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Monthly Archives: September 2012

3 years on and my soul sings

What exactly is my soul singing about this week? A lot of things! It’s marvelling at the beauty of life, it’s moved by its frailty and it’s excited for the future!

It has been a week of ushering in and saying goodbye. A very dear lady, who held the place of a grandmother (Nana) in my life fell ill and passed away. She was one fiery Scotswoman who taught me how to bake the yummiest shortbread, rich fruit cake and make rainbow sandwiches. We drank copious cups of tea together and chatted about all sorts of things. She was an absolute character of note! When I was informed that she didn’t have long to live, I just felt I needed to go and visit her. Not sure what to expect when I got to the hospital, I arrived armed with flowers and the pinkest, brightest vovo telo cupcake I could find. Unfortunately, she was too ill to enjoy the cupcake, but her expression when I walked in, made it all worthwhile. I am so happy that I went to see her and say goodbye as she passed on two days later.

Having experienced a hospital visit that wasn’t one of joy I was excited but somewhat apprehensive when on the very next day my sister went into hospital to give birth to her first-born son. My precious nephew was welcomed into the world at 6:08 am… He is an absolute beauty! I couldn’t be more excited to be an aunt. (I don’t like being called aunty though, so I may go for the Greek Thia or Italian Zia or the Spanish la Tía). Aunty, just doesn’t do it for me! (Guess I am joining the expressive grandparents, Zuus and YiaYia! haha).

It is so incredible to see a life develop before your own eyes. Seeing life end and start was a reminder of what a privilege life is! On the topic of life, I have a very special ‘Life” anniversary coming up. I call it an anniversary as I decided that along with my birthday and other special occasions, my ‘life day’ will be known and celebrated with all my nearest and dearest. My life day is October the 2nd, which was the day I was attacked and faced with the darkest of darkness…. but miraculously survived and am alive.. alive to fulfil a definite plan and purpose – my destiny!

Tuesday, 2nd October will be the 3rd anniversary! Wow. So little time and yet so long! I thought I’d take this time to reflect and process where I have come from and where I am now.

So, where am I now? In a very, very good place! This heart of mine, has been through it all but by the grace of God and His tender care has not given up! I refuse to! I have gone through all the stages of grieving. The first year I went overboard in trying to prove to myself and others that I was ‘okay’ and just tried to have as much ‘normality’ as possible. The second year was very different. I was healing but pouring out way too much into others healing and lives but at my own expense. The third year? I have done things I thought I would NEVER be able to do! I am so thankful and proud of where I am now! I have been transparent with my vulnerabilities and struggles this year, allowed myself to rest and allowed my heart to fill up. I have learnt to put boundaries in place. I have not been a people pleaser but a Cayly healer! I have been kind to my own heart! I have loved myself well (I know this may sound a bit crazy but it has been so necessary and so important for healing). I have had so much fun and so much growth! Of course, healing is a journey, but I have been through the deep depths of the valley and looking up, I am heading towards and close approaching the mountain tops now! I am an overcomer! I love life! Whoooooooohooooooooooooooo Whooooohoooooooooooooooooo, can you hear my loud victory echoes? Whooooooooooooooooooohooooooooooooooooooo


My family and friends and Heavenly father who placed those family and friends around me have been a real key to unlocking my door of healing. People still constantly surprise and astound me with their love and kindness! I am so blessed.

The next three years? Well, more journeying to an even deeper level of healing, loving fearlessly, being loved fearlessly, getting married, travelling, public speaking and hopefully ministry to those who need to hear my story to help them through theirs.

For now, I am looking forward to having the court case behind me. It is due to happen late October/early November of this year) Its going to be an incredibly tough thing to face, but I’m confident that God will be my strength and put the right people at my side to walk with me through it.

I’m not diminishing the pain I have endured, but I’m not allowing it to have a hold on me!

So raise your coffee cup, wine glass, water bottle or tea cup, and lets chink to life! Or say ‘Sante’ as my family who live in France say!




Show Some Matryoshka!

Show Some Matryoshka!

When I was a little girl, I secretly hoped that Santa Claus and Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer would go to Russia en route to our home and leave a beautiful Babuschka doll under our Christmas tree, just for me. Each year I left him a mince pie and a chilled beer and although he left me wonderful gifts he still didn’t remember my Babuschka doll! I am still waiting, Santa – are you out there? I know I am all grown up now but I still fancy a Babuschka doll. I will leave you a mince pie and a good cappachino doppio, and that’s a pinkie promise!

For those of you who do not know what on earth I am talking about (or maybe wanting to buy me one, hint- hint, wink –wink) a Babuschka or Matroyoshka doll is also known as a Russian nesting doll. It is a set of wooden dolls of decreasing size placed one inside the other. The sheer wonder of opening up a beautifully decorated doll and finding another one just like it on the inside and another and another and another… on average between five to twelve dolls each nestle perfectly within the other.

