My holiday has gone by so quickly…I only have have one more week to myself. It has been the most amazing time to unwind and gather my thoughts. Sometimes all you need is a good break from the noise to gain perspective.
I love this quote by one of the most successful and self-made women of our time – Oprah Winfrey. “Do what you HAVE to do until you can do what you WANT to do”.
It speaks of long term term goals, dedication and patience. Have you ever thought about where you would like to be in the next five years? I am all for ‘living in the now’. But for motivational purposes, it does help to have a vision in your mind. Do you want to be a millionaire by the time you’re forty? Or perhaps purchase your own home?
Like me, most people have a nine to five job. You may love it or loathe it. Be that as it may…it is where you are right now. Some of us would like to do something totally different with our lives. Realistically though, it is not always possible to simply give up the security of a stable income to pursue your dreams. We have bills to pay, families to take care of. I have some personal thoughts on how to achieve long term goals. The three most important things I try keep top of mind are:
3. Play with your spare time
If you adopt these, you assign a purpose to your life – and learn to be grateful and make the most of your immediate resources. You can sit in the same gloomy job for the next five years…moan and do nothing. Or you could use that time to formulate a plan, and use your role as a positive contribution to the company you are working for, as well as society. Keep a tight grip on your financial situation and budget, save money, start a new program at the office – lend your skills.
Most importantly, utilize every bit of spare time you have to do what you love. Take the dance or painting class. Sign up for that small business course! They are all small stepping stones to get you closer to your destination.
I hope that the new week brings you fresh ideas and renewed energy. Thank you for reading!
Having faced a myriad of challenges this year…I can say that I have survived 2015! What a roller coaster. For the most part, it has been a blessed time of personal growth and achievement. I always take the good with the bad. And if I can walk away having made the best of a situation or learned from it – I’m happy!
The most exciting thing was being chosen as one of Mangwanani African Spa’s brand ambassadors in August. I have had great fun being part of their family. The role has enabled me to meet some amazing people, and become more confident and dedicated in my abilities. Yes, I have been spoiled with the most incredible spa treatments! Thank you so much! There are still a few more months left of our partnership. I look forward to tapping into my creativity and adding value wherever possible.
Above all else, my family and friends are in good health. What more can I ask for. Two more sleeps…and that’s it guys! May 2016 be a year of absolute joy and abundance for you all. Be safe.
As a creative…when I feel like this…I write. It is my means of expression when thoughts get too loud. My ‘right brain’ has little chance of play chained to a desk in an air- conditioned office all day. This is fact. And very often people don’t like to own up to it because hey, we need to make a living. But today was just one of those days when I longed to be free to explore what it is I am destined to do with my life. I find it contrived to nod along in agreement to something that makes my soul feel uncomfortable. So oftentimes, my silence is frowned upon.
After a cool shower (and fancy Elizabeth Arden face mask), there are a few things I wish I could tell my lets say…16 year old self :
1. Take your time growing up.
2. Choose a career based on your passion, not what you believe will make more money.
3. It is okay to say no.
4. You are individually talented.
5. Make travel part of your budget.
6. Love unselfishly…but put yourself first.
7. Always speak your mind, without fear of judgement.
8. Know that you more than enough.
9. Stop making excuses.
10. Your natural hair colour is actually beautiful!
Here’s to summer holidays. And taking the time to sculpt your dreams.
This is my first post as a Mangwanani African Day Spa brand ambassador, and I am so proud and excited to be affiliated with this brand.
If you have ever been to a Mangwanani branch, you will know that what they offer is not the average spa treatment, it is an experience. If you want to unwind and completely spoil yourself, please do check in for a half or full day spa. You will not want to leave! The thing is, we spend so much money on other mundane things. We think visiting a spa is extravagant. Let me tell you it is not. I am not a qualified medical doctor, but I do believe that most illnesses are caused by stress. The daily grind…trying to excel at your job, being the best mother, wife, partner…whatever situation you find yourself in. Affording yourself the opportunity to be taken care of, centering your mind and body – is therefore of utmost importance.
