Bats & Ninjas

We had the most amazing weather all of last weekend and it continued on throughout the week! It is as if it is suddenly summer. Of course with Cape Town the weather can flip quickly so we will see how long it lasts. Our office is freezing and I sit under a vent so I’m still wearing boots and a cardigan and only feel the heat if I have to nip out for food or when I leave to go home.

On Saturday I had to be up and out of the house early to drive Miss Pixie to Noordhoek to see the doggy chiropractor. As usual, we arrived a wee bit early and had a cuddle while waiting.

Currently Pixie is going every 5 weeks for a treatment but we are going to try and push it out to every 8 weeks as she has been coping well in between visits. We will just monitor to see how she copes. As I now have both her and Navajo seeing David it can get very expensive. We just ordered a new brace for Navajo’s leg and hopefully that makes a difference in his mobility which in turn helps his issues with back strain.

After Pixie and I finished at David I drove home and changed out of my doggy fur-covered clothing and collected Norm. We headed down to the village as we had a long list of errands to run.

First we needed some brunch so we popped into Allegria Cafe and Life. We sat outside as it was so warm.

I am starting to realise (after over 20 years of marriage) that the best way to get a decent pic of Norm is to sneak up on him and snap a furtive pic like a ninja (when he least expects it or when he is distracted by something else).

One of the things I like about Allegria is the lovely owner who is always on site to keep the orders moving along and to keep her customers happy. She was standing chatting to us when we ordered and when I asked for an omelette with bacon and emmanthaler cheese she suggested that I also add in carmelised onions for a bit of sweetness.

I loved the carmelised onions and was very pleased with my omelette, however there were a few too many onions for my taste. I will order this again and next time ask for my carmelised onions on the side and that will be perfection.

Norm had his favourite that he usually orders when he goes here: Scrambled eggs, bacon & mushrooms.

After we finished with our lunch we headed off to Tanya Seeber Optometrist to try on the eyeglass frames she had ordered in for me. I had previously posted a few different lenses for people to vote on.

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Help! Which ones should I choose?

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But the pair that almost everyone preferred was pair 1 above which are red and I cannot really cope with red frames every day. But I do love the cat eye shape. If I could afford it I would buy 2 pair and have the red ones for when they suit whatever I am wearing but I cannot afford 2 pair.

Instead I chose these in the pic below, they are black with a bronze coloured finish on the trim and the inside of the frame. They were about 2k rand for the frames alone, once they added on the cost of the anti-reflective coating and the cost to make the very thick lenses as thin as possible, the cost goes up to over 8k rands. Phew. I may have to sell off Norm or a kid to pay for them. Let me know of any offers for either parties. 🤭

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I ordered new specs today. What do you think?

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After we ordered my glasses we hit the chemist and grocery shop as we were out of everything from toothpaste to lipstick. Which reminds me, am I the only lipstick addict who finally finds the perfect colour, buys a few tubes and then when you run out you find they have discontinued that colour? Revlon, you do my flipping head in. Or is it the buyer at Clicks who is erratic in her purchases? When you ask the staff at Clicks for any colour not on the shelf the answer is always ‘that one has been discontinued’. Can anyone say ‘Annoying AF’?

Never mind. Here is me at work at 7am wearing the new lippy. I mention the time so you can give me some sort of bonus points for the earliness and I mention the venue so you can give me some slack for sitting under bright AF strip lighting.

Don’t look too closely at my roots either, I am at the hairdresser on the weekend to sort that out.

Anyway.

We decided to braai that night as the weather was perfect for it so we bought some fillet steaks and salad ingredients. I marinated the steaks in a bowl of whatever-we-had-in-the cupboard when we got home. I think it was Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar, soy, garlic and a tiny bit of mustard. I poked some holes in the steaks so that they would absorb the flavours.

After he walked the dogs Norm fired up the gas grill and braaied the corn on the cob and steaks while I made a salad. I also made a salad dressing but it was dreadful so the less we mention that the better really! I need to find a delicious low carb dressing so any ideas will be gratefully received.

It was all perfect for the hot weather. My steak was bright pink inside but nicely charred outside, just the way I prefer it. I give Norman 5 Kitten Stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️😂😂

After dinner Norm and I watched a new series we have recently started watching called Somewhere Between. It is a very gripping show and we are quite enjoying it. It has that actor that no one can remember the name of but everyone thinks looks familiar? Apparently his name is Devon Sawa. We have not finished watching it all as yet but based on what we have seen so far I give it 4 Kitten Stars.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

We had a very lazy Sunday. It was even hotter than the previous day and I sat staring at the pool, trying to decide whether I could be bothered to remove the cover and clean it as it has not yet been used this year so the cover is full of crud. Luckily our tube from the guttering down pipe has kept the pool topped up with rain water.

That reminds me, last week there was a very loud screeching sound outside the front of the house late one evening. I was convinced it was bats. Where I grew up in Georgia we had a lot of bats and they would swoop down and bomb your head. I was terrified of them as a child. I told Norm I was sure there were bats, but then I wandered off and did something upstairs and Norm ventured out to investigate. He discovered it was not bats at all but the pool sucky thing had gotten stuck and was having a bit of a squeaky tantrum.

