A South African, married to an American, finally adapting to my adopted country. I love life, laughter, good friends and the warmth that my two kids have filled me with. I glory in the colors of my life and am grateful for the gray days as they allow me to appreciate the rainbows.

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Location: New York, United States

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Thursday, June 30, 2005

Things happen for a reason

The kids had their first day of camp yesterday, I sent them off on the bus and was not home when they got home or even when they went to sleep. The end of the month is my craziest time at work, I did not finish work until 7pm (their bed time) so I did not even come home, went straight to meet a friend for a quick bite to eat and then off toplay Mah Jong (which I won), home by 11:30pm - after having left for work at 8am, a bit of a hectic day.

I got a call from Ryan's counselor in the course of my day, she was telling me about her philosophy of not allowing clicks to form, how she mixes the kids up throughout the day in different activities so everyone gets to spend time with everyone. She also really understood Ryan's restricted diet being on similar restrictions herself. She pulled Ryan aside and told her that she wanted Ryan to eat lunch with her every day as they were allowed to eat the same food. How unbelievable is it for a 7 year old to have the head counselor approach them in such a manner. I swear if I could have, I would have dived through the phone and kissed her. I feel so blessed that Ryan is in the right hands.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

My little birthday girl - cooking up a storm
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Chris showing the kids how the pizza is made
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Circle within a circle .......

A circle within a circle,
That's how my life spins.
Moving around
Until another one begins.
Looking like a target from very far away
Spin in my circle
Begin another day

Happy Birthday Ryan

Along the lines of never a borrower or lender be, I feel never a follower or leader be .................... We had Ryan's birthday party. Every party around here is the same, gym, bowling or sports. Ryan wanted a cooking party. The only places that offer those options are places that make cookies or ice cream sundaes. Even though it was her birthday I wanted to keep her sugar exposure to a minimum, we loaded goodie bags with toys instead of candy and chose to do a make your own pizza party. Great. Now we just had to find a place that was willing to wander down that path with us. There was a place that did them but they were too far away so I approached the local pizza parlors in our neighborhood. I got resounding no's from everyone, I went to at least 6 places until I went to Calda's Pizzeria, which happens to be one of the places I order from but is a little further out of our immediate area.

The young owners could not have been more excited or willing to help. We were awed by their enthusiasm. We put together a list. Now usually most people are busy and you expect a mediocre turn out, well the RSVP's started flooding back, only two no's, 40 kids. They were all thrilled at the prospect of doing something out of the ordinary. Me and a place that has NEVER done this before - oh the joys. Oy friggin' vey. I hired two 16 year old girls to help, bought crafts and tattoo's and off we went.

The kids had a blast, usually parents leave but I made the mistake of ordering lots of food, hero sandwiches, the works, so they stayed. There is something about fitting over 60 people in a place built for 50 max.

Trying to get 40 individual pies made. We ordered pizza's for the kids once we saw how scary looking their pizza's were turning out. I must say the kids had a great time.

Josh, my mom, my friend Loren and I did not stop moving for a second. It truly amazed me how many of my friends who were there would not lift a finger to help, they could see how hectic it was for me and they just sat on their butts and had a great time. It floored me as I finally thought I had a group of people that I could rely on, I chose to invite their kids even though Ryan is not friendly with them but we are friends or so I thought. I guess I just have different standards for friendship. Loren is one of those people who just came through for me in a way I would do for my friends and I feel so blessed to have her here with me. I would not take anything on like this again, next time we will do bowling or a gym party - it would be half the price and a fraction of the work. The payoff was when I asked Ryan what her favourite part of the party was and she said "EVERYTHING!!" That girl deserved it. I am still recovering.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

The things kids say

I wish I had kept a journal of all the outrageously funny things my kids have said and done. One of my favourite Ryan moments, she must have been 3.5/4 she says to me, "Mom can I have milk from your nipples" and slides her orange plastic cup across the kitchen table like they used to slide drinks across the bar in the saloons in the wild west. I say no Ry I don't have any milk in my nipples anymore, she says "oh why, did Nikki drink it all up??"

