Archive for the ‘Just trendi’ Category

Everything, Everything Movie

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This week, after waiting for what has felt like forever, we were finally able to watch the trailer for “Everything, Everything” the movie based off of Nicole Yoon’s 2015 YA novel Everything, Everything.

Everything, Everything tells the story of Madeline Whittier who is an 18-year-old who has never left her house due to an immunodeficiency disease – basically, she’s allergic to the world. Only living inside her house her entire life was completely normal for her and fine until Olly moves in next door. He’s tall and wearing all black and obviously they fall in love.

Two teenagers falling in love would be fine in any other circumstance, but when one can’t leave her house and the other can’t come into that house things get a little bit complicated.

Everything, Everything is an excellently written innovative novel that adds a new and difficult twist to the traditional teenager love story. If you loved Eleanor and Park, Hazel and Augustus, and Sammie and Coop add Madeline and Olly to the list of amazing teenage love stories to envy.

WARNING: If you haven’t read the book, maybe read the book before watching the trailer: Click here.

If you’ve read Everything, Everything and are looking for another great book check out Nicole Yoon’s The Sun Is Also A Star, which was nominated for the 2016 National book Award. It is a genuine story of two teenagers on two very different paths who cross at the worse possible time. I devoured it in 24 hours. Nicole Yoon is an amazing author who has earned her place on my favorite author’s list.

Everything, Everything will be out later this year so grab a copy now so you can read it before seeing the movie! Because we all know, the book is ALWAYS better.

P.S. Incase you didn’t know:

Eleanor and Park from Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Hazel and Augustus from The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

Sammie and Coop from The Memory Book by Lara Avery

Written by Liz Sarant


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My home-schooling experience

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I am eighteen years old and I haven’t been to school in over twelve years. My mother pulled me out of school at the beginning of grade one and brought me home to home-school me. I finally finished the journey when I matriculated in May of 2016.

Home-schooling has become much bigger in recent years, but when my family first started, it was a largely unheard of concept. Many people told my parents that they were crazy and that their decision to home-school me and my siblings would ruin our lives. I am here today as living proof that not only is home-schooling not crazy – it’s an incredible experience for everyone involved.

Families choose to home-school for many different reasons. My parents wanted to be involved in our lives and to allow us each to learn at our own pace and in our own way. Each home-schooler has a very unique experience and story to tell. It would be exhausting for me to talk about or even just touch on each of its different possibilities, options and challenges. Thus, I will be focusing on my personal experience with home-schooling.

The first thing I learnt at home was how to read. This opened up a whole new world for me. I spent the majority of my childhood reading any book I could get my hands on. Through fiction, I learned English, history, geography, and science. The characters I read about taught me human values, such as kindness, being courageous, and dreaming big. I can confidently say that books and reading have shaped me into who I am today.

Once I started reading books, it wasn’t long before I was writing them, too. I spent hours every day scribbling away in notebooks, writing short stories, poems, and novels. Being home-schooled allowed me the freedom to pursue and explore this passion. It’s not just me, either. My youngest brother, who excels with numbers, was given the freedom to progress to far above his age level in math, and another friend of mine graduated culinary school at 16 and is now working her dream job as a chef.

Home-schooling taught me a lot more than just basic education. As I was largely responsible for my own schedule, especially during high school, I learnt self-control and disciple. I learnt how to pursue curiosity and enjoy learning. I learnt how to do things around the house, such as cook and clean properly, in order to help my mother out. (I especially appreciated these lessons once I moved out!)

A lot of people have told me that they admire my direction in life. I know who I am and where I am going. Though in part this is due to my personality, I also believe that one of the reasons for this is that, as a home-schooler, I had a lot of time and space to explore myself, the world, and my relation to it.

Being home-schooled gave me a lot of opportunities that might otherwise have been difficult for me had I been in school. At 12, when I was contemplating going into film and drama, I took a week off school to act in a student film. At 15, I took a college-level online creative writing course. And, because I worked hard, I matriculated early and spent the last six months of my matric year working in order to save for my gap year trip.

