Saturday, January 21, 2017

Shi-awela Marketing 2017 Ball Family News

Congratulations to all of you in the United States of America, on your new president. We surely stand in awe to see how your democracy works in the USA.  We certainly could do with our South African politicians taking note! We have had 12 years with the same government and up north in Zimbabwe they have had 37 years of the same president.  Surely ya’ll can celebrate in the way your system actually WORKS!!!  Change is always good, and somewhere between the two extremes is the balance that gives you the wonderful country that you have! GOD BLESS AMERICA.

Ken and I will be travelling to Grand Rapids this year, and we are so excited that we will both be able to attend the Grand Rapids SCI Chapter event in Holland MI. It has been YEARS since we were able to attend this event together. J We do hope that we will get to see you again?  We will also be heading to Charleston for SEWE like usual, and we are excited to catch up with everyone there too.  Please come and find us at our usual spot, inside the main large Sporting Village Tent at Brittle Bank Park.
Such wonderful news for us with our Micaela (now 19) graduating from high school with distinctions in all of her subjects. She worked incredibly hard, and finished on a very high note at Merensky!  She is enrolled at the University of Pretoria (four hours from here) for her next step in her education. She is planning to study to become a vet, and she will be doing the parallel BSc course this year at TUKS Hatfield Campus. She will be staying in residence to begin with, and we are excited for her next big step. She is busy packing and will be ‘leaving home’ next week!

JohnD is now 6’2” tall, our gentle giant. ;)  He towers over all of us, and it’s quite something to see him hug his Grandma!  He is now in Grade 11 at Merensky, and continues to love any time spent hunting or fishing, and would rather attend hunting and fishing classes than math (pity they are not available!!)  He has a busy year ahead of him, and we are so proud of him too. What a blessing he is to us all.
We had a wonderfully quiet Christmas, and were able to give most of our staff leave, as we took no Christmas bookings this year.  The lack of electricity and internet, it was quite interesting.  Our power supply is always challenging this time of the year when we get lots of rain. Yes, we have been blessed with amazing rains, and we are so grateful for the beautiful transformation of our bushveld. All of our summer Nguni calves have come and they are just as beautiful as always!  We also have the delight of baby blue wildebeest, red hartebeest, impala, blesbuck, and all of the other plains game!  We wait patiently for the first signs of when the buffalo will calve, although we suspect it will be closer to March before we see their young.
We had the incredible privilege of hiking in the northern Drakensburg mountain tip here in the Tzaneen area with a friend for four days over new year. What a blessing!
We had a very busy 2016, with lots of wonderful memories being made with new and repeat guests. Thank you to each and every one of you for your support. We certainly could never do what we do, without you!
Ken’s parents Dennis and Carol, are both very well, and continue to keep themselves active and involved. They are such a blessing to us, and like us, live for having the children home! Carol has been teaching us how to play Bridge. My what fun we have had!  My parents got the incredible news that they are allowed to remain in Australia! What a long story that was, and what a miracle. We are over the moon that they are able to finally leave the country, and come out to visit us in April, so we are all looking forward to seeing them again!
This comes with much love to you, and we are so grateful to have you as part of our lives. Thank you for your friendship, and God bless you and your family.    Ken, Jo, Micaela and JohnD xxx

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