Hi everyone,

Earlier this morning I was paging through my Dad’s latest Time Magazine and came across the Top 10 Lists of 2008. I read these with interest, and then decided that I would incorporate all 10 of this year’s top buzzwords in my blog. In case you missed the list, this year’s Top 10 Buzzwords are as follows (each one is hyperlinked to where it is used in my blog):

  1. Change – this word was synonymous with the US elections in the latter part of 2008, during which Barack Obama’s candidacy was inextricably linked to ‘change’;
  2. Bailout – 2008 brought with it one or two little financial storms, and everyone from banks to auto manufactures where needing bailouts, hence this word making the list;
  3. Hockey Mom – Sarah Palin, during her candidacy referred to parents who understand everyday problems as Hockey Moms;
  4. Fist Bump – this is a really cool term for an action that’s been around for ever, especially amongst hard core bikers. Even my Dad and I fist bump! It simply means the jabbing together of fists;
  5. Nuke the fridge – this is a little more obscure and I think I’m going to struggle to use this in today’s blog, but I will try nevertheless. It comes from a scene in the latest Indiana Jones instalment where he pops into a fridge to avoid a nuclear explosion. Being Indiana Jones, he steps out of the fridge unscathed; sadly though the term is now used for Hollywood franchises that produce disappointing sequels. Rocky springs to mind. I guess this is the new vogue term that combines ‘let sleeping dogs lie’ with ‘flogging a dead horse’;
  6. Staycation – owing to the rising fuel costs during mid-2008 many people opted to not travel on their vacations, or travel a very short distance, resulting in a vacation where you stay at home, i.e. a staycation;
  7. Rickrolled – I personally was rickrolled during the year! It means to click on an Internet hyperlink which then redirects you to a video of Rick Astley’s 1987 hit ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’. I’d rather be subjected to a string of Indiana Jones and Rocky movies than have to be rickrolled again;
  8. PUMA – another tough one to incorporate into my blog, and again we must thank the US elections for this one which stands for ‘party unity my ass’. Hilary Clinton takes the bow for this one;
  9. Tweet – a definite favourite of mine, and very relevant, as both my Dad and I are in the habit of tweeting. Effectively it means a short message to update family, friends and colleagues about one’s daily (or even hourly) activities. Tweeting was very useful during my seven surgical procedures that I under went during 2008, as I would tweet everyone about my progress;
  10. Topless Meeting – this is one I know my Dad will not be able to deal with easily; it means that laptops and other mobile devices such as Blackberries and iPhones are banned from a meeting. This one actually makes me a little sad, as I love seeing the SMS’s Dad sends me from meetings about how people are behaving, and which animal or alien he thinks they represent, and so on. Sadly I cannot publish his SMS’s, because I need to protect the innocent endangered corporate species. I guess it’s his way of dealing with numbskulls.


Ok, so here goes – my latest blog, with the incorporation of this year’s latest buzzwords. By the way, buzzword means a word which is voguish, and seems to have its origin in George Orwell’s “Politics and the English Language”.

This past week has been a pretty quite one, but it did bring with it some exciting news, meeting of old friends and making some new friends too. Temperatures remained in the mid 30’s during the day, and the evenings didn’t provide much of a bailout from the heat and stuffiness. On Monday Mom and I headed off to Morningside Medi Clinic, my second home, for me to undergo a hearing test. You’ll recall that last week my sight was given the all clear, and this week my ears would go under the spotlight. Owing to all the procedures I’ve had in my brain, it is prudent to ensure that all my senses are working correctly. So today I went to see Yvonne, and after a battery of tests I was given the thumbs up that my hearing was in order. I was most relieved, as one by one I’m getting a bunch of check makes against my health record. Each little test is a relief to all three of us, and obviously you, my dedicated readers and fans.

After the hearing test Mom trooped up to the NNICU to visit Lynette and Pulani. As always they were as thrilled to see me as I was to see them. I felt I owed them so much, as for more than four months they looked after me in hospital and made sure I was happy and comfortable, and most of all, safe.

Dad was home mid afternoon and I was overjoyed to see him. After a fist bump he picked me up, cuddled me, and threw me in the air, catching me in his safe hands and bringing me down to his face for kisses before being launched into the air again. I giggled and giggled and giggled, to such a degree that the top of my nose wrinkled! This is something that was noticed a few weeks back, and Mom and Dad have been trying ever since to photograph this little trait of mine, to no avail.

Tuesday morning there was lots of noise and activity in the garden. Dad had managed to procure the services of a gardener; I was also very excited by this, as I had noticed the garden looking a little neglected. Sadly the building extensions that were being done in preparation of my arrival had come to a halt in June when the horrid builder disappeared with Mom and Dad’s hard earned cash, and as a result, the garden also feel into a bit of neglect. But that is all about to change! I even heard that Dad will take me into the pool pretty soon, once all the green stuff in it had been obliterated from the water.

