OCTOBER 2021 • JOHANNESBURG
October is the most beautiful month of the year in South Africa. Temperatures are still climbing making it perfectly mild too. It’s a good time of year to venture out to the midlands and coastal towns all over the country. The braais are starting later and later as we take full advantage of the longer days and lazy sunsets. If you have not started already, many homeowners are getting their homes party-season ready. Instagram-ready shiplap and other home trends to cash in on.
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The race to the end of the year is officially on. That also means that many of us are burning out and need as much rest as we can get to function optimally. It's a known fact that we must take care of ourselves before we can take care of others successfully.
Sleep is the number one gift you can give yourself. No series binge-watching or going out with friends and family beats the benefits of sleep. Around 30 per cent of adults have reported that they sleep less than seven hours a day – which is the bare minimum for our health and wellness. Working adults need up to nine hours of sleep a day. Between 10 and 30 per cent of adults suffer from insomnia.
Sandy Roberts, from the Margaret Roberts Herbal Centre, shares her expertise on how to incorporate plants into your sleeping routine. Specific plants in your sleep routine (and even used as décor in your bedroom) can be very beneficial and aid your quality of sleep for the better.
Apart from Bergamot, Elderflower, melissa, rose and Chamomile, my favourite sleep plants above all are Rose-scented Geranium and the Margaret Roberts lavender. This is because both are easy to grow, and easily accessible to all South Africans. It is perfect for use in teas, food, and cosmetics. Versatile, delicious, and unforgettable!
How do they assist with good sleeping patterns?
The Rose-scented Geranium creates a chemical reaction in your brain to soothe anxiety and promote relaxation. It is also an anti-inflammatory that aids in pain relief which is often an underlying sleep depriver. Lavender assists in the production of melatonin and has anxiolytic properties – calming the brain and then the body. It acts as a natural relaxant, sedative, and pain reliever, which brings about sleep in a calming, gentle way. This is a perfect way to gently ease stress and improve moods. It is also used to calm babies who can’t settle or sleep.
Both the Rose-scented Geranium and the Margaret Roberts Lavender are easy to grow in pots or the garden needing full sunlight and a 3 times weekly watering. Both can be used as a cut flower in beautiful full flower arrangements to air and add fragrance to any room or used dried in an old-fashioned potpourri as an antibacterial room freshener. One never knows if these new fragrant oil room fresheners are pure essential oils. Rather go natural and make your own at home cost-effectively. I love to cook with them in tea biscuits, scones, and cakes and specially to make a soothing tea by adding 4 sprigs of lavender to 1 cup of boiling water, add a little honey to taste and a slice of lemon. Allow to cool for a minute and sip quietly. You will need 2 large leaves of scented Geranium to make a cup of Geranium tea. Fill up the cup with boiling water and add honey to taste with a slice of lemon. If you wish, you can occasionally add a little chamomile.
Leave out caffeine and sugar from your diet as well as carbs and dairy at night. Change your meal structure to a light meal in the evening and the main meal at lunch if you can. I would definitely up my Biochemic tissue salt intake with numbers 2,3,4,6,8,9,10,11 an hour before going to bed with a cup of scented Geranium (and Chamomile) tea and a lavender sleep neck pillow. I make beautiful lavender neck pillows for exactly this purpose! If you form a habit of going to bed at a certain time with no electronic devices or television on but a good book you will find yourself feeling better.
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Cancer Myths and Unicorns with Naniki Seboni
“The C-Word" or “Big-C”, no one likes to hear it, especially from a doctor sitting behind a desk but there are few people who do not know someone or at least know of someone who has had to brave a cancer diagnosis.
With October being CANSA Women’s Health Awareness month, we chatted to Cancervive Ambassador and skin cancer survivor, Naniki Seboni to find out about her journey and shed light on some myths.
Your journey to being a cancer survivor has been quite a long one, please share your story with us.
As an active growing child, playing outdoors was a must. Being in lockdown like today’s kids would’ve been absolute hell. But I guess we all have our hell; mine was the sun. I didn’t have a skin cancer radar, so when I started experiencing severe nosebleeds, multiple sunburns, skin changes, and the irregular development of my “jelly jot” mole, I didn’t think too much of it, neither did my parents. Smartly, I was introduced to using sunscreen but not in a consistent way, and not with any supporting sun-smart habits, but I was aware of my sensitivity to the sun and tried to move accordingly.
