ll find anecdotes, quizzes, questions and solutions to jump-start conversation with your partner. With wisdom and humour, Partnership Parenting helps you and your partner take advantage of your individual strengths to stay connected, improve your marriage and confidently raise children together.



May 2010



1 saturday


Build Lego at Toys-R-Us Help Lego build a 66 000-piece fireman and stand a chance to win Lego sets. Atterbury: 1–13 May, 9am–6pm; Centurion: 13 May–10 June, time varies. Contact Atterbury: 012 991 4050 or Centurion: 012 663 5453 or visit

ADHASA shopping weekend The Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Support Group of South Africa is on hand to advise you which foods to avoid when shopping for ADHD children and adults. They’ll also answer any questions you may have regarding ADHD food choices. Time: 9am– 5pm. Venue: Blairgowrie Spar, Conrad Dr, Blairgowrie. Cost: free entry. Contact Lynne: 011 888 7655 or Buffet lunch on the banks of the Vaal Treat the family to a fun day in the autumn sun. Enjoy a 45-minute river cruise and a buffet lunch with a special children’s buffet. There is plenty of children’s entertainment including a jumping castle, slip ’n slide, jungle gym, sandpit, trampoline and swimming pool. Time: noon. Venue: Stonehaven on Vaal, next to Baddrift Bridge, Sylviavale

to Information must be received by 7 May for the June/July issue and must include all relevant details. No guarantee can be given that it will be published. COMPILED BY CHAREEN PENDERIS

AH, Vanderbijlpark. Cost: tbc. Contact: 016 982 2951, or visit Cooper’s Cave picnic A rare opportunity to explore a 1,5-million-year-old fossil site featuring several animal fossils. Enjoy a day of fossil-hunting, and learn how to make tools like our ancestors did. Time: 9am. Venue: Cooper’s Cave, near Sterkfontein Caves, Maropeng. Cost: R350, includes picnic lunch. Online booking essential. Contact: 014 577 9000, info@maropeng. or visit Holistic Fayre A full day of holistic fun and entertainment, including alternative therapies and products, massages, gifts, goodies and food. Time: 9am–4pm. Venue: Blairgowrie Recreation Centre, Park Lane, Blairgowrie. Cost: R10. Contact Danie or Berrie: 083 417 7236, or visit

Rapid river-rafting fun Your last chance to enjoy an adrenalin-inducing rush as you raft the rapids of the Vaal River before the water level drops. The routes cross the Vredefort Dome World Heritage Site, a natural wonderland with hundreds of islands creating habitats for birds and wildlife. Tours are dependent on water levels. Time: halfday, 8:30am–12:30pm; full-day, 8:30am– 3:30pm. Venue: Otter’s Haunt, Parys. Cost: half-day, R275; full-day, R395. Contact Graeme or Karen: 084 245 2490, rapids@ or visit Sasol Birds and Birding Fair Naturelovers and birding enthusiasts of all ages can participate in a series of interactive exhibitions, lectures and live demonstrations. Special activities for children include winning a prize in a fun quiz, a “Birds for children’’ talk and activity session, treasure hunt, puppet show and night camp at

family marketplace


May 2010



what’s on in may

For a free listing, fax your event to 011 234 4971 or email it

1 May – Sasol Birds and Birding Fair

the zoo. Ends 2 May. Time: 8am–5pm. Venue: Johannesburg Zoo, Upper Park Dr, Forest Town. Cost: R25. Contact Sadie: 011 789 1122 or 0861 241 337 Sheepdog trials See these wonderful dogs from around the country demonstrate their intelligence, as they guide sheep around a course. Ends 2 May. Time: 8am–4:30pm. Venue: Muldersdrift. Cost: tbc. Contact Elsie: 082 441 9646 or SOS2 Reptile Expo If you love snakes, lizards, crocodiles and all things scaly and scary, you’ll enjoy seeing this large collection of reptiles under one roof. Ends 2 May. Time: 9am. Venue: Assembly


Room, Emperor’s Palace. Cost: R30. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit The 6th Oyster, Wine and Food Festival Food-lovers can sample fresh, juicy oysters, fine wines and a variety of mouth-watering oyster dishes. Ends 2 May. Time: from 11am. Venue: The Brightwater Commons, Republic Rd, Randburg. Cost: free entry but a nominal fee will be charged for oyster sampling. Contact: 011 789 5052 or visit Zeal for Life family programme This five-week course is geared at equipping the family to deal with the stresses of modernday living. These fun, interactive workshops are suitable for children 5–12 years and are beneficial for those suffering from learning difficulties, stress, anger, lack of friends or the wrong friendship circle, no personal motivation and low self-confidence. Ends 29 May. Time: tbc. Venue: various branches throughout Johannesburg. Cost: R1 800 per family, includes workshop material, refreshments, training and kit bags. Contact: 082 447 3343, info@equalzeal. com or visit