As if that wasn’t enough excitement for the day, Opa arrived. Fortunately Dad was also at home, as it was a Public Holiday. It was so nice visiting with Opa, but I am really worried about him, as he looks so very sad and distracted since Oma passed away. Before he left I gave him big hugs and kisses to make him feel happier again.

Opa wasn’t gone for more than a few minutes when Aunty Kim and Ronnie arrived. It was so cool seeing them again, and I wished everyday was a Public Holiday, if it meant Dad could stay home with me, and we could have lots of visitors. Coffee and snacks were served up and I did piles of giggling and smiling to keep all entertained.

Aunty Kim and Ronnie left after some time and I settled in for what I thought would be a quiet afternoon. Fortunately the afternoon was not going to nuke the fridge, as the day was about to get even more exciting. Bev and Claire arrived and as is always with them there is lots of excitement around the house, cocktails flowed freely, and before long pizzas made an appearance. Dad actually missed some of the afternoon, as he opted for an afternoon nap, only to wake up to festivities going on in the lounge. It didn’t take long for him to join in, only to be interrupted for an hour to go play squash. By the time Dad was home again, I had fallen asleep in Bev’s arms; a favourite activity of mine. She’s a real Hockey Mom, as she knows so much about the world and what’s going on everywhere, but at the same time she’s comfortable to hold me and care for me for hours on end! It was getting late, and I was eventually put into my cot, but I could hear the chattering and laughing carrying on in the lounge deep into the night.

A visit to Dr Sonja was the order of the day for Wednesday morning, where after Mom and I did a little bit of shopping. She discovered a factory shop close by and bought a whole bunch of clothes for the family. In the afternoon, Mom and I worked on Mom’s book club blog, but after almost being rickrolled, we ditched that idea and opted to chill-out for the afternoon and wait for Dad to come home.

During the sweltering heat of Thursday afternoon we had a surprise visit from Anne, whom neither Mom nor I know, but who had come to deliver a little Christmas present for me from Rosemarie in Scotland. It was so nice to meet a friend of Rosemarie’s, and to make a new friend as well. Anne was just about to leave when Dad arrived home, on his bike, and Nina also arrived for a quick visit. We chatted on the driveway for a while but Dad had to excuse himself, as the armoured jacket he wears for protection on his bike was making him hot, and needless to say, grumpy. He disappeared indoors and not long afterward reappeared in shorts and a t-shirt, looking a whole lot more comfortable! Nina stayed for a short while, and after she left we headed off for another visit, this time to meet Brenda. Before leaving home, I noticed Mom packing the double barrelled industrial strength breast pump in the car. I was happy to see it going, as it had usurped my place at Mom’s breast for way too long. In them realised we were going to meet Brenda (Boob) Pierce, who was out lactation consultant, and from whom Mom had rented the double barrelled industrial strength breast pump for the past six months. It was really awesome meeting Brenda, and I sat in her lap as we all chatted merrily. By the time we were leaving, the sun was starting to set over the horizon. Before long we arrived home and we settled down to watch some TV, trying not to move too much in an attempt to keep cool! During the evening I was also introduced to a tradition that Mom has been doing for a number of years. I got my very first Christmas decoration. Mom has been doing this for my cousins for years, and this was my first opportunity to be ‘part of the club’.

Friday morning Dad rushed into the nursery with a huge grin on his face and brandishing a little orange Tolo Cat for me. I wondered what the occasion was and then I remembered – six months old today! I was overjoyed, and reciprocated with huge grins, giggles and smiles. Dad scooped me up, and off we went back to the master bedroom where I crawled into bed next to Mom after being wished a happy six month birthday from her. We all chilled in bed together for a while, but before long Dad had to get up and get ready for work. I was hoping that he didn’t have any topless meetings today, so that the three of us could remain in touch all day, on my special ½ birthday! I finished off the day wolfing down a piece of dried mango, which tastes absolutely wonderful and helps with my teething, as I can see a second tooth is beginning to make it appearance. I’m convinced that by the time Christmas is here, I’ll have two (bottom) front teeth.

