Saturday, 31 July 2010

Picnic at granny's

Last Saturday welcomed us with almost summer weather and we had a little picnic in granny's garden. Her little winter garden is so colourful and bright with birds galore.

Remember my mom's orchid plant with the 10 strings of flowers? Last time I took a picture of the buds, almost 2 moths ago. Well, now they are starting to open. Spectacular!

Friday, 30 July 2010

Book review...

published for Salmon Fishing in the Yemen by Paul Torday at Cat's Bookclub.

July 2010 : Book no17

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen by Paul Torday
It's a rare achievement to tell a complete story in such an intriguing way merely by letters, emails, reports and other forms of correspondence.

For Alfred and Harriet an extraordinary project brings sparkle into their very dreary and ordinary lives. In the process of falling in love via actually "falling in love" with the charming Sheik Mohamed and his dreams and ideals , an international incident is triggered.

I thoroughly enjoyed this charming story of lost love on several levels. A really good read.

Cat's rating: a well deserved 8/10

Friday 30 July 2010

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily
Hosted by Chris

  24 July 2010:

A little bouquet from granny's garden.
  25 July 2010:

  26 July 2010:

Our "no TV" afternoons have resulted in a lot of puzzle building, reading and drawing.
  27 July 2010:

A little garden fragment.
  28 July 2010:

Ok, I admit. I have walked into Big Blue, I left with this stunning wrap top and a summer dress. Oh gosh, I loooove that shop.

It' s been ages since I did so fragmenting, so here goes:


  1. I met Laura of Harassed Mom yesterday for lunch- it was delightful and she has the most incredible eyes I have ever seen. Wow - eyes to launch a 1000 ships, I tell you. Girl, it was a great meeting you – let's do it again.

  2. The princess is at that stage in life where mommy does not know best any more – teacher knows best.

  3. I took her registration for grade R at the “big school” in yesterday. (For the US girls – I think you can compare it with the Kindergarten year). We have decided not to send her to school early (she is on the dividing line here with a n early January birthday) We are moving her from English to Afrikaans and as she is already doing grade R at her present school this year, I trust she will adjust well.

  4. We have started to plan our December holidays! Yeah.

  5. I am expecting to have a freezer full of good venison in a week or so.

  6. Today the weather is terrible – cold and cloudy. What happened to the almost summer we had for the last week and a bit?

  7. Some nights are tantrum nights – they will not disappoint – 3 tantrums in rapid succession.

  8. Our alarm went of the night before last and someone tampered with our main gate. I am a bit uneasy about it Thank God last night was peaceful and quiet.

  9. I have read 4 books in July – making up for June's dismal show of one book. Maybe I can finish another one tonight? I have also now read all the Twilight books. I really enjoyed them, but it's enough of the genre for me. The whole Renesmee thing freaked me out a bit.

  10. My DH (and yes, he is an absolute darling) has booked me for a facial tomorrow. Yeah!

Thursday, 29 July 2010


I am really loving the team-up challenge - it really gets you to look for a specific interpretation that you might not initially think of, as was the case for me this week.

Choosing a theme from last weeks photo's wasn't easy - there wasn't much to go on.  So i settled on wood (from the fence that Cat's son was climbing).  I thought it would be easy to get a pic of wood - not so much!  However, I spotted this tree on our way back from St Francis and got hubbie to stop so that i could take a few pics.  I took some in colour, and then also about 4 in B&W.  I thought the B&W one would be the breath-taking on, but no - the colour one is.  I'm sure if i had to photoshop the B&W they would be quite remarkable, but no fiddling allowed.  I do love  this tho as it showcases perfectly the stark beauty of the Eastern Cape right now.  We are still experiencin a severe drought, so not green green - but rolling hills abound and nothing for miles.  How blessed I am to be able to live in this beautiful part of South Africa.
Wood. What to do with Shayne's theme of wood. I had all these texture type pictures in mind with bark etc, or a wooden cross, and then I just snapped this one at the front door almost by chance. And it's proven to be the winner for the theme. I like the line s in it - and the roundness being echoed.
For more team - ups, go visit Corey's to see who else are participating.
And also check out these:

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

On popping pills.

All of us drink a multi-vitamin each day, or at least we are suppose to. And really, that's where it starts because these days it is just as much routine to have your Omega 3,6, 9 or whatever numbers with it. Those are the basics according to me.

