The Fingerprint of Love

ROHO is the Swahili word for
“soul”, and is defined as the spiritual or immaterial part of a human being or
animal regarded as immortal.

Described as the the distinct emotional energy and intensity revealed in a relationship
with someone with whom you share immense compatibility, the term “soulmate”
springs to mind.

Greek Mythology and Soulmates

In Greek Mythology, the concept of soulmates is rooted in the idea that that two individuals are two halves of the same whole, originally united but separated by the Greek god Zeus due to his jealousy and fear.  This separation led to the perpetual search for our “other half”. 

What is a Soulmate?

In the modern world, while people often see soulmates as a love story-perfect match, soulmates can transcend much more than romantic love.  Consider the following:

Best friends find it easy and fun to be in each other’s presence, support one
another’s life goals, and are there in time of difficulty to help out. 

Karmic soulmates come into your life to teach you something, or provide a need.  Each person in this soulmate connection will bring a particular skill to the table, but both share a united vision.

The romantic soulmate defined by, well…. romance and unconditional love.

Parent/child soulmate - unconditional mutual love and support, and on the part of the parent, selflessness.

A twin flame connection describes a relationship in which each person sees a part of themselves in the other. They share specific qualities, passions, or insecurities.

Pets - life-form makes no difference!  Pets are often a great deal more than just companions.

The holistic psychologist , Dr Nicole LePera, best sums it up as:

Your soulmate is whoever you put your energy into. It's whoever you learn to compromise with. It's whoever allows you to feel safe and accepted as you are.  It’s who reminds you that you’re greater than your circumstances.  Soulmates are the result of work.” 

St Valentine's Day

Originally a day for lovers, St Valentine’s Day has evolved to include the celebration of various precious relationships between soulmates – lovers, friends, husbands and wives, children, and even
teachers!  People express their love with cards, flowers, and gifts.

Over the years, we have marked weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, and (of course) Valentine’s Day with gifts of gold or silver.  Why?  Well, because jewellery makes us feel connected to the ones we love, and evokes emotions of care and love towards them.

Jewellery is a also a physical reminder of our memories, transporting us back to moments with or soulmates that we want to cherish for a lifetime.  It also lasts much longer than one lifetime, so heirlooms of memories (and the stories that created them) can be passed down to future generations, creating lasting
connections and collective memories between generations. 


Fingerprints develop in the womb and, once fully developed, the pattern remains the same for life.  Just as all of us exhibit unique fingerprints, we all also display distinct “soul prints” – our words, attitudes, values, and behavious etch an indelible imprint on the mind and heart of those we love – our soulmates. 

ROHO has married the physical with the emotional
to create a heirloom that is a tangible reminder of the soul.  The gift of jewellery to, or from, a soulmate
is one of the most personal celebrations of love we experience – what more meaningful personal gift of love and commitment for a soulmate is there than your own fingerprint, or their fingerprint, in gold or silver?

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Until next time,



Hi friends,


For giggles, I thought a heading that would appeal to rugby-mad dads would be fun… imagine their disgust on opening the post to find it’s all about motherhood!  A little like secretly enjoying soapies, it’s something they’d never admit to their friends. Hehehe. 😊


As Mother’s Day approaches, and Lindi and I scurry about to ensure that all the orders will be ready by 14 May, I’ve realized a couple of things: 

  • It doesn’t matter where in the world you’re from, or what your culture dictates, when it comes to Mother’s Day, the celebrations are thoughtful.  Planned activities and gifts alike, varied sentiments aside (let’s face it, some people don’t like their Mothers), the token of appreciation on this day requires thought.
Photo of a prickly cactus with the caption "Dear Mom, this made me think of you".


“Dear Mom, This made me think of you”


  • And, like the fingerprint impressions on ROHO impression jewellery, each celebration is unique - the idea behind each gift, activity, or lovingly cooked meal is especially customised and personalised.

Image of a ROHO pendant in luxury gift box.


As an Aussie living in Cape Town, I often compare the differences between motherhood in the two countries.  For example:



Government Support /or the lack thereof.


As a pregnant mother in Australia, I would’ve had free access to medical care of the highest standard.  In South Africa, however, while free prenatal care is (in theory) available to expectant mothers at public health centres, the reality is an overburdened service that provides poor care.  There are thousands of South African women from disadvantaged backgrounds that have no choice but to make do with the little that is available but, as someone in a better financial position, I was able to opt for private medical care. 


Like all private for-profit organisations, private doctors and hospitals are ridiculously expensive.  In Oz, the free care includes two scans over the course of the pregnancy for a normal, healthy birth. Really all that is needed.  In SA, private medical practitioners don’t force but, rather, strongly compel pregnant women to have a scan once a month from 12 weeks… definitely a ‘for-profit’ practice, in my opinion.  But on the plus side, private care in SA ensures continuity of your prenatal care-provider – in Oz, you’ll probably see a different midwife at each check-up which to me sounds very daunting. 


PANDA (Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia) offers support for the mental health and wellbeing of expectant and postpartum mother, and new and growing families.  This support includes counselling, information, services, and programs that are available throughout pregnancy and extend to cover the first 12 months of your baby’s life.  In SA, while there are programs like MomConnect and PMHP (Perinatal Mental Health Project), they are government initiatives which suggest that

  1. They are designed to support mothers from disadvantaged communities, which means
  2. I was neither (made) aware of the programs, nor benefited from them. And no doubt I would have had a far different postpartum story if I had of, that I am sure of.