Yesterday, Ryan and I were driving, we start chatting about our trip to South Africa and how I grew up and was able to walk to the library myself and how there is no way she is ever going to be able to walk there by herself. She asked why and I told her it was a lot safer when I grew up and we could do things like that without worrying. She wanted to know if it was still that safe, I told her no that New York was safer then South Africa. She says to me is that why you moved here? I said yes. She was quite for a few minutes then she says to me, oh I know why South Africa is unsafe, its because of all the Lions and Tigers walking around the streets. I snorted coffee through my nose I was laughing so hard.

Camp Orientation

Today we took the kids to their summer camp clothing day, I never could understand why Americans spent what they did on summer camps, it was something I could not justify, but I have come to realize how intense the school year is and how much pressure these kids are under every day of the year. Camp is the time they get to be kids, let it all hang out and have an absolute blast. There is a whole waterpark at the camp, an ice hockey rink, you name it - it is there. I am envious of what they will do and am so happy that for 8 short weeks they get to be kids without rules, regulations and pressure, other then peer pressure. Ryan is in a group with kids from her grade plus a whole group that she used to be in Pre-K with. Nikki is being sent to the lions, going to camp with all these kids that she barely knows, who live inour neighbourhood, whose parents don't give us the time of day. Personally I look forward to the day these parents have to call me to set up a playdate as I am yet to meet kids who don't gravitate to that little Nikki. Murphy's Law, Nikki will end up best of friends with the kids whose parents like us the least. I look forward to seeing it all happen..... I really am a nasty sort after all :)

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Sisterhood of the generous souls

I find one common element with my really good friends, they are all generous to a fault. Some of the biggest fights I have ever had have been money related, not over who is going to pay because no-one wants to but because we both want to pay. It is not like any of us are particularly loaded but the generosity of spirit is what binds us all. I hate cheap people, I have no tolerance for people who have and don't ever stick their hands in their pocket. If someone does not have the means well that is a different story, I have been in that situation many times when I first moved to the States and was humbled by the generosity and thoughtfulness that was bestowed upon me, particularly by my friend Jodi who has since gone to Australia, Jodi's philosophy was she earned a lot of money and it she enjoyed my company, she would rather know that I was out having agreat time with them then know I was at home because I could not afford to have a great time. I will never forget how much that meant to me. My friend Andi who who would send me care packages from South Africa and still goes overboard, and my cousin Lisa who was so generous with me during that dark time, and still is. My friend Dawn who has surprised Ry with a very special gift during her trying time, and in many other ways.

I think the generosity of spirit is what binds us all.

Yesterday I did a closing with one of these friends. She is a single mom, has raised two kids without any help. She is someone I admire on so many levels. Her and I have a great time working together and she has been instrumental in me getting a lot of work. Not only do I care for her but feel indebted to her. She claims there is no debt as she thinks I am one of the best Title Closer's she has worked with (dare I argue :) ) but I know she goes above and beyond what she needs to do. The client at the closing happened to be her sister. Of course I did not charge her, my friend basically wrestled me to the ground and added a fee in for me, of around half my normal rate, her feeling was that her sister was still getting a great deal and she would have had to pay someone else for the full price if I had not been available to do it. We had a full on "barnie" (South African slang for a fight) - she bloody well won.

Thank you all you generous souls.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Ryan and the sad day

I am sad. Devastated really. One can rationalize just about anything, I am the queen of rational thought. But the reality can sometimes crush you, literally. Today was the end of the year party at Ryan's school, now you all know about her dietary restrictions, logically .... no soy, no dairy, no sugar, no vinegar, no juice. the reality
No Soy.
No Dairy.
No Sugar.
No juice.
They had a pizza and ice cream party
Heartbroken, brave little sad face said no to all of the above.
She was so brave and felt so bad and it just tore through me, I wanted to heap her plate with everything and feed her like I did when she was a baby. I just held her and told her how brave she is and how proud I am of her, all the while my heart just shattered. She watched as her classmates, the whole grade, loaded on their ice cream sundaes and I was powerless, she was not allowed out of the cafeteria and I could not make it ok for my baby. My big girl, my baby, my heart, my soul. I wanted to cry, not just over a bowl of icecream but because of all the bowls she has had to watch this year, all those lost cupcakes, all those moments of being a kid and living in the moment. All those times of eating without worrying about fitting into your jeans. All those times and all the times to follow.
Give me your pain little face, let me shoulder it, if you can't pass all of it to me - let me shoulder as much as I can. You see she puts on a brave face and everyone thinks she is ok, but I know the truth I see in her eyes all her emotions and I know a piece of her is destroyed everytime. Being almost seven is hard. Being seven and so different is so much harder.
I love you my little Ry,
My precious butterfly.
I am so proud of you.
So sad for you.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Power of TV

