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SEPTEMBER 2010 Issue 56 Circulation 45 418


bes t

gu i d e

f or

p aren t s

spring-clean & donate

charities that need those things you don’t

planet fun

ecofriendly projects for children

creative parenting

building connection through family rituals

spring into





We have just moved house,


As many of you’ll agree, moving is not for the faint-hearted. But the upside is that it gives you the opportunity to re-organise your belongings, which can, in effect, re-define your life. Deep thoughts, perhaps, for one who’s somewhat sleep deprived and still surrounded by a mountain of cardboard. Looking at all the boxes I can’t help wondering what it is that I really need – more cupboard space or fewer summer dresses, swimming towels and soccer balls? I’ve lived without much of what still needs to be unpacked for a year now – it’s all been in storage – so why can’t I simply carry on without these things? Which is why I so love this month’s resource: spring-clean and donate (see page 38). I will be keeping it handy as I follow my organiser’s tips and empty the boxes into Keep, Throw and Donate piles. It feels good to be simplifying my life and enhancing someone else’s. Give it a try, and see if you discover, like I have: that spring-cleaning is as good for your soul as it is for your home!

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 • Resource Editor Chareen Boake • Editorial Assistant Lucille Kemp •

monthly circulation Cape Town’s ChildTM 45 228 Joburg’s ChildTM 45 418 Durban’s ChildTM 40 028

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

Copy Editors Nikki Benatar Debbie Hathway

Art Senior Designer Samantha Summerfield • Designers Mariette Barkhuizen • Nikki-leigh Piper •

Advertising Director Lisa Mc Namara •

Client Relations

All our magazines are printed on recycled paper.

Free requested Apr 10 – Jun 10


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


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.

September 2010


september 2010

upfront 3

a note from lisa


 ver to you o readers respond

10 reader’s blog F adia Gamieldien discovers just who Ronaldo is


13 s neezing season Marina Zietsman explains how to treat hay fever

features 16 gimme more  racy Ellis on the challenge of raising T children not sold out to materialism

regulars 8

20 c  ollect, create and cultivate! ecofriendly projects for children. By Chareen Boake 24 page turners tips for getting our children to love reading. By Elaine Eksteen 26 creating traditions  onna Cobban discusses the D value in family rituals


11 u  pfront with paul Paul Kerton wonders why we struggle to communicate in the 21st century


28 intelligent eating Lucille Kemp deciphers the labels on food packaging 14 dealing with difference Lisa Witepski on deafness

28 32 o  ff to camp, minus mom or dad questions to ask before booking your child into a holiday camp. By Glynis Horning 34 t he better connection Elaine Eksteen gives ideas for how you and your partner can get back the closeness you once had

38 r esource: spring-clean and donate Chareen Boake looks at organisations that will benefit from your pre-loved goods 44 a good read  new books for the whole family 46 what’s on in september 62 last laugh Sam Wilson plans to use her brain less and her feet more

classified ads

health 12 drool school Donna Cobban on easing your baby’s teething woes

52 family marketplace 58 it’s party time

this month’s cover images are supplied by:

Mini A Ture from

September 2010

Malou Barre from



September 2010


over to you health

Child Magazine the best

thank you A hearty thank you to Child Magazine and Le Creuset for the super Le Creuset roasting pan I received as my prize. I was thrilled to be a winner. It made my day! I have already tested it and will enjoy it for years to come. Please delivered the prize (with a smile) right to my door – fantastic! Thank you too for a terrific and informative magazine. Marina Muhlberg

LUCILLE KEMP looks at eczema in babies.


czema starts out as an itchy skin irritation that when scratched becomes a rash. When scratching continues or the inflammation is exacerbated by external

maintenance plan

factors such as allergens, the area will flare up into a red and burning rash, that can then become scaly. When infected, it will appear as pus-filled blisters that may ooze or become crusty. Eczema mostly appears

powder and cow’s milk to scratchy clothing and dry, winter weather. Parents should try to control the child’s environment where possible and alleviate the symptoms. Scratching can cause more issues

on children’s cheeks and scalps, the joints of their arms and legs, necks, back of the

(such as infection) than the eczema itself so help your child understand that although

arms, the inside of elbows, the front of the legs and torso. This is called atopic or

scratching may feel good momentarily, it will make things worse in the long run. Also,

allergic eczema and “is the most common

keep your child’s nails short and clean. For babies you may consider placing mittens on their hands. An antihistamine can be effective for relieving itchiness. Use a perfume-free, soothing and intense moisturiser to wash your baby instead of soap, and apply the cream before putting them to bed. On this note,

dermatologicrelief condition in children,” says Dr eczema

Denga Makhado, a Johannesburg-based dermatologist. “The gene that causes atopic eczema is also responsible for asthma and allergies,” she explains. Bloemfontein-based dermatologist Dr Deon Rautenbach also says, “Most eczema cases, however, are

A child’s eczema may be triggered by anything from soaps, moisturisers, sweat and allergens such as dust mites, washing


Thanks for running the article “the itch you can’t scratch” in the August issue of Child Magazine. I have a 19month-old son who was first exposed to corticosteroid mild and don’t warrant medical treatment, Kara says: “Be wary of expensive cosmetic creams at just three monthscreams of –age. Hea fortune would just moisturising.” they cost and break do little more than cheap emollient creams.” out burning in eczema leaving his little face inflamed and it issue Keep your child’s body at a lower your child has severe eczema, you’ll temperature with loose-fitting cotton alsoIfknow affected his inner elbows, which he would scratch that the big issue is treatment. clothing; use a dust-mite-proof mattress Steroid therapy is an acceptable treatment wash clothes using non-biological continuously, until the skin andbled. It broke my heart but overuse of corticosteroid cream washing powder. can cause stunted growth in infants. A Some experts believe it helps to watching him suffer like this. I tried many treatments, good clinician will always consider the breastfeed your baby for at least the benefits of treatinghelp eczema for versus two the first months ofhours, their lives, and delay the which would to sixthree then risks relating to corticosteroids. Durbanthe introduction of solids. If you are eczema flare up again. based would paediatrician Dr Yatish Kara breastfeeding, food allergies may be says: “I prescribe a mild one-percent responsible for your child’s flare ups so Two months wasawayatfrom thecow’s brink of giving hydrocortisone for shortago, periods when of time.” I steer milk, peanuts, However, this is as a last line of defence. eggs, soy, wheat and citrus fruits. If you up, “II try decided to try homeopathic medication. I found emollient creams first, as eczema aren’t breastfeeding and your child doesn’t often improves with skin hydration. Also, have a cow’s-milk allergy, you could use a cream from Spain, which aconsists of aloe vera and the bacteria in eczema secrete a toxin that hypoallergenic, partially hydrolysed irritates skin and aggravates eczema, so I formula. Then, of course, it is advised lavender extracts. It has worked miracles and is safe suggest an antibacterial cream.” that you protect your child from tobacco steroid-wary parents, Rautenbach exposure to prevent allergic conditions. to useForon infants. With just two applications my baby’s and Kara recommend immunosuppressant The good news is that, according to topical medication (calcineurin inhibitors), Makhado, “most children will outgrow skin started to heal. It leaves his skin moisturised which don’t contain steroids but have an eczema and the symptoms become less and relieve itching. and less as they grow older.” and anti-inflammatory hydratedeffectand, unlike cortisones, can be used Cape Town’s frequently, day or night. There is a cure out there with no side effects. Shabnam Sahib CT Excema 2.indd 13

help a child in need Johannesburg Child Welfare is desperate for families to care for children with special needs. We are very concerned about the children with mental and/or physical disabilities that are being placed in our care. Many of the children coming into the system at the moment have major disabilities, both mental and physical. Finding adoptive parents or foster homes for these children is extremely difficult. The reality is that it is more challenging to take care of a child with special needs and there are often more costs involved for doctors and medication. Another major challenge for us is finding homes for HIV-positive children. Parents are afraid of taking a child into their home only to lose him or her soon after. As a result, many of these children end up in institutions and, while these centres offer excellent care, children who spend long periods of time in them can run the risk of becoming institutionalised and may struggle to develop relationships later in life. These institutions are also being flooded and placement for these children becomes more difficult as a result. The reality is that the average adopter who comes forward is looking for a “healthy” child and cannot easily be persuaded to care for a child with an illness or disability. We would like to make a special appeal for families who will take care of these children. 2010 13 Johannesburg For more information, pleaseAugust contact Child Welfare on 011 298 8500 or communications@ 7/16/10 4:28:21 PM

power in knowing Parents don’t need professional assessments to

all an overwhelming challenge for him. Despite this,

know that their beautiful child is different. But

and with lots of love from family and teachers, he

when the report arrives, after years of questioning

perseveres at his mainstream pre-school and at

and wondering, it offers a sense of relief. Finally a

playgrounds and parties.

parent’s intuition is confirmed – given a name, a diagnosis, a reality.

and I need to become experts and make life-altering

Could someone please advise schools that offer to nurture our children into cultured, mature, independent thinkers to consider including their whereabouts in their adverts, as it is fairly crucial to be able to get the children there in the mornings! For us moms who are slightly technologically challenged and do not whip onto google earth on our cellphones the minute we see an advert, the written word would be appreciated. I will just have to stick to the school my children currently attend, since at least I know where to find it. Slightly deranged mother about to do another few hours of VAT recons!

And then the tears flow. Tears for the hardship

decisions for our little child. Remedial school or

that your beautiful child has faced already, tears

mainstream? Which mainstream school? Should

for the wrong decisions already made, tears for

we use a facilitator? Or just an OT? Or physio too?

the impatience shown towards a child genuinely

Should he stay back a year in pre-school? Should

write to us

struggling and not being lazy, and tears for a care-

we home school? It feels very lonely facing these

We would like to know what’s on your mind.

free childhood that will never be quite care-free.

decisions, especially when they are constantly

Send your letters to:

Our five-year-old has been diagnosed with

going round and round in my head. I would love to

or PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010. We reserve

various learning difficulties, basically stemming

meet other parents in similar situations and be able

the right to edit and shorten submitted letters.

from an inadequate vestibular and proprioceptive

to share their stories and advice.

system. Writing, drawing, swimming, building blocks, riding bicycles, doing puzzles – these are

But where to from here? Suddenly my husband

directions, please

September 2010

With thanks for the great articles. Caroline

The opinions reflected here are those of our readers and are not necessarily held by Hunter House Publishing.



the itch you can’t scratch

also pass on my thanks to Berco Express, who

I am a first time mom to a 16-month-old boy. Your magazine is excellent and I can’t wait to get hold of my copy each month – I sit down with a cup of tea and read it from cover to cover. Your topics are well researched and easy to read and understand. Sam Wilson and Paul Kerton are writers of a different calibre and they make reading your magazine more enjoyable. I lend the magazine to family each month and they enjoy it as much as I do. Keep up the great work and I look forward to many more Child Magazines in the future. Fathima Vaid


September 2010


giveawaysin september funky furniture Think of the most comfortable chair you’ve ever sat in – then try out a FatSak. This combination of beanbag and couch is both fun and unbelievably comfortable because it’s filled with foam (not beans or polystyrene balls). There are four sizes of FatSak to choose from, and the covers are removable and machine washable – so no need to worry about grubby fingers. Fabric to choose from includes corduroy, suede and faux fur. To order online or find a retailer in your area, contact 0861 999 122 or visit One reader of Joburg’s Child stands a chance to win a medium FatSak valued at R3 650. To enter, go to the website,, click on ‘Win a FatSak’ and enter your details before 30 September 2010.

chime after chime Mexican Bolas rest on your pregnant tummy and provide soothing sounds that comfort and relax your baby. The bolas make a special chime as you move and can be heard by your baby from about 20 weeks. For more information visit You could be one of four readers to win a Mexican Bola valued at R300. To enter, email your details to with ‘Mexican Bola JHB win’ in the subject line or post your entry to Mexican Bola JHB win, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010 before 30 September 2010. Only one entry per reader.

life skills parenting guide Toddler Sense is a must-have guide for negotiating the tricky toddler years. Toddler Sense holds countrywide seminars to equip parents for managing the toddler years, including topics such as nutrition, potty training, sleep and discipline. The seminars are hosted by baby and toddler expert Sister Ann Richardson, the best selling author of Toddler Sense and co-author of Baby Sense and Sleep Sense. For more information visit One Joburg’s Child reader can win the Toddler Sense book valued at R150 and a ticket to a Toddler Sense workshop valued at R290. To enter, email your details to with ‘Toddler Sense JHB win’ in the subject line or post your entry to Toddler Sense JHB win, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010 before 30 September 2010. Only one entry per reader.

soothe the pain Baltic amber necklaces are made for your baby to wear when he is teething. Allopathic medicine recognises Baltic amber for its anti-inflammatory and therapeutic qualities, which ease pain and calm a baby – the active ingredient is released when the amber is warmed by the skin. For more information contact Nicky: 083 650 0279, nicky@lovebugproducts. or visit One reader of Joburg’s Child stands to win Baltic Amber Raw Nugget Beads valued at R220 including postage. To enter, email your details to win@childmag. with ‘Lovebug JHB win’ in the subject line or post your entry to Lovebug JHB win, PO Box 12002, Mill Street, 8010 before 30 September 2010. Only one entry per reader.

September 2010

Equal Zeal offers a series of self-development programmes for families, parents and children that provide essential tools for tackling modern-day challenges that children face. Equal Zeal equips children with a solid foundation and a life philosophy that says “the energy you put into life equals the rewards you receive.” This month Equal Zeal is hosting a national road show (5 September in Johannesburg and 19 September in Pretoria) to promote healthy family living, which includes exhibitions, educational resources and workshops that will highlight issues affecting children, from crime to divorce. For more information on the road show see our calendar on page 48. For more information on Equal Zeal visit Two readers of Joburg’s Child stand a chance to win a ticket to the Equal Zeal road show valued at R295 each. To enter, email your details to before 31 August 2010. Only one entry per reader.

congratulations to our June/July winners Lizle Cloete, Annemieke Keijzers and Gale Levy who each win a NewU Fitness First Mind Body game; Ellah Ndlovu, Cecile Louw and Amanda McPhail who each win a Zakumi from Build-A-Bear; Reyase Maulid, Rita Johnson, Linda Superfain, Penelope Tshazibane, Erashini Govender, Angie Hershensohn, Caradee Wright, Astrid Pearmain, Nadine Singer and Farhana Vally who each win a Karvol hamper; Olga Colyvas who wins a Pop Idol-themed party at Wired Sound Studios; Joanne Wetherall who wins a mid-week break at Jaci’s Safari Lodge.


wild about luxury Tuningi Safari Lodge, situated in the malaria-free Madikwe Game Reserve, combines the wonders of the African bushveld with the splendours of five-star luxury. Tuningi gets its name from an ancient, sprawling fig tree under which the boma is set – perfect for traditional dinners beneath the African sky. The daily game drives, with informed and professional game rangers, are an exciting way of getting into the bush and experiencing all that it has to offer. For more info call 011 805 9995 or visit One reader of Joburg’s Child stands to win a twonight stay for two people sharing, mid-week at Tuningi Safari Lodge valued at R19 000. The prize includes accommodation, all meals and game drives and excludes transport, all drinks, gratuities and any additional costs incurred by the winner at the lodge or in the reserve. To enter email your details to win@childmag. with ‘Tuningi JHB win’ before 30 September 2010. Only one entry per reader. Note: by entering this competition you agree to Hunter House Publishing passing on your contact details to the Madikwe Collection and/or their agents, and you may receive marketing communication from them, as a result.


September 2010


who’s Ronaldo? hen my son, Tanzeel, asked me in January if I thought he could enter the McDonald’s Player Escort competition for the upcoming 2010 FIFA World Cup, I was torn between encouraging him to give it a shot, versus trying to put him off because it sounded like too much work. In the end, we went ahead. We pondered why he wanted to win, and what it would mean to him. Between February and March he took a handful of forms whenever he was at the store. Some we filled in, some he distributed to friends, and some I secretly threw away. One Saturday, at a noisy swimming gala, I received a call to say Tanzeel had been chosen to be an escort. I was amazed. Ayoba! The news remained top secret until we received the paperwork and then we all got really excited… We had not bought any game tickets, but certainly got into the spirit of things. Soccer Fridays were right up our alley – we had (still do) the flags, the mirror socks, the bumper stickers, bandanas, you name it!


September 2010

Tanzeel was selected for the 1:30pm match between Portugal and Korea DPR on 21 June in Cape Town, one day before his 8th birthday – how great a present is that? Since only one parent was allowed to accompany the escort we agreed that Dad would go, while Mom, little sister and our extended family would try to find a big screen TV on which to watch the match. We hoped to catch just a glimpse of him in his little yellow jacket as the camera zoomed in on the soccer players singing their anthems.

kick off Come match day it was stormy. The sleepy but excited child and dad left early, and the secretive day began. I made sure the identification bracelets were on his leg and arm, phone numbers memorised, drill on good behaviour given, lots of kisses and hugs shared, and off they went. My dilemma was where to watch the match. In the end we went to a mall. I was

accompanied by my parents, daughter, sister and nephews and we agreed to have lunch there and indulge in some retail therapy once the game had started. (Is it even PC to say that?) We were sitting there, when in the tunnel I spotted an ear I recognised – only a mom would know this – and my sister said: “Is that Cristiano Ronaldo’s hand he’s holding?” “Can’t see anything”, I replied, “but who is Ronaldo”? (Yet another thing you don’t say in public.) “Portugal’s captain,” I was informed. But I was looking for my son. All of a sudden I saw his face – cool and calm, and clearly well rehearsed. My exclamations of “there’s Tanzeel!” were observed by surprised shoppers, who probably thought I was a bit too old to be a Ronaldo groupie. One second later he was gone. I’m so proud and glad that he had the opportunity to participate in this historical event on African soil.