Some 15 odd years later, a new black mole started making my life miserable, but I was clueless to the extent of damage the mole was causing, so I left it unchecked for another 4-years. During a visit, I told my Neurologist about the mole, she referred me to dermatology, where a biopsy was performed, and still I thought nothing of it.
A month later, my whole world crashed – again. Battling with insomnia, a panic disorder, depression, and other neurological issues, I was in no mental state to handle a Stage III Malignant Melanoma diagnosis. What would that mean for me? Also, I’m black! Isn’t skin cancer a white person disease?
True to my procrastinative nature at the time, I lagged with my hospital visits, missing appointments, dodging calls as though ignoring my health issues would somehow magically cure me. I fell into a deeper state of depression. I wanted nothing to do with anything or anyone for that matter.
6-months later, I was tired of being scared. I was ready to face the Big-C, no matter the outcome. I got in contact with CANSA, and they connected me with their patient support group on Facebook called Champions of Hope. I found warriors and survivors from all over the country encouraging me to take my life back. I was only 25; I still had a lot of life ahead of me.
And then the medical whirlwind week of my life began. Monday, I went to the hospital and handed myself over to the doctors. Tuesday, I was admitted. Wednesday, I went in for my surgery, and Friday, I was discharged. If I had known it would have been such a quick process, I would have faced it earlier, but as I said, I was emotionally and mentally in no state at the time of diagnosis.
And just like that, I was declared cancer-free by the surgeon and the Oncologist after my follow-up appointment. And a new Naniki rolled out of the hospital and straight into a life of advocacy.
The HOMEMAKERS team know you as the Cancervive Ambassador aka. CancerUnicorn, why is being an ambassador and awareness facilitator important to you?
When Cancervive approached me to be one of their ambassadors, my role was to show "the other face" of cancer. I was a young black girl facing a disease that was notably associated with older white people. It was an opportunity for me to share with black communities and my peers that anyone can be touched by cancer, and I was living proof that survivorship was possible.
The CancerUnicorn persona was inspired by my journey as I thought, unicorns are these beautiful mystical creatures and this black girl with a "white person" disease was as much a mystical being. My story was almost unheard of, something of an anomaly. So I tapped into my story, some cancer knowledge, the unicorn essence, the Cancervive colours, my infectious energy, and the CancerUnicorn was born on stage as an awareness facilitator.
I miss the stage right now. I miss the crowds and connecting with people. I miss looking into someone's eyes and holding their hand. I'm bound to Instagram for now, but once we have full reign, I'll be back at schools and hosting breakfast runs and more.
The other side of this is also realising that my cancer journey started when I was younger, and if I could appeal and speak to the kids in a manner they could understand and grab their attention from the get-go, I was already halfway through my advocacy work. Imagine how many kids could be empowered with sun-smart habits to lower their skin cancer risk? And thus, I find myself truly motivated for the kids, but I don’t leave the adults behind, because they also need to be aware of themselves and their kids. Sun Smart habits all around!
There's a lot of myths around cancer, can you shed some light on some of the most common ones you've come across?
Geez, there are so many, but one of the most common I’ve come across is the same one I had, that cancer was a “white person” disease. I want you to understand something about these myths; I grew up at a time where people in my community were dying of HIV/AIDS, and it seemed to be so prevalent amongst black people. Whenever we heard about cancer, it was from a white person no one around me was having the cancer talk, and that’s why I encourage the cancer conversation, and hopefully, people take it home to their loved ones, not to scare them, but for awareness.
What advice do you have for being cancer aware and protecting your skin?
The skin is the largest organ of the body, and we need to take better care of it. As unique as our fingerprints are, so can our cancer diagnosis, the form of treatment, how you will react to that treatment, and what your “normal” looks like. There is no cut-and-dry approach, but if we are aware of the main symptoms and compare those to your “normal”, we’ll be winning people.
One super tip I can give about skin cancer is wearing protective clothing. And that means clothes that protect you from the sun's penetrating rays. The best way to check is to hold your clothes up to the light and see how much light comes through. The tighter the fabric knit, the better, as minimal light will seep through.
Ultimately early detection can save and prolong your life. It's important to know your “normal” and seek medical attention as soon as you suspect something is wrong.
How can people support and get involved with organisations like Cancervive?