However I did not know that and later I told everyone on Facebook we had a bat infestation.

We don’t.

It still makes me giggle that several people in the Hout Bay group were googling ‘bat sounds‘ and listening to the results thanks to my red herring.

Norm and I decided to tidy up the Halloween dress up box as we both needed to try and find some bits and pieces for our upcoming party. I found some things which I can use to create my outfit, Norm found the bits he needs and we also put aside some things Caitlin needed.

Lily needs a blond wig for her costume and so I tried on the 3 blond wigs we have and sent the pics to the girls. I made silly faces in each of the pics and Lily said I look like a rooster so Caitlin found a pic of my soul mate.

I have such a giggle every time I look at that pic.

Lily managed to find a crinoline for my dress for Halloween. I’m getting so excited, my outfit is coming together nicely!

Norm decided that as it was sunny he would paint another coat on the garage door he is refinishing. I settled in with the kitties and a cup of tea and watched The Good Place while Norm painted the garage door.

This is one I have chosen to watch on my own as I know it is not Norm’s type of show, but I really liked it. It is not earth shaking or amazing, it is just a cute little show with an intriguing concept. I did find the idea that we are constantly being measured by the ‘gods’ and that every thing we do accrues a score on our overall life tally quite interesting and frightening at the same time. Bad things drop our points and good things raise our scores. If my score drops every time I rant at someone who drives like an eejit while I am driving round in the privacy of my car then I must be way down in the negatives due to that alone. Actually, my Virgo tongue has probably dropped my points wayyyy down.

I give The Good Place 4 Kitten Stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

It was still really hot Sunday evening and I fancied sushi and Norm agreed to pop down to K1 in Hout Bay to order a take away.

K1 has a Two for the price of One on the same colour of plate so my order of 4 different types of sushi was only R123 as I only paid for two! A bargain in my books. I ordered Prawn roses, Salmon roses, Prawn tempura & Cucumber roses with prawn. I do not eat seaweed so I have to choose carefully. I did not snap a pic of the tempura but they were really big prawns with a yummy coating and I really enjoyed my entire meal. In fact I will give them 5 Kitten Stars and will definitely visit them again when my sushi craving hits. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

On Monday night Norm and I had to go down to the cop shop as I had some forms I needed to get notarised. We went into the station and there was a Rastafarian dude going mental at the counter, he was wearing a tattered tank top, with matted thick dreads hanging down to the middle of his back. He was there with a woman who looked like she hadn’t slept in months and they were both loudly giving off to the staff. After a few minutes of agitated ranting they were both taken into the back of the station. We were not sure if they were being arrested or what was going on but it made for an interesting show while we stood in the queue waiting our turn.

After we finished at the cop shop we popped by Woolies and got some meat to braai as it was 27 degrees Celsius when I got in my car to go home from work.

The weather app said it was 32C (90F)! Considering we were still wrapped up in front of a roaring fire just last week it is hard to keep up.

Norm fired up his gas grill and he cooked corn on the cob, aubergines and a lovely pork fillet and I made a raw spinach salad to go with it. I love spinach in any form, raw, cooked or creamed. I added lots of avocado to up the fat content.

Later that night there was a bizarre mist that came rolling in over the bay and you could not see outside of the perimeter of our garden. This is perfect cover for the house breakers and sure enough we heard on the radio that some drama was underway.

On Tuesday at lunch time when we went outside we spotted that there was another fire at the Cape Town train station which is across from our offices.

This is part of the ongoing attacks on our transport infrastructure that I have mentioned many times. According to the rescue service, “two trains with three carriages each on platform 17 and 18 respectively were alight”, with reports of the offices above the station deck also being affected.

These fires are causing so much devastation.

Norm cooked again on Tuesday night, he made a chicken and vegetable dish in a cream sauce and made low carb spinach noodles to serve it on.

On Wednesday I had an appointment with my dental hygienist for a cleaning. I am very dental phobic so I had to take a anti-anxiety pill. As I have had a hip replacement I have to guard against any bacterial infections so I also had to take a stack of antibiotics before hand. I arrived a bit early and they took me in early so I did not even have a chance to sort of calm down from the drive (that is why I arrive early to center myself). But I am sure it would be seen as efficiency by any normal patient! As I lay back in the chair I could feel the anxiety meds taking over and I was able to endure it with only 2 hand waves to say ‘Stop!’. The hygienist is brilliant as she chatters to me the whole time to distract me.

However she told me that one of their dentists had been stabbed the previous week while running on the mountain. He was not alone, he was running with other people, however this did not deter the culprits. I have searched for the news article and I think this is it HERE. The good thing is that they caught and arrested the culprits, we just have to hope that the case actually results in a conviction. So many of our arrests do not even make it to court, much less gain a conviction. Not only are our crime levels shocking but our justice system is a bit of a shambles. On the crime stats page they prompt you to take a survey about whether you or someone you know has been a victim of crime in the last 6 month. I took the survey and it tells me that 35% of the respondents have either been a victim or know someone who has been.