Mangwanani Zevenwacht is my favourite. However it is on the other side of the world for most. I lived in Kuils River, I know the journey . So for those of you not able to venture out into the Northern Suburbs, they have the cutest boutique spas situated in the Cape Town City bowl area. I visited the spa at the Cullinan Hotel. So beautiful and luxurious. They are open until 9pm at night. Very convenient if you want to pop round after a long day at the office.
My treatment was an hour long full body massage. Top class. The ladies take such good care of you. You lie down on those heated beds and every single stress and strain melts away. The soft background music makes you feel as though you are in Bali. You have a choice of three various types of massage oils (I always choose ‘Nurture’, which is a rose blend). For R350, you should do this at least once a month.
To book, call them directly on 021 415 4075/6
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or click here to visit the website.
Physical address: 1 Cullinan Street, Cape Town Waterfront, Cape Town , 8001
Operating times: 9:00am to 9:00pm daily
Here are some photographs of the venue, and friendly staff. I will definitely be visiting them again soon!
My therapist Nontando, and I. She was amazing, and takes pride in what she does!
The cold and dry season always makes my skin beg for extra hydration and protection. This is where Elizabeth Arden has really impressed me with their rich skincare range. Relatively affordable too (as far as high end products go).
I have been using the following products for about 2 months:
- Visible Difference Gentle Hydrating Cleanser – R245
- Visible Difference Gentle Hydrating Cream SPF15 – R475
- Visible Difference Hydrating Boost Night Mask – R290
- Prevage Anti-aging Eye Cream SPF15- R945
- Flawless Finish Perfectly Satin 24HR Foundation with SPF15 (in Sunbeige) – R380
Every good skincare routine requires proper cleansing. There is no point in applying moisturiser and makeup if your pores are not looked after. I usually use Dove soap on my face, which I have no problem with as it’s not drying. However I could definitely feel a difference after trying the Visible Difference Gentle Hydrating Cleanser. I do prefer a foaming cleanser, but during winter you need that creamy consistency to replace lost moisture. This one is gorgeous and rinses off easily. Avoid the sensitive eye area of course.
The Visible Difference Gentle Hydrating Cream with SPF15 is gloriously indulgent. I love its soft texture and fragrance. The selling point for me is that it seems to deliver continuous moisture throughout the day – without leaving an oily residue. Exactly what I was looking for. It provides a very comfortable base for any foundation or BB cream.
I don’t usually splurge on face masks, but the Visible Difference Hydrating Boost Night Mask is a luxury to keep in your beauty cabinet. Apply a fairly thick layer for best results, and rinse off after a few minutes. I promise your skin will feel as soft as a baby’s bum.
Now for the most expensive (yet most important) product…Prevage Anti-aging Eye Cream SPF15. At R945, it does not come cheap. But if you look at what this phenomenal product offers, I would say it is worth the investment. Forgive me for carrying on too much here, but you have to know this…. The first ever eye cream with both broad spectrum SPF protection and revolutionary Idebenone (known as the most powerful antioxidant), it provides protection against environmental and free radical damage. (Free radicals are those nasty little monsters that cause premature ageing!). From personal experience, I can say that it smooths the appearance of fine lines and reduces puffiness. The results are almost immediate.
I was an Estee Lauder Double Wear foundation girl for the longest time. After finishing the last bottle, I was so taken with Elizabeth Arden’s facial products – I decided to purchase the Flawless Finish Perfectly Satin 24HR Foundation with SPF15 (in Sunbeige). Also, it was cheaper and I was a full week away from payday! Provides great coverage with a matte (yet luminous) finish. If like me, you prefer a natural and fresh faced look as opposed to heavy makeup…this is the one.
Do you have any Elizabeth Arden favourites? Please share your experience in the comments section below.
Happy Woman’s Month!