The only agenda item for the day was a visit by Mom to her doctor at Morningside Medi Clinic; this went very quickly, and before long we were back home, and shortly afterward Dad arrived home from work. I was put into Dad’s care and Mom went out to run a few errands. After she posted some goodies off at the Post Office to Izy in the Eastern Cape (who is holidaying in Kenton-On-Sea, I’m soooo jealous), she went to change some of the clothes at the factory shop, as it seems Dad is sneaking on some kilos in an attempt to sympathise with me having to put on so much extra weight! Mom called to say she was dropping in at Bev and Claire’s on the way home and gave Dad a series of instructions over the phone. So Dad saw to all my cares, bathing, and meds, and before long I settled down in his arms and we watched some TV. A tweet arrived from Mom via SMS to say she was going to stay with the girls for a few glasses of wine. Mom met Chester and Georgie there as well as little Bijou the cat. Mom also feasted on the wonderful art work around the house. She came home in a very good mood from her afternoon.

Another hectic day ensued on Saturday, as once I was bathed and dressed we went to see Sister Lindie at her clinic to be weighed (the Baby Club at Tina Otte’s place had already closed for the year). After a bit of a wait, it was my turn to step on the scales. Yippee, some more weight was put on since my last weigh-in and I was now a proud 6350 grams. My height was checked as well and I now towered a full 65 centimetres over the planet! This is a whole 13 centimetres more than when I was born. I was really chuffed at my progress – there is certainly no hint of PUMA at Camp Jarrod; we’re all working together harmoniously!

We rushed back home after my weigh-in to meet Ruan, Maryke, Ryan and little Kylie at home, as they popped in for a quick visit. I was so excited to meet them all, as I’d heard so much about this little family from my Mom and Dad. Little Kylie was tiny, as she was just 7 weeks old, and I stared at her in awe, thinking that I used to be that size! Then, looking at Ryan, all of 2 years old, I was also in awe to think that pretty soon I’ll be that big and be able to run around and play with my Dad in the garden. A few times during the morning Ruan, Ryan and my Dad popped into the front garden to play with Tequila and Gumbie, the two little Dachshunds that are also part of the Mynhardt family. The reason for the whole family (dogs and all) visiting, is that they were going for a few day’s staycation at Maryke’s parent’s place in Kempton Park. While they were visiting Opa arrived for a quick little visit. It was really busy in the Lederer lounge, being held by everyone and meeting a whole new bunch of people. What was super was that little Ryan had brought me a present from his family which was placed under out Christmas tree in readiness for Thursday. Soon Opa left, and not long after the Mynhardt’s were also on their way. I was most impressed to see how full they had packed the car, complete with Christmas presents, gear for a few days, two kids, two dogs and two adults.

Sunday morning heralded in a flurry of activity as Mom slept in, and Dad was just surfacing when Robin and Di phoned to drop of a Christmas present for me. Pretty quickly coffee and tea was served and I was in Di’s arms chatting with everyone. Unfortunately there visit was only a brief one, as they were heading off to Cape Town later in the afternoon. The three of us then dashed off to Cresta for some last minute Christmas goodies. It was an absolute madhouse there, but Mom and Dad, with me in Dad’s arms, navigated the crowds with proficient dexterity. Not a moment too soon we were out of Cresta and far from the maddening shopping crowds.

After being home for a little while we were on the road again, literally. I was piled into the traveller, and the three of us headed up the road, on foot. This could only mean one thing – visiting Nina, Gene and Jaco. It was Gene’s fifth birthday, and a party was being held in her honour. We arrived and immediately I made a whole bunch of new friends. Gene showed me off to all her friends, and before long we were at the bottom of the complex’s garden chatting and munching on (you guessed it) pizzas! Jaco had made two awesome fires in a Weber, where we baked our pizzas. During all this time I had discovered the wonders of biltong, and was given a piece which I spent the better part of an hour chewing on. I really wished my teeth would arrive more quickly, so that I too could savour all these wonderful things that adults eat. My large doughnut was laid out under a huge tree and I was joined by Gene and her friends in and around the doughnut. The heat was unbearable, so the garden sprinklers were put on, and some of its droplets drifted our way, keeping us cool. The older kids played in the nearby pool, and a Slip and Slide was set up down the slope of the garden. It looked like enormous fun, and I wished I was older and bigger to join in – but that time will still come. Dad fetched a white baby bunny from the nearby pen, and all the kids and I touched and played with its ears. This was the second bunny that I had touched, as Bob the Bunny at Elmien’s place had also been the target of my tactile senses. At the time of my meeting Bob the Bunny I remember touching him and then giggling hysterically, as he felt funny, and very different to my cats at home. Today I was a little too tired to touch this new bunny, but I observed him from a distance nevertheless.

The lazy Sunday afternoon marched on with lots of chit-chat on the lawn, and pretty soon Gene’s birthday cake was served up. The kids went mad over the Hannah Montana styled ice-cream cake, with the adults not far behind. In the distance a thunderstorm was brewing, and Dad let Craig use his camera to take some shots of the clouds. I’d not met Craig and Nicolene before, so it was really exciting to meet them too, as they were expecting little Chloe in February! I can’t wait to meet her.