2 sunday A walk at the Wilds Put on your walking shoes, bring the children and even the dogs (as long as they’re on leads) and enjoy a stroll through Johannesburg’s “secret

garden”. Time: 7am. Venue: park and meet at St John’s College, St Patrick’s Rd, Houghton. Also 9 and 23 May. Cost: free. Contact TJ: 082 554 9972, wildswalk@ or visit Blubird Whole Food Market Enjoy the “United Flavours of Nations” at this monthly market. Sample fresh food prepared by chefs and cooks. Also 9, 16, 23 and 30 May. Time: 9am–2pm. Venue: The Blubird Shopping Centre, Athol. Cost: free entry. Contact Robyn: 083 311 4768 or info@ Half-day pewter and mosaic workshop Expert craftswoman Joan Launspach will teach you a combination of pewter and mosaic work and you’ll make a felt-lined keepsake box. Time: 9:30am–12:30pm. Venue: Ngwenya Glass Village, off Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: R260, includes materials and refreshments. Booking essential. Contact: 083 326 5157 Inanda Club family fun day Loads of entertainment for the whole family, including skydivers, a model helicopter demonstration, dodge ball, giant slide, water balls, pony rides, face painters, trampoline bungee, market stalls, a beer garden, food stand and the Inanda Polo Tournament. Time: 10am. Venue: Inanda Club. Cost: R60. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

Market in the park This monthly market offers crafts, jewellery, children’s educational games, aromatherapy and health products. Well-trained dogs are welcome. Time: 9am– 2pm. Venue: River Café grounds, Field and Study Centre, Louise Ave, Parkmore. Cost: free entry. Contact Lorraine: 011 465 1281 or Prospector’s Trail Enjoy a walk through the Kloofendal Nature Reserve to Confidence Reef Gold Mine. Time: 2pm. Venue: Kloofendal Nature Reserve, Galena Ave, Kloofendal. Cost: adults R40, children R20. Contact Karin: 011 674 2980, 072 595 6991, or visit

2 May – A walk at the Wilds

May 2010



Self-defence workshop for women The WIP self-INpowerment workshop is a four-week selfdefence course that has been codeveloped by Alison Botha, the author of I have life. It is designed to give women the mental and physical ability to make a choice in an emergency situation. Time: tbc. Venue: Fourways area. Cost: R950. Contact Mark: 082 881 6215

3 monday A day at Maropeng with granddad and granny Pensioners can make use of the old-fossil special at the visitors’ centre of the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site in the Magaliesberg. The special includes a Maropeng tour at R55 (normal price R65), tea and coffee in


May 2010

reception on arrival, and lunch in the Tumulus Restaurant at R35. The special also exempts pensioners from a parking fee. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: Cradle of Humankind, R400, Magaliesburg. Cost: adults R95, pensioners R90, children R45. Contact: 014 577 9000 or visit Little Cooks Mother’s Day marvels Moms and tots can enjoy a morning of fun, creative cooking. This week’s special treat is Banoffee Pie but there is a new menu every week. Time: Monday, 2:30pm–3:30pm; Wednesday and Saturday, 10:30am– 11:30am. Venue: Norscot Recreation Centre, Penguin Rd, Norscot Manor. Cost: Monday and Wednesday, R85; Saturday, R95. Contact Deborah: 082 874 2851, or visit

4 tuesday Basic home-cooking course for moms Get some ideas for making simple but delicious meals for the whole family to enjoy. Time: 9:30am–12:30pm. Venue: Little Cooks Club, Rivonia. Cost: R350. Contact Christine: 083 556 3434, or visit Baby massage course This four-week course teaches you how to massage your baby. Massage is an enjoyable way to enhance your baby’s development, deepen communication, and help relieve

physical problems such as colic, sleep or constipation. Time: 11:30am–1pm. Venue: Children’s Therapy Centre, Cambridge Rd, Petervale (Bryanston). Cost: R450. Contact Joanne: 083 303 1190 or joannebradley@ Crystal Essence creative life workshop for adults A four-week course designed to transform your life creatively and help you approach challenges in a positive manner. Time: 7pm–9pm. Venue: 4 Kingsway, Sandton Village, Paulshof, Ext 2. Cost: R1 000, includes tea, snacks and course material. Contact Karen: 083 453 4621, or visit The Trio Broz is a talented Italian string ensemble comprising two sisters and a brother, all top chamber-music graduates


Sandton MediClinic maternity ward tour

Expectant parents are invited for a tour of the maternity facilities every Wednesday. View the labour wards, water birth facilities, maternity units and suites. Time: 10am–10:30am. Venue: Sandton Medi-Clinic, cnr Peter Place and Main Rd, Bryanston. Cost: free entry. Contact Liezl: 011 709 2206 or visit