Florence Nightingale Graham (December 31, 1878 – October 18, 1966), who went by the business name Elizabeth Arden, was a Canadian American businesswoman who founded what is now Elizabeth Arden, Inc., and built a cosmetics empire in the United States. At the peak of her career, she was one of the wealthiest women in the world. (photo courtesy of Wikipedia.org)
I received a very exciting package from the kind folk at Optiphi today! They excel in the deliverance of scientific products to rehabilitate the skin at cellular level. Which is very important in treating the signs of aging.
Lets face it…post thirty, you start noticing little lines and wrinkles that were never there before. Not ideal! I am all for non-invasive products to help slow down this process. Youthful and healthy skin has always been a priority, so I am really looking forward to putting the following two products to the test.
Eyesigns Active Gel
I need a hardworking eye treatment. Eyesigns Active Gel (R755.00) promises to target fine lines, wrinkles, dark circles, puffiness and to improve the overall firmness and texture of the skin around the eye area. Firstly, I love Optiphi’s packaging. The product is easily dispensed, which diminishes wastage. The gel has a rich, thick feel. So a little goes a long way. I applied some after my morning shower today, and could immediately feel the moisturizing and soothing effect.
Classic Complete Therapy SPF20
Women need to understand the importance of a good moisturizer. I fell in love with this one! There is hardly any fragrance, but the texture is glorious and comfortable. Classic Complete Therapy (R635.00) shields your skin during the day. It is an all in one treatment which offers: potent anti-oxidants, skin hydration, anti-wrinkle, skin restructuring and repair. Let’s not forget the sun protection factor – a huge plus.
I’ve tried various other anti-aging products, however some have seemed rather harsh on my skin. The difference here, is Optiphi’s gentle yet effective composition. Definately worth a try. Lets see how it performs over the next few weeks.
To purchase Optiphi, or locate a representative in your area, please contact Bernice Barnard on email@example.com.
To win both of these amazing products worth R 1,390 please ‘like’ my Facebook page here, and follow me on Instagram: @LilyStormBlog.
The winner will be announced on 31 January 2015.
Good luck my lovelies!
This year, I have decided to give back to the community and become involved with an organization called the Christine Revell Children’s Home in Athlone, Cape Town. I am very passionate about little ones, so cannot wait to visit them within the next week or two! The weekly volunteer program will also be a key focus area for me.
Even though the home does receive a basic subsidy per child, they are still in need of the following items:
Girls and boys clothes / toys (in a usable condition), towelling nappies, baby powder/lotion, washing powder, bleach, dishwashing liquid and Handy Andy, toilet paper, bars of soap, sugar, tinned food, Jungle Oats, maize meal, vegetable oil, macaroni and spaghetti, peanut butter, sweetmilk and cheddar cheese, tins of jams and long-life milk
If you’re able to donate any of the above, it would be greatly appreciated. I could collect from you if based in Cape Town. These will then be delivered to them upon my visit. Please contact me should you have any questions: 082 852 4125 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is more information on what these wonderful people do, and how you can get involved.
The Christine Revell Children’s Home provide full-time care for up to 49 babies and children from birth to five years of age. A very sad fact is that these children are either neglected, abandoned, abused, orphaned. They are accepted at the home irrespective of HIV status, race or gender.
Full-time care is given with the help of 31 staff members including a director, social worker, child-care worker, administrative and domestic staff. The home nurtures, protects and cares for the children and help to develop them to their full potential.
Christine Revell is registered with the provincial Department of Social Development and receives a basic subsidy per child.
Below are a few programs which the home offers to help maintain a high standard of care and promote the development of children.
Volunteer Program – volunteers ranging from individuals to high school learners, church and corporate groups, who have all committed themselves to help for one morning or afternoon per week.
Hosting Families - In order to facilitate the process of reintegrating the children into the community, a sucessful weekend and holiday hosting program is run and children go out on weekends at least once per month.
Educare Program – From the age of 18 months the older children attend the Little Star Creche in the premises on weekdays mornings. There are two groups and under the guidance of qualified staff members, the children learn about shapes, sizes & colours and are taught rhymes and songs.