Towards the end of last year I added Probiflora intense 9 strain to my hand full each day. It has been revolutionary in relieving my IBS symptoms So much so that it is the one I would not miss on any account although it does cost a small fortune.

But here's the thing - it's winter time. I am really going all out to avoid getting a cold or flu. Last year's swine flu was, well for the pigs. It was terrible. So, Hunter and I have joined the kids in drinking a cold and flu fighting supplement. So now I have 4 pills to swallow each day in the supplement department. I also have the not so small pill to swallow in the evenings by the way of a calcium and magnesium supplement recommended by Dr. Barbie my gynea, as it seems the start of menopause could once again be heading my way a bit earlier than the usual timing.

So my question to you is - how many supplements are too many? Which ones do I stop? And do you stop taking your multi vitamin when you drink the cold and flu supplement in winter? And what about the B vitamins which you then miss out on? I am really stressed at the minute with work and am worried that without my B vitamines I will get sick.

So what's your opinion on supplements and what is in you handful every day?

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

A wing and a prayer...

Today, I have a prayer request, if you are the praying kind. If not, some positive thoughts or what ever will also help.

Remember our friends?

Every night as a family, we read the bible and pray. How the kids pray is really a post all on it's own, but when Hunter and I pray, we have a huge list of friends where we ask Jesus to give them little friends for our kids too. Sometimes it seems that we know more people who are struggling to fall pregnant and keep the babies, than we know of friends who are actually having babies. My heart bleeds for every single one of them.
Last night, we could change our list. In stead of asking for a little baby for Lasca, we could pray that Jesus will keep our new little friend safe in Lasca's womb. What a joy! What an absolute joy!

This couple has been through so much (we are not even counting the amount of procedures any more - but we are nearing the 20s) - one surrogacy pregnancy failed and then the clever doctors discovered a new angle on the issue. And she, herself is pregnant now. 9 weeks!

So can I please ask you to join us in prayer to keep this little one safe too!

Monday, 26 July 2010

So another weekend flew by...

With a visit to granny on Saturday (and a sick Hunter), church and friends over for Sunday afternoon cake and coffee. The princess and I baked cappuccino muffins (no recipe - it was a pre-mix). But they were seriously good.
I also cooked Oxtail.In South Africa, oxtail is a delicacy - not sure about the rest of the world. My mom is well known for her oxtail recipe, but I took it yesterday and changed it a bit - made it a bit healthier and more "modern".It was simply delicious winter comfort food. It aslo went of well with the kidlets - we had 2 out of 3 "happy bowls" (empty bowls) and the third almost there. So being the good blogging friend I am, here's the recipe: ( I even converted it for the US girls - to pounds and liquid ounces). Oh and I forgot to take a picture.

Cat's healthier Oxtail

1,5kg (3,3 pounds) Oxtail ( you can use other stewing beef if you would like to)
Salt and pepper to taste
25ml (0,8 oz) oil
25ml (0,8 oz) butter

Season meat with salt and pepper
Fry until brown in a thick bottom pot.
Decant and keep warm in over.

Make sauce:
One glove garlic, finely chopped or pressed
Half an onion, chopped into very small bits
25ml (0,8 oz) dried mustard powder
250 ml (8,5 oz) beef stock
50 ml (1,7 oz) tomato paste
salt and a small bit of basil
20 ml (0,7 oz) maezina (thickener)
12,5 ml (0,4 oz) worchester sauce
500 ml (17 oz) red wine
250 ml (8,5 oz) natural low fat or fat free yogurt
Chopped parsley

Fry onion and garlic briefly in the same pot as above.
Mix stock, tomato past, mustard, salt and basil.
Add to pot.
Mix maezina and worchester sauce. Add red wine.
Add mix to pot and stir.
Add meat and simmer over low heat for about 6 hours.
Add water when required to cover the meat and stir now and again.
Before serving, add yogurt.
Sprinkle parsley over when serving.

 Please let me know if you try this and loved it too!
Having found a "new" great recipe Makes my Monday.
Playing along with Cheryl.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Friday - 23 July 2010

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily
Hosted by Chris

  18 July 2010:

 Oh is she not beautiful! And so the late afternoon light.