One concern people often have about home-schooling is that home schooled children don’t or can’t make friends. While socialising as a home-schooler certainly is different to socialising as a “school kid”, it is far from impossible. I myself have many friends, both home-schoolers and “school kids”, in a variety of different ages and walks of life. I met these friends at organised social events (such as the monthly home-schooler’s Ice-Skating), other friend’s birthday parties, and extra-mural classes.

Do I believe that every child should be home schooled? No, I do not. I believe that every family should choose what is best for their unique situation, characters, and circumstances. However, if you are considering home-schooling, I can promise that it’s worth a shot. I for one am very glad that I was home-schooled, and very grateful for everything that I learned from the experience.

Written by Aimee-Claire Smith


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Ups and Downs of an Independent Woman

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If there is one thing I love most about myself it’s the fact that I am an independent woman. I was raised by father to always depend on myself and to work hard for what I want in life. This week I am sharing my experience of being an independent woman, the Ups and the Downs because this week on the 8th of March we celebrated International Women’s Day.

It’s all up to you

Firstly, you must understand that as an independent woman, you can’t just wait for someone to do things for you. If you don’t get up and do it for yourself, no one will. In all my University years I had to work hard to support myself at school and also, to work hard to pass my academics because I knew very well that if anything should go wrong, or if I slack in any way, then I would only be disappointing myself. Every morning I had to get up with the intention of doing my utmost best for that day – self-motivation was my best friend.

Mom and dad to the rescue

Well, you might as well forget this because once your parents know and are confident that they have raised an independent child, well, they sort of start to let you handle your business yourself. For me, as the youngest, my parents gave me free range to work for my pocket money at an earlier age than that of my siblings. This allowed me to learn, make mistakes and start again very early in life which I think has helped me build my strong will, and also taught me to work hard and to know what I want out of life.

Love is not just about the heart

Being an independent woman you start to realize that relationships are not as they are displayed in movies, where you meet a nice guy and you fall madly in love and maybe someday get married and have children. Hahahah I wish. What I have noticed is that most guys start to treat you differently as an independent woman; they tend to either date you because you can depend on yourself, and therefore they won’t work as hard to buy you things, and pay for your dinner, because they know that you can actually do it yourself. Also, most start letting you pay for things and some even act like the lady in the relationship and expect you to financially support them. I was raised in a home where the man of the house takes care of his family, and no matter how modern and independent I become, I still believe that the man should take care of the household. I know most people will not agree with this view, but that is my view and yes, I do think a woman should help her spouse in building the home, but at the same time I think it is also his duty to take care of the household.

Now when I date someone I ask different questions: it’s not just about falling madly in love, but it’s more than that – is he educated, does he have a job, or will I have to pay his way out of things, does he want a family, and so on. What I like about being an open minded, independent woman is the fact that I don’t look at love as just that, I look beyond that and think for the future because when you are relying on yourself for everything, you never want to end up in situations where you can’t fend for yourself.

Can’t afford to get sick

For me, this has been one of the worst parts of being an independent woman and that is you literally have no time to get sick. Getting sick with flu or whatever the case maybe is simply not an option and when it does happen it’s like your whole world comes to a standstill. It sounds hectic because it is, you know that there is no one else to take care of everything when you get sick, and no one will go to work on your behalf. So you realise that the option of being sick is the last thing you want to have happen to you.

You can treat yourself any time

I have said negative things about being an independent woman but the best part that I truly enjoy is the fact that I don’t have to answer to anyone, I am my own boss. I can go shopping and buy whatever I wish, provided I can afford it of course :-). I can plan and fulfil my dreams and goals without having to first consult anyone. If I fail at something, only I have to know about it, and I can choose to start over or move on. I get to choose who I want to stay in my life and get rid of friends I no longer need to be associated with. I make the decisions and I rule my household the way I want it.

Here are just some of the things that people tend to think of when they hear the words ‘independent woman’. They are true, but these are qualities that I think every woman should have, because in every woman there is a strong independent woman who is waiting to be awoken.