Shocking.

Still, life goes on.

Well, if you are lucky it does! Last night Pixie stole a chicken wing from Navajo and tried to swallow it whole. We only noticed when I looked over to see her convulsing on the floor. By the time I got to her she had managed to eject it from her airway. Cheeky lil monkey that she is, she terrified me! She was quite blasé about the whole affair. She even contemplated trying again but I snatched her away from it.

Wednesday night Norm and I cooked together and we made mexican food.

We just made tacos and refried beans and topped the tacos with home made guacamole, salsa, cheddar, lettuce and fromage frais. It was rather delicious as I love tacos. The best thing is how quick they are to prepare.

Today Norm had a meeting at the waterfront so he popped by my offices for a coffee. Work is a bit busy as I have new data to analyse but I took a wee break to chat to my darling.

Tonight he cooked chicken sausage, sweet potato mash with gravy, the last of our sweet corn and fried red cabbage. It was delicious. I love him looking after me.

I’m looking forward to the weekend, I hope yours is full of happiness.

Until next time, Kisses from the Kitten xoxoxo

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The Toothwhisperer

My week started out a bit badly as I was at the dentist on Monday but as far as dental visits go it wasn’t too bad. I took a tramacet pain pill for courage and Norm drove me. Dr Pretorius was great, talking me through every action before he made it and moving slowly. My tooth is still tender if I bite on it but it should improve. This was the last phase of my root canal.  I also had to take my car in for its 30k mileage service. Luckily that’s free with my motorplan. Norm followed me there at 730am and then dropped me to collect it late that afternoon after the dentist. I worked from home in between appointments. It was a hot sunny day at least. 

I was back in my main client’s office in the CBD on Tuesday. I woke to pouring rain, another rapid change in our crazy weather. This time of year in South Africa can be so unpredictable. When I got to the café where I usually buy my morning coffee there was a lady standing outside who stopped me. She said ‘I am not asking for money. Please do not judge me. But I am hungry.’ As both a mother and as a child of the American South, that is something I cannot turn my back on. I asked her to wait for me while I just put down my bags at my desk and I would be right back. When I got back outside she looked like she was so surprised I came back. She showed me her neck which looked like she had her throat slit at one stage as there was a dark scar from side to side. She also walked hunched over as if she could not straighten her upper back. She said in a gravelly voice that she has throat cancer and she is having treatment and can only swallow soft food. I told her to come with me to the café where she can sit inside in the warmth and I will buy her breakfast. She said that about the only thing she can eat is cereal with milk and could I rather buy that. I took her into the corner shop and bought her a giant box of corn flakes and a big bottle of full fat milk. The change was R10 so I gave her that as well as I tried to not get emotional. She broke my heart. There but for the grace of God go I. Or you. 

I’ve been pretty much homeless but for the kindness of friends. It can happen to any of us. So many people live day to day, paycheck to paycheck. Or they are dependent on their partner to provide a roof. Or they fall victim to anything which requires medical assistance. If you have no medical aid an accident can bankrupt you. You lose a job or a partner, what happens to you? So many, especially women, have no safety net.

Then that same evening when I left work a young man approached me asking for cash for the night shelter. But so many people are needy, how do you choose who to give to? But to anyone who approaches me for money while walking I will say no. It’s not safe opening your bag on the street. If they are hungry I will buy food. 

Work has been varied again which makes it less monotonous. I can’t bear monotony. I had so many different projects and clients demanding attention. I facilitated 2 workshops on Tuesday and hopefully that will result in a bit of new work, the client seemed very happy with what we showed them. I got home late but still quickly threw together dinner.


I made spicy mince with cumin, garlic, chili, chili powder, paprika and a bit of stock and cooked peppers and onions in butter. I served it salad style with butter lettuce, rosa tomatoes, avocado, sour cream, salsa and cilantro. I made taco ‘shells’ from baking thinly sliced smoked provolone until bubbly.

I had enough left for lunch on Wednesday, this worked out well as I ended up getting asked to dial in on a conference call as a Specialist Consultant for a new client which lasted til almost 1.

I got home so late on Wednesday as I didn’t leave the office til almost 5pm and then sat in stand still traffic for ages. I heard on the radio that there had been 3 casualties on the motorway in the southern suburbs. Three men who are part of the group of housebreakers known as the “Crowbar Gang” and were being pursued by security police.

This is what they mean by a crowbar gang.

They crossed over to the wrong side of the highway and rolled their car and 3 of them died and 1 of them went to the hospital but was in critical condition. He also subsequently died.

They hit a mother and her child in one car as well as a second car. The people in the other cars were injured but have survived thankfully. 

Luckily Norm bought us dinner and prepared it all once I finally got home. It was grilled fish, butternut squash and steamed broccoli.


It was low carb but not high fat.  I would have dipped the fish in coconut and fried it in coconut oil but I was so tired I was happy to be fed whatever and however Norm felt like cooking.

The #FeesMustFall student protests have gotten completely out of hand and incredibly violent across the breadth of the country. Here in Cape Town at CPUT, Lily’s alma mater, the protestors locked a couple of security guards in a closet and set the campus on fire. 