4 May – The Trio Broz

of the Academy of St Cecilia in Rome and Florence’s Scuola di Musica di Fiesole. Their South African tour repertoire incorporates serenades by Beethoven, Dohnanyi and Sibelius, and a special arrangement by Maestro Bruno Giuranna of Bach’s Goldberg Variations. Ends 8 May. Time: 7pm. Venue: Le Canard Restaurant, Rivonia Rd, Morningside. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 793 2334, 082 458 3522, or visit

5 wednesday Learner Husband Comedian Stuart Taylor and director Heinrich Reisenhofer have teamed up to create the definitive relationship crash course for the confused husband. Revealing tips from Taylor’s soonto-be-published K53 for Learner Husbands, this programme employs the principles of driving to understand and radically reduce typical marital collisions. Ends 30 May. Time: varies. Venue: Main Theatre at Montecasino. Cost: R125. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit



May 2010



Wishing all moms a very happy Mother’s Day “A mother’s love for her child is like nothing else in the world. It knows no law, no pity; it dares all things and crushes down remorselessly all that stands in its path.” – Agatha Christie

Happy Mother’s Day! Celebrate serendipity with mom Relax in the garden surrounded by trees while the children play or get creative in the art and crafts section. Moms can win through a lucky draw. Time: 11am. Venue: Serendipity, Parkwood. Cost: free entry for adults, first child R40, second child R30, additional children R20. Contact: 011 447 7386 or Concert in the Gardens The wellloved annual concert series returns and today’s all-girl band, Girl Zone, dazzles with popular tunes from hit parades of yesteryear. Pay tribute to our phenomenal mothers with a magical picnic on the grass. Time: 8am–6pm. Venue: Walter Sisulu National Botanical Gardens, Malcolm Rd, Poortview. Cost: adults R25, pensioners R20, children R10, free for those under 6. For more info: or visit Mother’s Day luncheon and cruise Treat mom like a queen with a six-course buffet lunch and 45-minute cruise on the Vaal or a two-hour luncheon cruise aboard the luxurious Spirit of Jen. A children’s buffet is provided plus entertainment around jumping castles,

Vaal, next to Baddrift Bridge, Sylviavale AH, Vanderbijlpark. Cost: tbc. Contact: 016 982 2951, or visit 702 Mother’s Day concert Pack a decadent picnic basket with Mom’s favourite goodies and show her how much she is appreciated. Time: 9am–3pm. Venue: Johannesburg Zoo, Upper Park Dr, Forest Town. Cost: adults R41, children R23. Contact: 011 646 2000, or visit “Mamma mia, it’s the stallions” Back by popular demand, the Lipizzaners will be performing to the magical music of Mamma Mia! especially for all the mamas. Time: 10:30am. Venue: Lipizzaner Centre, Kyalami. Cost: R110. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Mother’s Day Diamond Express to Cullinan Spoil Mom with a Mother’s Day steam-train trip to Cullinan. Browse through this old mining town and enjoy lunch at one of the restaurants. Time: 8:30am. Venue: meet at Friends of the Rail Steam Trains, Paul Kruger St, Pretoria. Cost: adults R175,

slip ’n slide, jungle gym, sandpit, trampoline, swimming pool and more. Time: noon. Venue: Stonehaven on

children 7–12 years R100, children 2–6 years R75. Contact Arno or Billy: 012 548 4090 or 082 293 4616

Milestones creativity workshop for moms and tots This interactive workshop for parents with children aged 8 months– 2 years will help them reach milestones through fun activities such as finger- and foot-painting, playing with dough and dancing. Also 12, 19 and 26 May. Time: 9am–11:30am. Venue: 4 Kingsway, Sandton Village, Paulshof, Ext 2. Cost: R80, includes refreshments and materials. Contact Karen: 083 453 4621, or visit Sing your heart out like a pop idol This state-of-the-art recording studio offers one free recording session on the first Wednesday of each month. If you’re a budding pop idol then grab a microphone and sing your heart out to a backing track. Time: tbc. Venue: Wired for Sound Studios, 23 Seventh Ave, Parktown North. Cost: free entry. Booking essential. Contact Laurika: 082 337 4733, info@wiredsoundstudios. or visit

6 thursday Foil ball record attempt In a campaign that aims to create awareness for recycling and waste management, a giant soccer ball structure has been erected and schools, businesses and the general public are