Like most industries, the lockdown restrictions have put a slow down on operations. We have an annual flagship event called the Cancevive Ride, where a group of 60+ people travel in convoy to schools, farms, and community halls. And with the current venue capacity restrictions, we can’t even have half of our dynamic team members there to share their journeys or create awareness. It's been a challenge to see people face-to-face but we persevere. We are still available for wellness days and continue to support and counsel warriors, thrivers, and survivors alike, across online platforms. Covid won't stop our passion anytime soon. If anyone or companies would like to get involved and support our initiatives, charity drives or host corporate wellness days online, they can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Shiplap offers a modern timber look and is a price-friendly pick-me-up for any space you are trying to renovate and up-style. It is an easy-to-install wall covering that can instantly change the entire look and feel of a room. From kitchens and bathrooms to guestrooms and studies, this style of wall cladding giving any room instant Instagram-ready status.
Shiplap is very easy to install and you do not require a professional to do it for you. The joints mimic those of tongue and groove joints that make them easy to fit. You also get peel and stick options, making the application even easier. It is also lightweight and offers a wide variety of options from recreating wood to concrete, you can easily recreate any expensive wall coverings.
Shiplap is also low maintenance and makes cleaning a breeze. Its convenience is what makes this trend a favourite amongst many homeowners the world over. These shiplap wall coverings are also durable and can take a few good knocks from the household over time. They also essentially protect your walling. If your house ever goes on sale, it can also be easily removed by new owners who envision something else.
Shiplap techniques have been used for thousands of years. It is its introduction to interiors that is a fairly new trend. According to The Finished Space “The earliest version of shiplap was found over 1,700 years ago on Viking ships! An ancient boat was found using overlapping planks around the outside of the boat to keep the water out. The technique used on this ship was called lapstrakes, but it was a precursor to what would become known as shiplap. The production of watertight, overlapping planks evolved to produce shiplap (i.e., boards that overlap at rabbeted edges to create a completely watertight fit)”.
Shiplap was successful in keeping the water out on ships and soon sheds and farmhouses were introduced to it. From there the trend moved to building's exteriors and more recently it has made its way indoors.
Bathrooms: Bathrooms, both large and small look attractive with shiplap wall coverings. Wooden styles of shiplap can easily give bathrooms a chic, cottage feel with a touch of country. In bathrooms, shiplap does wonders as an accent wall.
Bedrooms: Create a beach-inspired bohemian look in your bedroom with shiplap cladding that ignites the inner shipmate in you. With a variety of colours available, choose soft aqua-inspired tones. From white and ivory to sky and moody blues, you can create a desert island-inspired oasis away from the hustle and bustle of everyday distractions.
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With Munier Solomon
Builders Warehouse has been around long enough for homeowners to know that whatever they need, they will find it at Builders. Munier Solomon, Marketing Operations Manager at Builders chats to us about their latest campaigns with a bonus feature on how to approach your latest renovation the Builders way.
Massmart acquired five Builders Warehouse stores operating in Johannesburg and Pretoria in 2003. They bought and rebranded three De La Rey stores in the Western Cape in 2005 and now operate in South Africa, Botswana, and Mozambique. Builders follows the big-box or warehouse retail format – offering homeowners, DIY enthusiasts and contractors a comprehensive range of competitively priced products under one roof. With a large garden centre display and builders’ supplies yard, the brand is unique in that it is the only home improvement warehouse in South Africa.
Our Homes have essentially become our World. Today we are all looking at them differently and we wanted a campaign to help us bring that messaging to life. And many can agree that our homes have become our nests: a nest of refuge, safety, family, learning, work, pleasure and comfort.
DIY became the most searched word on Google during the pandemic and Builders being pioneers for home improvement and DIY projects in South Africa, could assist people with the easy options that our stores provide and give them great ideas on the Builders Blog. Our customers are more and more becoming hobbyists and creators, resorting to the internet to inspire their creativity. And with all this help, they can easily and cost-effectively do it themselves. People are redefining their homebody experience and building their own home sanctuaries.
We will be launching the Builders Super App soon.
We opened our 110th store in Midrand in March 2021 and are looking to open a few new stores in the near future.
The success of a home improvement project is the result of expert planning. As much as home renovation comes with costs and lots of decisions to make, it is a phenomenal way to breathe new life into any home or living environment. It is an opportunity to put your mark on the property and add to its value.
Whether you are planning something big or small, to take control of your home renovation budget you need a plan. One factor, amongst others, is to plan how much product is needed to complete your project on time and cost effectively.
1.1.Understanding the design and planning requirements: whether you are updating the look and feel of your bedroom with a new headboard, adding a laminated glass partition to add an extra room or space or privacy in your home, or simply just painting your wall - you must be clear on the job and the requirements. For example, glass for interior use will be different from that used for exterior applications. It’s vital to understand the application and the correct product required for the project.