  • She is strong and knows what she wants
  • She is not shy to speak her mind
  • She is able to give and receive love
  • She stands up for what she believes in
  • She has a sense of right and wrong (i.e. morals)
  • She has self-esteem and self-motivation
  • She knows who she is and will not compromise
  • She can be both dependent, independent, and interdependent
  • She can access her wisdom and will power
  • I hope you learnt something new about me and also, that being independent can also be an awesome experience. #StayTrendi

    Written by Phoebe Sibomana


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    Wizarding World Movies

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    Inspired by the new Wizarding World movie, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, I dived back into the world of Harry Potter desperate to find any clues as to what may be coming in the next four movies. Is anyone else as excited about this as I am?

    First things first. We must discuss the movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Did everyone else think this movie was as spectacular as I did? It was so fantastically done and proves, once again, that J.K. Rowling is truly a genius. The story brings us back to the Wizarding World before Harry Potter’s time when wizards were still forbidden to marry muggles and the magnificent wizard that everyone feared was Gellert Grindelwald rather than Lord Voldemort. While we only get a glimpse of his evil in this movie it leaves us at the edge of our seats, anxious to find out what happens next. For anyone who hasn’t yet seen the movie I highly recommend you take the time to check it out before the next one hits the big screen at the end of 2018, if everything stays on schedule, that is.

    In rereading the entire Harry Potter Series from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone/ Philosopher’s Stone (depending on which country you read it in) all the way to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, I once again fell in love with the books that created this world rather than the movies. At a Harry Potter movie marathon with my friends I was once again that annoying person who pointed out every point where the movie skipped, diverted or disregarded the books.

    My biggest issue was everything that was left out, obviously. As my friend put it, they left out all the social justice points from the books. Fluer, one of the wizards in the Tri-wizard Tournament, wasn’t as helpless as they portrayed her to be and they completely left out S.P.E.W., Hermione’s Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare which protected House Elves aka Slaves. Which, if we’re being honest, the whole world could do with more social justice. Maybe if we’re lucky, we’ll have movies completely devoted to House Elves’ struggles in the future after they’ve gained their freedom and been functioning members of society for decades, so the elite can see just how bad things really were.

    Some other important social justice bits that were left out of the movies: (BEWARE: SPOILERS)

    1. Firenze, the centaur Harry meets in the Forbidden Forrest, ends up teaching Divination at Hogwarts when Professor Trelawney was fired by Professor Umbridge. Professor Umbridge hated Professor Trelawney and had hoped to be able to hire her own teacher, but Dumbledore beat her to the punch and hired Firenze. Professor Umbridge saw Firenze as a lesser being because he was only half human and therefore “barbaric”. Sound familiar to anyone else? Why would you cut out this beautifully developed plot line that Rowling clearly intended to use as a teaching mechanism?

    2. Lupin and Tonk’ s relationship. The entire sixth book (Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince) Tonks is in a bad mood and sad. Harry and everyone else thinks it is due to the loss of her cousin, Sirius, but it’s not. It is in fact because she is in love with Lupin, a character that Rowling has stated was represented a character with HIV/AIDS, who is a werewolf and continuously subject to prejudice (see Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban). Tonk loved Lupin so much her Patronus, a very powerful protective spell, took the shape of a wolf. She loved him throughout the entire series and Lupin told her he was too “sick” to be with her and too poor and old and that she deserved better. She didn’t care about any of this. This of course all came up after Bill Weasley was attacked by a werewolf (see Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince). Everyone assumed that because was now ugly because of the attack, Fluer, his fiance, would change her mind about marrying him. This of course was false. I won’t tell you everything that happens with these two relationships, but you would be right in assuming they both end “Happily Ever After”, kind of.

    3. The fact that Voldemort was a half-blood because his mother fell in love with a muggle, gave him love potion, married him, had a child with him, and was disowned by her family for not marrying a pure blood. Oh yeah and then he spent his whole life pretending to be a pure blood, killing multiple muggles, half bloods and mud bloods while praising pure bloods. Do I really need to explain the intricacies of this aspect of the book? How could you leave this out of the movies!?

    Well I could sit here all day and point out all the details and how they were better in the books, but you could also find out for yourself. If you’ve only ever watched the Harry Potter movies I implore you to take some time and read the books. The audiobooks are also brilliant.