As it was the Summer Solstice, the evening stayed light until well after 7pm, where after we made our way indoors. Most of Gene’s friends had gone home already, so Gene and I watched Cars, while the adults had coffee and tea in the lounge. All too soon I noticed the rustling of my toys and goodies being packed away and I knew it was time to head off home. We bid Gene, Nina, Jaco, Nicolene and Craig farewell, and we walked back up the road home. It was an awesome evening, as the thunderstorm had blown over, and the heat of the day had dissipated, but not too much to make the evening too cool. Mom carried me home as I was drifting off to sleep, while Dad pushed the traveller, looking at the evening sky. Once home I was popped into my cot where I stayed asleep until about 1 am in the morning, where after I drifted off dreaming of more biltong. Much to my Mom and Dad’s amazement, I slept until 7 am on Monday morning. They’re so chuffed at my ability to sleep through most of the night, with the odd troublesome evenings when I’m not feeling too great.

Well, before I sign off for today I must share some other things with you that Mom and Dad think are really cute. Over and above my now liking biltong and dried mango, I’ve also taken to yoghurt and honey like a fish to water. Mom also regularly feeds me butternut with cream cheese and chicken mixed with vegetables. I’m really enjoying all these new favours and textures, as I was starting to get really bored with breast milk and the Infatrini. Although I will still stick with these for a while, the added variety is really cool. The other thing that tickles my Mom and Dad pink is that I’ve taken to singing myself to sleep. I’ve not chosen any particular tunes, but I guess this is a function of my having had music played to me in NNICU by my Mom and Dad to drown out all the horrid hospital noises. I guess as I start understanding my vocal range more, I can start stringing together cords and actually sing recognisable tunes!

That’s it for now. Have a wonderful Christmas.

Love, hugs and butternut kisses,

Jarrod J

Figure 1 Christmas festivities are already underway with Bev & Claire

Figure 2 In the Christmas spirit

Figure 3 As a rule when being changed . . .

Figure 4 . . . I always grab for Jeremy Fisher

Figure 5 Got him!

Figure 6 Giggles in my cot

Figure 7 Meeting Anne from Scotland

Figure 8 Getting my first Christmas decoration . . .

Figure 9 . . .and here it is proudly displayed on the Christmas tree

Figure 10 Meeting Brenda (Boob) Pierce, our lactation consultant

Figure 11 Here I am eating yoghurt and honey, and most importantly, hold my own spoon

Figure 12 Six months old, and holding up my 1/2 birthday present

Figure 13 Dad has started marking off my height on my Winnie-the-Pooh growth chart

Figure 14 Here’s Mom holding little Kylie

Figure 15 A close-up of Kylie

Figure 16 And here’s Ryan checking out Pooh bear

Figure 17 Showing off to Opa on my Jolly Jumper

Figure 18 One of my friends in the garden

Figure 19 Enjoying some dried mango. Yum!

Figure 20 Savouring some droë-wors

Figure 21 Chilling with Jilleen

Figure 22 The girls cool off

Figure 23 All the kids take a dip

Figure 24 I’m starting to grip anything and everything

Figure 25 A quick power nap during the afternoon’s proceedings

Figure 26 Gene takes a quick break from the pool

Figure 27 Making friends with Jordan

Figure 28 Hugs from Debbie

Figure 29 Getting all the attention from the girls

Figure 30 My first braai

Figure 31 Yah! Ice-cream cake.

Figure 32 Loving the outdoors

Figure 33 Me and my Daddy

Figure 34 Craig shot this with Dad’s camera – stunning

Figure 35 Gene & I watching Cars after everyone left

Figure 36 Taking a snooze to escape the Monday afternoon heat

1 Comment on Buzzwords

  1. Jenni says:

    Hello little Darling

    Wow you have been a busy little man that is for sure, your social life seems to get more and more hectic as the weeks pass. You are looking so healthy and happy and I am very glad to hear of your progress on all fronts and most especially that 5 senses are working perfectly!! You are a miracle and you have once again proved to everyone that miracles do happen.

    I would like to wish You, Your Mom and Dad and all your family a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS and all the very best of wishes for 2009. You are going to have many celebrations over the next 10 days, enjoy it as they are the first of many to come!!

    Lynn and Norwin you have been so strong through all that has happened over the last 6 months and I can only but admire your strength,dedication and the will to NEVER GIVE UP!

    I send you all lots of Christmas Love and Cheer and most of all kisses to share

    I will be chceking in here so please be sure to let us know how your first Christmas celebration turns out.


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