Just saying – in Oz the best medical care is freely available and accessible to everyone without having to sit in queues for hours. It's common knowledge these services and the support is encouraged. 


Other sources of support for Australian mothers includes:

  • Pregnancy, Birth and Baby, which offers a range of resources, including a free call hotline for parents seeking support and advice. 
  • The Australian Breastfeeding Association also provides local support groups for mothers and 24/7 helpline.

Again, (and I’m making a guess here), I’m sure that this sort of support is most likely available here in South Africa but, as opting for private care promotes various private support options, the notion of government support conjures up images of overstretched shoddy service.  And having private postpartum support isn't a common practice here, yet. Much needed, but that is a rant for another day.

Over and above top-class medical care, the Australian government also offers a range of financial assistance to all families, including single mothers.  This includes rental assistance for those who rent a property and are eligible for Parenting Payment, the assistance dependent on the amount of rent paid.

In comparison, I understand that the South African government pays mothers R500 per child per month on condition that the household income does not exceed R52 800 per annum.  I'm just going to leave that there and let those numbers sink in...

Verdict:  Oz wins hands-down.



Is there one that’s better than the other? 

Our ideas about raising children are largely influenced by our culture, so it’s not surprising that attitudes and practices vary around the world.  Did you know that in Denmark it’s not unusual to leave your sleeping baby in a stroller on the pavement (outside!) while you eat a meal?  And, in Norway, babies are bundled up and put down to nap in their strollers outside even in below-freezing weather – their parents believe sleeping outside offers health benefits. I don’t think either of those scenarios would ever occur in either SA or Oz!

Generally, while parents in both SA and Oz set bedtime roundabout 7.30 pm – 8.00 pm, parents in India, Taiwan, and Hong Kong  only put their kids to bed at around 10.00 pm.  Good grief!  It doesn’t matter which country I’m from or in, I’m ready to sleep by 8.00 pm.


Children in Italy taste wine with dinner, on the premise that a drink with family supervision is not a problem.  I think there are probably Aussie and South African parents with the same attitude when it comes to teens and alcohol consumption in the home, but it does raise the question of whether normalising alcohol consumption in the home leads to teens consuming alcohol with a sense of approval outside the home.


Up there with leaving your baby asleep in a stroller on the pavement is the Japanese practice of allowing young children to run simple errands and use public transport on their own.  Japanese parents believe it’s important to teach young children the skills they need to be independent.  Oh, my goodness!  I don’t know any Australian or South African parents that would allow their young child to use public transport on their own, or toddle down to the supermarket for a litre of milk without the fear of child abduction!  Independence is all well and good, but I’m thinking more along the lines of my little Dragon Child dressing herself or making her own snack. 


I think that child-rearing practices in Oz and SA are similar.  I’d like to say that Oz parents are a little more relaxed because they’re less concerned with what others think and have less fear around safety but, for the most part, I think the fundamental values of raising a child are the same in both countries.  


The fact of the matter is that there is no one practice that is better than the other.  Just a difference in personal and cultural values.


Verdict:  It’s a tie!




Technically, Australia is one up (also I am naturally biased being Australian), but in South Africa we have the benefit of affordable domestic help, and this gives SA the much-needed penalty goal to even the score.  In between being a full-time mother, wife, and business owner, I have to admit that without our Catherine over the past year to help me out, I would find life a whole lot more difficult and I wouldn't have manifested everything that I have today.


Domestic work in SA provides a major source of employment, and it is the efforts of domestic workers that allow their employers to be more productive both in- and outside the home. I appreciate the help more than anyone can imagine, because I realize that while Catherine is helping me free up my time so that I can be a better mother to my precious children, she has to rely on someone else to provide that care for her precious children.


So, this Mother’s Day I’m going to say thank you to all the mothers that are so busy putting the proverbial bread on the table that they don’t have the time to be full-time mothers.  While mother’s world over are Superheroes and a great many will be spoilt one way or another on Sunday, 14 May, this is a shout out to all the mothers that don’t know about Mother’s Day and, like me and SA government’s maternity benefits, don’t get to enjoy them.  It may not be a grand gesture, but it’s a gesture from the bottom of my heart – I’m going to bake for Catherine.  Here’s the recipe – I hope you try it for yourself and that whoever you bake it for enjoys it.



Photo of rose buttercream cupcakes.





  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup milk



  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 cups icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1 – 2 drops red food colouring
  • 1 tsp rose water 




  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in the eggs one at a time until fully incorporated.
  4. Add the vanilla and continue to beat.
  5. Add the dry ingredients, alternating with the milk, until fully mixed together.
  6. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 with batter and bake for 18 – 20 minutes in preheated 180˚ C.
  7. Let cool.
  8. Prepare the icing:
    1. Beat the butter
    2. Add vanilla and mix until light and fluffy
    3. Add icing sugar gradually and mix on medium speed
    4. Add milk, rose water and food colouring and mix until light and fluffy


Create petals using a 2D piping tip.  Pipe a small amount of icing in the middle of the cupcake and without lifting your piping bag work your way around counter-clockwise until you reach the outer edge of the cupcake. Or bang it on with a butter knife because realistically who is going to make beautifully piped icing when your toddlers sticky hands are in the bowl.


Happy Mother’s Day!

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