May 2010

encouraged to deposit their aluminium into the ball. Help them beat the current record of 732kg of recycled aluminium foil. Ends 31 July. Time: 7am­–7pm. Venue: Brightwater Commons, Republic Rd, Randburg. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit Play and learn workshop All babies learn through play. By using researched playing techniques, you can give your child the best possible learning foundation. These interactive, age-appropriate workshops ensure that you enjoy every moment with your child. Also 7 and 27 May. Time: 9:30am–12:30pm. Venue: Pikanini Baby Academy, Intercare Medical Centre, Cavendish Glen Shopping Centre, Monument Rd, Kempton Park. Cost: R2 750. Booking essential. Contact Karen: 082 701 9767 or Self-esteem workshop for parents equips moms and dads with the skills to help their children become aware of their strengths so that they can build on them. It also explores the kinds of praise that builds a positive and realistic self-image. Also 27 May. Time: 9:30am–11:30am. Venue: Jabula Recreation Centre, Sandringham. Cost: R240 (claim from your medical aid). Contact Wendy: 011 454 1709 or 082 292 7999 joburg’s

8 saturday

7 May – St Andrew’s open day

7 friday Color Café is a ceramic studio where you can paint ceramics such as mugs, plates, teapots or bowls. Qualified staff assist. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: Shop 14, Hyde Square Shopping Centre, cnr North Rd and Jan Smuts Ave. Cost: R95 per hour, includes paint, firing and glazing. Ceramic items are charged separately. Contact: 011 341 0734 or visit Course on neurodevelopmental differences – HANDLE This two-day course is designed for parents, teachers, assistants and healthcare professionals to address ADD/ADHD, sensory-integration dysfunctions, conduct disorders, reading and writing difficulties, autism and autism spectrum disorders, Down syndrome, brain injury, trouble with coordination and dyslexia. Ends 8 May. Time: 9am–4:30pm. Venue: Sundowns College, Centurion. Cost: R2 500. Contact Liezel: 083 519 7944 or visit Learning Point Exhibition Weigh up the pros and cons of various school options. Public and independent schools are represented. Time: 10am–4pm. Venue: Fourways Mall. Cost: free entry. Contact: 083 552 8778, or visit St Andrew’s open day Prospective pupils and parents can enjoy a tour of the school and receive first-hand information from the headmistress, teachers and pupils. Time: preschool, 10am–noon; grade 0–grade 12, 11am–4pm. Venue: St Andrew’s School, St Andrew’s Ave, Senderwood. Cost: free entry. Contact Ann: 011 453 9408, awright@standrews. or visit


Abby’s Aquarium Adventures Marine biologist Heidi de Maine autographs copies of her new book, the first in a series that looks at marine life, aquarium life, careers relating to animals, and conservation. Face painters and a question-and-answer session included. Time: noon. Venue: Johannesburg Zoo, Forest Town. Cost: adults R41, children R23. Contact: 011 646 2000, info@jhbzoo. or visit Craighall River Market Enjoy a wide variety of art, crafts and organic produce, deli and home-baked goodies or breakfast in the tea garden. There are also pony rides for the children. Time: 8:30am­–10:30am. Venue: Colourful Splendour Nursery (REEA), Craighall Park. Cost: free entry. Contact Roy: 011 465 3413 or Crystal Kidz creativity workshop Children aged 6–12 can enjoy a creative morning of painting and drawing. Also 22 May. Time: 9am–12:30pm. Venue: 4 Kingsway, Sandton Village, Paulshof. Cost: R120, includes refreshments and materials. Booking essential. Contact Karen: 083 453 4621, or visit Irene Village Market offers over 300 stalls of arts and antiques, numerous food stalls and a licensed tea garden with a safe children’s entertainment area. Also 29 May. Time: 9am–2pm. Venue: Smuts House Museum, Jan Smuts Ave, Irene. Cost: free entry. R5 parking. Contact Josene or Anita: 012 667 1659, irenemkt@mweb. or visit Integrated Learning Therapy course Professor Shirley Kokot offers an ILT-1 course for children with mild to more severe learning difficulties. ILT gathers knowledge and practice from various fields including neurophysiology, cognitive psychology and sensory integration, and nutrition. This course gives practitioners 30 CPD points. Ends 30 May. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: Radford House School, Fairland. Cost: R2 400. Booking essential. Contact: 082 559 9966, 082 414 4814, or visit Official opening of the Codfather Foodhall This food emporium is sure to get your taste buds racing with everything from organic and wholesome food to decadent sweet treats. There is also a child-friendly village. Time: 10am–7pm. Venue: Codfather Village of Food, Rivonia Rd, Rivonia. Cost: free entry. Contact Robyn: 083 311 4768 or

Eight steps to a new you

Lifestyle entrepreneur Pat Bosman speaks on the importance of change in one’s life. The talk is aimed at people who feel stuck in a rut, low, insecure or depressed, or perhaps just want a change. Pat shares interesting concepts and relates how change can be accomplished in a fun, easy way. Time: 10am. Venue: Ngwenya Glass Village, off Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: R65, includes refreshments. Booking essential. Contact Annemarie: 084 607 4291