...asks newly-devoted soccer mom FADIA GAMIELDIEN.

upfront with paul

did you hear a word I said?



n the legendary movie Cool Hand Luke, in which Paul Newman keeps escaping from high security prison, the prison governor calls through a megaphone to a trapped, exhausted Luke: “What we have here is a failure to communicate”. Today, despite drowning in convenient means of communication – landline, fax, email, Skype, cellphone, MMS, SMS – and perhaps because we’re drowning, we are all guilty of failing to communicate properly. For my sins, I am in the communications business: publishing, marketing, advertising, writing. This means I am used to taking information, chopping it up and presenting it as digestible titbits to many different audiences. My CV says I am an expert. Unfortunately, with children, experts come unstuck. Especially if you try talking to them while they are watching Hannah Montana or the Jonas Brothers. You may, like a prison governor, have to use a


megaphone or stand directly in front of the TV before you get any response. Even then, the reply you get will be scrambled since you are interrupting, what for them is (hopefully), rare viewing time. Even in their most receptive moments, children only hear what they want to hear. Say “get in the bath, now” from a distance of one metre and they will not hear. “What did you say?” they will murmur, stalling like mad in an effort to steal one more minute on the computer. But whisper “chocolate” to sibling one while the other is four kilometres away and sibling two, who has suddenly developed the radar of a bat, will be there like a shot. “Did someone mention chocolate?”

crossed lines Even when they actively listen and seemingly digest what you are saying, their hearing is selective and instructions soon forgotten.

When you’ve got children life seems riddled with communication failure, says PAUL KERTON. Survival rules repeatedly etched into their brains, like “don’t run into the road”, go AWOL when an excited friend holding a puppy calls them from across the street. Plus children automatically assume that parents know what they know; and that they don’t have to tell us anything or explain any crucial information they may be holding, as in “I have to take R200 to school tomorrow for the trip.” They daydream that they have told us things and fantasise about conversations that never happened. Parents do a grown-up version of this during our snatched conversations as we pass in the corridors of life: the I-told-youabout–it-ages-ago routine. “I did,” she says. “No you didn’t.” But she genuinely thinks she did. What happens is the brain circumvents reality. She wanted to tell you and knew she

Paul, Sabina and Saskia

needed to tell you, but forgot, and her brain, conveniently covered for her. My brain often covers for me too. It’s the reason writers should never be the only ones to proofread their work. Why? Because if you miss a word out your brain cheats and while you are reading it back, it knows the word that should be there and jumps over it. But on paper the word is still missing. Basically, our own body miscommunicates with us, continually. Paul Kerton is the author of Fab Dad: A Man’s Guide to Fathering.

September 2010



drool school DONNA COBBAN talks teething in babies and toddlers.


September 2010

Comparing your child’s teething to another’s is futile – it’s an “unquantifiable” equation. Sister Liesel Turnbull at the Bedfordview Mother and Baby Centre says there’s no scientific evidence available to tell us why some babies and toddlers sail through teething while others seem to suffer terribly. Turnbull says that the disrupted sleep caused by teething is a huge thing, as it can disturb the whole family. “It stands to reason,” she says, “that even as adults, pain feels so much worse when everything is dark and quiet, and we are all alone. So it must be much more intense for little ones.” When I ask Dr Murray Rushmere, a Cape Townbased GP and homeopath about supposed secondary teething symptoms, such as runny tummies and fevers, he says: “It is important to be aware that teething may temporarily compromise the immune system, so you may be looking at a secondary complicating illness, such as an ear infection.” He adds that parents should be aware that it may take a little longer for children to recover from whatever they have while still teething.

teething tips Here’s what to do with too much drool • Keep on a cotton absorbent bib or you will be changing shirts all day. • When your baby sleeps try putting an old-style cloth nappy under his mouth – to prevent the pillow soaking through and to keep the area as dry as possible. Ideas for natural relief for the teething toddler • Freeze a face cloth and give it to your toddler to chew on. • Ask the pharmacist for a homeopathic powder to rub on the gums. • Try an amber necklace (some people swear by them). • Freeze large chunks of fruit for your baby to suck on. Thick slices of banana or celery work well (they must be large enough so your baby won’t choke). • Fill a dummy with water and pop it in the freezer for an hour and give it to your baby to suck on.




ifty years ago teething babies might have had a little rum rubbed along their gums to ease the pain – and that would be that. In recent years, teething has spawned an empire of associated experts and products: rings to chew on, necklaces to wear and over-the-counter lotions and potions. It’s no small wonder, therefore, that the eruption of a baby’s teeth can leave parents floundering in a sea of choices and conflicting opinions, while their baby flounders in extreme discomfort. We are all born with teeth. The unfortunate aspect, for everyone (except the breastfeeding mother), is that these teeth lie just below the surface of the gums and emerge at unpredictable intervals, from birth (although around 4 to 6 months is the norm) through to adulthood, when wisdom teeth finally push through. Most of the time parents can’t miss a teething baby, although the extremes of discomfort can vary widely – some drool excessively, others may tug at their ears (leading you to suspect an ear infection, which if the agitation continues should not be ruled out). The eruption of molars may be preceded by swelling along the gum line.


sneezing season Hay fever can be a highly irritating, and sometimes debilitating,



condition – so how can you help your child? By MARINA ZIETSMAN

ccording to the Allergy Society of South Africa (ALLSA) allergic rhinitis (the correct term for hay fever) affects almost two in 10 South Africans. “The basis of nasal allergic problems results from the interaction of common inhaled allergens with specialised cells in the nasal mucous membrane. This reaction results in the release of powerful chemical agents of which histamine is the best known,” says ALLSA. These substances cause severe swelling of the mucous membrane lining the nasal passages, intense itching of the eyes, throat and palate, sneezing and the production of copious amounts of watery mucous. Dr Sarah Karabus, a Cape Town-based paediatrician says, “Allergic rhinitis can be seasonal – often due to various pollens that are present in the air at different times of the year – or it can be persistent, due to allergen triggers that are present year-round such as dogs, cats, birds, dust mites, moulds, fungal spores and cockroaches.” Karabus adds


that dust-mite triggers are more common in small children, while pollen allergies usually develop in the older child. Other factors that influence the occurrence of allergic rhinitis are cigarette smoke and genetics. Children have a 30 to 60 percent chance of developing allergic rhinitis if one of their parents is affected and a 50 to 70 percent chance if both parents have allergic rhinitis. Dr Ahmed Ismail Manjra, of the Paediatric Allergy and Asthma Centre at Westville Hospital in Durban, says, “Avoid indoor smoking. It not only worsens the allergy, but is also a cause and risk factor for asthma in children.” The best advice in treating allergic rhinitis is to avoid the triggers, but it’s not always possible to do this. The treatment for allergic rhinitis differs from that of the common cold, though the symptoms can be very similar. “The common cold is caused by a virus, which can lead to a fever, a sore throat and a runny nose,” says Manjra, “but allergic rhinitis does not cause a fever.” A cold can last up to

10 days, while the allergy symptoms can be present continuously, says Karabus. Other than those already mentioned, “symptoms include a permanent stuffy or running nose, constant nose wiggling, wiping or pushing of the nose (called the ‘allergic salute’), red watery eyes, dark rings under the eyes, snoring and mouth breathing”. Karabus adds that if your child suffers from food allergies or eczema he could be more prone to allergic rhinitis. If you are not sure about the triggers, you can get your child tested by an allergy specialist. This will help you know what to try and avoid: such as staying indoors on hot windy days when pollen levels peak; or avoiding pets, though Karabus admits this is often difficult to do and impractical. “Getting rid of the family pet, for example, may not help immediately – it can take up to a year for the dander, the microscopic protein that causes the allergy, levels to drop.” Both Karabus and Manjra say that not treating allergic rhinitis, can be detrimental

to your child’s health. It can worsen asthma, cause dental problems, sinusitis and a post-nasal drip. “It can also affect a child’s sleep, reducing ability to concentrate, and thus leading to problems at school,” concludes Karabus. “In general, treatment for toddlers and babies is the same as for adults, though certain medication cannot be taken by children,” says Karabus, who suggests using a saline spray to wash pollens out of the eyes and nose. Medical treatment includes antihistamines (oral) or nasal spray. Allergy immunotherapy (vaccination) can also be done at specialised centres. “Speak to your health-care practitioner about what is best for your child,” advises Karabus.

September 2010


dealing with difference

breaking the silence With early intervention, the exquisitely nuanced world of communication is well within reach of

arah Allwood, a 33-year-old mother from Somerset West, had no reason to suspect there was anything wrong with her daughter’s hearing. True, Kate had shown no response to buzz tests during her 20-week foetal assessment – but the gynae had said she was probably sleeping. A routine screening test conducted when she was two days old showed abnormalities; but the audiologist put their minds at rest, saying that the follow-up, to be conducted at 10 weeks, was essentially for their peace of mind. Since Kate responded to loud noises, and both Sarah and her husband Anthony have normal hearing, they agreed that further testing would be done simply for caution’s sake – which is why they were devastated to learn that their little girl, now two, was born profoundly deaf. Their story is a happy one, though: as an ideal candidate for a cochlear implant, Kate’s ability to communicate has been fully restored through “bionic ears”. Her parents’ joy is clearly evident as they tell of how she sings along


September 2010

with Barney, and what it felt like when she told them she loved them for the first time. “If picked up sufficiently early, hearing loss needn’t be an issue for any child,” Anthony insists. But that’s just the problem, says Johannesburg audiologist Fleur Bonnet. Many parents don’t realise that hearing tests (like the oto-acoustic emission test) have such high sensitivity and produce accurate results for even newborn babies. “The test should be performed, at the latest, when the child is six weeks old,” Bonnet explains. Ruth Bourne, head of Cape Town’s Carel du Toit Centre, a school for hearing impaired children, agrees that the sooner the tests are conducted, the better. A baby diagnosed with deafness by six months can immediately be fitted with hearing aids, and can be on a par with hearing peers by their second birthday, provided an intervention takes place as soon as hearing loss is detected.

Indeed, delayed intervention carries significant impact. The world of silence can be an isolated one, and without the ability to communicate their wants and needs, children swiftly become frustrated. This ultimately affects their self-esteem. Moreover, because hearing loss makes communication with hearing parents tricky, children with hearing loss have difficulty acquiring speech, and this may become even more challenging if diagnosis comes when the child is older than six months.

reading cues Sue Brown* has witnessed first-hand the difficulty that children with hearing loss experience. Her son, Luc, whom she started fostering when he was three and a half weeks old, was found to be deaf at around six months. He too has




the hearing impaired, says LISA WITEPSKI.

a cochlear implant, and has learned to communicate with a blend of oral language, sign language and gestures. Hi Hopes, a Johannesburg group that facilitates interventions for parents of deaf children, has also been extremely beneficial to Luc’s development, says Sue. Luc has been assigned a parent advisor and a deaf mentor, providing him with a role model and building his self-esteem. Although he has made good progress in acquiring language, he is sometimes confused because without auditory skills, he is deprived of many subtle cues related to giving and receiving messages, which hearing children pick up incidentally through ambient sound. Luc’s deafness may have been caused by any number of factors. Says Dr Phillip Pio, a Johannesburg ear nose and throat specialist, “The cause, most often, is something that occurs during the intra-uterine period.” Viruses during pregnancy may play a role, as may maternal drinking or smoking or a number of syndromes, as well as premature birth or the parents’ family history. Further risks may be posed by common childhood diseases and even certain medications. Recurring middle ear infection can cause temporary residual damage to the middle ear, so treatment and management options should be explored as soon as possible, says Bonnet. The problem is that if parents are unaware of these risk factors, they may not know their child’s hearing has been compromised. “Parents don’t realise that even if a child can hear a loud sound, like a door slamming, they may not be able to hear very soft sounds, like those present in speech,” says Bonnet.


Bourne concurs: “Hearing loss is an invisible challenge, so the early signs are easy to miss. Normally, you’d notice that the baby doesn’t startle at loud sounds, or may get a fright when you enter his visual range because he hasn’t heard your footsteps. Very young children may not be soothed by their parents’ voices.” Very often, though, parents dismiss such signals as “a phase”, and worry only when their child does not start talking at the appropriate stage.

Hearing loss is an invisible challenge, so the early signs are easy to miss. good news There is hope, though: with a hearing aid, many children are able to achieve hearing within the normal range, says Pio. Even profoundly deaf children can be given access to sound with a cochlear implant. But implants should not be viewed as a magic cure. These work by inserting an electrical device into the inner ear, which uses electrical impulses to stimulate the cochlear nerves in much the same way as the tiny hairs present in the ear would. This gives access to sound (although the quality will not be the same as that experienced by a hearing person). A hearing aid, on the other hand, works by amplifying sounds. However, the implant procedure is not recommended for all children with hearing loss. Not only is it extremely

expensive, but parents must be entirely committed to the lengthy and often difficult process of habilitating children to speech that follows. For instance, Sarah and Sue speak of the intensive speech therapy their children have undergone, and mention that they are required to maintain a running commentary of every action taking place in order to foster further progress. The procedure can only be performed on children who have normally developed inner ears. All candidates for the procedure are required to have first tried a hearing aid for at least six months. This is because the tiny hair cells that convey sound will be damaged with the insertion of the electrodes. It’s therefore necessary to first ascertain that the child is completely deaf, and that hearing aids have no impact, before going ahead with the operation. With the available interventions, a deaf child can happily attend a mainstream school, unless they have learning difficulties that make remedial classes a better option. Bourne notes, though, that schools for the deaf provide more intensive language learning programmes and the best therapeutic support for learners. Pio and Bonnet believe that it’s a good idea to ensure that children are taught oral communication and lip reading as well as sign language, as this will smooth their transition into the hearing world. And there’s no reason why this transition shouldn’t take place smoothly: “Many of our learners have gone on to graduate from university and lead fully independent lives,” says Bourne. The last word goes to Sue. “People often comment that Luc seems so normal. He is; he just can’t hear.”

September 2010



gimme more TRACY ELLIS looks at how materialism affects children.


September 2010

can’t buy me love On a recent shopping trip to purchase birthday gifts for my husband, my sevenyear-old son spotted a toy and asked if I would buy it for him. When I explained that this trip was about Dad, and that we were not buying anything for ourselves, he frowned and asked, “But don’t you love me too?” Needless to say we stopped right in the middle of the mall, and had a heart to heart about our love for one another having nothing to do with material possessions. Sadly I can’t remember a shopping trip with my children that didn’t include a request for me to buy them something




an money really buy happiness? Some people would like to convince you it can. Dozens of adverts on billboards, television, radio and the Internet, and in newspapers and magazines, promise greater happiness and fulfilment if we just reach into our pockets and succumb to the latest and greatest purchase. With debt at an alltime high, the lines between needs and wants are blurring as we fall into the trap of measuring ourselves by the things we own and wear, perhaps even placing more value on possessions and brands than people and experiences.

– and I know I’m not alone. Our children are trained consumers, and parents these days have a hard job trying to teach them to go without things that in their young minds seem completely necessary for survival. It doesn’t seem as though any harm could come from giving our children everything we can afford to give them. Some parents strive to provide more for their children than they had when they were growing up. But how much is too much, and what are the side effects that are starting to emerge among this generation? Materialism is affecting our children in many ways,” says Durban-based


psychologist Francois Grobler. “They believe that possessions are the key to happiness and grow up envious of, and obsessed by, what other people have. They begin to judge others by what they own and not who they are. Ultimately, what they don’t own ends up owning them.” Johannesburg-based educational psychologist Wendy Wentzel, who consults to a private school, sees how the problems manifest. “Parents feel the need to keep up with the Joneses and children grow up with a sense of entitlement. They never have to work very hard to get what they want and unfortunately I see this spilling

When I explained that this trip was about Dad, he frowned and asked, “But don’t you love me too?” over into their achievement and progress at school. They become apathetic, lacking self-motivation and a sense of personal responsibility, believing someone else will always come to their rescue.”

role models What we model as parents is always key to our parenting. Ask yourself how content

you really are with what you have? Are you always commenting on other people’s possessions and complaining about not having enough? Children are remarkably perceptive and our attitudes to money, status, fame and wealth rub off on them. Julie, a mom of two girls, aged four and two, believes her parents got it right. “My parents could have given me

September 2010



everything my heart desired but they didn’t. At the time it upset me but I am so grateful for that now.” She values having grown up to be non-materialistic, and believes charity is a good way to teach children to be this way too. “When I buy new clothes, I give away old ones and my four-year-old helps me pack them into a bag and comes with me to give them to a needy organisation. I am not scared to teach her about real poverty. Many parents are afraid of upsetting their children by exposing them to poverty, but children need to know what is really going on outside of their schools and shopping malls. It keeps them grounded.”

that some adults are not even aware of the tactics employed by advertisers and supermarkets to lure consumers into buying their products. “When it comes to shopping, my children gravitate to items with pictures of popular characters on them. I have to explain that this is a marketing tactic.” Many parents find themselves giving in to branded items, from vitamins to shoes. I remember a friend of mine sticking Barbie stickers on no-name-brand yoghurts because her daughter would not eat anything without a character on it. We have to teach our children to be happy with less than the best.