Traditional Matroyoshka (or Babuschka) dolls are handcrafted with skill, instinct and expertise rather than using actual measurements. The time, craftsmanship and detail that goes into each Babuschka doll is incredible. And this got me thinking about how uniquely and wonderfully God has created and crafted each one of us. The love and thought that the Creator put into creating each one of uniquely, still leaves me dumbfounded! Although we don’t have mini clones of ourselves within ourselves, we do have qualities and characteristics within us that aren’t necessarily all evident nor revealed at first meeting. One needs to be seen in different situations, contexts and environments before the other aspects of our character,whether positive or negative, are revealead. A bit like an unveiling! Just like Shrek says in the movie, ‘Ogres are like onions, they have layers!’

It is often in the trying times that one gets to see what is inside the heart of people. It’s in those times of greatest difficulty or trial that one gets a peek at what is going on below the ‘surface level’. We sometimes see a previously hidden inner strength and beauty emerge that we never knew existed, but sadly we also sometimes get to see some not so pleasant negative qualities too! Yes, no one is perfect and we are all a work in progress. We all have some uhmm….‘quirks’ that need to be worked on.

We each have a different capacity for handling things. We all deal with things differently, thank goodness! If everyone dealt with things in the same way this world would be a veeeery ‘interesting’ place. Imagine only having sulky and selfish Sallys, rude and rejecting Richards, overbearing and obnoxious Ollys and petty and personalising Pams! Imagine? I’d rather not! And then we all know that someone who is NEVER at fault. Somehow somebody ELSE is ALWAYS the problem. The person who disagrees and finds fault with everybody else but somehow never stops for a moment to consider that maybe, just maybe, they are actually the common denominator!!! Mmmmkay, enough said! And then lets get brutally honest here…sometimes that somebody can sometimes actually be yourself!!!

So when trying circumstances come (and come they will) are we going to be like a dried up clogged well, that when you lower your bucket to fetch water, there is nothing there, just a dry pit….or are we going to be like a Babuschka doll? When you remove the first layer, there is another layer, and another and another and another (we are talking depth and resilience here – you get the point.) The Babuschkas are the people who have a depth to them, who when the going gets tough,dig deeper and deeper and deeper and are the overcomers who stay the course!

How does one develop these layers you may ask? No, you unfortunately can’t buy them anywhere as they are gained…through experience. What experience you might ask? Staying the course when nothing is working according to plan, when it feels like the whole world is against you and God has forgotten you (not true, of course). These are the times when God is developing your character, teaching you a deeper level of wisdom, selflessness, understanding, committment and knowledge. These are the times that one needs to surrender and trust God for the final outcome knowing that He is a good and gracious Abba who is faithful and loving. Some of these layers are quickly learned, but those deeper layers are not an instant thing, some can take years, some even a lifetime.

I have invited God to come and heal the deepest most inner parts of my Babuschka. I am delighted to report that so many things that hurt so badly for so long are just not hurting as much any more. Some things that hurt as recently as a week or a day ago have somehow faded into nothing more than a memory with no hold over me.

Allow God to help you to become more multi-faceted in how you see things and handle things. Dont despise the difficult times. Those times of battle, they are the character building, life changing, layer bringing, God strengthening times….if you let them be! (and no, you don’t need to wear those ridiculous russian dresses people!:)


A Little Bird’s Big Celebration



There are so many different angles that I can take to write this particular post:  from how blessed I was on my birthday earlier this week,  how happy I am to be alive,  how God has helped me heal at a supernatural rate or even how much I really enjoy eating a really good cupcake (especially for breakfast)! So I will try to condense all these different topics and emotions into one post about an incredibly special birthday that I celebrated on Monday.

My family, (well, my sister and I) have something called a birthday week.  Not only do we celebrate on d-day or should I rather say b-day, we also have a  build up to the special day!  (No, not like MTV’s sweet sixteen bratzilla type birthday celebrations) and wow, did I have a birthday for the books!

It started off two days before my birthday, when one of my nearest and dearest friends arranged for me to have a day of all my favourite things. The love that  she showed me just totally bowled me over!  The care she took with all the details was so special. ‘A perfect day in the life of Cayly Robyn Jewel Warner’ is what she called it.  She fetched me early on saturday morning (the only not so perfect part;) and whisked me off for a day of favourites (all of which were a total surprise).  We drank tea and ate zoo biscuits (our thing), did our hair, baked cupcakes (the girliest ones ever imaginable) and I was then  taken for coffee at my favourite coffee shop. I must have had such a blank look upon my face when I walked in and saw friends of mine sitting with other friends of mine, and I thought to myself, hang on, how do they know each other?!! Duhhh… It was a surprise party for moi! It was SUCH a special and beautiful time, to have my close ladies (bar a few who couldn’t make it)  sitting in a sun light room sipping cappuccinos and celebrating my life.