Several protesters have been arrested and charged with attempted murder.

At Wits in the North of the country a priest named Father Graham Pugin from Holy Trinity Church in Braamfontein bravely stood at the church entrance blocking the police riot vehicle from entering the church grounds to arrest protestors who were seeking sanctuary.


Image credit
Father Pugin got shot in the face by a rubber bullet as a result.


I received an email from the University of Cape Town advising that the Information  Systems Expo was cancelled due to the unrest. 


Those kids work all year towards presenting their work at the Expo, Caitlin was always proud of their work. So many people will be punished for the means of a few. People will be affected who themselves may not be able to afford a make up year. The poor affecting the poor. The year will be written off as a fail for most. The damage is immeasurable.

I am supportive of the desire for change. However some of the points they protestors make seem ridiculous to my western mind. 

Surely science is science?  Not that I don’t believe in black magic or witchcraft. I do. However this does not devalue science! Surely there is room for both the physical sciences as well as black magic? Even though black magic goes against the limitations of physics and science.

I am confident that this turmoil is being instigated by Zuma to distract us from his own issues and the investigations into SARS and other areas of suspected corruption. 

Zuma tried to stop our wonderful, brave, amazing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela from releasing her report on State Capture before her term ended. State capture is a type of systemic political corruption in which private interests significantly influence a state’s decision-making processes to their own advantage through unobvious channels that may not be illegal. In SA a family called the Guptas seem to be leading Zuma and manipulating government decisions. Parliament described the probe as an “investigation into complaints of alleged improper and unethical conduct by the President and other state functionaries relating to alleged improper relationships and involvement of the Gupta family in the removal and appointment of Ministers and Directors of State Owned Entities (SOES) resulting in improper and possibly corrupt award of State contracts and benefits to the Gupta family businesses”.

Zuma also had his fingers up another puppet’s backside in the form of Shaun Abrahams. Abrahams has charged Pravin Gordhan with fraud. Malema has had charges levied against him as well. The timing is rather suspect.

The light is shining on Zuma. Like most vermin he doesn’t like the light.

The same as the light is shining on Trump’s latest scandals coming out about his many abuses on women. Let us hope that the American voters do the right thing. Even if they vote for that moron who doesn’t even know what Aleppo is. He can’t be as dangerous as Trump.

Thursday I had a meeting in Canal Walk for most of the day then at lunch time I came back to the city for my main client after Norm and I went to the bank to move funds to pay for the kitchen renovation. It was a stunning sunny day with a strong wind coming off the sea and was a pleasant if blustery walk across the city. 

That evening when we were home relaxing Pixie started barking like a lunatic. We moved all the furniture looking for a ball or bone or what ever might be driving her so insane. Norm shouted at her and tried to distract her and then I heard rustling. It was a tiny shrew! 


We chased round with a shoe box for ages and finally got it. We are a catch and release house.

I had a day in office on Friday working toward my delivery of my main project. I had a yummy Mexican salad for lunch from Tortilla Modern Mexican


The chef there chops lettuce just for me as I don’t want the carbs from the chips, rice or tortillas. I do have beans however. This is my weekly treat. I never thought I would see beans as a treat!


Friday Josh and Lily drove down for the weekend as Josh has a race on. It was lovely to see her again so soon. 

We ordered in take aways and Norm took a break from dismantling cupboards to collect them. We had a curry and the kids had sushi. We had a chilled evening. I was delighted to discover that series 6 of American Horror Story was on playback so we watched an episode of that. 

I love that series! Norm is not a fan. We have opposite tastes in TV. 

The kids woke us at 6.30am so we got up and busy. We packed up the kitchen cupboard contents and Norm dismantled the cupboards. It was exhausting and my house is a mess! 


We knocked off at sunset and showered and the kids came home for dinner. We tried a new place, The Kitchen Takeaway. I had 100g of delicious fall off the bone ribs, Lily had the crispy chicken burger, Josh had the gourmet burger and Norm the Banting burger.  Due to the state of my kitchen I didn’t take any snaps but I loved their takeaway packaging, I adored my ribs, everyone loved their food. The chips were crispy outside and fluffy inside and covered in a nice spicy salt.  Gorgeous all around. We will be back!

Today has been working on dismantling the kitchen cupboards. Norm somehow managed to pull together a delicious Banting Brekkie. I was sitting outside and so surprised! 


Josh and Lily pitched in with taking down the upper cupboards as it was a bit much for Norm and let’s face it, I’m more of a hindrance than a help.


Pixie was so annoyed that she was not the center of everyone’s attention.


Monday the electricians come and sort out their portion of the project. Tuesday the joiner comes to install the carcasses and on Thursday or Friday the painter will deliver the doors and painted panels. The Quartz people cannot come until the units are in. There are so many steps involved in this sort of project. Timelines usually mean little in Cape Town. 

I just want to be functional as soon as possible. My Mom and Joy are due to arrive in 4 weeks. I just want it all done for their arrival.

My mom has her MRI this week then her op on her back as soon as possible. Hopefully they can inject the vertebrae with cement like last time as it has a quick recovery time. 