I still can't believe we travelled ten hours to Cleveland, OHIO and ten back, to be there for two days - holy cow. Twenty-some-friggin' hours in the car. The kids were beyond unbelievable, I have to say they did not budge, one of the best things about me depriving them of TV is a friend of mine lent me her portable DVD player for the car, four little eyes sat glued to the tiny screen. Not a word, not a budge, nothing. I hit the local store and stocked up on dvd's made tons of microwave popcorn, they munched and watched until they could munch and watch no more. Oh the joys .......................

A mom's dilemma

It's funny, I don't see myself as the safest place in the world but to these two little souls that have captured my heart I am all encompassing, all powerful and yet I am just me. A woman made up of so many sides I wonder which one I will be today. Working woman, mother, sister, daughter or friend. Friendly stranger or klutz knocking over the cereal display in the supermarket. Sexy vixen to the man in the same market hoping he does not peer into my cart and see the baby wipes, kids suntan lotion, Preparation H and snack size goldfish, let me be a woman of mystery for just a moment more..................
Yet deep inside past all the layers I am just a little girl who occassionally throws caution to the wind who loves to giggle and be silly. Whose favorite activity is being around razor sharp people who make me pee with laughter at their wit, those who see the world as I do. Not always agreeing, no black, no white, no shades of gray but the colours of rainbow that make us all who we are.

I feel a great responsibility being a parent, I feel as if I have been entrusted with two souls to help form. I sometimes wish I could lay back and let it all happen but I see in my kids so much more then they do. I feel incredibly fortunate for not only do I love my kids, which is any mom's given, but I like them, I truly enjoy who they are and love watching who they are becoming.

I know we are who we are from birth, I truly believe that we don't change as people, our essence, our soul remains constant, its our mind we can change and our ways but not our nature. We can take the edge off or develop one. I try not to label my kids or limit them, I know they both have huge spirits, large souls and an ability to care for others that warms me. I don't expect them to be singing KumBaya every night or giving themselves over to free love but I want them to bear the social responsibility that comes with life and how one treats their fellow travellers on the journey that is our lives. It often feels like a double edged sword, teach them to be open, loving and trusting but wary of strangers or those who can do them harm, to trust their instincts but not to help search for the lost puppy that the man says he needs to find. Oh the worry and the anguish. The fear. So much that can go wrong. Buckle their seatbelts, tuck them in at night. Food restrictions, dietary changes, allergies, don't, don't, don't ...........................
do, do, do ...........................................
Be wild, be free, be polite, be quiet, sit still, don't talk back, express your feelings, be polite to everyone, don't speak to strangers
Be safe
How can it be that they have been entrusted to me.

Sunday, June 19, 2005



Father's Day

My friend Dawn pointed out to me this morning that I had not acknowledged Josh in my previous post, my snide retort to her is that he is not my father and it is up to my kids to acknowledge him. She made me see how important it is to not lose sight of Josh and the kind of dad that he is, so this is for him............... (thanks Dee)

Josh never saw himself as a parent, he struggled with the concept, he did not think he knew how, but I knew different. I knew there was this gentle soul inside this big man. He is an incredible dad, he has unbelievable patience with the kids, he teaches them how to cook and him and Nikki spend hours working on his lam"b"rover as Nikki calls it. She is such a little monkey with that wrench. He is the one to practice words for spelling tests with Ryan as I lose my patience too quickly. He is the one in the middle of the night cleaning up throw up or whatever other illness has befallen our little girls when they were young as they cling to me.

He is on the soccer field every Sunday with Nikki or spends time with Ryan playing with her doll Marisol. Every Sunday when the kids are not at my folks he lets me sleep late and I find the three of them shnuggled up on the sofa watching movies as dadd tickles their backs for hours. Sunday nights are family shnuggle time when we all climb into our king-size bed, the kids in the middle, Josh and I on either side as we watch a video of their choosing. On Valentine's Day he comes home with flowers and chocolates for all his girls. He will often pack them in the car and take them to the diner for breakfast or off to see his dad while I take care of whatever else needs to be done.

