Friday, September 30, 2011

MSA - Not three letters that you want to see together!

This morning we'd like to ask you to join us on the 3rd of October in raising awareness of a horrible disease, known as MSA or Multiple System Atrophy.

Here is the definition as per Wikipedia:

'Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) is a degenerative neurological disorder. MSA is associated with the degeneration of nerve cells in specific areas of the brain. This cell degeneration causes problems with movement, balance and other autonomic functions of the body such as bladder control or blood pressure regulation. The cause of MSA is unknown and no specific risk factors have been identified. Around 55% of cases occur in men, with typical age of onset in the late 50s to early 60s.

The overall prevalence of MSA is estimated at 4.6 cases per 100,000 people.'

On the 3rd of October the organisers of International MSA day have asked that people all over the world light as many candles as possible at 8pm their local time to create awareness of the illness. They have also asked that people walk a mile during that day, either alone or with someone else and that those miles are logged on their official MSA website. What a wonderful idea!

I have written a piece on this on my Camino blog and all the info you will need if you want to participate is to be found from my post on the subject. I will be walking with the amazing Sonja, one of my newest friends, who was diagnosed a year ago with MSA. From being a vibrant athlete and gym instructor, she is now wheelchair bound. I will be meeting her in person for the first time on Monday - in fact, we'll meet at her local beach where they plan to start the walk. People will take turns to push her wheelchair - I thank God that he surrounds us with our own special angels in the form of friends and family in time of need!

To find out more about Sonja and MSA, click here for our post on the subject. Thank you for taking the time and we'd love to hear from you if you have participated or discovered what people have arranged for the 3rd October in your part of the world.

We would love it if you can join us in lighting a candle in your own home at 8pm on Monday. Why not send us a photo of your burning candle/candles and we'll send it on to our friend Sonja, who is working so hard to raise awareness while battling the illness herself.

Our email address:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A few special moments from our roadtrip...

Almost at our destination - this part of our country, known as the little Karoo, is pretty arid but covered with amazing wild flowers this time of the year.

Beautiful blue skies with yellow and purple flowers alongside the road for miles...

The famous 'rooster brood' or griddle cakes found at all events hosted in our small towns in the countryside.

Made with love by these three local ladies...

...and enjoyed by us with a lovely Italian cheese!

Our home on wheels for four days!

And this is what the trip was all about - the annual 'Karoo to Coast' 100km mountain bike race.

A view of the town of Wilderness on our 'Garden Route'.

Tourists in our own country!

And when a girl has to go, she has to go!

Halloo - we'd like a big bush for privacy please!

Holiday homes along the route...

This was the view at our campsite this morning - picture perfect!

Almost home!

Well, that's about as much as I could stay awake for!

Same here - wake me up when we get home!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Day 1 of our roadtrip...

A flower amongst the flowers!

Halloooo - I'm here too..!

Delicate 'Chinese Lanterns' growing wild along the roadside - stunning!

We are having fun indeed!

Our route so far: Cape Town / Worcester / Montagu / Barrydale / Ladismith / Calitzdorp / Oudshoorn
We are following the classic 'Route 62' - if you'd like to see more of the area that we are travelling through, click here for the official route site.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


The camper is in the driveway and Ms Abbey has checked out the mobile accommodation - I guess all that remains is to say: 'Watch this space!'

We can't wait to share our roadtrip with you!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

We just can't say goodbye!

Miss Abbey making the most of the lovely weather!

Glad to say we've finally had a sunny day in our part of the world! It's supposed to be spring here but it's been wet and overcast for days now - I can't even remember when last we were even able to spend a Thursday in the mountains!

I'm afraid I haven't been very good at updating Ms Abbey's blog - I was just saying to Maxmom that I think I need to concentrate on my Camino blog and do a final post here, as keeping up three blogs (there's the Thursday hiking blog as well!) is proving to be an impossible task! This morning I thought I'd attempt to put together that final post here but alas, I can't do it!!

I've discovered that this little blog really does have a special place in my heart, even though I haven't updated here in weeks. I simply can't say goodbye to it! So, my friends, I'll have to think about the format that I want this to take on, somehow I think we should give it a final bash! 

Lets begin then with an update of the four stars of this household. Firstly, little Miss Abigail. I'm glad to report that she still rules the roost, even though she's the tiniest of the lot. Prim and proper, in excellent health and a true little lady. She really is the easiest little dog to live with - she literally can travel anywhere with me, as long as she's close to me, nobody even knows she's there! That works really well when we have to sneak her into places where four legged little creatures aren't really allowed! As animal lovers I'm sure you can identify!

Miss Chloe is doing well, we seem to be winning the allergy battle at this stage. For those of you who've gotten to know us, you'll know that she's had a constant battle with skin allergies the last two years or so. We now have them all on a Tapioca and fish dry food diet and after an extended period on antibiotics, so far so good. We've had no choice but to go the cortisone route a couple of times now as her skin became SO badly infected, so hold thumbs that that will NEVER be necessary again!

Our old faithful Bacardi the Maltese has had to have a whole bunch of his teeth extracted - he suffered from a nasty abscess and together with that of course he had a serious case of halitosis, which thankfully now has been sorted out! He is such a darling dog - hates any loud noises and actually leaves the room if people talk too loudly! Watching a sports event on TV in our house means making sure Bacardi is not in the room - when our team scores a goal (the men in this house mostly watch soccer), he runs for the hills!

George the Maltese is doing great - we think he had one or two days of what looked like arthritis pains this winter but nothing that needed to be checked by the doctor. Phew, I tell you, we are seriously considering taking out doggie medical aid for these four, our vet's bill has been astronomical this year. Bacardi's stint with the teeth last week was a cool R1980 and I've lost track of Chloe's allergy bills... If our vet ever decides to sell shares in his business I think I'll seriously consider investing - that guy is making good money!

Anyway, there's nothing we won't do to ensure our doggies are well cared for, so here's to good health and many happy years with these special little creatures entrusted to us!

Next Friday we're off on a road trip with the camper van we always rent when my husband participates in a cycle race upcountry. This time he's doing the 'Karoo to Coast' race and the two Yorkies and I have been invited along for the ride! We won't be getting on a bike but we will be supporting him all the way and look forward to sharing our trip with you here. I hope to take a gazillion pictures and hopefully I will be able to share a part of our country with you that you have not seen yet.

Wish me luck with camouflaging my two princesses along the route as I turn the 'No animals allowed' signs around! :)   

* If you're interested in what else we've been up to, you might want to visit our other blog: You're very welcome! *