May 2010


11 tuesday Duet for One This play by Tom Kempinski deals with the relationship between a former concert violinist with multiple sclerosis and her psychiatrist. It was a huge success in London and hopes to wow audiences in South Africa too. Ends 6 June. Time: Tuesday–Friday, 8:15pm; Saturday, 5:30pm and 8:30pm. Venue: Old Mutual Theatre on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton. Cost: R120–R160. Book through the theatre: 011 883 8606 or visit 15 May – FIM Superbike World Championship

10 monday Words Bookstore Enjoy a cup of tea or coffee at this French, country-style book store before shopping for some amazing books. Time: 7am–6pm. Venue: Health Emporium, cnr Church and Market St, Midrand. Cost: free entry. Contact Maria: 011 315 3801, 082 896 0182 or maria@ Tots n Pots has arrived in Johannesburg Children can be creative while having fun. Young cooks will be making butternut and feta mini quiches but, there are new menus every week. Time: varies. Venue: Edenvale and Bedfordview. Cost: 2–6 years R85 per class; 7–10 years R95 per class. Contact Bianca: 084 596 4839, or vist


May 2010

12 wednesday Assertiveness training for children open day Is your child often bullied, picked on or excluded? Is your child too aggressive and disliked by others? Educational psychologist Jo Hamilton gives details about the skills taught and the contents of the assertiveness training workshop. Children work in small groups over six days and there is a very informative evening talk for parents. The next workshop series will be held twice weekly from 18 June. Time: call to confirm. Venue: The Little Star Montessori Pre-School, 57 15th Street, Parkhurst. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 468 2058 or BabyGym instructor training This is a three-day course for people wanting to become a BabyGym instructor in order to run their own classes and business. Ends 14 May. Time: 9am–4pm. Venue: Crowthorne,

Kyalami. Cost: price on application. Contact Joanne: 083 303 1190, joanne.bradley@ or visit

13 thursday The Bryanston Organic and Natural Market is Johannesburg’s original outdoor market. Enter an environment where the emphasis is on quality hand-crafted goods, art, clothing made from natural fibres, a deli filled with rich, wholesome foods and fresh organic produce. Time: 9am–3pm. Venue: Culross Rd (off Main Rd), Bryanston. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 706 3671 or visit

14 friday 4D Theatre at Gold Reef City Theme Park Be wowed by these exciting animated shows at the first and only 4D theatre in Africa. The movies include an exciting yet humorous science-fiction film called Robots of Mars and Turtle Vision, a cute coming-ofage story featuring the adorable sea turtle,


Sammy. Time: varies. Venue: Gold Reef City Theme Park, Northern Parkway, Ormonde. Cost: adults R140, children under 1,2m R90. Contact: 011 248 5000, info@goldreefcity. or visit

15 saturday Bagpipes, haggis and highland dancing Celebrate a day of Scottish fun, food and festivities with pipe bands, dancing, craft markets and food stalls. Time: 9am–4pm. Venue: 2–22 Road No. 3, Victory Park. Cost: adults R15, children R10. Contact Rosemary: 083 448 4046 FIM Superbike World Championship See the world’s top superbike riders go wheel to wheel at mind-blowing speeds. SA Superbikes and National Superbike/ Supersport National Series are there in support, making it a two-wheel weekend affair not to be missed. Ends 16 May. Time: 9am. Venue: Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit. Cost: R100–R250. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

The Joburg Baby Expo

SA’s biggest parenting expo returns to Joburg so whether you’re expecting your first baby or you’re already a parent, this expo will provide you with lots of useful information. Everybody’s favourite dinosaur, Barney, gets parents and children going as they sing along to the ever popular song, “I love you, you love me, we’re a happy family”, and many other tunes, while learning how to unlock your child’s imagination. Ends 16 May. Time: 9am–6pm. Venue: Coca Cola Dome, Northgate. Cost: adults R50, children under 10 free. For more info: visit


Tswaing Meteorite Crater Enjoy an outing 40km north of Pretoria to a ring of small hills with a diameter of 1km and about 100m high. These are the walls of an impact crater that was formed about 220 000 years ago and today boasts spectacular bird life. Tour this crater and learn more about its ecology and geology. Time: 8:30am. Venue: Tswaing Meteorite visitors’ centre, Pretoria. Cost: tbc. Booking essential. Contact Karen:

16 sunday Sunday fun at Ngwenya Village This village not only has a brewery and restaurant but also a host of interesting crafts, art and curio shops. Children can spend time making candles and sand art at Jock’s Studio. Time: 10am–4pm. Venue: Jock’s Studio at Ngwenya Glass Village, off Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: R30. Contact Judy: 083 611 4360 or visit Predators and prey Predator World’s game farm has 25 species of free-roaming game, not to mention abundant bird life! See the buffalo and sable breeding project as well as white rhino, giraffe, zebra, bushbuck, eland, gemsbok, banded mongoose and much more. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: 5km from Sun City on the R556. Cost: adults R150, children R75; includes water and a picnic stop. Contact: 014 552 6900, 076 817 6869, or visit