So if you can spare some good wishes please send them to Atlanta for my Mom and if any is left maybe a bit of fairy dust to my kitchen!

Have a fabulous week yourselves. Xx

The Spokeswoman 

The week started off so gorgeous, so sunny and  hot! We had a lovely 27 degrees Celsius on Monday and Tuesday was even hotter, allegedly hitting over 30 degrees. As I work in an air conditioned office I often have no clue what is going on outside. It’s like Antartica in my office, we freeze. 

I wondered will it finally stay warm, can I actually now move from boots to pumps? “Pumps” is another of those words which seems to mean a different thing in different countries.

In the US, a pump is a sexy, closed heel.


In South Africa a pump is flat.


I get so confused. Maybe it means both? Since my hip replacement I can no longer wear heels. I miss them, I never feel properly dressed up without a sexy pair of stilettos.

But it’s been so many years since I wore heels it would be hilarious to watch I’m sure. 

And then Thursday arrived and in typical Cape Town fashion,  I reverted back to boots as it was storming so badly it sounded like the house was going to blow in when I was getting ready for work. Once I got into the city the heavens opened and as well as icy cold wind and drizzle it started pouring giant splodges of rain. I have a long walk and I just zipped my jacket and put on my hood and plodded and splashed across town, dodging people running and went to my office. It’s impossible to use an umbrella in Cape Town.

I looked like a drowned rat when I got to work. I shook off and put what bits of me I could manage under the hand dryer. At least my thighs got dry in front and the back of me didn’t get as wet as I was walking into the downpour. 

drowned-rat

But that is Cape Town for you! Crazy daisy weather.

On Monday evening I had a phone call from Washington from a woman from Democrats Abroad asking if I had submitted my ballot. When I told her I hadn’t registered before I emigrated and that I left the US so many years ago that I can’t even remember my last address or Social Security number in order to register she said she would see what she can do. Maybe I can vote after all! That would be fab to vote against the Donald. I never answer my phone, the fact I answered an unknown US number is a real exception.

I then received an email from someone and she was zero help, suggesting I ‘figure out how to open the pdf’ that I told her wouldn’t open. Gosh why didn’t I think of that! She sent a link to a website which provided no guidance at all. So I’m back to square one, unable to register without proof of tons of info from 30 years ago. I’ve moved over 40 times, no chance will I know an address from when I lived in LA! Bugger.

I cannot face another president coming into the mix where I am going to be quizzed on ‘WTF is America thinking??’ every time a random stranger hears my Yank accent. I had to endure this for all of the years that Bush was ineptly banging around the White House. I cannot explain how a moron gets elected. I assume it is by the support of other morons but I am not the International American spokeswoman on moronic behaviour. And no I also cannot explain what is going on with the blatant murder of blacks by police in America. I am as horrified by these recurring deaths as anyone – I cannot explain it to others. But still I get quizzed. Luckily I’ve been out of the US and lived so many places my accent is a hodge podge. I escape scrutiny on occasion. 

Meanwhile life goes on. 

This week was over in a heartbeat because I was so busy. 

Norm was working on Monday evening so Caitlin and I ordered a Thai cafe order for home delivery. But as we took so long to make a plan then had to await the delivery dude, it was very late by the time we ate and it was time for bed soon after we finished.

As a result of having no leftovers, the next day I decided to take some smoked salmon to work for lunch so I walked to Food Lovers Market and visited the salad bar and made up a simple salad but they had no ripe avos so I bought a tiny perfect avo at the corner shop for only R3 and I took it all back to the office kitchen to construct it. It went so nicely together. It also meant a nice midday stroll out  in the gorgeous sunshine.

The drama continues over the appointment of Hlaudi Motsoeneng into yet another executive position after being deemed unfit to serve as the COO. Now several of the SABC board have resigned and the parastatal is in deep trouble. The blatant disregard by the ANC of the findings by the Public Protector had already led to some resignations but the latest shenanigans has resulted in the last few members who seemed ethical to finally jump ship. The company is in a mess as is everything the ANC touches, Mandela must be so disappointed.

The medical infrastructure is barely functioning.  The incompetencies in the hospitals mean you don’t want to get injured in an accident. If you go for surgery where you select the hospital and surgeon yourself then you are generally ok. But you don’t want to be injured and especially not out in the remote areas.

Norm has started with getting the kitchen prepped for the renovation project. He has packed up a lot. 

We had a moment of panic this week when we rang to check progress with the company we paid to produce the cupboards and discovered the guy whom we were dealing with no longer works there. OK, to be perfectly honest, in reality I panicked and Norm just regretted telling me. 

He rang them the next day and confirmed that all was in order and the cupboards would be ready on Monday the 10th as planned. However as things often pan out, when Norm followed up with the painter she said that she wanted to get a full sized door to use as the demo piece for approval. When she drove to the site to collect a door they showed her one which was the wrong design! She had heard the whole story directly from me about the design so she agreed with them that they would pay her for the doors and she will produce and paint them! Thank goodness for the painter who seems so switched on. She should have a sample available on Monday for us to approve. I’m excited beyond measure. 