Josh is an affectionate, loving and involved dad, he is right by our side every doctors visit in the city. He is the conduit for the doctor as I do not have neck and shoulder strength from too many injuries to that area. Here is this big powerful guy who turns to mush, wrapped around these tiny little fingers, and they are just such tiny little pinky's.


Saturday, June 18, 2005

Full Circle.

How fitting is it that tomorrow is Father's Day. I have just spent 4 fun filled days on vacation with my folks and my kids. It is one of the few vacations I have managed to fit in with my parents other then our trips to Florida which usually become a mad family dash as my sister lives there. I had almost forgotten how much fun travelling with my folks can be, my dad is the master of the adventure and can turn any ordinary trip into a fun filled event. We went to a cousins wedding in Cleveland (ho hum), religious cousin (ho-hummer), we drove 10 hours to get there. My firend Julie lent us a dvd player for the car and except for one small altercation we did not hear a peep from the kids. They had their eyes glued to the tv set the whole way there - for a woman who does not have cable it felt great giving in to the power of the all encompassing box. We arrived at 12:30am, my dad then went and checked out every room in the hotel until he found one acceptable for his ladies. My folks kept Ryan in their room and Nikki stayed with me. For those of you who don't know my little monkeys, Ryan is cosmically connected with my mom, and Nikki has not had her umbilical cord cut yet. The kids were full of beans and we finally got them to sleep, Nikki woke bright eyed and bushy tailed at 5:30am declaring Mommy I love you the bestest can I come shnuggle you in your bed. I have yet to ever refuse an invitation like that. Bleary eyed and barely functioning after three sleepless nights preceding our trip, I got to feel this warm little body shnuggle up to me for a few hours. Oh the love.

They spent the day at the pool and we went off to the wedding, I will fill you in on the wedding in a short while as the connection is nothing short of remarkable and just makes one even more aware of the higher power that exisits and the 6 degrees of separation in all our lives.

Friday my dad packed us all into the car and took us to it was awesome. Nikki went on her first roller coaster and declared, and I quote "Mommy, that was my dream come true", obviously my mom took them on the rollercoaster because she is not aware of the fact that her body is no longer 25 and she has this bountless energy that certainly skipped my generation. She had the kids bouncing from coater to coaster, I took them through the water parks and slides. And then we declared war, my mom, Ryan, and Nikki in a ball pit of note. Tons of foam balls and cannons and guns to shoot them at people (well little kiddies actually) in this three level maze - it was a blast - we had tons of kids swarming around, my mom and I took them on, it was a riot. We then bundled up soaked and happy kids, and headed for Lake Eerie. Around which time the kids were STARVED they could no longer eat any more junk food and just wanted some real food. My dad tracked down a policeman, told him what we needed and next thing I know, my dad has organized a police escort to take us to a barge which serves the best seafood in town.

I was laughing because I said to him that is a real Jewish 911 emergency, officer, I have kids to feed, help - do you know where the nearest decent restaurant is. LOL, my dad offered the kind cop a meal but he was unable to join us, guess he had real emergencies to attend to - only my dad. LOL

Some of you may know that I embarked on a yearning to find my roots and research my family tree. Through the process I have reconnected with many members of my family from my father's side. It has been quite a journey. I have been very fortunate for in my research I came across a remarkable man who had researched his family tree, we have the same last name and he put me in touch with someone who had traced his family back to the 1500's, lo and behold it was my family tree, we are trying to tie up the loose end and connect the dots but yes we fit in to it on page 9 and 27 of this huge tree - it is really wild. My one uncle in South Africa gave me the number of someone who lives in Pittsburg, PA who he knew was related to us and did not know how. I called the phone number, which incidentally was 2 digits different from mine. The man I had called to speak with had regretably died only two months before and his assistant gave me his son's number. He is this amazing man who was brought very reform, he had two kids, went to listen to a Rabbi from Florida give a lecture, this rabbi is so powerful that he influenced my "relative" to become frum, he started another family, there is 12 year age gap between his first two kids and the following 5. This same Rabbi is the one my sister works for and he influenced her to become more observant.