17 monday Skiing fun Winter is almost here so get yourself in the right mood. Bum-boarding fun down a 20m slope is sure to get hearts racing. Ski lessons are also available. Time: Monday–Friday, 9am–5pm; Saturday, 9am– 2pm; Sunday, 10am–1pm. Venue: The Ski Deck, 74 Bond St, Ferndale, Randburg. Cost: R60 for two hours of bum-boarding. Contact: 011 781 6528, or visit

18 tuesday The Boys in the Photograph This is a powerful and passionate musical about young people on the verge of adulthood, wanting to love, play soccer and lead 18 May – The Boys in the Photograph

normal lives in a city dominated by violence and hatred. Ends 11 July. Time: varies. Venue: The Mandela at Joburg Theatre, Braamfontein. Cost: R191–R365. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Passion, pirouettes and paella Enjoy a gala fundraising dinner with The South African Ballet Theatre inspired by Carmen, the ballet. Time: 7pm. Venue: Le Canard Restaurant, Sandton. Cost: R900. Contact: 011 884 4597 or

19 wednesday Hedgehog Lane provides endless fun for children. The fairground includes a Ferris wheel, a merry-go-round and the miniature Hedgehog Express Train. Picnic baskets are welcome. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: Garden Shop, 278 Main Rd, Bryanston. Cost: adults free, children R18. For more info: visit

20 thursday The Parlotones This rock band is wellknown for its electric, polished stage performances delivered with darkly romantic lyrics. Ends 21 May. Time: 8pm. Venue: Silverstar Centre. Cost: R130. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

21 friday Grand Designs Live is based on the multiaward winning UK event and is set to be the country’s grandest design and lifestyle

show. Time: 10am–6pm. Venue: Coca-Cola Dome, Northgate. Cost: adults R60, children under 12 free. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Mixed DNA Heavyweight South African comedian Joey Rasdien’s absurd yet thought-provoking stand-up comedy show tackles the touchy subject of evolution and how natural selection has blessed many of the figures that loom over South African life. Laugh until you cry at topics under scrutiny, ranging from the devil and Charles Darwin to Julius Malema and Stephen Hawking. Ends 22 May. Time: 8:30pm. Venue: The Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City. Cost: R130. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit The annual Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show public wine-tasting Wine lovers can sample some of the country’s bestjudged wines. Time: 6pm–9pm. Venue: The Ballroom, Hilton Sandton, Rivonia Rd, Sandton. Cost: R90. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

22 saturday ADHD Seminar A variety of speakers cover topics relating to ADHD. Time: 8am– 4pm. Venue: Randburg. Cost: tbc. Booking essential. Contact Lynne: 011 888 7655 or Dinner with the stars Enjoy a deluxe three-course dinner before joining Maropeng’s resident astronomer, Vincent Nettmann, on a fascinating journey through

May 2010


time and space as he explores the universe. This event is weather dependent. Time: 6:30pm. Venue: Maropeng Hotel, Cradle of Humankind. Cost: R295. Booking essential. Contact: 014 577 9000, info@maropeng. or visit Left-handed learning parents’ workshop It’s fun, informative and interactive to help you ensure that your left-handed child flourishes in a righthanded world. Time: 10:30am–12:45pm. Venue: Building 1, Prism Office Park, Ruby Close, off Fourways Boulevard, next to Fourways Mall. Cost: R220, includes refreshments and workshop material. Booking essential. Contact: 072 300 7066 or Left-handed learning workshop for teachers Many left-handed children struggle with fine motor skills. This workshop will assist you in teaching lefthanders vital fine motor skills such as cutting, drawing, letter and number formation. Time: 8:15am–10:30am. Venue: Building 1, Prism Office Park, Ruby Close, off Fourways Boulevard, next to Fourways Mall. Cost: R250, includes refreshments and all workshop material. Booking essential. Contact: 072 300 7066 or

23 sunday Feed a baby crocodile Enjoy a close encounter with these prehistoric creatures. Children can also hold a baby crocodile. Feeding sessions are at 2pm Saturday and Sunday. Time: 9am– 4:30pm. Venue: Croc City, Plot 59 along the R114 (old Pretoria Rd), Nietgedacht (near Fourways). Cost: adults R55, pensioners R45, children R30. Contact: 083 657 7561, 083 321 1016, info@ or visit Meet the baby animals Have you ever seen the beautiful bat-eared fox or a rooikat? Take the opportunity to watch them play right in front of you at the animal crèche. Children can also have their pictures taken with the animals. Time: 8:30am–4pm. Venue: Rhino and Lion Park near Muldersdrift; see their site for a map. Cost: adults R100, children R70. Contact: 011 957 0347, or visit Walk for quality education SiyaJabula SiyaKhula, a non-profit organisation dedicated to improving maths and English levels among learners, hosts a walk for quality education. Schools are invited to participate in a number of activities