They begin to judge others by what they own. Ultimately, what they don’t own ends up owning them. Teaching children the value of people and relationships over possessions is a good start to countering materialism. When you see your children fighting with each other over a toy, step in and remind them that treating their brother and sister with respect is more important than having the toy they want. Consumer journalist and mom-of-two Lyse Comins agrees: “I recently watched Toy Story 3 with my children, but I felt I needed to explain to them that toys do not have feelings whereas people and animals do. Children can’t always tell the difference between fantasy and reality and I worry that movies like this encourage them to value their possessions on a level that is not healthy.” Lyse is also passionate about teaching her toddlers how to be savvy consumers. She believes marketers start targeting children at an early age and


September 2010

needs, wants and time Can children differentiate between needs and wants? I quizzed my seven-year-old to see if he knew the difference and he had no problem explaining to me that besides food, a house and a family, everything else was a want. Wendy Wentzel believes that time plays a key role. “Children want more time with their parents. Many parents are travelling more and working longer hours to support their lifestyles. Lots of them come home with gifts or treats for their children to ease their guilt over the time spent away from home. But buying more for our children only fuels their wants and gives them the message that they do not have enough,” she says. She believes a better solution is to reward them with time. “Reward systems are great but those rewards are almost always monetary.” How about getting to joburg’s

play another game of cricket in the garden with Dad? Teaching our children financial responsibility and value for money is another great lesson. Pocket money may be the answer here, but there is a lot of debate surrounding paying children for good behaviour or doing chores around the house. Some feel that pocket money is an unrealistic model of the real world, where no-one pays us to look after ourselves, our pets and our belongings, while others feel that the earlier we teach children to manage their own money the better prepared they will be for life. The balance lies somewhere in the middle. Wendy suggests that chores that teach personal responsibility – such as making beds, tidying up toys and feeding pets – should not be done for reward, whereas washing mom’s car or sorting the Tupperware cupboard can be rewarded. In this way children begin to understand the link between hard work, money and possessions.

Craig Zeeman, a single dad of three teenage girls living in Johannesburg, adds: “I introduced pocket money at eight years old. I also opened bank accounts for the girls and taught them how to save for more expensive items. Now when they go to the mall they use their own bank cards to pay for movies and luxuries. They seem to spend less when the money is theirs. It teaches them responsibility and the value of money.”

back to basics Neil Madgwick and his wife Jo have chosen to live a frugal life in the Midlands joburg’s

25 kilometres from Pietermaritzburg, where they home-school their five children and share their experiences on a family blog in the hopes of inspiring other families. Jo says: “Seven years ago when Neil was teaching in Cape Town he turned the discussion to brand-name clothing. He told the class he had bought a pair of genuine Levi’s jeans for only R100 because the red Levi’s label had been cut out. They were amazed, not because he had picked up a bargain, but because they didn’t see the point in wearing the jeans if the label was missing. That’s when alarm bells started ringing for us. Now we live a simple life and focus more on family and traditions. We raise chickens, grow vegetables and make gifts for each other. We talk to our children all the time about money and how to use it wisely. With five children we buy most things in bulk and just can’t justify spending money on expensive items.” While we can’t all get away from our fast-paced lifestyle, we can slow down enough to take moments with our children – a walk to the park, a game of frisbee or time to chat. These happy moments that don’t cost anything can’t be bought, but will be remembered long after the next big purchase is gathering dust somewhere.

recommended reading If you’re going to be getting out your wallet, these books offer food for thought. • Affluenza by Oliver James • Consuming Kids by Susan Linn • Born to Buy by Juliet Schor • The High Price of Materialism by Tim Kasser

September 2010


how to

collect, create and cultivate! Nine fun ecofriendly projects using household junk, garden goodies and lots of imagination. By CHAREEN BOAKE

eggshell herb people What you need: empty eggshells, with the tops removed • egg box • koki pens • potting soil • seeds such as watercress or wheatgrass What to do: Carefully remove the tops and inside from the hard-boiled eggs, leaving an opening big enough to spoon the soil into the shell. Stand the shells in the egg box and draw faces on them. Fill each with a few teaspoons of soil and then sprinkle seeds into each shell. Cover lightly with a little more soil. Water gently. When the seeds start to sprout your eggshell people will look like they’re growing hair. When the herbs grow too big, just crumble the eggshell and plant your herbs in a bigger container or in the garden.

age 4–10

A terrarium is a closed environment that allows you to create your own little ecosystem – rain forest or desert, whichever you prefer. What you need: empty two-litre plastic cold drink bottle with lid • small plants (miniature ferns, African violets and small palms work well) • potting soil

age 6–13 20

What to do: Remove the label from the bottle, and clean the inside and cap well. Cut the bottle near the bottom (where the label used to be). Fill the base with soil and plant your plants. Place the cap on the bottle and wedge the upper half of the bottle onto the base (you may have to play around a bit to get it to fit). Place your terrarium in a sunny spot and water your plants as regularly as they require it. You might like to place coloured glass, rocks, dinosaurs or fairies inside your bottle before sealing it and watch your terrarium turn into a mini wonderland as your plants grow.

September 2010

shoebox Zen garden

age 3– 8

The Zen garden originated in Japan where they’re made with sand or gravel, which is raked into beautiful patterns. The shoebox version is a great way to display special holiday treasures such as shells and pebbles. What you need: shoebox lid • fine sand (such as sandpit sand) • pebbles, small rocks, shells • plastic fork What to do: Fill the shoebox lid with sand. Arrange the pebbles and shells in the lid. Now use the plastic fork to rake patterns in the sand.

age 4–8 portable mini-golf course Mini golf is also called putt-putt, crazy golf, goofy golf or adventure golf. Whatever you call it, you’re sure to have loads of fun creating and mastering your very own miniature course. What you need: 9 x two-litre plastic cold drink bottles • coloured electrical tape • permanent marker What to do: Remove the labels and cut off the bottom of the bottles. Cut an arched hole at the base of each bottle (approximately 8cm x 8cm). Use coloured tape and permanent markers to decorate and number the bottles from one to nine. Place the bottles in the garden and use your imagination to create a great mini-golf course, right in your own garden, by using logs, rocks or pot plants. joburg’s


miniature garden


September 2010


how to

pinhole camera

age 4 –11

The first camera was invented over 2 000 years ago. It was a very simple device using a box, a pinhole and light to create an image.

What you need: a cardboard tube (like the kind crisps come in) • wax paper • an elastic band • a drawing pin • tin foil or thick black cardboard What to do: Make a hole in the centre bottom of the tube using the drawing pin. Cut a piece of wax paper big enough to cover the opening of the container. Wrap the wax paper over the top of the tube and stretch the elastic band around the opening of the container to secure the wax paper in place. Wrap a sheet of tin foil or thick black cardboard around the camera to keep the light out. Stand in a dark room and point the bottom of the container out of the window, making sure that it’s pointing at a brightly lit object. When you look at the wax paper, the scene reflected through the pinhole will appear upside down.

age 4–11

growing cards Plant these cards in the ground and watch them turn into flowers.

What you need: 1,5 cups of newspaper torn into 2,5 centimetre strips • bowl of warm water • masking tape • baking tray • piece of fine wire mesh (window mesh works well; make sure that the piece is slightly smaller than your baking tray) • seeds such as marigold or lobelia • towel What to do: Place the strips of newspaper in the bowl of warm water and soak them overnight. Fold strips of masking tape around the edges of the wire mesh to make it easier to handle. Mix the mushy paper well, gradually adding fresh water until the mixture looks like a creamy soup (you can use a blender if you like). Add water to the baking tray until it’s a quarter full, then pour in your paper mixture. Add the flower seeds and mix well with your hands. Slip the screen into the pan so that it slides under the pulp and seeds. Lift the screen gently and make sure that you catch the pulp mixture in an even layer on top and allow the water to drain off. Lay the screen on a towel and let your paper dry for at least 24 hours. When your paper is completely dry, gently remove it from the screen. You can add a drop of food colouring to the mixture to make different coloured paper. Write a message on the cards and you have a note and a gift all rolled into one.


September 2010


compost bin

age 7–12

Your children will need your help with the drilling.

solar oven Most of the earth’s energy comes from the sun. You can use this energy to create your own solar oven, which can heat up to 200˚C on a sunny day.

age 6 –13

What you need: 20–25 litre plastic storage box with lid • craft paint • power drill • clear varnish • soil What to do: Drill one-centimetre holes along both long edges of the bin (holes should be about 3cm apart). Cut holes in two opposite corners at the bottom of the bin (1cm wide x 3cm). Decorate your compost bin. Paint bright flowers and leaves, or paint the word compost as a daisy chain. You can also create fingerprint insects like ladybirds. Once you’ve finished decorating your bin, spray the varnish onto the bin. Allow it to dry and then give it two more coats. When your bin is finished, line the inside with a layer of soil and some dry leaves and you’re ready to start composting. Vegetable peels and fruit scraps are best for making compost.

What you need: empty pizza box • tin foil • plastic cling wrap • thick black cardboard • stick or dowel What to do: Make a flap in the lid of the pizza box by cutting along three sides, leave a 2cm rim between the flap and the edge of the box. Fold the flap over so that it stands up when the box lid is closed. Cover the inside of the flap with tin foil (shiny side up) so that it can reflect the sun’s rays. Open the box and tape a double layer of cling wrap securely over the opening you cut for the flap. Make sure that it’s airtight. Line the bottom of the box with tin foil (shiny side up) and cover it with thick black cardboard. Take your oven to a sunny spot and adjust the flap so that it reflects lots of sunlight through the plastic window. Use your stick or dowel to prop your flap open at a right angle. Try melting some cheese on toast. Get creative by adding tomatoes, fresh herbs or even pineapple and mushrooms.

age 4 –10

junk yard vegetable garden What you need: old containers such as yoghurt pots, mugs with broken handles, old buckets, colanders, even old tyres or a wheelbarrow • vegetable seeds (onions, lettuce, carrots and tomatoes grow well from seeds) • old wooden spoons • craft paint and koki pens • potting soil • compost What to do: Decorate your wooden spoons and write on the name of the vegetables. Place potting soil and compost in your containers. Sprinkle the seeds on top and then cover lightly with soil. Plant your wooden spoons in the containers and then arrange the containers to form a pleasing configuration. Remember to water your seeds and wait patiently for your vegetables to start growing.


September 2010



page turners Great ideas for encouraging your children to love reading. By ELAINE EKSTEEN


utdated nursery rhyme, you may think. Not according to Cape Town librarian and early literacy expert Sharon Geffen. A rhyme like this “teaches sequencing, while others teach counting skills”. After chatting to Sharon I’m off home to dig out my childhood collection of nursery rhymes so I can start reading them to my 20-month-old son. According to Geffen, nursery rhymes help children learn the skill of retaining info, which assists with both contents subjects and languages. And she knows what she’s talking about. She’s been running baby and toddler story time groups for the past 16 years. Her “pilot group” just finished high school – “this little girl matriculated with seven As, and so did this one,” she says, pointing out their photos in an article published about her story hour, when the children were still in preschool. Although she won’t take credit for their success, she is certain a culture of reading has played an important role.

how to read, which is associating letters with sound,” says Naudé. “The more exposure to reading a child gets, especially if it is done in a playful and fun way, the more familiar he or she will become with the skill of reading. Plus it will be associated with their natural development of language, a process that starts at birth and is something children love.” And that’s what we’re aiming for: engendering a love for reading in our young ones, a connection with words and other worlds that will, hopefully, help them at school, but as importantly, will set them on a journey of discovery. “Reading is a world like no other. You can taste riches, go anywhere, it takes you places,” says Geffen.

breeding bookworms So how can we introduce our children to reading in such a way as to ignite in them a passion and love for reading? “Start early, right from birth, by reading aloud to your child,” says Naudé. “Reading for children should be seen as fun, not a chore,” Naudé continues, but just how can we make it such? “Delight them,” says Geffen, “don’t just fill them with facts. Change your tone of voice often and use different voices for the different characters.” Stories

“The skill of reading is the heart of all learning,” says Dr Louis Naudé, a Cape Town-based cognitive and remedial consultant. “In learning to love reading and improving one’s ability to read, competency is built in understanding the written word and in doing so children become more competent scholars.” Developing pre-reading skills, however, doesn’t need to be all about work – especially not for the child. “Listening to stories, rhymes and ‘playing’ with sounds and words form the foundation for learning


September 2010

reflect emotions and attitudes, as we narrate stories we can use our voices to dramatise these. So throw off your inhibitions – and welcome audience participation. Make reading a part of your day every day, “especially at bedtime,” suggests Naudé. Or build in a cuddle and story with Mom during the early morning bottle. How about a Dad’s-just-back-from-the-office story each evening? Create an enjoyable and affectionate interaction, and your toddler “will grow up associating these good memories with reading,” says Geffen. joburg’s


Reading is a world like no other. You can taste riches, go anywhere, it takes you places.

Most importantly, says Naudé, “let your child see you read. Share your love of books with them.” Introduce a reading hour for the whole family once a week at the same time and talk to each other about what you are reading, suggests Naudé. Always have books around the house that your child can pick up and page through, suggests Tandi Erasmus of The Story Club, a Durban-based “book club” for children aged three to six. This doesn’t need to cost you a fortune: visit your local library, check out the children’s shelf at your second-hand bookstore or swap books with friends. It’s easier to encourage reading when children are excited by the topic. “Learn what excites your child and select books according to these interests,” says Naudé. “My oldest son loved dinosaur books, whereas the younger one has always enjoyed trains and fell in love with the Thomas The Tank Engine series,“ says Erasmus. Choose age-appropriate books. Babies, for instance, need books that “are durable, in bright colours, with minimal text and with pictures of concrete, recognisable things (such as animals or

they’ll move on to the next book when they are ready,” says Erasmus. “Give books as gifts and ask relatives to do the same,” says Naudé. Involve your child in selecting the book. Go to story time at your library or bookshop, or take them to “meet an author at a book launch; talking with other children about books may inspire them,” says Naudé. “If you have a child who seems to be uninterested in listening to stories try buying good children’s magazines – they are sure to find an article that captures their attention,” says Erasmus. Consider having a weekly televisionfree evening, let each child choose a book and spend the time reading. “Even my oldest daughter, who’s 13, participates happily,” says Erasmus. “If your child has readers from school try ‘buddy’ reading: they read a page and then you read a page – this can make reading homework more fun. Always praise and encourage your child as they learn to read and never compare them to siblings or friends,” says Erasmus. Both Erasmus and Geffen suggest choosing some of the children’s classics and enjoying them with your children: try

household objects)”. Geffen suggests not reading fairy tales to children younger than four years of age. Sensible advice if I think of how I, at nearly double that age, would remove the Town Magicians of Bremen from my bookshelf and push it out into the passage, so did the folk tale haunt me. “A good book for two-year-olds?” I ask. “The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle,” she suggests, “or Virginia Miller’s Bartholomew Bear: Five Toddler Tales.” If a younger child wants to hear their favourite book over and over again, bear with them, cheerfully and animatedly, of course. The repetition “is reassuring, and

“Robinson Crusoe, Little Women, Treasure Island, Oliver Twist and The Lost World,” says Erasmus. “The Wind in the Willows, Alice in Wonderland, and The Wizard of Oz shouldn’t be missed out on either,” adds Geffen, who suggests reading these to children from the age of six. “The Magic Faraway Tree is great from the age of four,” she says. Don’t lose heart. “As your child grows and enters their teen years their interests change and there may be a period that they seem to read less. I believe, though, that once they are readers they will always be readers,” says Erasmus.


September 2010



creating traditions DONNA COBBAN looks at rituals as a means of building family.

to achieve at the time. On the contrary, their purpose was a cold gin and tonic along with a good roast, mixed and cooked by anyone but themselves. (Such are the basic desires of many parents with small children.) Nevertheless, the ritual was created, because that’s what we did, every Sunday, week after week, year after year. It’s an experience I hold onto dearly; it adds continuity and form to my life.

that was then… Now, years on and far from the smell of wild grasses, I find myself, a single mom, acutely aware of the need for rituals – rituals that, in the absence of nearby family, need to be created myself. Thus far we are not doing too badly… This past winter, every Friday night has been pancake night – we work together to mix the batter and cook up delectable savoury pancakes for our supper. Come summer, this might morph into beach pizzas or lounge picnics – weather dependent. As a working mom, this gives the weekend ahead a special significance and helps my toddler to ground himself and grasp where in the week we are. As Robin Barker, author of The Mighty Toddler, puts it: “Rituals are calming and reassuring and give order to a toddler’s life at a time when his inner world tends to be somewhat chaotic and uncertain.” When I cast around for stories of treasured family rituals, they come pouring in. Tales of rituals from people’s childhood that are so full of colour and so infused with meaning that the very telling of them is a rich reminder to me of the enormity of childhood, and how the smallest things really matter! Meike tells me how her dad had a bedtime ritual where, instead of reading a story from a book, would read “a story from the hand”. “We could,” she says, “just


September 2010

show him our hand, and he would have a very close look at it and then start telling the story he would ‘see’ in our hand. My dad is the best storyteller in the entire world, and this ritual also allowed him to tell us a story when, for example, there wasn’t a book close by, like on long trips in an aeroplane or on the train. My brother does it with his children and whenever I hear: ‘Dad, one more story from the hand’, it reminds me to try and do this for my son.” While stories evoke rich memories, so too do days spent in bed, too sick to go to school. Kate tells me that she can still remember the colours and pattern on the pillowcase that they were allowed when sick. The ill one would also get freshly squeezed orange juice. “The pillowcase and the orange juice were not enough to mean that we feigned being ill but it certainly was a special treat for the sick one,” she says. Rob Parsons, author of The Sixty Minute Family and The Sixty Minute Father talks about rituals giving us a “sense of connectedness”. In his books, he tells of his own family tradition where once a month everyone would drag their mattresses into the living room, the fire would be lit, chocolate devoured, and stories told. Traditions like these are certainly worth the effort. As Parsons points out: “Whether they are simple or profound, in our family or in our nation, traditions say to us: ‘You belong here – these are your roots’.”

connection makers Some ritual ideas gathered from far and wide: • Bedtime story – every single night. • Weekend breakfasts – pancakes, eggs, bacon, muffins, French toast – cooked and eaten in a leisurely fashion. • Slow weekend mornings – children climb into the parents’ bed and there’s no rush to get going. • Family meals out, to mark the passing of age and/or grades. • Regular holidays – younger children love returning to familiar places with the same mountain pools, trees to climb, and the predictable sense of adventure. • Let each child choose the family meal on an allocated day of the week – cook, rejoice and eat, no matter the meal. • Let each child choose a weekly game or activity in which the whole family participates – no excuses. • Before eating, say gratitude prayers, where everyone has a chance to be glad for the good things that happened that day. • Treat all family birthdays the same way – flowers and sweets and presents round the birthday person’s breakfast bowl, tea in bed with presents, a special story, the options are endless. • Create scenarios where children know the outcome – examples might include doing a huge puzzle together as a family, and from the start the youngest child gets to hide and then place the final piece – make it up as you go. • Spring-cleaning rituals make room for space and giving – take the children to the same charity (see page 42 for ideas) every year to give them a sense of continuity and to assure them that parting with once-treasured goods really does make a difference. • Turn things such as taking out the rubbish, making your bed or washing the dishes into a ritual rather than a chore – resistance to these may soon vanish as children see their role as a vital cog in the family wheel.