Bill and I had many chats, he had never heard of us and really had no information, he put me in touch with his dads sisters, two remarkable ladies in their late 80's who I have yet to meet but have had some wonderful chats with. Through all the e-mails, Bill connected with a religious cousin of mine who lives in Cleveland (whose daughter got married this past weekend). They have become quite close. This cousin who now lives in Cleveland was brought up in Israel, his dad had left South Africa in 1948 for Tel Aviv when the State of Israel was formed. The parents and my dad are first cousins, there is a huge age difference between my dad and his cousin who is now in his mid 80's. (Hope this is still clear - it gets really whacky in a few minutes - bear with me :) ) The 85 year old cousin who still lives in Israel, the bride's grandfather, is nothing short of obsessed with the family tree I happened to find, and spends all his time researching it and trying to find clues. he is very religious and is drawn this part of the family as there are apparently 15 generations of rabbi's in the family.

On the day of the wedding he spoke to the "cousin" in Pittsburgh, who raced to his grandmothers grave to find the clue we were all looking for, turns out his grandmother, and my father's great-grandfather were siblings. Here were were generations later all breaking bread at a wedding -it was wild. For all these years the families knew nothing about each other and here the circle closed we all got to know each other again.

It was strange going to a wedding where I did not know the bride and had only met her father twice in my life, but have spent many a shabbas with her grandparents in Israel. It amazes me this intertwining of our genes. My one cousin who was at the wedding, found out through our family tree that he was related to his WIFE!!! Distantly but still related. If you choose to start your own journey into your heritage try it is a great site.

Hope this made sense.

I know I started out about to acknowledge my father and the man that he is. I guess I got side tracked. I think I can sum up my dad, when Josh and I first got married he told me that he always felt that he could never treat me the way my dad did as my dad was such a tough act to follow, and that he hoped his girls would feel about him the way we do about my dad. Josh does have a tough act to follow, my dad set down a hard path for anyone to follow. From taking us to plays when we were kids, there we were all dressed in our hats and gloves, bobby socks and black shoes with the gold buckles, at interval he would buy us each our own box of black magic chocolates, my mom's favourite ones. I remember trying to balance the huge box of chocolates on my lap. He has always managed to make each of us feel so special and I feel so fortunate to have been treated as a princess but this special man. He is my hero, always has been, always will be. Sorry sweetie, you'll have your own place in my heart but my daddy will always be the first man I loved and the one I look up to today. Happy daddy's day dad. I love you.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Hasta La Vista Baby

We're off to Cleveland for a family wedding today - it should be quite interesting. It is a really religious part of our family who we have not seen in many years. Their dad is my fathers first cousin and my dad is their only first cousin. It will be special on many levels as about a year ago I started tracing my family tree and have reconnected with this whole other side of the family who seem to be the only ones who know any of my dad's heritage. This Uncle is the oldest and he spent a lot time with my grandfather who was very religious.

So off to discover a whole other side of my gene pool.

Take care until we return.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Poetry in motion II

Look inside my head he said,
You know just what I mean.
Look into my memory,
Create another dream.
Soldiers of servitude,
Warriors out at war
Each day finds another problem
Knocking at the door.
Drift off to sleep she said
I'll show you the way
Wake up tomorrow
The start of a brand new day...............

Words just flow into my mind sometimes, I am never quite sure what to do with them. I have put them on paper, filled up books galore. Now I have my blog so I can bore you at the fore...............

I look at you with pride,
Each day as you grow.
You show another side to me,
The side only I will know.
I cannot comprehend each and every thought,
But know that in your darkest times,
When temptation is fraught,
You'll stand up with pride,
You'll face your foe with courage,
And never hide.
How could I know what love truly meant,
Without you by my side,
This is the real deal,
Complete and Bona Fide.

TV Mania

I am in the midst of a debate with a friend of mine - she feels that Josh and my no tv, no computer rule during the school week is cruel as it alienates the kids from their peers. I must just add that we don't even have cable so even when they watch tv they are not part of the popular culture, unless they are happily entrenched at my mom's house.

I am a TV addict, I admit it. In the same way I can't keep junk food in the house, I can't have cable, I think I would miss out completely on the first quarter of my kids development in favour of Home and Garden TV or one of the other channels that captures my fancy.