2.2.Calculate Material Costs: now put together a list of materials you’ll need to do the home improvement job. There are a variety of ways to calculate how much materials you’ll need. One method is to use online product calculators such as the recently launched Builders Products Calculators. The Builders product calculators cover paint, blinds and curtains, headboards and glass cutting, including mirrors and doors.
3.3.Write a schedule of works: it’s crucial to define your home renovation process before you start the work - a project plan of what needs to be done and by when. Be clear on the steps you will need to take to renovate the property before you make a start and prioritise work that is urgent. You might find that work in one room impacts on those in another, so have a clear vision and prepare a work schedule, listing the order of jobs.
Save Renovation Costs
One of the best ways to lower your renovation costs is to tackle home projects yourself. You could cut the first part of labour costs by painting all your walls yourself, ripping out old flooring, tearing down drywall or removing cabinetry before the work requiring a skilled person starts.
Time is essential when planning for renovation. Making a cohesive and functional design can be overwhelming, so taking more time, even when you have all your money ready, is crucial. You may regret the choices you make in a rush.
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Don’t we all just hate the orange-brown rust surprise we get when taking an item out after putting it safely away for the next use? A little bit of rust doesn’t necessarily mean it is the end of the road for that item. You will be surprised at how many ways there are to remove that pesky rust from metal surfaces.
Home Recipes to Remove Rust
What do lemons, vinegar, potatoes, and baking soda have in common? They’re all excellent natural solutions for removing rust.
Let’s look at a few of these commercially available removable solutions and recipes:
Rust converter is a product that prevents further corrosion to an item by covering rust. You will basically treat the rusty item by applying a thin layer of converter with a roller or brush to the item.
Pros: It is a quick solution to stop further corrosion.
Cons: It is not as effective in removing rust completely. You are simply stopping the process of further corrosion with this method.
Chemical solutions are powerful and effective. They work wonders on smaller items which you can soak in the solution for a couple of hours. You can also pour the solution over the item if soaking is not an option. Once the solution has worked, you rub the rust off with a cloth.
Pros: It works!
Cons: This method is quite messy and can take long to set. You will also have to use gloves and wear a mask and possibly even protective glasses for this method.
This method requires a bit of old-fashioned elbow grease!
Remove the rust from the item by using an electric sander, steel brush, screwdriver or steel wool to scrape and brush most of the rust from the item. After which you can finish with a fine grain sandpaper to remove marks and any leftover residue.
Pros: A good method for less intense rust projects.
Cons: An easy method by using items you probably already have at home. It requires a bit of hard work from the arm muscles!
This method can get rid of significant rust and works well on tools and items that are all steel and can be submerged. Dissolve rust by soaking the metal in white vinegar overnight (or for several nights) before scraping off the rust with a metal brush. For bigger items you can soak rags in white vinegar and wrap the rusted area.
Pros: You can leave the item and forget about it for a couple days...after which the rust will easily be removed without any hard work.
Cons: It is a longer process and takes a while to achieve results.
Mix water and baking soda into a thick paste and spread the paste all over the metal, covering all the rusty spots. Leave the paste on for a couple of hours and use steel wool or a wire brush to scrub and remove the rust. Rinse the paste off with water and dry. This method works well on less severe rusted items like baking pans, light rust rings and thin metal.
Pros: A very affordable and simple option.
Cons: It requires a bit of elbow grease to remove the rust once the paste sets.
Sprinkle a generous amount of salt over the rusted area. Then cut a lemon or lime in half and squeeze the juice over the salt. Let the mixture sit for a couple of hours, then scrub away the rust with the rind. Repeat again if needed. This method is perfect for less stubborn rust stains like on kitchen knives.
Pros: The abrasive process is minimal. A very affordable and simple option.
Cons: This method won’t work on bigger rust projects.
There are even more ways to be investigated such as submerging items in Coca-Cola, citric acid and even covering them in a mixture of dish soap and potato! If all else fails, remember that the best method is still to rather prevent rust before it starts. Here are 6 tips for rust prevention:
1.1.Store metal objects and tools in a dry area with low humidity.
2.2.Apply a protective coating on your objects two to three times per year. There are lovely products available on the market for knifes as well as for tools.
3.3.Prevent scratches that leave metals exposed.
4.4.Use stainless steel.
5.5.Use galvanized metal which preserves steel for many years.
6.6.Regular rust maintenance will keep the rust under control.
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October 2021 Johannesburg HOMEMAKERS Home Improvement Supplier Magazine.
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