    Written by Liz Sarant


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    Policies versus Implementation #SameSexMarriages

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    Same-sex marriage has been legal in South Africa since the Civil Union Act came into force on 30 November 2006. The decision of the Constitutional Court in the case of Minister of Home Affairs v Fourie on 1 December 2005 extended the common-law definition of marriage to include same-sex spouses—as the Constitution of South Africa guarantees equal protection before the law to all citizens regardless of sexual orientation—and gave Parliament one year to rectify the inequality in the marriage statutes. On 14 November 2006, the National Assembly passed a law allowing same-sex couples to legally marry 230 to 41, which was subsequently approved by the National Council of Provinces on 28 November in a 36 to 11 vote, and the law came into effect two days later.

    South Africa was the fifth country, the first (and only, as of February 2017) in Africa, the first in the southern hemisphere, the first republic, and the second outside Europe to legalise same-sex marriage.’ Recently read this on Wikipedia.

    Now let us unpack this policy, giving it meaning by including the human factor, because in paper it sounds perfect but in actual reality it is quite tricky. Firstly, well done to our democracy for recognising the rights of the minority because compared to other African countries, we are well ahead. The South African policies are so good that it makes implementation hard. Are we perhaps, as South Africans, jumping so high that we even forget the cultural barriers that continue to exist amongst our communities? Or is it because our policies are so ambitious, they are a tough act to follow? Well, it all rests in the following principles; understanding, acceptance, respect and equality.

    I often wonder what happens after a policy or right has been passed in governmental departments in South Africa, i.e. Home affairs, Housing, DOE. Does government conduct workshops, or training in any form to orientate officials in new policies? I wonder because some of the stories I have come across prove this idea to be otherwise; for example there is a gay couple in Knysna who are currently struggling to get officials to marry them. The excuses they receive from government personnel is that performing such an act goes against their principles. This is quite shocking, as this is unprofessional let alone discriminative. The couple is even considering paying an official other than government to marry them. This is sad as this service is performed free of charge by Home Affairs. Please take note Knysna is a small town situated in Western Cape where I gather same sex marriages do not take place often.

    Fortunately I am in a position to comment on this as I recently tied the knot to the love of my life. I must say at first anxiety took over both me and my partner the day we went to select a date for our union. We went to Cape Town Home Affairs where we expected to be judged, looked upon in a discriminatory manner – we even feared rejection. We expected this because of what happened to one of my oldest friends Andiswa, who tied the knot last year. Apparently her experience was the worst ever at the Nyanga Home Affairs in Western Cape. She and her partner were mocked, ridiculed and discriminated against to such an extent that her most memorable day turned into a nightmare. Fortunately due to their devotion, love and understanding of each other they endured all of that simply because they wanted to become one.

    Things proved to be quite the opposite for us, as the government personnel were warm, caring and very supportive. There was just one minor detail that I noticed whilst completing the marriage application form – it contained the words husband and wife. This points back to implementation, but I didn’t let that pass without making my mark. I scratched out the word husband, in inverted commas I wrote in ‘WIFE’.

    The other thorn that we experienced was that we both knew we could not inform our families because we know that their acceptance is limited. I recall my aunt at one stage politely informing me not to invite her should I ever decide to get married, and she boldly said, “No white wedding please”, as that would have embarrassed my family in the community. The very same reason we as same sex couples decide to marry is often the fact that our families never recognise our partners: they disrespect them and override any decisions we make regarding them. I have seen some of my friends at their partner’s funerals standing at the back instead of sitting in front with the family. They are not given any recognition at all, never mind the fact that they shared their lives with the deceased. Today, I am glad that my partner will never have to go through that the day I die and I thank God for making that possible. Pretty ironic that I thank the same God that we are told does not approve of same sex marriages by the church.

    There other minor thorn we came across during the ceremony was when we were asked to choose who is partner A and partner B. I volunteered to be partner A simply because I’m older than my partner. The officer explained that in any household there needs to be a head of the house, but this bothered us because we both identify ourselves as head of households.

    Clearly advocacy and education needs to take place as a lot of ignorance has been demonstrated in these government offices, in our communities, in our families and most importantly in our churches. Advocacy also begins with us as LGBTI community. When one plants a tree, you do not start in the middle but with the seeds in the soil or ground. Culture is not inherited but it is taught therefore it can be adjusted should need be.

    Written by Nandipha Tshabane


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