very Sunday, shortly after breakfast, my father would load up the cooler bag, while my mother packed a few items she’d ordered from the “country”. We then bundled Heidi, our beloved Staffie, into the back of the open bakkie, and my sister and I followed suit. Heidi would lean out over the wheel hub, her ears taking flight in the side wind as her small nose took in all it could smell. For 30 kilometres we travelled like this, on our way to my grandparents’ smallholding. I can still smell the wild grasses, feel the weight of the uphills and the thrill of the downhills. Five hundred metres from the gate, Heidi would launch herself from her wheel-hub seat and race us to it. Today, over 30 years on, whenever I feel disconnected with myself, the world, or life in general, I take myself back to the bakkie, to the wind, the smells and the sunshine, to a place of safety (before the obligatory safety of the car chair was conceived). Such is the nature of positive rituals: they tend to ground you, give your existence credence, and allow you to take stock and know that all is okay. This certainly was not something my parents were trying


September 2010




eating Your child’s food – what should be in it, what should not and what it all means. By LUCILLE KEMP

food label lingo

The order of the nutrients on a nutritional label corresponds to how much of each is in the food. The first on the list is the main ingredient and the last makes up the smallest portion. A typical nutrition analysis table must provide information on kilojoules (energy), total fat, saturated fat, monounsaturated fat, polyunsaturated


September 2010

fat, trans fat, cholesterol, sodium, total carbohydrates, dietary fibre, sugar and protein. To keep you and your family healthy choose food that has no cholesterol, reduced saturated fat, preservatives and sodium (salt) and that is trans fat free. Favour calcium, dietary fibre and good fats such as monounsaturated fat, which can be found in avocados and peanuts, and polyunsaturated fat, which is found in salmon. Simple carbohydrates and lean proteins are also good in moderate quantities. Overall, choose products that contain less than 20 percent of the daily values for fat, cholesterol and sodium. Nutrient reference values (NRVs) now replace the term RDA, and are a recommended guideline to preventing nutrient deficiencies and disease. These also help you see how a food fits into an overall daily diet. Gabi Steenkamp, a Johannesburg-based dietician who is also a food-labelling consultant, advises that you take note of the NRVs as they apply to everyone in the family that is four years and older. Serving size aims to keep you and your family’s food portions within healthy limits. If children are to keep a healthy weight, it is vital from a nutritional point of view that parents keep the serving to the size recommended on the packaging. joburg’s


The info on food packaging can be tricky to understand, but being able to “read” what’s printed on the label can make all the difference to your family’s diet (and wellbeing). We chatted to a few people in the know and rounded up some tips for food shopping savvy…

Good news for the consumer is that new food labelling legislation comes into effect on 1 March 2011. Products will be more accurately represented, ingredients will be better monitored and scrutinised for consumer safety and it will be illegal to make flippant health claims – no more terms such as “healthy” and “nutritious” splashed across a box of sugary cereal. Claims such as “fat free”, “sugar free”, “light”, “low fat”, and “high fibre” will only be able to be used if, according to Gabi, “certain provisos are met; the nutritional analysis is done by a reputable SANAS (The South African National Accreditation System) accredited laboratory, following accredited procedures; and the level of the stated nutrient is in fact at the level set out in the legislation.” Rulings are yet to be passed on claims about the relationship between a nutrient and a disease, such as calcium and osteoporosis, or fat and cancer, for example. (For a detailed breakdown of new food labelling regulations visit the Department of Health’s website at Organic labelling has often been used as a catchphrase in the marketing and branding world. For this reason it is heavily monitored and regulated – products undergo a stringent assessment. The food should have no (or very little) synthetic chemical input such as fertiliser, pesticides, antibiotics, food additives, genetically modified organisms, irradiation, and the use of sewage sludge is not allowed. The farmland also needs to have been free of synthetic chemicals for a number of years.

avoiding trolley trash That old saying “you are what you eat” has more than a sprinkling of truth in it. Being informed about the ingredients in food and the related health implications means you can make good choices for your family. Here are some things to keep in mind… A build-up of LDL cholesterol causes high blood cholesterol and is linked to coronary heart disease. It shouldn’t be shrugged off as an exclusively adult issue. Pay particular attention to your child’s saturated fat intake because “the effect of a poor diet on cholesterol levels is cumulative and starts in childhood,” says Gabi. Saturated fat is linked to heart disease, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, weight gain and certain types of cancer. To maintain optimum health Gabi advises: “A primary school child should consume no more than 80g of fat per day in total. This means choosing leaner protein and dairy foods, with only one added fat to every meal your child eats.”

A little sugar does no harm, but starting off the day with a huge dose of sugar and refined carbohydrates is not conducive to good concentration at school. Sodium increases the risk of getting cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure. Chicken nuggets, tinned veggies (opt for frozen veggies, if not fresh, as they will have been frozen straight from harvest), microwave meals, frozen pizzas, cured meats and even yoghurt have been shown to contain an excessive amount of salt. A healthy daily intake of salt for a child aged one to three years old should be a little more than half a teaspoon (1 500mg), four to eight year olds should be eating just less than one


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teaspoon (1 900mg), nine to 13 year olds should be eating close on one teaspoon (2 200mg) and from the age of 14 and older they may eat the same as an adult – one teaspoon (2 300mg). Probably the easiest way to keep within the guidelines and control your family’s salt consumption is to cook your own meals. Trans-fatty-acids can increase the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure,

high blood cholesterol and weight gain. They can be found in fried foods, storebought baked goods such as doughnuts, cookies, crackers, processed foods and certain margarines. These fats form when vegetable oil hardens (a process called hydrogenation). Limit carbohydrates and added sugar if diabetes runs in the family. Low GI is ideal – the glycemic index was originally developed by doctors who wanted to find the foods best for people with diabetes. Healthy cut-offs of sugar and fat consumption depend on each food category. For instance, bread with a fat content of 3g per 100g is a high-fat bread, but lasagne and yoghurt with this level of fat would be classed as low in fat. Gabi also suggests looking at a child’s serving size. “If one sweet is consumed the sugar content will be okay, but if a whole mini packet of sweets is eaten, then the sugar becomes excessive. Everything is okay in moderation.” Artificial colourants and flavourants are said to be linked to allergies, hyperactivity, asthma and cancer.


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However, this should not be taken out of context, as Gabi puts it: “Additives are very well controlled in South Africa. The miniscule amount that you are being exposed to will make no difference as long as you make sure you are tempering this with an active lifestyle and you, for the most part, eat freshly made food and lots of fruit and vegetables.” Gabi also says you need to know your E numbers before you make your judgements. “E numbers refer to all additives to food, including vitamins and other beneficial or useful additives. For example, the E number for vitamin C is E300.”

ready, steady, cook Having completed a label-savvy shop, you’re now ready to whip up your family’s meals. Eating healthily, however, doesn’t have to be a mission. The key to a healthy diet is fresh over instant. Plan a once-a-week fresh produce shop so that fruit and vegetables are always available in the home – and you’re sorted. Half your child’s plate should be filled with vegetables. This will improve the nutritional


Half a plate of salad and veggies will improve the nutritional value of all meals – even fish fingers and oven chips become okay. value of all meals – even fish fingers and oven chips become okay, according to Durban-based dietician Paula Lawson. She goes on to say: “The busy parent who relies on prepared meals will make the nutrient composition of that pre-prepared meal so much better by abiding by the half plate of salad and veg rule.” If you are going to buy a prepared meal, Paula suggests you go for a low GI option, which means that the glucose sugars release slowly and steadily into the body throughout the day, giving your child long-lasting energy.


A plate of food should be portioned following the food pyramid, says Paula. “That is: a palm of protein, a fist of low GI carbs, and half a plate of salad and vegetables. Serve fresh, seasonal foods and in so doing you will automatically limit packaged, processed long-life shelf foods.” Paula says parents should encourage water consumption – this should take the place of cool drinks and juices, while fruit juice, when consumed, needs to be made with 100 percent fruit juice blends, and preferably diluted with water.

When it comes to breakfast cereal scrutinise the ingredients list. Gabi’s take on cereal is a real eye-opener. “Most cereals are highly refined foods; foods from Mother Nature will always be much better.” At least most have vitamins and minerals added, but the absorption of these is dependent on what form the vitamins and minerals take. The bottom line is that many cereals are too concentrated and refined, and often too high in sugar. “A little sugar does no harm, but starting off the day with a huge dose of sugar and refined carbohydrates is not conducive to good concentration at school.” Based on what we mentioned earlier about the order of the ingredients indicating their position on the list, Gabi offers a useful tip. “If the first ingredients are wheat flour and whole wheat, the cereal is actually made of very concentrated carbohydrates in the form of flour – not exactly a cereal. If sugar features in the first two or three ingredients then chances are the cereal contains too much sugar,” she says. If your child insists on cereal, seek out the products that list a whole grain, but be sure to check the fibre content. Cereals should have less than 5g of sugar per serving, and brown rice instead of white rice makes a better choice

since it’s higher in fibre. Cooked oats (not the instant variety) is the best breakfast for your child and is a good example of a whole grain. Some dieticians say that you can even make a small difference by taking the cereal that your child likes and mixing it with a whole grain option.

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off to


minus mom or dad

Holiday camps are catching on in South Africa. If you’re considering one for the December break, here’s what you need to know. By GLYNIS HORNING


he closest most South African parents have come to summer camp is watching American comedies like Meatballs or nostalgic reruns of Dirty Dancing. “The US has had a camp culture for 100 years,” says Zoë Ellender, director of Sugar Bay, north of Durban. “Generations of family members have made it a tradition.” By contrast, nine years after it first opened, Sugar Bay remains the only permanent dedicated holiday camp in this country. But a growing number of temporary camps are being run at camping sites, on farms or at guesthouses over school holidays.

new activities,” she says. “They provide a great opportunity to socialise with different children and adults.” “Children learn to relate to others, to be responsible for themselves, and to make their own decisions about things like what they’re going to do next,” adds Ellender. “Here they can choose from over 100 different activities, and often end up trying and loving things they and their parents wouldn’t have dreamed they’d tackle. Having a stranger say ‘Good going, climbing that wall!’ is more powerful than hearing it from a parent, who children

With many parents working, there should be a large market for camps, but most South Africans still keep their children home with a domestic worker, or send them to daycare or to grandparents, says Tanyan Gradwell, director of Metamorphic Adventures Holiday Camps, held at various sites in the Western Cape. “Cost may be a factor, but parents here have been slow to appreciate the advantages camps can give children.” Holiday camps, say Gradwell and Ellender, are not simply about keeping children safely occupied and having fun – they’re a growth experience. Durban psychologist Rakhi Beekrum agrees. “For many children, camps are their first taste or test of independence and an introduction to


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know will always tell them they’re great. It’s affirming and confidence-building.” Even “problem” children benefit, she says. “At camp they can make a fresh start, and we keep loud children or potential bullies busy, give them responsibilities, and ensure they exercise and eat well, so they do well.” Most South African camps take children from ages seven to 17, but camp-readiness is less about age than maturity. If a child can sleep away from home and handle staying up to around 9pm, they are generally ready. But talk to them about things like “uncomfortable touch” and the importance of saying “no,” suggests Beekrum. Good camps include talks on this. joburg’s


Children learn to relate to others, be responsible and make decisions.

Parents often ask if a child should bring a sibling or friend, but it’s not necessary. “Children find they want to do different things and explore new friendships, and can feel tied down,” says Ellender. “They tend to come alone the next time.”

choosing a camp Unlike in the US, there is no Camping Association in South Africa, providing a comprehensive list of camps of a certain standard, and our Tourism Grading Council has no category for them. You need to shop around online or review websites and brochures with your child to find a camp that fits their interests (arts, sports, leadership, religion), then contact the director. Ask for references (other parents, camp counsellors), and ask questions: What is the director’s background? Ellender, for example, is an attorney, and a scuba-diving, first-aid and life-guard instructor; Gradwell has worked in earlychild development and the travel and tourism industry, and her husband, codirector Marcel Gradwell, is an accredited sports coach and outrigger canoeing instructor who did Salvation Army camps and counselling in the US.


Which organisations do they belong to, or which endorse them? Ellender has joined the American Camping Association and the Southern African Tourism Services Association and follows their guidelines, although they have no inspectors to accredit camps here. Gradwell, who also runs school camps, works with the Departments of Education, Health and Social Development in running her camps, and suggests contacting the nearest provincial department to ask about any camp you are considering.


How is homesickness handled? Good camps allow little ones to bring a familiar toy or blanket, and find out what they enjoy doing and distract them, dealing with each camper differently.



How is discipline handled? Does this fit with your values?

How full is the programme? There can be scheduled down-time for reading, resting and board games (generally an hour after lunch), but if children have long stretches of open time they may be bored and little better off than at home.


What contact is there with parents? Calling children can make them homesick, but you should be given times when you can call camp managers for an update. Cellphones and other electronic equipment are generally not allowed, but children should be able to ask to call home.


How safe is the camp? Is it fully fenced and protected from outside influences? Is safety equipment used for all risky ventures, especially climbing, skateboarding, BMXing, horse-riding and paintball? Are all activities supervised by adults qualified in first aid? Do trained lifeguards supervise water sports? Are there fire drills and plans for emergency procedures? How far is the nearest doctor and hospital?


Are counsellors given thorough background checks? Top camps insist on police clearance and an agreement by counsellors to undergo random drug and alcohol tests. Are counsellors given proper training in child behaviour and safety, not just a quick chat the day children arrive, and are they continually evaluated?


What is the counsellor-child ratio? This should be around one to seven, and counsellors should sleep in the same cabin or tent as the children to provide 24-hour supervision, but have their own section and ablutions.


How old are the counsellors? They should be young (18 to 25) so they have energy to participate fully with children and can be role models, and they should have youth-development experience as coaches at schools or youth organisations.



How much does it cost, and does this include all extras? Top camps charge from R3 500 to R4 000 a week fully inclusive, with discounts for extra children and repeats. Other camps charge half that, and some considerably less, but also give less – find out what you will be getting, from facilities and transport to meals (ask to see some menus).


Finally, what percentage of campers come back? Around 40 to 60 percent is good. “We have some children who’ve been more than 20 times,” says Ellender. “They become like family.”


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the better

connection Stuck in a cycle of living past each other? Here are some things you can do to invest in your marriage and get back the closeness you had.


t’s Saturday. Your partner is off at your son’s under-8 soccer match and you’re rushing up and down the aisles at the supermarket trying to finish the grocery shopping. Your three-year-old is hanging off the trolley hoping to grab interesting looking items from the shelves. Halfway down the cereal aisle you’re hit by the question: what happened to those lazy Saturday mornings, snuggling in bed, sipping freshly brewed coffee, chatting about the events of the past week? When last did you and he actually stop, look squarely into each other’s eyes


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and have a conversation that wasn’t about the house, the children, the bond, and so on? If your reply is “far too long ago”, you’re not alone. It’s scary just how easy it is to live lives so focused on getting the children to and from where they need to be, feeding and clothing the family and keeping the house running while juggling jobs, financial responsibilities, work trips, extramural schedules and so on, that you start living past each other. Once all of these demands are taken care of, you’ve got little energy left for your partner, let alone for building your relationship.




But, says Liz Dooley, director of the Family Life Centre in Johannesburg: “If you don’t spend time nurturing your relationship you’ll grow apart. You may end up not knowing each other, and possibly not even liking each other.” Or, as Cape Town psychologist Glyde Thompson puts it: “Some couples make great CEOs. The family is the company, which they run very well. But when the children leave home, they haven’t invested in their relationship and things fall apart.” So what can we do to keep this from happening? Here are a number of ways you can invest in a strong and meaningful relationship with your partner...

Connect through conversation. “A good exercise,” suggests Dooley, “is asking what percentage of your time you spend as a couple talking about ‘me’, ‘you’, ‘us’, ‘them’ (others including the children), and things (car, cost of groceries, and so on). Very often this reveals how little we talk about intimate things.” It’s important to be intentional about changing this because you and your spouse are going to be together long after the children grow up and move out. Clinical psychologist Willard F. Harley gives some valuable insight into the sort of conversation that builds strong relationships: “If you want a satisfying marriage, you must use some of your conversational time to inform,


investigate and understand each other,” says Harley in his popular book His Needs, Her Needs: Building an Affair-Proof Marriage. “Inform each other of your personal interests and activities, desiring to bring each other into your spheres of interest. Investigate each other’s personal feelings and attitudes without trying to change each other. Encourage each other to be open and vulnerable by being respectful and sensitive. Understand each other’s motivations in life – what makes you happy and sad.”

Listen so as to understand beyond the words. Listen to hear your partner’s heart. Make time for togetherness. Harley suggests couples spend 15 hours a week alone with their spouse “giving each other undivided attention”. Fifteen hours might sound like a lot – with children to see to, work commitments, a social life, and so on – but he believes this amount of time is vital. If you don’t have the time to be alone to talk, you need to reassess your priorities, he says. Some couples find setting a date night works for them. Why not choose one evening a week and take turns being

responsible for serving the other dinner? Takeaways are fine – food is not the main course, conversation is.