May 2010

27 May – Arican Footprint

including a big walk, readathon and a times-table rap competition. Also on offer are a community craft market and food stalls. Time: tbc. Venue: Zoo Lake, Parkwood. Cost: free entry. Contact Yasmine: 011 782 4680, 079 473 8901 or

24 monday Seussical Dr Seuss’s Cat in the Hat and other famous stories are brought to life on stage. “After all those years of being stuck on a page, could you imagine seeing me on a stage?”, so says the mischievous Cat at the start of this magical, musical extravaganza. Ends 17 July. Time: Monday–Saturday, 10:30am and 2:30pm. Venue: National Children’s Theatre, 3 Junction Ave, Parktown. Cost: adults R80, children R70. Book through the theatre: 011 484 1584 or visit

25 tuesday Polka Dot Arts and Crafts This art studio caters for all types of art and crafts from painting and pottery to mosaic and papier-mâché. Moms can relax in the shady tea garden or an indoor venue. Also visit The Little Shop for goodies. Time: 9am­–5pm. Venue: 13 4th Ave, Parkhurst. Cost: free entry. R100 for one-hour studio session. Contact: 011 447 9892 or visit

26 wednesday Scrapbook Emporium This shop carries everything to make the scrapbooking enthusiast’s eyes light up, from borders to papers and even your own carry bags. Scrapbooking lessons and craft workshops are done on a regular basis. Time: 9am– 5pm. Venue: Scrapbook Emporium, shop 109, level 1, Design Quarter, Fourways. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 465 9349 or visit

Rooms on View 2010 A décor and design exhibition that showcases the best in South African design. Each exhibitor has to create a room setting in its entirety, which gives visitors an idea of what is possible in their homes, what the latest trends and products are, and how they can be incorporated into their lifestyles and homes. Ends 30 May. Time: Friday, 10am–8pm; Saturday–Sunday, 10am– 6pm. Venue: Sandton Convention Centre. Cost: R80. For more info: visit


27 thursday African Footprint returns home to celebrate its 10th anniversary on African soil. This dazzling musical fuses the hypnotic beat of the African drum, the cheerful pennywhistle kwela, jive, traditional gumboot, tap, contemporary ballet, hip-hop and pantsula. Ends 20 June. Time: varies. Venue: Theatre of Marcellus, Emperor’s Palace. Cost: R185–R225. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit


28 friday Easy week-night dinners for busy moms Get some inspiration for making simple, quick and easy week-night meals. Time: 6pm–8pm. Venue: Little Cooks Club, Rivonia. Cost: R350. Contact Christine: 083 556 3434, christine@littlecooksclub. or visit Mommy morning The morning’s topic is “The Lost Age of Innocence – Protecting your Child against Sexual Abuse”. Time: 9:30am–12:30pm. Venue: Pikanini Baby Academy, Intercare Medical Centre, Cavendish Glen Shopping Centre, Monument Rd, Kempton Park. Cost: R130. Contact Karen: 082 701 9767 or karen@ The Society for Animals in Distress annual golf day Book a four-ball for a good cause at the fifth annual golf day to help animals in distress. Time: noon. Venue: Kyalami Country Club, Kyalami. Cost: R3 000 per four-ball. Contact Bev: 011 466 0261, 078 458 9143 or aid@ World Play Day 2010 Play is crucial for the holistic development of all children, and Monkeynastix, Active Learning Libraries and Let’s Play is celebrating. Children, parents and caregivers are invited to join in a day of indoor and outdoor games, toys, traditional games and Let’s Play sports. Disabled children are also accommodated. Time: 8am–1pm. Veue: Paterson Park Recreation Centre, Norwood. Cost: free. For more info: 011 484 0333 or visit

29 saturday

Family cycle and walk fun day in the Cradle Join the Bryanston Parallel Medium Primary School for a fun-filled family day. On offer are a host of events for the whole family including a 5km fun ride and walk for the little ones (moms and grannies are welcome to join them), a 10km ride and walk as well as the 21km challenge ride for those who dare. Lots of prizes and goodie bags are up for grabs. Other fun activities like jumping castles and a touchand-feed farm make sure that everyone has something to do. Time: 8am registration. Venue: Teak Place, Kromdraai Rd, Cradle of Humankind. Cost: adults R40, children 7–14 R25, under 7 free. Contact Janene: 083 320 0145 Miniature and dollhouse showcase Miniature and dollhouse enthusiasts can enjoy a showcase of work by some of South Africa’s best miniature artisans. Time: 9am– 1pm. Venue: Parkhurst Recreation Centre