Norm has started chipping away at the tiles.

Meanwhile on Facebook, one of my Mom’s friends posted some of the cutest pics from January 1992. This is me and my children a year and a half after moving from LA to South Africa.

Caitlin would have been 3, Lily just turned 1 and Trevor was 5. So tanned and golden. Like a negative of them now, they never go in the sun and have dark or black hair. 

How did I have 3 children under 5 and have painted nails?  This was Africa, there were no nail salons. 

Norm is on a mission to grow his own tomatoes. His seeds have sprouted.


 His mom always had a load of her own tomatoes, as did my Grandmother. There is nothing better. I was not thinking properly as we chose rosa tomatoes which I love, but if we had planted large tomatoes we could have had fried green tomatoes, I miss those! 

I found this low carb recipe on a blog I want to try: Low carb fried green tomatoes.


The #FeesMustFall protesting is still going on with the university students. The University where Lily attended was full of chaos on Thursday. The protesters threw human feces at the police and in return the police fired rubber bullets. The government have sat firmly on the fence proving ineffective at controlling the situation.

I worked on 4 different projects this week, doing data analysis, project planning, created a presentation and reviewed someone’s document so it was varied and the week flew by. 

Caitlin flew to Johannesburg for a few weeks leaving on Thursday evening. It was unfortunate that Norm had work and they both were away. 

Early Friday morning Norm also flew away to speak at an event. Here he is having dinner with the parents of SA Gold medalist Wade van niekerk and SA Athletics officials. 

Meanwhile I was attending the launch of my friend Darryn Clark’s new location for his business Time Menders with my friend Annie. Darren is an artisan who makes and repairs clocks. It’s a stunning venue full of classic cars, bikes and various bits of Americana and memorabilia. 


It is a fabulous space with good clear energy. Some of those old spots can have a lot of bad juju hanging around. I hope it’s going to be a successful venture. They want a pseudo Biscuit Mill vibe with a coffee shop and maybe restaurant or cafe but with artisans occupying the stalls not just selling the usual same old tat you see at so many markets. 

In typical SA fashion, the blokes stayed round the fire and the women all sat comfortably round the lounge area and didn’t mingle. Of course we did talk about menopause and abusive men all night soooooo I can’t blame the blokes really. It was a man free zone.

We went very early and so we left early too and got home by 8 as I wanted to go spend time with Lily and Josh who had arrived just after I got home from work. I was so glad I wasn’t on my own that night. The wind picked up again and the rain was intermittent. The garden is loving it. 

Saturday it again poured with rain in the morning and we woke to overcast misty mountains.

I had a lazy day on Saturday and Lily and Josh were off to the track for training on Josh’s bike. He is racing next week so they are coming back again. Norm flew home from Bloemfontein late yesterday afternoon. 

I wanted to cook something for dinner but we had nothing much in the fridge and I was too cozy to shop.  I thawed out a bag of frozen raw prawns. I fried 3 small peppers, red, yellow and orange, 4 red Birdseye chillis, an onion and 4 cloves of garlic. I then added a bag of chopped butternut. I added double cream, coconut cream, 2 cups chicken broth and 2 tins chopped tomato. I flavored with chili powder, cumin, fresh coriander and paprika. I let it simmer until the butternut was soft then used the hand blender to make it all smooth. I cleaned and tailed the prawns and cut them into small pieces and washed them and added to the soup. I then added provolone to a sheet of baking paper and cooked til bubbly.

I topped the soup with fresh cream and chopped cilantro to serve. The provolone ‘crackers’ added a bit of crunch.


That soup was to die for. So much flavor and bite. Mucho caliente baby. We just relaxed the rest of the evening, I was happy to have Norm home. The animals were cozy too.

Lily and Josh drove back this morning and Norm and I headed out to do errands. It was sunny but there was a bit of chill in the air. My flowers were looking for the sun.


We went to Hirsch’s and bought a stainless steel extractor hood to go with our new cooker.


That is another thing sorted. We tried to find lighting and a bar fridge but no luck.

We were starving by the time we left the shop so we went to Mugg & Bean for a bite to eat. I had the Cobb salad.

Norm had the low carb Eggs Benedict. Instead of an English muffin it had mushrooms.


We did a shop for toiletries and bits and bobs at Clicks then decided to go to Constantia to do a big grocery shop, we were out of everything. On our way we spotted a huge fire. We never saw what was burning.


We then did a Pic n Pay shop for basics, then got our meat and veg at Woolworths. 

Norm walked the dogs and we relaxed a bit then we made dinner together.

We stuffed chicken breasts with spinach and marscapone then baked it. It was soooo tender. 


To go with we made mushrooms, gem squash and steamed cauliflower. 

The weekend has flown by, tonight we are watching Creed, the Sunday movie. Tomorrow my car goes in for a service so I am working from home and then in the afternoon I am at the dentist for the second phase of my root canal treatment. Hopefully it won’t hurt as much. 

I get to see my painted sample cupboard door tomorrow, I’m so excited! 