I also don't like the concept of them zoning out in lalaland 7 days a week. I feel they have a long day and need to burn off stress, there is tons to do, they have a full basement complete with a stage and clubhouse, more toys then a small asian nation could hope to produce and a backyard with a swingset, trampoline, clubhouse and a gazillion toys. I did not feel like my youth was any less exciting then the next persons because SA was behind getting tv, until the mid 1970's. I understand how hard it is when everyone at school is talking about what SpongeBob did on TV last night or whatever show they watched, I know it further alienates her from this alien nation I have placed her in. But one day when she speaks to her sister as they watch their own kids play they won't remember the SpongeBob episode but they will remember how they hunted for bugs in the backyard or how we planted a vegetable garden (Ok I planted they threw dirt at eachother and cried) or how they invented a game called popcorn on the trampoline.

I may be scaring them for life in many ways, but I don't think that this qualifies, guess only time will tell ................................

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Maradona Manoevers

Soccer season came to an end today. Surrounded by two of her Grandma's, her two Grandpa's, her mom, dad and big sister, Nikki went out with style, scoring three goals, OK she scored them for the wrong team but they were three goals. She could just not get her head around which goal to aim for, at one stage she even chases the ball all the way down to the next field - good ball control just not in the way we had hoped. She beamed with pride as did we. She has come a long way from the kid who stood in the goal post picking flowers while her team mates were taken around the field in pursuit of the soccer ball. My what a big girl she has become as she leaves pre-K behind her and heads to Kindergarten. My baby is growing up. I am not ready for her to but she has the soccer trophy to prove it!!

Saturday, June 11, 2005


Everyone has their own version of bravery. I have these two little girls who amaze me with theirs. Today Nikki decided that she no longer needed a floatation device to swim, ZERO swim lessons under her belt. She decided enough was enough. She aged my mom quite considerably, the poor woman watches the kids on Saturdays. Nikki stripped off her arm bands/swimmies and jumped into the pool without a backward glance - my speechless mother watched, mouth wide open as the kid just paddled along and managed to keep her head above water. I got a breathless call from a little voice declaring that she swam under the water and did not even drown. Shew how my heart swelled with pride and fear simultaneously. This is the same kid who at 15 months old decided she no longer needed diapers, swiftly removed it and has been without ever since - I think she is going to give me a run for my money one day.

The flipside of Nikki's non chalant bravery is Ryan. Every few weeks we venture to the city to see the dr., every few weeks another one of her culinary pleasures is limited and her homeopathic medications increased. Ryan is so brave, so strong willed, she amazes me in a way I never imagined possible. When she is told to do something she does it no matter what she is such a good girl. She declines candy and cake at parties she knows she is not allowed and does what she is meant to do. If I had her determination I would be a size two and running Microsoft, there is just nothing she cannot do when she has to. After the doctors visit, I tweaked her already bare diet, sobbed as I filled up her daily medication vials, divided into morning and evening doses, my heart breaking for my gentle little butterfly, so beautiful, so creative, so kind. Subjected to so much. How is it possible for the love I feel to grow and yet it does - it draws the breath out of me as my heart swells with pride at your bravery, your sweetness and all that makes you who you are, all the while I am pounded by a sadness for what you have to endure and know this is right for you. Wish I could burden it for you, knowing that even I could not burden it as well as you. How proud I am of you, how sad for all you have to go through my little Braveheart.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Six Degrees of Separation

The Universe is a funny place it leads you in circles to bring you home.

Ryan needs a specific homeopathic medication that has been a real trial trying to find - it is very expensive, the dr she sees does not order many meds so he has to use a third party to do it and it works out quite a bit more expensive. I did a search online for the meds - found a supplier who works on a small margin - sent him an e-mail. We sent e-mails back and forth, he sent me an invoice through paypal - now keep in mind he and I have never spoken, he could be anyone - anywhere (nice mom hey??). My pay pal account was past its limit thanks to Josh's landrover parts. So I e-mail this guy and ask him if he has an alternate form of payment that he accepts - he said no problem you can mail me a check. His office is 5 minutes from my house!!! What are the odds in the whole world to end up 5 minutes from home. I go to pay, meet his wife, see her diploma's, she has an unusual last name, I ask her if she is related to a little girl in Nikki's class - this girl, Jordy, is her niece and one of Nikki's best friends.

Six degrees - oh my word.

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