Individual and Small Group Sessions – Children who indicate some behavioral and developmental problems receive specialized attention.
Medical Program – Thanks to the panel of volunteer doctors, the children are regularly examined and treated as needed.
Income Generating Projects
Shop Sales: Bi-monthly sales to the community of donated items provide much needed additional income. On sale are clothing, toys, household goods and even furniture.
Annual Bazaar and Dance is also a source of income for them, donations and support for these events are greatly appreciated.
For more information: 021 697 1748
Alicia Rhoda (Director): email@example.com
Lets all dig deep, and together with the Lily Storm blog…do our bit for the less fortunate!
Happy 2015 everyone. I hope it brings much success, peace and prosperity.
I’m not one for new years resolutions…too much pressure! However, I’m all for it being a brand new chance to re-evaluate your current state of being. Last year was a trying time for me. I really battled to find happiness within myself. But there comes a point when you have to take responsibility and pull yourself together. There is too much I need to do. We all have God given talents. Why waste it?
December has always been my favourite time of year. It’s filled with joy, love and festivity. January though…not so much. I have heard one too many stories of couples parting ways, and more disturbingly – domestic violence. I don’t know what it is like to be caught up in an abusive relationship. Can only imagine the trauma. But ladies…if your man disrespects and beats you once, that is enough! Why would you go back for more? Especially if there are children involved? I know of someone in a similar situation, and her response is, ‘But I love him’.
No. Love does not hurt. Love does not make you or your children feel worthless and unwanted. I do realize people are stuck in very difficult situations, but there is always a way out. Stand up and be a soldier. Women underestimate their ability to survive on their own. We all want to be inlove. At what cost though?
I promise that there are still proper and chivalrous men out there. Men who don’t feel the need to physically or emotionally abuse a woman to prove their masculinity. Don’t give up on the idea of true love. Start realizing your worth. Let go of anything or anyone who no longer benefits your wellbeing.
This weekend, I’ve discovered Pinterest…and am completely obsessed! I always thought it was just a bunch of random people uploading photos, similar to Instagram. But not so. What I love about it is the fact that you can create your own ‘boards’. And pin things to it. I call mine dream boards. I am drowning in a sea of Marilyn Monroe décor ideas, beautiful images of Tuscany and inspirational quotes.
So the plan is to pin as many photos of my goals and dreams for the near future. Let me share a few….
Marilyn Monroe. Queen of sexy sophistication. I admire her quiet, timeless beauty. Yet sometimes feel an incredible sense of sadness and strength from her photos.
When I move into my fresh, new apartment one day…I want to create a plush space. Miss Monroe’s presence and style will be key. My home must be my sanctuary. A place to read a good book propped up against ridiculously comfy cushions, or eat a breakfast of poached eggs and salmon while flipping through an issue of Woman & Home on a Sunday morning.
I have never travelled. Yet something in my soul longs to discover the cultural mystery and earthiness of Tuscany. I want to eat real pizza, have good wine, have conversations with elderly owners of established vineyards and villas, spend days writing about my experiences… On my bucket list for sure.
Life is too short to worry about constantly pleasing others. As women, our natural instinct is to nurture, fix and conform to what society demands we be. I am multi-faceted. And I don’t think it’s selfish to want to give myself the best that life has to offer. Work hard, be kind to those around you, be brave while facing the storms of life. Put yourself first.
I am a great lover of perfume, and very keen to try different brands according to my mood.
Optiphi’s Essence 1.618 aromatic balm is truly divine. My first experience with a solid perfume (received at a blogger event earlier this year), and months later I am still impressed. It comes presented in a cute vintage-like tin. Now a staple in my handbag.
What does it smell like? It’s hard to describe… warm, softly sweet, discreet yet seductive. I apply a smidgen to my pulse points during the day. It lasts for a few hours and I can’t resist sniffing my wrists every now and then! The fragrance is gentle enough for those who don’t like anything too overpowering.
Contact Optiphi for more information on stockists: http://www.optiphi.com or via Twitter @optiphi