I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead. Xxx

Road Rage & Root Canals 

This Sunday has been so much fun but oh so busy! And very different than my lazy day last weekend. Last Sunday I ended up cooking a roast chicken, red cabbage, a spinach and avocado salad and lovely little sausages. For a last minute throw together from Spar it was delicious. It also meant I had left over chicken that week for work lunches.

I was glad to have the food for lunch on Monday when I spent 12 hours away from home, I left at 7am and returned home at 7pm. I was exhausted. But being prepared with chicken, salad and red cabbage meant I could stay low carb.

We made a plan on Tuesday to go again to view the ceasarstone and quartz slabs for our new countertops for the kitchen renovation project. Norm collected me from work early and off we went to Northgate. We finally decided on the colour Java from the Cafe Quartz line.

This is it in the warehouse.

And this is the close up view from their website.


We then went off to see the company that is doing the paint effects on the cupboards. This is the effect I want below (but not the colour), where another base colour shows through the top coats to look aged. Ours will be a pale creamy yellow with the brown base coat to match the counter tops.


We got home so late that night that we decided on takeaways from Posticino in Hout Bay. I had planned on cooking but it was too late, instead I decided to make the sauce for cottage pie to sort out dinner for the following night.

The only problem is that I was so tired that I fell asleep and burned the meat sauce. Oops. I salvaged most.

The next evening I made the rescued meat into a caulimash Cottage pie. It was nice and did not taste burned luckily.


The local news has been full of the ongoing #FeesMustFall Protests and the estimated tally of the cost of the protests is R600million damage.


If the president and his cronies were not wasting and embezzling or misappropriating so much money there would be plenty of government funding for university fees.

I had one of my top 10 most terrible days on Thursday. It started when the door which we lock between upstairs and down wouldn’t open when I tried to leave for work at 6.45am. There are two bolts and one was jammed, so the key would not go in at all. I woke Norm to assist and I was just starting to panic when Norm managed to get it open.

Then once I got to work I had a very stressful day. On my way home I was driving along a 2 lane road when a large truck drifted into my lane, so I gave a quick hoot to make sure the driver knew I was there. Next thing I see the driver swerves  left and tries to ram me! I stopped and he then stopped in front of me, blocking both lanes and he exited his truck. He heads back towards me and I quickly raise my window and he starts punching my car. I just said “Dude, you are crazy. Get back in your truck. You are such a big man to attack a woman.” This last sentence was like a red flag to an under-endowed bull and he took down his zipper of his shorts, removed his penis and thrust it against my car.

That will show me, right? What a psycho. I am glad the police do not use this approach as a traffic control measure.

I felt all panicky but I got away from him. I had taken antibiotics for the dentist to zap any bacteria the dental work might release and I am so phobic and then this guy attacking me had my heart racing. I started to wonder had I been given some antibiotics I was allergic to or was that just adrenaline? Which in turn made me panic further!

When I turned into my suburb I looked up and saw the psycho had followed me! I rang Norm via my bluetooth and took a wrong turn so he wouldn’t know where I live. I then carried onto the dentist, feeling stressed. I had a cleaning done and the dentist saw me after. He said the root in my tooth had to go and he ended up doing a root canal. He was so gentle and patient with me – and I tried to get my body to stop the adrenaline flow.

What a horrendous bloody awful day.

The good news was that Norm had shopped and cooked my fave meal of fillet steaks.

The bad news was that my teeth hurt and steak is not an easy journey to travel.


I took forever to eat it but it was delicious. The steak was cooked perfectly, he made brussel sprouts, asparagus and mushrooms in a cream sauce to go with it. It was so divine.

I’m a lucky kitten.

I work with a guy who has a birthday the day after mine and get this, he had a bad tooth and had it pulled the same day I had my dental work! Like it was National Virgo messed up tooth day.

Friday I came home and chilled in the sun on my new lounger and the Poms fought to share it with me.


It was such a stunning day so I moved outside on the balcony and played my Covet Fashion game.


My Friday night was full of my favourite things. Norm picked up a take away curry, we watched X factor, I finished off with some Amarula on ice and was in my happy place.


My best of the XFactor that night was Sada Vidoo, the Living Doll.

Absolutely bizarre and fabulous.

Saturday Pixie and I had to be up and away early to go to the Chiro in Noordhoek.

Afterwards Norm, Caitlin & I went off to Earthworx Garden World and spent a small fortune. I’m trying to get the garden looking nice for summer. We then dropped off the plants for Mzudumo and Norm.


Then Caitlin and I went for lunch and to do some shopping for Operation Shoebox. We each had a little girl and a little boy to buy for. 

This is what I got for my two. The boy likes orange so he gets an orange shirt,  truck and transformer/robot boy thing. The little girl likes purple and almost everything is purple. She got a dolly, jump rope and Princess dress up goodies. They each get a shorts and top outfit, a set of pajamas which can be worn as play clothes too, socks, underpants, sandals, toothbrush and toothpaste, soap and facecloth,, crayons, coloured pencils, a coloring book with stickers, popcorn, sweets and a box of juice. 


We were starving so had lunch at Woolies Cafe. It took forever.