Tell your partner you love them, but make sure you’re speaking the right language. While regularly saying “I love you” is so important, it’s vital for the health of your relationship to show your love in the way your partner needs it to be expressed. Surely if I’m communicating it, that’s good enough, you may argue. Well, not according to best-selling author Gary Chapman, whose book The 5 Love Languages is well worth reading. In it he outlines five emotional love languages: “five ways that people speak and understand love”. These are “words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service and physical touch.” You might think your partner should be feeling super loved, after all the positive things you’ve been saying to him lately, but the truth is, in love terms you’re speaking Greek and he doesn’t understand a word. Instead, what he may need to feel loved is quality time with you – your undivided attention for a stretch of time, regularly. We often give the sort of love we would like to be receiving. So observe your partner carefully. How is he expressing love to you? Is this perhaps how he’d like you to be showing love to him? The book contains a useful quiz for pinpointing your love language – why not do it together and, if you are not too keen on reading an entire book on relationships (though

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I’d highly recommend you do), just read the chapters pertaining to your partner’s top two or three love languages. Each gives loads of ideas for communicating your love to your partner in a way that he or she will understand. “Once you identify and learn to speak your partner’s primary love language, I believe that you will have discovered the key to long-lasting, loving marriage. If we want him/her to feel the love we are trying to communicate, we must express it in his or her primary love language,” says Chapman. “The payoff of speaking each other’s love language is a greater connection. This translates into better communication, increased understanding, and ultimately, improved romance.”

Cut criticism and speak appreciation. US psychologist and relationship expert Dr John Gottman has spent 35 years researching the reasons marriages work or fail. His litmus test for a healthy relationship is whether the ratio of appreciation to criticism is at least five to one. Having interviewed thousands of couples, he found that where the ratio was one to one or less, divorce was virtually inevitable. Defensiveness, stonewalling, criticism and contempt are all markers of ill health in a marriage, he says. He singles out contempt, shown by one or both parties, as the top signal of a relationship in trouble. So, if you find these four things raising their ugly heads in your relationship, take action! Focus instead on speaking out your appreciation for your partner. Look for what you like, admire and love in the other, and verbalise these things. If we’re aiming for a healthy relationship, we all have a lot of work to do in the appreciation department.

Be interested in, and curious about, each other. We are happy to get into the world of our children, but do we make the same effort to understand the interests or job of our partner, asks Dooley? You might just get hooked on their fascination with plants, the share price (at a push!) or their interest in cycling – much fulfilment can be found in shared interests.


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Really listen. “This means that you are able to recall what she told you her boss said two months ago,” says Dooley. “When he speaks, focus on what he is saying, give him your attention,” she continues. Listen so as to understand beyond the words. Listen to hear your partner’s heart. What is your husband or wife really trying to say? And if you don’t know, ask!

Be honest. “Honesty is the best marriage insurance policy,” says Harley. “In 24 years of counselling, I have never discovered the perfect marriage. Each partner has faults and weaknesses of one kind or another. However, no marriage can survive two things: lack of honesty and lack of cooperation. “When honesty and cooperation exist in a marriage, you have a couple, that is willing to share and build together. They do not need to be secretive or ‘private’. Neither wishes to lie or shade the truth to ‘protect’ the spouse. When you build your marriage on trust, you experience a joyful willingness to share all personal things with the one you have chosen for a life partner.” That means avoiding lying to get yourself out of trouble or to protect your partner, and not letting “little white lies” chip away at your relationship. Your partner “has a right to your innermost thoughts,” says Harley. “Knowing you includes your good and bad feelings, your frustrations, your problems and your fears – anything that’s on your mind.” It’s about letting yourself be known, warts and all.

Learn how to resolve conflict effectively. “Conflict and acrimony between parents has a direct impact on the emotional wellbeing of a child. Parents must be able to disagree in front of their children. This teaches children how to resolve conflict in their own lives. But the severity of the arguments is key. If parents are in the habit of degrading each other, it can have an enormously negative impact on a child,” says Thompson. One conflict-resolution technique that’s particularly useful when you’ve hit a stalemate, suggests Thompson, is to “give one partner the opportunity to talk. During joburg’s

When last did you and he actually stop, look squarely into each other’s eyes and have a conversation that wasn’t about the house, the children, the bond...? this time all the other partner is allowed to do is listen and paraphrase what the speaker is saying. At the end, the listener then says something along the lines of: ‘I understand you feel this way because of…’.” The conversation is then left there. Later that day or the following day, once the emotions of the earlier conversation have subsided, the roles are reversed. When you say “I understand” it acknowledges the other’s feelings and experience and “gives emotional resolution to the topic,” says Thompson. “If you get into arguments and can’t make headway, go for counselling, or get a mediator,” says Thompson. Don’t get stuck – get help and get moving in the right direction, towards – not away from – each other. A woman on the marriage-preparation course I attended told of a tactic her parents had used regularly. In the height of an argument, they would run a bath and sit facing each other, knees together, no room for escape. They would stay in the bathroom till they’d talked things through, and come to some resolution. Perhaps this “aqua therapy” might work for you too?

100-kilometre round trips each afternoon and evening, you can say ‘no’. You need time for yourself and time for you as a couple,” says Dooley. While it is important to give your children the chance to engage in fun, stimulating activities, your relationship with your spouse can’t just survive on the leftover time once all other demands have been taken care of. Your marriage deserves intentional scheduling into your diary, and its importance needs to be reflected in the choices you make.

Surprise your partner. Book a babysitter and take him out to dinner on a Friday evening. “Surprises inject energy into a relationship – without these, life becomes a chore,” says Dooley. Why not cook her the same meal you made in your bachelor days, when you were trying so hard to impress her? Make a little effort in setting the table and create an occasion of it. Or buy him the book he commented on while reading the reviews in the weekend paper. Pick a few flowers from the garden and place it in a vase next to her bed. The options are endless; the end point simple: make your partner feel special and loved.

Have fun together. Compare the following

Learn to say “no” to the children. If your daughter “wants to do five extramurals that involve you driving joburg’s

snap shots, says Thompson: “You’re sitting next to each other and somebody says ‘smile’ for the camera, versus being caught off guard sitting together, enjoying the moment… there’s no need to pretend.” All good and well, you may say, but what if hanging out together just doesn’t feel like fun? Find something you both enjoy doing and do that. Cast your mind back to when you first met. What did you love doing together? Book a night to go to a rock concert; spend an afternoon wine-tasting – find a common interest and create space to indulge in that. As much as you expect your partner to share your difficult days and challenging experiences, only burdening them with the “heavy” stuff won’t work. Make sure you also share fun, laughter and enjoyment. As Harley puts it: “The couple who plays together, stays together.” September 2010




and donate

Time to clear out the clutter? Tackle one room at a time and decide what to keep, what to bin and what to donate. Then use our handy guide to decide where your pre-loved goods will best be used. Simply scan our list for the item you want to give away, read up on the charities listed alongside and choose one to receive your donation. And you thought this would be difficult… By CHAREEN BOAKE

Appliances (small) Appliances (large) Art, craft and hobby supplies Baby clothes Baby cots, camp cots, cot mattresses and bedding Baby formula and powdered milk Baby prams, highchairs and car seats Baby supplies (bottles, slings, cups etc) Bicycles and tricycles Blankets Books and magazines Building materials CDs and DVDs Clothing (adult) Clothing (child) Computers and peripherals Fabric


Food (non-perishable) Furniture Garden tools Kitchenware Linen and curtains Outdoor play equipment Plants and seeds Shoes Toiletries (new) Toys and children’s books Wedding dresses and matric dance dresses


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Abraham Kriel Childrens Homes provide residential care, satellite homes and home-based care for socially disrupted and disadvantaged children and families with the aim of empowering and reintegrating them into society. Donations can be dropped at their homes or collection can be arranged. Langlaagte. Contact: 011 839 3058, or visit Acres of love Owns and operates homes that provide a noninstitutional type setting and environment for infants and children. Donations can be collected by them or delivered to the various homes throughout Johannesburg. Contact: 011 704 1423, info@acresoflove. org or visit All hands on Dec Friends offers assistance to families of children diagnosed with cancer, and raises awareness of the plight of children with cancer. They also create and deliver activity boxes for children undergoing chemotherapy and cancer treatment. Various drop off depots in Johannesburg. Contact: 011 958 0037, or visit joburg’s

Animals in distress provides veterinary assistance and followup services for those who cannot afford treatment for their animals. They can collect in the Midrand area and surrounds. Contact: 011 466 0261, animals@animalsindistress. or visit Botshabelo provides a babies’ home, home-based care for people with HIV, cancer and TB as well as an early childhood development programme for children aged 0–6 years within the Olievenhoutbosch informal settlement. Drop off at Urban Life Church between 8am–4:30pm. Main Rd, Kyalami. Contact: 0861 248 724 or visit Children of Fire co-operates with several charities to relieve the effects of poverty and sickness in South Africa and is particularly concerned with disabilities and disfigurement resulting from burns. Goods to be delivered to Just Ginns, Shop 6 Chilli Lane, Rivonia Rd, Sunninghill. Contact: 011 234 0789, info@ or visit Child Welfare provides direct services to children, families September 2010



and communities in distress. Some of the services include foster care, preventative care, trauma care and counselling. Goods are distributed among the various homes and they are able to arrange collection. Contact: 011 298 8565, or visit Chubby Chums provides homes, places of safety and hospices for abused, molested and abandoned children as well as critically and terminally ill children from birth–18 years. Drop off at their office in Germiston. 136 Cydonia Rd, Primrose Hill. Contact: 011 873 1539, chubbyc@ or visit

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. – Aesop


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Compass offers food and shelter to homeless people as well as a two-year rehabilitation programme that includes the necessary skills to reincorporate those who attend back into society. Goods to be delivered to Office

50-51, Upper level, Van Riebeeck Mall, Van Riebeeck Str, Edenvale. Contact: 011 454 3642, or visit Door of Hope is literally a “hole in the wall” into the side of a local church in downtown Johannesburg. Mothers are able to anonymously leave their babies at the church rather than abandoning them elsewhere. Collection can be arranged in Johannesburg South. Contact: 011 432 2913, doorhope@ or visit Eco Access facilitates the inclusion of people with disabilities into the natural environment and nature. They also encourage schools for disabled children to set up environmental programmes, including vegetable gardening. Eco Access can collect in and around the Northcliff area. Contact: 011 477 3676, or visit


Gerald Fitzpatrick House and Nursing Home cares for 85 elderly ladies who have little or no income. They also have a thrift shop selling used goods. They are able to arrange collection or you can deliver to their premises in Selby. Contact: 011 614 2615 or gfhshadia@ Home Start South Africa provides counselling, play mediation, assisted reading and homework times for children. They also organise postpartum depression group meetings and home visits to families with children under school-going age. Goods to be delivered to Benoni. Contact: 011 845 1116, or visit Hospice Westrand provides palliative care to terminally ill patients by providing medically directed home-based care, support groups, bereavement counselling and orphans


and vulnerable children’s programmes. Collection can be arranged. Contact: 011 953 4863, or visit Jabulani Khakibos Kids provides a home for children who have lived on the streets, and arms them with specific life skills in preparation for re-integration into their respective communities. Goods to be delivered to the home at 1 High Str, Berea. Contact: 084 620 1465, or visit KGOSI Neighbourhood Foundation rescues children between the ages of four and six years from the streets, and channels them into an early childhood educational programme at the Wings of Hope School. Goods to be delivered to 44 Long Str, Belgravia. Contact: 011 614 3427, or visit

Kids Haven rehabilitates children living and working on the streets, provides them with love and shelter as well as the guidance, therapy and support to reintroduce them into society. You can drop off goods at various depots around Johannesburg or they can collect. Contact: 011 706 7959, or visit Lambano Sanctuary provides homes for babies and children infected with HIV. Goods to be delivered to 36 Senator Rd, Wychwood. Contact: 011 615 3307, or visit Little Eden provides a permanent home for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. They are able to arrange collection or you can drop off. Corner Harris Ave and Wagenaar Rd, Edenglen. Contact: 011 609 7246, info@ or visit

Magical Moments aims to create magical moments and special days for abused, abandoned, disadvantaged, neglected, orphaned, underprivileged and vulnerable children. There are various drop-off points around the city. Contact: 083 324 0320, info@magicalmoments. or visit Mosaic Kids is a community project for the upliftment and upskilling of unemployed mothers with children under six years. Mothers are taught to sew and make fairy costumes whilst their children are provided with crèche facilities. Goods to be delivered to 19 Barbara Ave, Morehill, Benoni. Contact: 011 425 5685, mosaic1@ or visit Mother Earth Foundation seeks to assess, identify and affect selfhelp projects to empower people living in poverty with the necessary foundational skills and knowledge to help them

September 2010



get into the workplace. There are various drop off points in Johannesburg. Contact: 011 930 6169, or visit Nazareth House provides a home for HIV positive orphans, terminally ill adults as well as mentally challenged and aged adults who can no longer care for themselves or be maintained by the community. They are able to arrange collection of donations. Contact: 011 648 1002, superior@ or visit Oasis Haven seeks to place and care for abandoned and HIV positive infants and children within “Forever Families”. They are able to collect donations within the Randburg area or you can drop off at 48 Winston Ave, Robinhills. Contact: 011 678 8057, or visit


September 2010

Princess Alice Adoption Home is a place of safety for 30 babies. They care for abandoned babies and infants waiting for adoption. They also care for pregnant teenagers. Goods to be delivered to 36 Pallinghurts Rd, Westcliff. Contact: 011 646 5641, or visit Refilwe The Refilwe skills project aims to equip the Refilwe community with the necessary skills to start their own businesses, thereby creating a sustainable income to support themselves and their families. Goods to be delivered to Plot 87 and 90, Pelindaba Rd (R512), Lanseria. Contact: 082 379 0965, chapjane@global. or visit Save the Children Fund South Africa assists with job creation, palliative care and early childhood development programmes in Soweto and Alexandra. Certain drop off points in

Johannesburg. Contact: 011 477 8653/ 8591, or visit Scatterlings – Early learning for South African children provides day-care centres for disadvantaged children, enabling them to receive a good early childhood educational foundation. Various drop off points in Bryanston, Sandton and surrounds. Contact: 011 463 0193, 082 446 8190, or visit Siyanqoba Service Foundation Centre helps orphans and children infected and affected by HIV/Aids in the Zandspruit informal settlement near Honeydew. They also aim to care for physically disabled adults. Goods to be delivered to office No 18, Zandspruit Value Centre, cnr Peter Rd and Beyers Naudé Dr, Honeydew. Contact: 011 476 1700, info@ or visit

SOAPKIDZ – Sunrise of Africa’s Peaks Creates environmental awareness, promotes nature conservation and teaches life skills while doing fun activities with underprivileged, abused and neglected children. Goods to be delivered to 209 Amos St, Colbyn, Pretoria. Contact: 083 975 2700 or visit Sparrow Village cares for adults and children with HIV/Aids. Collection can be arranged. Contact: 011 472 6628, or visit Stepping Stones Children’s Homes provides a place of safety for orphaned and abandoned children as well as a learning centre where they are taught life skills, entrepreneurial skills, sustainable development skills, arts and participate in sporting activities. Goods to be delivered to Northcliff. Contact: 082 892 7674, zaf@ or visit


A little madness in the spring is wholesome even for the king. – Emily Dickinson The Bigshoes Foundation provides medical interventions and aims to improve the medical care of orphaned and vulnerable children. Drop off point at 13 Joubert St, Parktown. Contact: 011 484 0793, or visit The Cradle of Hope is a home offering restoration for female children and women. They offer counselling and therapy and teach the women how to care for and support themselves. Goods to be delivered to 37 Dekker St, Krugersdorp. Contact: 082 459 5747, admin@thecradleofhope. org or visit


The Manger Care Centre provides homes, food and clothing for 350 abused women, children, the elderly, disabled and destitute people, single mothers and addicts. They also feed almost 42 000 through various feeding schemes. They are able to collect or you can drop goods off at 8 Kirschner Road Brentwood Park, Benoni. Contact: 011 747 8700, zen.teitge@mangercare. or visit The Mary Needham Bargain Bazaar This shop is located on the premises of the Johannesburg SPCA and sells goods to raise money for the ongoing work performed by the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, such as veterinary treatment at their hospital. Open Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and the last Saturday of every month from 8am– 2pm. Goods to be delivered to 5 Benray Rd, Booysens. Contact: 011 681 3600 or visit

The Papillon Foundation aims to develop community empowerment projects for the destitute, orphans and old-age homes as well as providing clothing, food, training and education. Goods to be delivered to cnr Mabel and Lily St, Rosettenville. Contact: 011 435 9799, info@papillonfoundation. com or visit The Princess Project accepts donations of wedding dresses, matric dance dresses, ballgowns and evening wear. The dresses are matched up with brides-to-be and matriculants who haven’t the means to buy their own. There are representatives throughout the country, and collection can be arranged. See their website for someone near you. This organisation is still in the process of registering as an NPO. Contact: 084 400 9559, linmarieventer@gmail. com, or visit

Tshwane Place of Safety Association consists of a network of volunteer families who are screened, trained and registered as safety parents for abandoned and neglected babies and toddlers. They also provide a safe haven for babies and children up to 10 years of age. Collection can be arranged in certain areas surrounding Midrand and Centurion. Contact: 012 343 4331,, or visit Usindiso Ministries provides a shelter for abused or homeless women, children and teenage girls. They offer workshops to create awareness of HIV and Aids, women’s rights as well as life skills and handcraft programmes to assist the women in finding employment. Goods to be delivered to 80 Albert St, Marshalltown. Contact: 011 334 1143/4, or visit

September 2010



a good read for toddlers

for preschoolers

Hello, Animals!, Hello, Bugs!, Hello, Let’s Go!, and Hello, World! By Smriti Prasadam and Emily Bolam

The Elephant’s Child By Rudyard Kipling and Geoffrey Patterson (Frances Lincoln Ltd, R106)

(Bloomsbury Publishing, R79) These four delightful board books introduce your baby to the world around him. They feature high-contrast, black-and-white patterns and a burst of colour on every page. Hello, Animals! and Hello, Bugs! feature noises that get young ones joining in, while Hello, Let’s Go! introduces your baby to 10 noisy vehicles with beep-beeps and zoom-zooms. In Hello, World! your baby can explore the familiar and friendly features of the world around him. This is a lovely series to introduce your baby to the world of books, words and sounds.