  20 July 2010:
 I bought these red and purple Arum lilies for the house - aren't they just stunning?
  21 July 2010:

 Apparently it was a good day for biking, This little scene greeted me when I parked at home.
  22 July 2010:

 This green Arum lily grows in our office garden.

Thursday, 22 July 2010


I just love Shayne's photo for this week. Such a wonderful interpretation and a great shot.

This week's theme, Jeans (chosen by Cat) threw me somewhat.  What on earth would i photograph - certainly not me in my jeans that is for sure!  So i had to make do with what i had - and here it is.  The stack of jeans in my wardrobe.  Prob about 10 pairs of so, but I have my fav 3 that i wear again and again.  And i fold them becoz they take too much space in my hanging wardrobe.  Is that weird?
I randomly chose "Jeans" from Shayne's picture of last week - it was the first thing that came to my mind. So this weekend I had to make some jean oppertunities and this one came out best. Little man C in his cute balck jeans. I love to take these "non-portrait" portraits - a bit of someone that show their personality
For more team - ups, go visit Corey's to see who else are participating.
And also check out these:

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Cape Town day 2

We woke up to a cloudy and rainy Cape Town on Saturday morning the 10th. We decided to try something indoors and headed to Butterfly world. My, did the girls enjoy it! It is literally a paradise under cover.
The highlight of the day for the Lil Miss was to be chosen to feed the koi fish.
Some of the pretty things to see include parrots, monkeys, lizards and blue duiker (blou bokkies). These are the tiniest most amazing little antelope and very endangered.
After spending quite a bit of time just strolling around we had some coffee at the little restaurant. It has these amazing kites hanging from the ceiling.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

The first time, ever I saw your face (remember the song?)

Blackhuff has tagged me for this one - a long long time ago.
What’s the first thing you notice about a man when you meet him?
For me, it's more smell than sight. Cleanliness and grooming than a look. I am quite paranoid about being clean - a bit obsessive compulsive maybe. I shower every morning. Sometimes if I go to gym during lunchtime I take shower no 2. Then I have a nice bath before bed every evening. I wash hands a million times a day. Hunter is much the same. You can think that a man that does not keep himself hygienic is an issue to me. So I love a man that smells nice and fresh and looks clean and neat. And really, that was my first impression and still is. Did I mention I love my man?

A great laugh and sense of humor is a close second.

So if you need some blog fodder - you're tagged. 

Monday, 19 July 2010

The weekend that was.

So have you noticed (or is it just us), that anything in the home, from DIY to cleaning, or anything else takes sooo much longer if you have the kidlets around. Truly, it's a major issue in our home. But regardless, we got a lot done this weekend. And that makes my Monday.

My darling hubby installed pop-up irrigation for the grass areas (we already had in the flower beds) - now most of the garden is so easy to water. Great going hubby!

He also installed an infra red heater in the open plan lounge area - I have been looking for what we refer to as a "Spur" heater, and at last found it. Costs a freaking fortune, but works so well. Does not look so great, but everything has a cozy red glow when it is on and no child can get hurt. We will still place the cord in a less obvious place. Brilliant I tell you. If we later use our gas heater again we can move it to the patio.(for the overseas girls, we do not have central heating in our houses in South Africa and at present we are having the coldest winter in 20 years)

I got us into a higher gear with recycling at home and got these handy containers at Plastic warehouse for R290 for all 3. Taking it to the depot is going to be the harder part of this. And my word, do we use a lot of plastic?

Playing along with Cheryl.

Friday, 16 July 2010

Friday 16 July 2010.

Its been a bit of a freaking amazingly crazy week. Work has been mad and my trusty Huberta (the van) gave me a run around which transpired to be st a flat battery and nothing more. I tell you, I am a whole week behind on blog reading and a lot of work will have to happen this weekend. But onto:

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily
Hosted by Chris

  11 July 2010:

Beach race: No matter how cold, the beach still hold's it's attraction. And a 3 and a bit year gap is not too much to share a whole lot of fun.
  12 July 2010:

 Houtbay blues: My second choice for yesterday's challenge.

  13 July 2010:

It's Percy: His sister brought him a train from Cape Town.

  14 July 2010:

Tower of chips: Mom and Dad's backgammon board provided a lot of fun.