I had the corn fritters with bacon, avo and a poached egg.


Cait had the chicken burger without the bun or chips.


While we were out the men planted my new flowers as a screen by the pool.


We chose wild iris or ‘Dietes bicolor’ as its properly called. They have thrived on the other side of the pool so hopefully will also like it here too. They are a bit sparse now but hopefully will multiply.

At the back in the large pots we planted proteas. I hope they get enough sun.


We also got a few bits for dinner. I pureed Caulimash and gem squash with creamed cheese. I fried peppers with chorizo & mixed it all together and topped with cheddar cheese and served it with crisp fresh green salad with lots of avocado and a bit of crispy pork belly.

It was divine.

For weeks I have been looking forward to Foxcroft opening in Constantia. I booked online weeks ago when they published the pre-booking link. So easy!

It was full of people and a great buzz outside as it was a sunny stunning day.


The inside did fill up. It’s beautifully done.


There were huge koi in the fountain.


We settled in.


We ordered Klein Constantia Sauvignon Blanc. We both had the squid starter which was divine!


I had the beef ribeye. It was R 220 and came with Duck fat chips, cep sauce, carrot puree, baby carrots, & brussels.

I asked for pink, not bloody and it was perfect.


Norm had the Slow-cooked Lamb’s Leg with white bean hummus, smoked garlic, black olive, minted potatoes at R195.


For dessert I had the Elderflower Doughnuts with Litchi milk ice, raspberries. It was so yummy! It was R65.


Norm had Compressed Strawberries with Toasted croissant at R70.


He loved it.

The service was amazing, the food was faultless and our day was pretty spectacular.

We finished with a coffee and came home to relax a bit then Norm took the dogs for a walk then we went off to Retha’s for a braai. We took along the bottle of Sauvignon Blanc I had won recently and finished that off.

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It was a fun evening but I am rather tired today! It’s hard work having fun 🙂 I hope your weekend was fabulous. xx

Pop Goes The Kitten

When I meet new people they often ask me do I not miss the US. I don’t miss anything except the people, but one thing I do wish we had the equivalent of in SA is shopping. The UK and the US have such great sales and a better quality of merchandise generally.

I miss being able to shop 24 hrs a day and the concept of customer service, also quite often lacking here.

One thing I do miss is access to current music or even a quality radio station playing my taste in not so current music. I like a lot of pop music, it’s my dirty little secret. It’s called ‘pop’ because it is what is ‘popular’, mainstream, the common middle ground, music for everyone.

The main channel I used to listen to in SA has had a major staff and show reshuffle. And in my opinion it has been very unsuccessful. They got rid of their popular morning jockey and his very funny team. Personally I didn’t like him, I found him misogynistic, ageist, fattist, when in fact he looks like Ichabod Crane’s ugly younger brother so I found it ironic he is so critical of other peoples appearance.

His team however I thought brought him a nice balance. But they have now all moved on to a live show on the comedy network. I watched it. They all look very self conscious of the cameras. I didn’t enjoy it.

I love the afternoon DJ, a larger than life funny guy, but now he is the morning DJ. But by morning I mean so early only a sparrow will hear the majority of his show. What a waste! Now there is some dude on in the afternoons, and he is surrounded by a group of noisy uninteresting unprofessionals. Some afternoons it sounds like a group of toddlers in my back seat bickering or singing over songs. FFS people listen to your show and realise you are just making noise!? One day this guy actually said ‘I love breast cancer survivors, they generally have bigger boobs.’

Seriously??? What a sleazy scumbag pig of a man.

They have some other dude on now in the late mornings who continually uses the wrong word. He uses actual words that do exist, he just uses them in the wrong context, and this is one of my pet peeves. If you make a living as a linguist you must be able to speak properly. At least he played Iggy Azalea. Once.

She breaks records on downloads and NO ONE gives her airplay? This is representative of the issue I have with South African radio stations. No awareness of international playlists.

So music exposure and professional radio is what I miss most about the US and UK.

I do have limits on what pop music I like and Britney Spears is not on my list of fan sites, but last night we were invited to dinner for a friends birthday at Beluga and this was the theme. Oh dear. Lily made an effort and put on some cute leather leggings and went as the black leather outfit Britney. I just threw on a wig and went as “”Weekend Britney”, aka ‘Britney just hanging round the trailer park’.

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After the yelling of ‘surprise’ and shooting of poppers and blowing of party favours, we went back to our normal selves.

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The service at Beluga was impeccable. They were happy to let us toot horns, pop things, shoot streamers and make noise and still brought a round of the most delicious caramel vodka shooters on the house. They rocked.

We had dim sum starters and sushi for mains.

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We had an uber rich chocolate cake from Charley’s Bakery which was so delicious.

I had a plethora of strawberry daiquiris seeing as I had a designated driver.

Norman has been in Kenya the last week so we have all been busy coping. The week flew by and I even had a dental visit on Friday which Lily drove me to.

The weather is freezing cold and the wind has been howling. We even had a bit of hail. Today I am wrapped up in a faux fur blankie and snuggled up with the puppies. I am glad I have nowhere to be except with the ones I love.

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