The Sleep Sheep By Anna McQuinn and Hannah Shaw

Rudyard Kipling’s classic tale from the much-loved Just So Stories, is now available in paperback with fresh, vibrant illustrations by Geoffrey Patterson. “What does the crocodile have for dinner?” To find the answer to this vexing question, the elephant’s child, full of curiosity, leaves his uncles and aunts behind and journeys to the greygreen, greasy Limpopo River. This story, about how the elephant’s trunk became so long, has delighted children since 1902, when it first appeared, and Patterson’s illustrations enable even the youngest readers to enjoy the tale.

Tiddler – The story-telling fish By Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler

(The Chicken House, R83) When Sylvie can’t get to sleep she tries counting sheep, but the sheep have other ideas: like dancing, rollerblading and swimming! Children aged three plus will delight in trying to keep up with the flock of wild and woolly sheep in this lovely bedtime story. Packed with funny detail to pore over, jokes to discover, and witty illustrations, this book is a wonderful new take on the familiar sleep-inducing tactic of counting sheep. Anna McQuinn is an accomplished writer of more than 20 picture books, including the international best seller Lulu Loves the Library.

Hey! What’s that nasty Whiff? By Julia Jarman and Garry Parsons (Scholastic Children’s Books, R134) Children that can read well, starter learners as well as very young children, who simply enjoy a good story and beautiful illustrations, will love this book. Jarman has cleverly integrated into this story facts about two of nature’s great recyclers, the hyena and the vulture. Helpful Hyena is tired of cleaning up everyone else’s mess, so she quits. But when the mess starts to pile up, her friends soon realise that it’s up to everybody to look after our planet.

(Scholastic Children’s Books, R101) The award-winning creators of The Gruffalo first published the story of Tiddler in 2007. This fun story, which is full of colour and rhyme, is now available as a board book. It’s the tale of Tiddler, who “wasn’t much to look at with his plain grey scales. But Tiddler was a fish with a big imagination. He blew small bubbles but he told tall tales.” Tiddler is always late for school and always has a story to explain himself. One day, he gets caught in a fishing net, but because he’s only a tiddler, the fishermen dump him back in the sea – and now he’s lost, but can his stories save him? Children aged three to six will enjoy this book.

Monsters – An Owner’s Guide By Jonathan Emmett and Mark Oliver (Macmillan Children’s Books, R90) With a Monstermatic toy your child can experience the thrill of caring for a huge half-crazed creature in the comfort of your home. This guide contains all he needs to know about assembling and operating his monstrously marvellous companion. This is a funny spoof user-guide, that covers everything from “monster identification” to “cleaning and care” and the important “do’s and don’ts”. It’s full of comic detail, humour and monster mayhem.

for early graders Bella Sara – The Ultimate Guide (HarperCollins Children’s Books, R120) This is a collector’s item for all the little girls that love the magical world of Bella Sara. The book details the beginnings of the Bella Sara story. Children can learn facts about the legendary horses and are introduced to the marvels of this world. They can learn more about collecting the Bella Sara cards. Included is a guide to help them record the progress of their card collection.


September 2010

an old favourite

Frightfully Friendly Ghosties By Daren King (Quercus, R99) Frightfully Friendly Ghosties will not disappoint young readers. Tabitha Tumbly, Charlie Vapour, Rusty Chains and friends can’t understand why the “still-alives” are so mean. When Pamela Fraidy gets locked in the attic by a “still-alive”, the “ghosties” are determined to make the “still-alives” like them. But the friendlier they are, the meaner the “still-alives” become.


for preteens and teens

for us

Gladiators By Toby Forward and Steve Noon

Secret Daughter By Shilpi Somaya Gowda

(Walker Books, R226) For over 300 years, the gladiators of ancient Rome pitted their strength and skill against each other in the Colosseum. Children can re-live their feats with this book set. Included is a pop-up model of the Colosseum, as well as a map showing what the buildings were used for. They can explore the structure of the Colosseum and learn where its underground tunnels led. The book tells them what a day at the games was like for Roman citizens.

(HarperCollins Publishers, R140) On the eve of the monsoon, in a remote Indian village, Kavita gives birth to a baby girl. But in a culture that favours sons, the only way for her to save her daughter’s life is to give her away. It is a decision that will haunt her and her husband for the rest of their lives. Halfway across the globe, an American doctor, Somer, decides to adopt a baby after making the wrenching discovery that she will never have one of her own. She and her husband fall in love with a photo of the baby girl in Mumbai. Interweaving the stories of Kavita, Somer and the child that binds both their destinies, the book explores the emotional terrain of motherhood, loss, identity and love.

Seven Sorcerers By Caro King (Quercus, R102) Nin had never liked Wednesdays, but this one took the cake. On this particular Wednesday she woke up to find that it was raining buckets and that her little brother, Toby, had ceased to exist. Nobody, except Nin, seems to remember him, so she sets off through the land of the Seven Sorcerers to find him. This is not just an ordinary fantasy story: King has created an interesting world in which people can stay alive on memory alone. The characters are intriguing, and her writing style witty.

proudly South African

Oli and Skipjack’s Tales of Trouble – Mirror Mischief By Ceci Jenkinson

Awesome South Africa By Derryn Campbell

(Faber and Faber, R89) The author, Ceci Jenkinson has learned a lot from her own two boys, and drew on this when creating the characters Oli and Skipjack, which makes them even more likable and believable. They are rascals, but aren’t mean. When Oli accidentally turns the maths teacher (who punishes him because he can’t do fractions) into a vulture and Slugger Stubbins (who gives him a hard time on the rugby field) into a baboon, he really wants to turn back the spell, but doesn’t know how!

(Awesome SA Publishers, R250) This visual book about our beautiful country is packed full of information and fun. The entertaining and colourful compilation contains interesting facts and trivia about South Africa and its people. If you are South African, this book is guaranteed to stir feelings of pride and belonging. If you are not a local, then Awesome South Africa will provide you with a comprehensive overview of this unique, and sometimes crazy, country.

School Sorted in 2011 (SmartSkills, R199) It can be tough for learners to try and stay on top of the multitude of tasks and activities they have. This musthave school planner and skills-trainer will help your child manage his tasks and time. There’s a tool to mark off which projects are required and when they should be done. Other sections include a goal setting chart, test and exam planning table, a time table, useful contacts and a My Time planner. It is currently available on the website,

Cloud Tea Monkeys By Mal Peet and Elspeth Graham (Walker Books, R180) This old Himalayan tale has been reprinted, with beautiful artwork by Juan Wijngaard. Children aged six to 11 will enjoy the story of Tashi, who lives in a tiny village where her mother picks tea for a living. When her mother falls ill, Tashi must pick tea in order to pay for the doctor. But she is too small to reach the tender shoots, and the cruel overseer sends her away empty-handed. Cloud Tea Monkey is a richly told tale full of vivid characters.


for parents Adjusting the Boundaries By Anne Cawood

pick of the month

(Metz Press, R118) Aimed at families facing separation and divorce, this book will be helpful for parents confronted with the challenges of traumatic change and the need to adjust their family’s boundaries. Using her many years of practical experience in the field, highly regarded counsellor Anne Cawood will empower you to contain your children’s anxiety and feelings of insecurity, and to re-establish a measure of equilibrium as effectively as possible. Cawood uses lots of case studies and deals with topics such as emotional support for you as a parent, how, when and where to inform your children in an age-appropriate way and co-parenting agreements. September 2010



what’s on in september Things to do, places to go, ways to give back, talks and exhibitions plus loads of fun for the whole family. compiled by CHAREEN BOAKE

special events


FUN for children


only for parents


bump, baby & tot in tow


how to help







bump, baby & tot in tow

how to help

Elephant Sanctuary Guided tours give you the opportunity to touch and feed elephants in an indigenous environment.

The Michael Fridjhon Wine Experience Weekend A fun weekend of wine tasting for connoisseurs.

Johnson’s Baby Sense Seminar Expectant and new parents can receive input from leading childcare and baby experts.

Refilwe Community Project Plant a tree and help a community and the environment.

September 2010




My Camp Rock roadshow and talent contest In anticipation of the release of the film, Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam on 18 September, budding stars aged 8–16 can perform a Camp Rock song in an open audition.


September 2010



SPECIAL EVENTS 1 wednesday The Chilli Boy A hilarious look at the life of an old Indian woman reincarnated as a white gangster from Boksburg. This popular show even had sell-out performances in London’s West End. Ends 3 October. Time: varies. Venue: The Fringe at Joburg Theatre, Braamfontein. Cost: R130. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit or

4 saturday 94.7 Joburg Day Some of the country’s foremost talent, such as The Parlotones and Jack Parow, entertain you at this event, which has become a firm favourite for Joburgers. Time: 10am. Venue: Riversands Farm, Muldersdrift. Cost: adults R200, children R70. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

5 sunday

10 friday

Cellar Rats Spring Wine Festival Taste some of the country’s best wines in a tranquil, country setting. Picnic baskets are on sale and there is a host of supervised children’s entertainment, including a jumping castle. Time: 11am–3pm. Venue: The Old Mill, Magaliesburg. Cost: R170 for a picnic basket for two adults, R35 per child. Designated drivers free entry. For more info: visit Childhood with Zeal Roadshow Equal Zeal promotes a balanced lifestyle in families and this one-day seminar aims to connect children and their parents in a way that will enable them to make informed decisions about their everyday lives. Time: 9am. Venue: The Country Boma, Muldersdrift. Cost: adults R295, teens R95. For more info: visit Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Also 19 September at Menlyn Park Shopping Centre.

National Book Week 2010 This project is designed to encourage reading, particularly among children and teenagers. Museum Africa hosts a series of events including reading tents, puppet shows, exhibitions and story time. Ends 13 September. Time: 10am–5pm. Venue: Museum Africa, Newtown. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit The Getaway Show Showcasing the latest in 4x4 vehicles, outdoor gear, camping equipment, and outdoor and adventure gadgets. Ends 12 September. Time: Friday 11am–7pm, Saturday 9am–7pm, Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: The Coca-Cola Dome, North Riding. Cost: adults R50, children R30. For more info: visit Education Expo A national exhibition where schools show you what they offer. Also 11 and 12 September. Time: Friday and Saturday 9am–8pm, Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: Maponya Mall, Old Potchefstroom Rd, Soweto. Cost: free. For more info: 083 552 8778 or visit

Jock of the Bushveld This South African classic about the brave and beloved dog, Jock, is brought to the stage for the first time ever. Ends 10 October. Time: varies. Venue: The Mandela at Joburg Theatre Complex. Cost: R195– R345. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit


September 2010

11 saturday

4 sat

Stargazing picnic in the kloof Join the West Rand Astronomy Club for an informative evening as you learn about our night sky. Time: 6pm–9pm. Venue: Kloofendal Nature Reserve, Galena St, Kloofendal. Cost: adults R50, children R25. Booking essential. Contact Karin: 072 595 6991 or

1 September – The Chilli Boy

The animal whisperer Amelia Kinkade, renowned American animal whisperer, presents a two-day workshop on communicating with your animals. Enthusiastic animal-lovers, children and their parents can learn how to understand their animal’s thoughts. Time: 10am–5pm. Venue: Delta Environmental Centre, Victory Park. Cost: R1 800. Booking essential. Contact Sandy: 082 372 3388, sandy@deltaenviro. or visit


Johnson’s Baby Sense Seminar The leading baby care and parenting experts deliver talks for expectant parents and new parents about the practicalities of baby care as well as the concerns and issues of new parents. Time: 8am–12:30pm and 1pm– 17:30pm. Venue: Southern Sun, Grayston Dr, Sandton. Cost: R230 for the morning or afternoon session, R420 for both. Price includes a goodie bag and Johnson’s Baby products. Booking essential. Contact: 0861 114 891, or visit

12 sunday Inanda Club family fun day A day out for the whole family on a lazy Sunday. There is loads of entertainment including skydivers, a model helicopter demonstration, dodge ball, giant slide, water balls, pony rides, face painters, trampoline bungee, market stalls, and a beer garden and food stand. Don’t miss a visit to the SA National Birds of Prey Centre, housed in the Inanda grounds, an open-air sanctuary housing birds such as American eagles and falcons. Time: 10am–4pm. Venue: Inanda Club. Cost: R60. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit My Camp Rock roadshow and talent contest In anticipation of the release of Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam on 18 September, budding stars aged 8 to 16 can perform a Camp Rock song in an open audition. The top three stars will be


called back later in the day to perform in front of a crowd for the final jam. Time: registration starts 9:30am. Venue: Menlyn Park Shopping Centre, Menlyn Park. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit and go to Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam for terms, conditions and further information

13 monday African Tapestry This musical weaves African folktales, dance and music into a fun, interactive show for families. Ends 9 October. Time: Monday–Saturday 10:30am and 2:30pm. Venue: The National Children’s Theatre, 3 Junction Ave, Parktown. Cost: adults R80, children R70. Book through the theatre: 011 484 1584/5 or visit

14 tuesday ADHD and ADD Awareness Day School children with ADD or ADHD are invited to submit an essay showing how ADD has benefited them. There are several topics. Essays can be written in various languages and there are great prizes to be won. You can also encourage your child’s school to wear civvies or hold assemblies and discuss ADD and ADHD. For more info: 011 888 7655, or visit

17 friday Kevin Perkins aka Mike Naicker This popular Johannesburg comedian delivers a combination of his mainstream comedy and the ever popular antics of Michael

17 September – Mike Naicker

Naicker. Time: 8:30pm. Venue: The Lyric at Gold Reef City Casino. Cost: R110. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit

18 saturday

10–13 September – National Book Week 2010

Pamper Day Enjoy a hand, foot and head massage, refreshments and lunch as well as a goodie bag. Also a craft market, pony rides and kiddie zone with jumping castle. This is an event to raise funds for The Namaqua Dog and Donkey Foundation. Time: 9am– 4pm. Venue: Rivonia Recreation Club, Achter Rd, Paulshof. Cost: R150. Booking by 3 September essential. Contact: 071 560 9829 or

September 2010


calendar Poplar Primary open day Prospective parents can view the facilities of this small parallel-medium school. Time: 8:30am– 3pm. Venue: 37 Lyncon Rd, Carlswald. Cost: free. Contact Lizelle: 082 655 0723 or visit The Lipizzaners have been in South Africa for 62 years. Join them in celebrating the event with singer Nedine Blom as they dance to opera and classical music. Time: 7pm. Venue: Lipizzaner Centre, Kyalami. Cost: R150. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Be a pizza chef for a day Have fun making yummy pizzas with Toys R Us and Barbie as part of Barbie’s ‘I can be’ campaign. Saturday–Sunday 18–19 September, Toys R Us, Atterbury. Saturday–Sunday 25–26 September, Toys R Us, Stoneridge Mall. Time: 10am–2pm. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit Jeff Dunham Best known for his ventriloquist act with Achmed, the dead terrorist, Jeff Dunham will have you laughing at his politically incorrect humour. Definitely for adults only. Ends 19 September. Time: tbc. Venue: Sun City Superbowl. Cost: R250–R500. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit or for more info: visit

19 sunday Spring tree walk Enjoy an easy two-hour walk with a field guide and learn how to identify trees while learning about their medicinal and other uses. Time: 9am. Venue: Kloofendal Nature Reserve, Galena Rd, Kloofendal. Cost: adults R40, children R20. Booking essential. Contact Karin: 072 595 6991 or

23 thursday Good Food and Wine Show The biggest food and wine show in the

23 thu

ride from Johannesburg to Durban to raise funds for the QuadPara Association of South Africa. Time: tbc. Venue: tbc. Cost: R2 600 per rider, R1 600 for back-up driver and crew, includes meals and camping. Booking essential. Contact: 082 870 6134 or visit or

country with a host of international foodie celebs, including James Martin and Willie Harcourt-Cooze. Don’t miss the Little Cooks Club where your children can meet Sid and Julie from the CBeebies lifestyle show, I can cook. Ends 26 September. Time: Thursday–­Saturday 10am–9pm, Sunday 10am–6pm. Venue: Coca-Cola Dome, North Riding. Cost: tbc. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit



arts, culture and science A journey into space Children aged 2–8 years can spend a morning learning about stars, the moon and space. Time: 10:30am. Every Saturday. Venue: Johannesburg Planetarium, Empire Rd, Parktown. Cost: R18. Contact: 011 717 1390 or visit

24 friday Abracadabra – It’s Magic This magical show features ventriloquists and illusionists with mind-boggling acts. Ends 3 October. Time: varies. Venue: The Hippodrome, Gold Reef City. Cost: R140, toddlers R90. For more info: 011 248 5168 or visit

30 thursday Move It! This family show is filled with dazzling dancing, bright costumes and speciality acts. Performances feature a South American, African and Hollywood feel, including popular singers Tracey-Lee Oliver and Sury Boltman. Ends 7 November. Time: varies. Venue: The Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City Casino. Cost: R100–R285. For more info: 011 248 5168 or visit


Taste of Joburg The city’s top restaurants, award-winning wineries, premium drink brands and food exhibitors showcase a host of their delicacies. Sample fine wines, cocktails and an assortment of food. Ends 3 October. Time: Thursday­–Friday 6:30pm–10:30pm, Saturday 1pm–5pm and 6:30pm–10:30pm, Sunday noon–5pm. Venue: Bryanston High School, Tramore Rd, Bryanston. Cost: R60–R570. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000, visit or