Winter Ball Unity College hosts its annual fundraising ball for disabled children with special educational and social needs. Time: 7pm. Venue: Oakfield Farm, Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: tbc. Contact Michelle: 011 465 2422, 072 999 2279, info@unity-college. or visit

A journey into space Join Thomas the Astronomer in his giant rocket. Travel to the game reserve and then on to the moon and beyond. Time: 10:30am. Venue: Johannesburg Planetarium, Empire Rd, Parktown. Cost: R18. Contact: 011 717 1390 or visit The Sunflower Fund 10th Anniversary Memories and Milestones Ball The theme is “Sowing the Sunflower Seeds of Hope”. A bone-marrow transplant offers a patient suffering from leukaemia, or other life-threatening blood disorders, hope as well as a chance at a new life. The ball is a celebration of how the seeds of hope have been sown, grown and blossomed. Jeremy Mansfield is the host. Time: 6:30pm. Venue: Montecasino, Fourways. Cost: R750. Booking essential. Contact Lizelle: 011 469 4513, eventsG@sunflowerfund. or visit

30 sunday Abseiling and caving adventure Get dressed in overalls and mining helmets and abseil through the roof of a cave to discover the wonders of the world beneath our feet. Time: 11am. Venue: Wild Cave Adventures, Cradle of Humankind. Cost: adults R220, children R180. Booking essential. Contact: 011 956 6197, 082 486 2464, info@ or visit

31 monday Story time at the library Teach your children an appreciation and love for reading through a story time session. Time: children under 3, 10am; children over 3, 3:30pm–4:30pm. Venue: Parkview Library, 51 Athlone Ave, Parkview. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 646 3375 29 May – Family cycle and walk fun day

Tennis Club Hall, 5th Ave, Parkhurst. Cost: free entry but donations to the Cerebral Palsy foundation are welcome. Contact Sue: 011 787 2340 joburg’s

May 2010


last laugh

do you lie to your children? Of course you do. SAM WILSON,

Joe, Sam and Benj


orking on a parenting website means I get to be part of a lot of child-rearing chat... which is mostly fascinating, warm, honest and affirming. Recently, there’s been a lot of rather jocular discussion on the topic of “The lies we tell our children”… and it’s been freaking me out a bit. I get that everyone lies to their children a little. About festive folk or creatures, for example. Or age-appropriate fudging about how babies are made. Although it’s not been along the lines of either of these topics, of course I have lied too. Unfortunately, I am a very bad liar, and as my children age they have begun to make fun of me for it. Just last week, for example, Joey came into the lounge bearing a tooth that had been in his slipper for almost a month.


May 2010

“It would be really cool if the Tooth Fairy could come back from holiday,” he said to me, with a raised eyebrow. “I know she’s recently been paid and probably has some money in her fairy wallet at the moment.” Feeling horribly guilty I replied apologetically, “I am so sorry honey. I am sure she’ll come tonight. And if not, maybe you could let me know when you go to brush your teeth in the morning?” “Done,” said Joe. “But she should know that teeth that have been allowed to dry out thoroughly are a little more expensive.” “Consider her appropriately informed,” I said. We then grinned mischievously at each other, with the delight of a joke shared but unspoken. It’s not those lies that get to me. It’s the Der Struwwelpeter ones, specifically designed to scare the living daylights out of children, so they’ll do what you want them to do, like: “If you don’t

clean your pee-pee properly, it’s going to fall off!” or “When you chew on bubblegum, you actually chew on your brain”. Or, even more inexplicably, “If you scratch in your navel, your butt will fall off!” (I am not making these up. All three are examples shared by readers on our website.) I believe that most children start out nice, and don’t need to be civilised into acceptable members of society. So why would we want to scare them this badly? Many go on and on about having teenagers who lie to them. But perhaps if you’ve always employed this kind of nasty “behave yourself!” lie to discipline your children, it’s no great leap that they’d get a little two-faced themselves? Honesty and respect are, by nature, two-way streets. Why play so fast and loose with your half of that family contract? And that’s aside from the fact that most of these lies are seriously stupid. And children aren’t stupid; they are just

small, with limited life experience. Once a child gets over the fear inherent in one of these whoppers, it becomes clear very quickly that your butt is not going to fall off, regardless of how much you might dig in your bellybutton. If I was that child, I’d feel very put out if my parents condescended to me to that degree. I know that I am jumping into judgemental territory here, which I try and stay away from, but children don’t often have the platform to speak for themselves about this kind of thing, and I thought I’d have a bash at child advocacy. After all, these are the people who are going to try and sell Shady Pines to us as a fabulous place to live out our remaining years. And isn’t that a scary thought? Sam Wilson is the Editor-in-Chief of Parent24, Women24 and Food24. She hopes her children are saving their Tooth Fairy money for a seriously nice old folks’ home.



however, takes issue with the mean lie.

Child Magazine | Joburg May 2010  
Child Magazine | Joburg May 2010  

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