My actual birthday was such a joy! It started off with breakfast with my family at a quirky new coffee shop called La Boca in Central (cnr Lawrence & Clyde to be precise). The owner made sure I felt celebrated and personally iced a beautiful white cupcake for me. I then spent the day coffee shop crawling (as opposed to pub crawling) with a few special friends. That evening I booked a table for a group of friends at another of my favourite restaurants, Charlies Superstar (clearly I enjoy a good coffee and chow?!) The restaurant has  a ‘lights out Monday’ where they turn off all the lights and light up the room with myriads of candles. It looked celebratory and majestic. The company, the music, the food. wow! I got into bed at the end of the day,with a cup of tea in hand and upon reflecting about the day, I  had a teary moment. I am just so moved by the incredibly wonderful people God has put in my life!

Two special song birds in my life even filled my heart with their precious melodies. My cousin, who  has such a beautiful voice, sang a cover of a Birdy song. Then another special friend, wrote a song just for me, sang it and sent it to me. She called it, Little Bird. I love the words of William Shakespeare in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, ‘and Though she be but little, she is fierce!’ Hence some of the lyrics of my song, Little bird,

‘Little Bird
Do a little dance just for you
Though you’re small,
you’re the fiercest girl I ever knew
Little Bird”

My second name is Robyn, and one of my family’s nicknames for me is Cayly Tweet Tweet, so all things feather was quite apt!

I think this birthday was also symbolic for me as it is a new season in my life. It is also nearing the 3 year anniversary of the attack (2 October) and the court case looms, and is expected to finally get to a start on the 29th of October this year –  So celebrating life is definitely a priority:)

In the spirit of special occasions I was just reminded how we should celebrate life everyday, not just on birthdays..  Life is a gift that should not be taken for granted. In the same way we should also celebrate other’s lives with them too! I read a lovely quote that says, ‘Do not regret growing older, it is a privilege denied to many.’






Blossoming Vines

 I have entered a new and beautiful  season in my life, with God using me and my story to  speak hope and healing into the lives of  others. Wow, what a privilege this is!  It has not been without opposition though.  Okay, lets level here – a LOT of opposition which has left me feeling vulnerable and very angry at times! I guess one can call this a righteous anger!

I picked up a book whilst working through some anger (okay, a LOT of anger last week) and was blown away by what I read. What I read was entitled ‘Blossoming Vines’ by Helen Rudolph. In it she says the following, Song Chp 2:13-15.

‘ The fig tree forms its early fruit; the blossoming vines spread their fragrance. Arise, come, my darling; my beautiful one, come with me….. Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards are in bloom”

Foxes are crafty animals that destroy the vines. They symbolize an attitude of cunningness and selfish ambition that strives to fulfill its own desires. This selfish attitude was clearly seen in the life of Herod. (Luke 13:32, Acts 12:21-23) who in his selfishness was not concerned with the Kingdom of God. Yeshua called him a fox

God is the vine, and we are the branches. He insists we catch the foxes that destroy the new growth and tender grapes. It is the ‘seemingly unimportant’ things (little foxes) that seek to break our communion with God. Our God is jealous for us to guard the fruit we bear from its conception stage.  If unwatched or unguarded now, the little things can ruin it all.

I am dealing with some pesky and very annoying little foxes right now. They don’t feel so little actually, they feel huge! What do I plan to do with them? I would ideally love to set up a giant fox trap, you know, one of those gin traps with gigantic claws….. What I am rather going to do is attend to my vineyard and declare the Lord’s protection over it. I see the foxes and in God’s strength and power, I will not allow them entry or power over my crop.

Are there little foxes trying to destroy  your vines? Is your bloom and newness at risk of attack by the selfish desires of little foxes?

I challenge you to face your proverbial foxes in the strength of a mighty God and ask  Him to guard your blooming vineyard.  I will be honest enough to admit that I have recently felt like running and hiding from the foxes but alas, that would only be a temporary solution as somewhere someday they would re-appear!  So, I too have turned and am choosing to face some more fears and hurts head on!

Be alert for people or things that would love to see you fail or give up just before break through is near. DONT! Your crop is about to bloom, and it is going to be a sweet, fragrant and juicy crop. One that will be of the finest of them all! When that fragrance of vines rises up it will be such a beautiful testimony of God’s glory! wooohoooo!

Let me know when your crop is in bloom. Perhaps we can share a glass of the finest vino together;)