September 2010

Dirt bikes, quad bikes and trailies are invited to join in this four-day



Quad 4 Quads

Polka Dot Art and Crafts

Arabella’s Art Studio Weekly art lessons and art parties for children. Time: varies. Venue: 26 5th Ave, Parktown North. Cost: R1 250 per term. Contact Arabella: 011 880 6654, 082 822 1161 or arabella. Artjamming Art studio for children and adults. Time: Monday–Friday 9am–5:30pm, Saturday 9am–4pm, Sunday 10am–3pm. Venue: Artjamming, Blubird Shopping Centre, cnr Athol-Oaklands Rd and Fort St, Athol. Cost: dependent on canvas size and materials. Contact Kayla: 083 379 2069, or visit Art of Play Hands-on, creative fun studio for children aged 2–12 years. Parents can relax in the coffee shop. Time: Monday– Saturday 10am–noon and 2pm–4pm. Venue: 3 Forssman Close, Barbeque Downs, Kyalami. Cost: tbc. Contact: 071 830 0918, or visit Color Café is a ceramic studio where you can paint mugs, plates, teapots or bowls. 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

Polka Dot Art and Crafts This art studio caters for all types of art and crafts from painting and pottery to mosaic and papier maché. Moms can relax in the tea garden or indoor venue. Time: 9am­– 5pm. Venue: 13 4th Ave, Parkhurst and their new store in Morningside Shopping Centre. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit Pottery Junxion is an art studio where you choose and paint your own pottery. Also offers regular workshops on drybrushing, paint techniques, antiquing and mosaics. Time: Monday–Friday 9am–4pm, Saturday 9am–2pm. Venue: 5 Glendower Place, 99 Linksfield Rd, Dowerglen. Cost: varies. Contact: 011 453 2721, or visit Sci-Bono Discovery Centre An interactive science museum with exhibits and fun experiments. Time: Monday–Friday 9am–4:30pm, Saturday 9am–4pm. Venue: Sci-Bono Discovery Centre, Miriam Makeba St, Newtown. Cost: adults R20, children R10. Contact: 011 639 8400 or visit Science Fair with Handy Andy Children aged 4–14 years can check out the cool science experiments on the go and even try doing some themselves. 2–5 September: Fourways Mall, 8–12 September: Cresta Shopping Centre, 17–19 September: Green Stone Shopping Centre, 23–26 September: Brooklyn Mall, 30 September–3 October: Eastgate Shopping Mall. Time: call each mall to enquire. Cost: free Scrapbook Emporium Scrapbooking lessons and craft workshops. Time: 9am– 5pm. Venue: Scrapbook Emporium, shop 109, level 1, Design Quarter, Fourways. Cost: free entry but workshops and materials are additional. Contact: 011 465 9349 or visit Smudge indoor arts and crafts studio suitable for children aged 3–13 years. Offers beading, painting, drawing as well as a music room, dress-up room, book lounge and coffee bar. Time: Tuesday–Friday 10am–5pm, Saturday 10am–4pm, Sunday 10am–1pm. Venue: 21A Valley Centre, 396 Jan Smuts Ave, Craighall Park. Cost: R110 for the first hour, R55 for every hour thereafter, includes all art materials. Contact: 011 501 0234 or visit

Angelo’s Kitchen joburg’s

Bushbabies Monkey Sanctuary

classes, talks & workshops Creative Kidz fun programme Saturday morning art and crafts workshops for children aged 6–13 years. Activities include baking, painting and creative fun. Time: 9am– 12:30pm. Venue: Creativity Workshops, 4 Kingsway St, Paulshof. Cost: R110, includes material and refreshments. Contact: 083 453 4621 or visit Left Hand Learning Workshop for educators of children aged 3–7 years. Date: 11 September. Time: 9:15am. Venue: Health and Baby Centre, 52 Kingfisher Dr, Fourways. Cost: R220, includes material and refreshments. Contact: 072 300 7066, or visit Little Cooks Club Programme for moms and children aged 2–15 years, aimed at introducing children to cooking and healthy nutrition. Also offers domestic cooking classes. Venue: Rivonia, Fourways, Fairland, Mondeor, Edenvale/Bedfordview, Pretoria. Contact Christine: 083 556 3434, or visit

Shopping Centre, cnr William Nicol Drive and Mulbarton Rd, Fourways. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 465 7090 Goblin’s Cove Fantasy Restaurant is set in a forest with a lake, a playground containing jungle gyms and a sandpit, an aviary as well as the Fairywinkle fairy and goblin shop. Time: Wednesday–Saturday 8:30am–9:30pm, Sunday 8:30am–5pm. Venue: R24 Magaliesburg/Hekpoort. Cost: free entry. Contact: 014 576 2143, goblins@ or visit Gold Reef City Adventure themepark with speciality rides for young and old, theme village and several eateries. Time: Wednesday–Sunday 9:30am–5pm. Venue: Northern Parkway, Ormonde, Johannesburg. Cost: weekend R140, weekdays R100, toddlers R90. For more info: visit Lifestyle Garden Centre Offers a play park and farmyard with free pony rides and a restaurant overlooking the play area. Time: 8am–5pm, daily. Venue: cnr Beyers Naudé Dr and Ysterhout Ave, Randpark Ridge. Cost: free entry. For more info: visit Maropeng This centre in the Cradle of Humankind pays homage to the discovery of early man. It features two restaurants, offers stargazing dinners on certain dates and Sunday buffet lunches. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: R400, Magaliesberg. Cost: adults R105, children R60. Contact: 014 577 9000, or visit Ngwenya Glass Village This village has a glass shop, several curio and craft shops, a brewery and restaurant. Puppet shows and sing-alongs are held every Friday afternoon. Time: tbc. Venue: off Beyers Naudé Dr, Muldersdrift. Cost: free entry. Contact: 084 607 4291 or visit Stonehaven on Vaal Riverside garden restaurant with lots of children’s activities. Time: tbc. Venue: next to Baddrift Bridge, Sylviavale AH, Vaal River. Cost: free entry. Contact: 016 982 2951 or visit

family outings Angelo’s Kitchen An Italian restaurant where children can make their own pizzas. Time: noon–9:30pm. Venue: Coachman’s Crossing, Peter Place, Bryanston. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 463 5800 or 011 463 9498 Bambanani Restaurant offers a children’s play area with child-minders. A variety of children’s entertainment on Wednesday. Time: Tuesday–Friday 10am– 10pm, Saturday 8am–11pm, Sunday 8am– 9pm. Venue: 85 4th Ave, Melville. Contact: 011 482 2900 Flora Farm Offers a garden centre, restaurant and children’s play area. Time: 8:30am–5:30pm. Venue: cnr North Rand Rd and Trichardt St, Boksburg. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 894 2377 or visit Frog Terrace Bistro Family-friendly restaurant with outdoor play equipment as well as a range of children’s art and crafts. Time: Tuesday–Saturday 8am–5pm, Sunday 8am–3pm. Venue: Leaping Frog joburg’s

Croc City Crocodile Farm

Uncle Tim’s Centre Country village centre boasting several antique and collectible stores, a book shop, cheese deli, jewellery stores and restaurant. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: 40 High Rd, Brentwood Park. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 967 1816 or visit September 2010



Lory Park Zoo

finding nature & outdoor play Bushbabies Monkey Sanctuary Offers guided tours through indigenous forests where you can view a variety of exotic primates. Time: tours are on the hour, every hour from 9am–4pm. Venue: R512, Hartbeespoort. Cost: adults R250, children 3–14 years R125. Contact: 012 258 9908/9 or visit Chameleon Village Reptile Park Anacondas and cobras are just a few of the venomous creatures you can see. Time: 8:30am­–5pm. Venue: N4, Hartbeespoort. Cost: free entry. Contact: 012 253 1451 or visit Croc City Crocodile Farm View crocodiles and hatchlings at close range. Time: 9am–4:30pm. Venue: Old Pretoria

Rd, Nietgedacht. Cost: adults R45, children R25. For more info: visit Cubs and Scouts Children aged 7–18 years can learn practical, life skills while enjoying wholesome outdoor fun such as camping, hiking, pioneering and cooking. Time: varies. Venue: several venues throughout Johannesburg. Cost: varies per term. For more info: visit: Elephant Sanctuary Guided tours give you the opportunity to touch and feed elephants in an indigenous environment. Time: 8am–4pm. Venue: R512, Hartbeespoort. Cost: adults R425– R525, children R215. Contact: 012 258 0423/ 0332 or visit Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve Six hiking trails of varying difficulty offer you

the opportunity to enjoy this nature reserve inhabited by several antelope species. Time: 7am–6pm. Venue: Silent Pool, Frandaph Ave, Mondeor. Cost: free entry. Contact Tony: 082 454 6114 Lion Park Home to several carnivores including white lions. You can play with cubs, enjoy a game ride and visit the restaurant. Time: Monday–Friday 8:30am– 5pm, Saturday–Sunday 8:30am–6pm. Venue: cnr Malibongwe and R114, Lanseria. Cost: adults R115, children R80. Contact: 011 691 9905, or visit Lory Park Zoo Sanctuary for a large variety of wildlife including bengal tigers, ringtailed lemurs and several other endangered animals and birds. Time: 10am–4pm. Venue: 80/1 Kruger Rd, President Park, Midrand. Cost: adults R50, children R30. For more info: visit Montecasino Bird Gardens These gardens are home not only to birds but mammals and reptiles too. Enjoy a meal at the Flamingo Café or be thrilled by the Flights of Fantasy bird show. Time: 8:30am­– 5pm. Venue: Montecasino, cnr William Nicol and Witkoppen Rd, Fourways. Cost: adults and children over 10 R38, children under 10 R22,50. Contact: 011 511 1864 or visit The Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre Offers a three-hour guided wildlife tour during which you can view cheetah, African wild dog, other large cats, birds

and antelope. Not suitable for children under 6. Time: varies. Venue: De Wildt, Hartbeespoort area. Cost: R245–R345. Booking essential. Contact: 012 504 9906/7/8 or visit Trees Eco Fun Park Picnic venues, tunnels, obstacle course and outdoor games. Time: 10am–6pm. Sunday by arrangement. Venue: 2 Totius Rd, Cloverdene, Benoni. Cost: R20. Contact Nicolette: 082 458 1504 or 083 452 2104

Fame Academy

family marketplace


September 2010



International Tennis Academy

holiday activities Beading workshops Children can learn to bead while creating earrings, cellphone charms, keyrings and watches. Date: 25 September–3 October. Time: subject to booking. Venue: Elements, Blairgowrie Plaza, Conrad Dr, Blairgowrie. Cost: from R75 depending on items made. Contact Michelle: 082 492 0562 Craft workshops Half-day workshops offering craft activities for children. Create gifts with mosaic, decoupage and beadwork. Date: 1–3 September. Time: 9am–noon. Venue: inside Broadacres Garden Seedpod Centre, Cedar and Valley Rd, Broadacres. Cost: half-day R180, includes all materials. For more info: 011 465 0375





workshops Musical theatre workshops for children aged 6–16 years. Date: 27 September–1 October. Time: 9am–noon. Venue: Crawford College, Benmore. Cost: R650. Booking essential. Contact Vicky: 082 336 4424 or FasTracKids holiday camp Hands-on, fun educational programme for children aged 2–8 years. Topics include Anatomy of Me, Explore the Galaxy, Travel the World and Take a Prehistoric Adventure as Paleontologist. Date: tbc. Time: 9am– noon. Venue: Shop 7, Broadacres Shopping Centre, Cedar Rd, Broadacres. Cost: tbc. Booking essential. Contact Heloise: 011 467 0230 International Tennis Academy holiday clinic Mini, half-day and full-day clinics for the Sharapovas and Federers of the future. Suitable for children 3–16 years. Date: 27 September–1 October. Time: mini-tennis 3–6 years, 8:30am–9:30am; half-day 6–16 years, 9:30am–1pm; full-day 6–16 years, 9:30am– 5:30pm. Venue: Pirates Club, Lonehill or Craighall. Cost: mini-tennis R350, half-day R880, full-day R1 800 (includes lunch and a drink). Booking essential. Contact Michele: 083 443 3391, or visit Little Cooks holiday programme Enjoy a morning of cooking and crafts. Date: 27 September–1 October. Time: 9am–noon. Venue: Houghton/Parkhurst. Cost: R200 per class. Booking essential. Contact Colleen:

082 764 4065, colleen@littlecooksclub. or visit Pony Camp in the great outdoors. Date: 1–2 September and 27–29 September. Time: 8am–5pm. Venue: 55 Sunset Dr, Elandsdrift, Muldersdrift. Cost: R220 per day. Booking essential. Contact: 084 220 2657 or belinda. Serendipity holiday programme Fun days filled with free and organised play, art and crafts, baking and story time. Suitable for children aged 2–10 years. Time: 8am– 12:30pm. Venue: 48 Keyes Ave, Rosebank. Cost: half-day R120, full day R180, includes lunch, refreshments and activities. Booking essential. Contact: 011 447 7386 or visit

markets 44 Stanley fine food market This Friday night market offers Indian, Thai, African Kwanza and Hari Krishna vegetarian food. Time: 4pm–8pm. Venue: 44 Stanley St, Milpark. Cost: free entry. Contact Robyn: 083 311 4768 Bryanston Organic Market Stalls offer everything from organic clothing and children’s toys to art, coffee and food. Time: 9am–3pm. Every Thursday and Saturday. Venue: Culross Rd, off Main Rd, Bryanston. Contact: 011 706 3671 or or visit Bunny Park Crafters’ Market provides activities for children, a tea garden and

Irene Dairy

September 2010



Playtime at Egoli Café

stalls offering everything from pet accessories to homebakes. Time: 9am–2pm. Last Saturday of the month. Venue: Southvale Rd, Boksburg East. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 896 3890 or 011 899 4361 Craighall River Market Enjoy a wide variety of arts, crafts and organic produce. Children’s playground and pony rides available. Time: 8:30am–1pm. Every second Saturday. Venue: Colourful Splendour Nursery (REEA), Craighall Park. Contact Roy: 011 465 3413 or Gourmet Market Bread, nuts, organic vegetables, cheese, pickles and olives. Time: Tuesday–Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: Lifestyle Garden Centre, Beyers Naudé and Ysterhout Dr, Randpark Ridge. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 792 5616 Irene Dairy You can see a fully functioning dairy, buy farm-fresh products or enjoy a meal at the country café. Children can play on the tractor and feed the cows. Time: 8am–5pm. Venue: 100 Nellmapius Dr, Irene. Cost: free entry. Contact: 012 667 4012, countrycafe@willoworld. com or visit Irene Market Offers over 300 stalls of arts and antiques, numerous food stalls and a licensed tea garden with a safe children’s entertainment area. Time: 9am–2pm, second and last Saturday of each month. Venue: Smuts House Museum, Jan Smuts Ave, Irene. Contact: 012 667 1659 or visit Market in the Park This monthly market has stalls with crafts, jewellery, games, Story time at the library

tasty treats and more. Time: 9am–2pm, first Sunday of the month. Venue: River Café grounds, Field and Study Centre, Louise Ave, Parkmore. Contact Lorraine: 011 465 1281 or 083 655 8012 Melville Market This is a bargain hunter’s paradise. Time: Monday–Saturday 9am–5pm. Venue: Campus Square Shopping Centre, Auckland Park. Contact: 011 482 2118 or 011 442 4488 The Kids’ Market You mark your price on any of your children’s old goods, they are sold on your behalf and you collect your money at the end of the day. Unsold goods can be donated to charity. Date: 4 September. Time: 8:30am–2:30pm. Venue: Fontainebleau Community Church, Rabie St, Fontainebleau. Cost: free entry but they do take a fee of 30% of goods sold. Contact Patricia: 082 257 1367 (after 2pm) or The White House Market Over 50 stalls sell homemade and crafted goodies. Time: 9:30am–4:30pm. First Saturday each month. Venue: Kliprivier Dr, Mulbarton (behind Southern Brickyard). Cost: free entry. Contact: 082 565 3268

on stage & screen African Tapestry 13 September–9 October. Time: Monday–Saturday 10:30am and 2:30pm. Venue: The National Children’s Theatre, 3 Junction Ave, Parktown. Cost: adults R80, children R70. Book through the theatre: 011 484 1584/5 or visit Jock of the Bushveld 4 September–10 October. Time: varies. Venue: The Mandela at Joburg Theatre. Cost: R195–R345. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 Move It! 30 September–7 November. Time: varies. Venue: The Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City Casino. Cost: R100–R285. Book through Computicket: visit

playtime & story time Be a pizza chef for a day Have fun making pizzas with Toys R Us and Barbie as part of Barbie’s ‘I can be’ campaign. Saturday– Sunday 18–19 September, Toys R Us, Atterbury. Saturday–Sunday 25– 26 Septemberr, Toys R Us, Stoneridge Mall. Time: 10am–2pm. Cost: free. For more info: visit


September 2010


Bonaero Park Library Story time for preschool children. Time: 9:30am, every Friday. Venue: Aero Centre, Atlas Rd, Bonaero Park. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 921 2981 Build-a-Bear workshops Create your own teddy bear or stuffed animals. Daily. Time: dependent on store. Venue: several in the Johannesburg area. For more info: visit: Egoli Café and kids play area Monitored indoor and outdoor play area, climbing wall, jumping castles and jungle gym. Time: Friday noon–5pm, Saturday­–Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: 17A Terrace Rd, Eastleigh, Edenvale. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 609 4755 or visit Grannies Garden Indoor and outdoor play venue with a coffee shop. Time: Monday–Friday 10am–5pm, Saturday–Sunday 8am–6pm. Venue: 138 Barkston Dr, Blairgowrie. Cost: R30 per hour. Contact: 011 326 4265 or visit Hedgehog Lane Outdoor fairground with a ferris wheel, merry-go-round and miniature Hedgehog Express Train. There is also a creative studio, bakery and hair salon. Picnic baskets welcome. Time: 9am– 5pm. Venue: Garden Shop, 278 Main Rd, Bryanston. Cost: adults free, children R18. For more info: visit Lola Park Safe, fun family park with rides, aviaries, fairy garden, splash fountain and a petting zoo. Time: Wednesday­–Sunday 10am–5pm. Venue: Viewpoint Rd East, Bartlett AH, Boksburg. Cost: R50. Children under 2 free. Contact: 011 918 0854 or visit Love Books Different storytellers recalls everything from traditional African folk tales to fairy-tales, the classics and brand new stories. Suitable for children 4–8 years. Time: 10am, every Saturday. Venue: Love Books, The Bamboo Centre, 53 Rustenburg Rd, Melville. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 726 7408 or Norscot Manor Library Story time for children aged 2–8 years. Time: 3pm– 3:30pm, every Wednesday. Venue: 16B Penguin Dr, Norscot Manor. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 705 3323 Oki Doki This play and party venue offers a unique “town” where children can play dress-up. Also a coffee shop for parents. Time: Tuesday–Saturday 8:30am–4:30pm. Venue: 66 6th St, Linden. Cost: free entry for adults, children R20. Contact: 011 888 8940 or visit

Jozi-X joburg’s

Boogaloos Skateboard Park

Piccino’s Indoor soft-play area suitable for tiny tots to 6 year olds, as well as a coffee shop for parents. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: Norwood Mall, Hamlin Rd, Norwood. Cost: R40 per hour. Contact: 011 728 0928 Smudge Creative Play Centre Sandart parties, balloon storytelling, puppet shows and music workshops. The venue also offers a baby room, a book lounge, dress-up area and the Smudge shop. Time: Monday–Friday 10am–5pm, Saturday 10am–4pm, Sunday 10am–1pm. Venue: Valley Centre, 396 Jan Smuts Ave, Craighall Park. Cost: R110 per child for the first hour, R55 for every hour thereafter. Contact: 011 501 0234, sandra@smudgeart.coz.a or visit Words Bookstore Enjoy a cup of coffee, read a book and let the children play in the play area. Ten percent off all children’s books on a Sunday and story time can be arranged. Time: 7am–6:30pm. Venue: Health Emporium, Church and Market St, Midrand. Contact: 011 315 3801 or Yeesh! Fun for Kids Supervised soft-play indoor playgrounds with coffee bars. Time: Tuesday–Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: Unit G6, Woodmead Commercial Park, Waterval Crescent, Woodmead and 5 Main Rd, Bryanston. Cost: R40 per hour. Contact Woodmead: 083 923 2306, Bryanston: 073 230 6531 or visit

sports & physical activities Abseiling and Caving Adventure Time: 11am, every Sunday. Venue: Wild Cave Adventures, Cradle of Humankind. Cost: adults R220, children R180. Booking essential. Contact: 011 956 6197 or visit Battlezone Outdoor paintball adventure park. Time: Monday–Saturday 8:30am– 11:30am, 11:30am–2:30pm and 2:30pm– 5:30pm, Sunday 11:30am–2:30pm and 2:30pm–5pm. Venue: cnr Sloane St and Main Rd, Bryanston. Cost: R100, includes gear. Booking essential. Contact: 082 818 0345 or visit Boogaloos Skateboard Park Skateboarding parks for expert skaters and beginners. Time: varies. Venue: September 2010



Runnin Rebels Soccer

Brightwater Commons, East Rand Mall, Montecasino, Festival Mall. Cost: R30. Contact Quintin: 011 608 1101 or visit Compu-Kart Raceway Indoor go-karting venue suitable for children 10 and older. Time: 10am–9pm. Venue: Stoneridge Shopping Centre, Modderfontein. Cost: R50–R250, dependent on number of laps. Contact: 0861 465 278 or visit Daytona Adventure Park Take your own bikes or hire quad bikes and spend a fun day getting dirty. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: William Nicol Dr, Fourways (past Dainfern). Cost: varies, booking essential. Contact Greg or Vic: 083 625 1537 Jozi-X Extreme fun park suitable for children aged 4 and older. Time: 10am– 5pm. Venue: cnr Main Rd and Sloane St, Bryanston. Cost: varies. Contact Marco: 082 456 2358 or visit Runnin Rebels Soccer Development soccer aimed at children 6–11 years. Time: varies. Venue: Bedfordview, Fairmount, Fourways, Parkmore, Zoo Lake. Cost: varies. Contact Alan: 011 646 5461 or visit Sandboarding at Mount Mayhem Similar to snowboarding but without the cold. Time: Saturday–Sunday 10:30am– 3:30pm. Venue: Mount Mayhem, Boksburg. Cost: R250, includes equipment and instruction. Booking essential. Contact Marco: 082 605 1150 or visit The Ski Deck Bumboarding snow fun down a 20m slope. Ski lessons are also

Zoo Trot


September 2010

available. Time: Monday–Friday 9am–5pm, Saturday 9am–2pm, Sunday 10am–1pm. Venue: The Ski Deck, 74 Bond St, Ferndale, Randburg. Cost: R60 per child for 2 hours of bumboarding. Contact: 011 781 6528 or visit Wonderwall Indoor climbing wall for beginners to advanced climbers. Time: Tuesday–Thursday 10am–10pm, Friday 10am–9pm, Saturday 9am–6pm. Venue: Unit 1, Kya Sands Industrial Village, 22 Elsecar St, Kya Sands. Cost: adults R60, children R40. Contact: 011 708 6467 or visit Yoga4kids An educational and ageappropriate yoga curriculum, which combines the exploration of the body, mind and self. Venue: Broadacres, Craighall Park, Atholl, Rivonia, Parkmore. Contact Yoga4kids: 083 299 6555 or visit Zoo trot A 5km or 10km walk or jog around the zoo. Time: 7am. Second Sunday of every month. Venue: meet in the car park at Johannesburg Zoo, Forest Town. Cost: R30. For more info: 011 646 2000 or visit

only for parents classes, talks & workshops Activating your child’s potential Dr John de Martini delivers a talk, which aims to help you understand your family dynamics, dissolve dysfunction and assist you in recognising and activating your child’s unique genius. Date: 16 September. Time: 7:30pm. Venue: The Rosebank Hotel, cnr Tyrwhitt and Sturdee Ave, Rosebank. Cost: R220. Booking essential. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Anger management course This two-day course aims to help you identify your anger and develop skills to find a constructive alternative to it. Date: 2 and 3 September. Time: 8:30am–12:30pm. Venue: 1 Cardigan Rd, Parkwood. Cost: R500. Contact: 011 788 4784/5 or visit Coping strategies for working moms Dr Colinda Linde, clinical psychologist and author, delivers a talk that aims to equip working moms with the tools to incorporate mindfulness into daily living. Date: 11 and 18 September. Time: tbc. Cost: R200, includes CD. Certain medical aids cover cost. Booking essential. Contact Olga: 011 783 0241 or cbtpractice@ Divorce support workshop A six-week workshop for individuals going through a divorce or recently divorced. Date: 7 September–28 October. Time: 7pm–9pm. Venue: 1 Cardigan Ave, Parkwood. Cost: R390. Contact: 011 788 4784/5 or visit Redirecting Children’s Behaviour parenting course This fiveweek course teaches parents and professionals the skills to create confident, loving and responsible children. Date: every Wednesday, 1– 29 September. Time: 7pm–9:30pm. joburg’s

Time: varies. Venue: Theatre on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton. Cost: R90–R133. Book through the theatre: 011 883 8606 or visit

out and about The Michael Fridjhon Wine Experience Weekend Wine aficionados can enjoy a weekend of delectable food and superb wines. Date: 4–5 September. Time: varies. Venue: Hyatt Regency, Johannesburg. Cost: from R1 575–R6 500. Booking essential. Contact: 011 482 5936 or monica@ Anger management course

Venue: details given at time of booking. Cost: R1 000 per person, R1 400 per couple. Contact: 082 525 7941 or natalee. Sensory profiling and relationship building within families This oneday workshop covers topics that help you get to the root of conflict, anger and stress within parenting relationships. Date: 11 September. Time: 8:30am– 3:30pm. Venue: Pretoria. Cost: tbc, booking essential. Contact Carina: 072 522 9183, or visit University for parents Join well-known parenting expert, Nikki Bush, as she delivers one of her empowering talks for parents. Date: 16 September. Time: 7pm. Venue: Waterstone College, Main Service Rd, Kibler Park. Cost: free entry. Donations welcome. Booking essential. Contact Sian or Jill: 011 943 2682

on stage & screen Evita The rise and fall of Argentina’s first lady, Eva Peron, is played out in this hit musical. Ends 17 September. Time: varies. Venue: Pieter Toerien Main Theatre, Montecasino. Cost: R125–R295. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit Kevin Perkins aka Mike Naicker 17 September. Time: 8:30pm. Venue: The Lyric at Gold Reef City Casino. Cost: R110. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit The Chilli Boy 1 September–3 October. Time: varies. Venue: The Fringe at Joburg Theatre, Braamfontein. Cost: R130. Book through Computicket: 083 915 8000 or visit or Tuesdays with Morrie This is the autobiographical story about a journalist and his relationship with his former professor who is battling with illness. Ends 2 October.

support groups Anorexia and bulimia family support group Assists those suffering from anorexia and bulimia nervosa as well as the affected family members. Contact: 011 887 9966 or visit Childhood Cancer Foundation (CHOC) Provides advice and support for families affected by childhood cancer. Contact: 0861 113 500 or visit Compassionate Friends Support group for bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents. Contact: 011 440 6322 or visit Hi Hopes Early intervention programme developed by Wits University to empower parents of deaf or hearing impaired children aged 0–3 years. Contact: 011 717 3750 or Johannesburg Bipolar Support Association Contact Linda: 011 485 2406 or visit PACSEN – Parents for Children with Special Educational Needs provides counselling, support and information for parents with special needs children. Contact: 012 333 0149 or visit Respect Me Support for children affected by bullying. Contact Kelly: info@respectme. or visit The Family Life Centre Offers marriage, divorce and couple counselling, single parent and step-parent support groups, family counselling as well as play therapy, grief counselling and trauma debriefing. Venue: 1 Cardigan Rd, Parkwood. Contact: 011 788 4784/5, or visit Tough Love Self-help programme and support group for families affected by unacceptable adolescent behaviour, such as drug abbuse. Contact: 0861 868 445 or visit Women and men against child abuse Medical, psychological and follow-up therapy and treatment for children

Divorce Support Workshop joburg’s

September 2010




Santa Shoebox Project Get your children to experience the gift of giving this Christmas by registering to donate a personalised gift to a vulnerable child in one of many crèches, homes and Educare centres. Select a child on the website, pledge to him or her and donate a present. Registration starts 1 September; gifts delivered from 27 October. For more info: visit

party time

Practical and creative milestone stimulation programme for toddlers

who have been sexually, physically and emotionally abused as well as for their nonoffending family members and caregivers. Contact: 011 789 8815, or visit

bump, baby & Tot in tow

classes, talks & workshops Johnson’s Baby Sense Seminar The leading baby care and parenting experts deliver talks for expectant parents and new parents. Date: 11 September. Time: 8am–12:30pm and 1pm–5:30pm. Venue: Southern Sun, Grayston Dr, Sandton. Cost: R230 for the morning or afternoon session, R420 for both. Price includes a goodie bag and Johnson’s Baby products. Booking essential. Contact: 0861 114 891, seminars@ or visit Moms and Babes Interactive workshops for parents with babies from 2–12 months. Workshops include guided play with ageappropriate toys, movement to music and sensory stimulation. Venue: several venues throughout Gauteng. Contact: 011 469 1530 or visit Moms and Tots Interactive workshops for parents with tots from 1–3,5 years. Workshops include free play with educational toys, music, stories and crafts as well as life skills, messy play and gross motor activities. Venue: several venues throughout Gauteng. Contact: 011 469 1530 or visit Nanny and toddler workshops These Friday classes provide a morning of interactive play for toddlers aged 1–3 years. Time: 9am–noon. Venue: Sandton Field and Study Recreation Centre, Parkmore. Cost: R90. Booking essential. Contact Kerry: 083 391 4921 or Nanny training course This course covers first aid and CPR, nutrition, hygiene and self awareness as well as communication. Date: 11 and 18 September. Time: 8:30am–3pm. Venue: Sandton Bible Church, Leslie Rd, Douglasdale. Cost: R1 800. Booking essential. Contact Marinda: 083 625 8033 or Practical and creative milestone stimulation programme for toddlers Stimulate your toddler’s senses through creative play such as baking, dancing and painting. Suitable for ages 8–24


September 2010

months. Time: Wednesday 9am–11am or Thursday 2pm–4pm. Venue: Creative Workshop, 4 Kingsway Street, Paulshof. Cost: R80. Contact: 083 453 4621 or visit Top Tots Workshops aimed at child development from birth to preschool. Venue: several throughout Gauteng. Contact: 082 876 7791 or visit

playtime & story time Jungle Rumble Indoor playground and party venue with allocated baby area for birth–3 years. Time: Tuesday–Saturday 9am–5pm, Sunday 10am–5pm. Venue: Panorama Shop & Leisure Centre, cnr Kliprivier and Jordie Rd, Mulbarton. Cost: R15–R45. Babies under 10 months free. For more info: visit Parkview library story time Suitable for children under 3 years. Time: 10am, every Monday. Venue: Parkview Library, 51 Athlone Ave, Parkview. Cost: free entry. Contact: 011 646 3375 Piccino’s Indoor soft-play area suitable for children aged 2–6 years; coffee shop for moms. Time: 9am–5pm. Venue: Norwood Mall, Hamlin Rd, Norwood. Cost: R40 per hour. Contact: 011 728 0928 Yeesh! Fun for kids Supervised softplay indoor playgrounds with coffee bars. Time: Tuesday–Sunday 9am–5pm. Venue: Unit G6, Woodmead Commercial Park, Waterval Crescent, Woodmead and 5 Main

Adoption South Africa

Rd, Bryanston. Cost: R40 per hour. Contact Woodmead: 083 923 2306; Bryanston: 073 230 6531 or visit

support groups Adoption South Africa Offers support groups for adopters as well as extensive services in counselling and legal social work. For more info: visit Bedwetting Support Group Contact: 083 289 6640, Monday–Friday 8am–5pm La Leche League Breastfeeding support group. For more info: visit Post-natal depression support association The group assists mothers as well as families affected by post-natal depression. Contact: 011 786 8803, 082 429 2279 or visit SA Preemies Support group for the parents and families of premature babies. Contact: 080 773 3643, or visit South African Multiple Birth Association Contact: 0861 432 432

how to help AQUA school for teens with autism needs volunteers to assist the children on outings every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday during school terms. Offers full training. Contact Sharmla: 011 484 9608 or Dress for laughs Casual day is an opportunity to dress differently to the way you normally would. Funds are in aid of people with disabilities. Date: 3 September. For more info: visit Families needed to house special needs children Johannesburg Child Welfare is looking for homes for special needs children. Contact: 011 298 8500 or communications@ Plant a tree for Arbor Week Refilwe aims to break the cycle of poverty by empowering community members with self-help projects. Help them by purchasing a tree and compost for R150, which you can plant or they can plant for you. Contact: 082 602 0389 or visit

don’t miss out! For a free listing, email your event to or fax it to 011 234 4971. Information must be received by 2 September for the October issue and must include all relevant details. No guarantee can be given that it will be published.



September 2010


it’s party time continued...


September 2010



September 2010


last laugh

exercise for head folk SAM WILSON hopes her family will learn to live a little less in their brains…


September 2010

about in the waves, we’ll be the ones with a net, collecting specimens from rock pools, distracting ourselves with new thoughts as opposed to resolving the ones we already have with a good jolt of endorphins. Being head folk, has its upsides. Both our children like reading, for example. I don’t think they really had much option. One of our favourite activities is to squish all four of us into our bed and read away a Saturday morning, preferably with a few English muffins to hand. We also play a lot of board games and do a lot of recreational Wiki’ing, as all good nerdbased life forms should. But what’s beginning to worry me, is how this is all affecting the boys’ sense of physical self. Because, of course, the children of couch potatoes rarely grow up to be marathon runners. And, while I don’t have any urge to try and shoehorn my nice gentle sons into a life of competitive sport, it would be fabulous if one day they

could turn to me and say, “I don’t know. I’m going to go for a long surf and sort my head out.” Because, that’s how all the nice people I know have got over being overly worried – by balancing out their thinking with a whole lot of doing. And those are just the mental benefits. I haven’t even touched on the physical ones. Dreas and I were discussing these the other night. “You know what we are going to have to do, don’t you?” said Andreas, over the top of his book. “What?” I said, hoicking my novel into a defensive position. “The same thing one always has to do when parenting reveals a personality weakness. Fix it at the core.” I tried to make a feeble joke, but the truth is he’s right. If Dreas and I are going to teach our children to live in their entire bodies, not just their heads, we are going to have to start by example.

Joe, Sam and Benj

So. We’ve bought bicycles and helmets, not just for the boys, but for us as well. (I have never really learned how to ride a bike, so it’s a bit of an eye-opener.) And we’re trading Saturday Classic Movie Festivals for mountain walks. And who knows? Maybe this time next year, we’ll be sporty folk! Okay, let’s not aim too high. I’ll be content if I learn to think with my feet a little bit. Sam Wilson is the Editor-in-Chief of, and Food24. com. She sprung for the more expensive cycling helmets, for obvious reasons.




don’t think Andreas and I are really chronically lazy. I prefer to think of us as people who live in our heads. Have you seen that Ted talk by Sir Ken Robinson about educating people out of their bodies and into their heads, and then slightly to the one side? He talks about those who have bought so into the idea of classical education that they begin to see the body as some form of transport for one’s head, like an elaborate bookstand, as opposed to part of one’s self. (If you haven’t seen this fabulous eye-opener on nurturing creativity in children, it’s available at Well, that’s what happened to Dreas and me. At some point during our education, we stopped thinking with our bodies and started conducting all our thinking in our brains, which is a very dangerous way to live. So, rather than washing away the day’s woes with a nice walk, we’ll bury ourselves in books or the TV. Rather than splashing

Child Magazine | Joburg September 2010  
Child Magazine | Joburg September 2010  

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