The Stench of Corruption

Wednesday was voting day for the local elections in South Africa. The election results were brilliant at highlighting that the ANC is losing their stronghold on the masses. This wasn’t the final figs shown below as the ANC did hold onto Joburg. I just couldn’t find a better graphic.


The EFF did brilliantly as newcomers to the political arena and I suspect will continue to rally support by those disallusioned with the ANC’s corruption and self-serving manner.

The DA maintained their hold on the Western Cape and widened their realm to include Nelson Mandela Bay and Tshwane. The irony of the much maligned Nkandla, home of our dubious president being taken by the IFP wasn’t lost on anyone. He should have paid back the money he embezzled, the people are watching you Zuma! 

The ANC kept the face of Zuma out of the public eye until the final ceremony. 

And then this happened.

In addition to embezzlement our president was accused of rape. This was 10 years ago. Currently 1 in every 3 women are victims of rape in South Africa. We have one of the highest rates of child rape in the world. With role models like our president is there any wonder about the prevalence of rape culture in SA?

The ANC are a farce. Their leader is bringing them shame and they all reek of the stench of corruption. 

It’s been a busy wobbly week with a public holiday in the middle. I’m now in the midst of a four day weekend and won’t go back to work until Wednesday.

We slept late today. Norm attempted to make this dish.

It looked so easy.


Never mind, he tried, it was edible (other than the raw bits of pork). The egg was perfect and it was tasty if not attractive.


We had a few nights of pork this week as we bought a big packet of chops and only Norm and I were home, so they stretched to 2 nights. We made crispy fondant sweet potato fried in butter til brown, and last night to go with I made a lovely sauce by frying sliced mushrooms in butter, then added a pack of baby spinach and once wilted added a container of double cream. I steamed some broccoli to round it off. 

Norm cooked the other chops and did sweet potato and roast veg. It’s lovely to have him cook for us when I work late.


We didn’t have a late night as I had been up early to the hairdresser. A friend sent a pic of me 5 years ago and it really highlighted how much hair I’ve lost.

“Now” is the one in the green top.


The fat kept my wrinkles pumped up too 🙈

Nevermind, my hair is growing back and there appears to be no grey in the new hair coming back in. However as the back is so long will I have an odd mullet when the new hair gets a bit longer?

After the hairdresser Norm and I popped into The Riverway Cafe for brunch.  I had the ‘Brekkie Salad’ which was Banting friendly. It was salad leaves, rosa tomatoes, avocado, Parmesan, crispy bacon and a soft boiled egg. Delicious.


I’m trying to be more adventurous and less predictable. Normally I go automatically for the Eggs Benedict. 

Afterwards I went round to the shops and Norm went home to drop Mzudumo home. I had a birthday present to sort for tomorrow.

I’m also broadening my foods to allow in some fresh fruits from the orange list. We grow our own beautiful passion fruits, aka grenadillas.


I had these in my morning full fat yogurt instead of my usual teaspoon of local honey.

We had take aways on Wednesday from Posticino and were terribly disappointed. It was divine last week but this week they burned my food and sent home the wrong food entirely for my daughter. You have to be consistent. They were apparently very busy but that shouldn’t mean you lower your standards.

We had take aways from Massimo on Friday and they were perfect as always. I had the John Wayne and the avo was so perfect, the beef neck cooked for 5 hours in the pizza oven.

I ate it before I could snap a pic. Oops. Take my word, it was stunning.

We had chicken wrapped in bacon on Tuesday evening when Norm cooked for us.


He did sprouts, mushrooms and mashed cauliflower to go with.

We have eaten well this week! My weight is maintaining and I have a day or two where I do have carbs, but still have no sugar or sugary foods or drinks.

I’ve got a busy few days off, tomorrow morning the girls go for breakfast, then Norm and I are visiting a few kitchen places. Tuesday I go for a defense class put on by the CCP and Wednesday I’m going to a Women’s Comedy event. 

I hope you have had a fab weekend. Xx

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A rose is still a rose, Mary

This week I had one of those Golden Thread enlightenment moments where I realized how all of my past lives relate to each other. It’s the Celtic thread at the root which ties them all together.

I detest Rosemary. I recently discovered that an old Appalachian folk tale involves planting Rosemary by the door to keep away witches. It certainly would have worked with me! When we bought this house it had several Rosemary bushes. I’ve dug them all up.

  
In researching this folklore I also read about the fact that Georgia, Tennessee, the Carolinas and Appalachia were settled by Irish and Scottish immigrants in the 1700s. Many of these were Gypsies and some of these Gypsies merged and married into the original Cherokee people who were residing in that area, the Tsalagi. The magic and folklore from the Celtic Gypsies and the Tsalagi blended into it’s own local branch of magic. A dialect and brew of old wives tales, folklore, colloquialisms and Magic still evident in some areas of the South.

My knowledge of my own blood line only goes back as far as a blend of Cherokee and generic Georgia/Tennessee hillbilly. I don’t know what country my family originally emigrated from, but I have always had an affinity for the Celts. My first husband is Welsh, my second husband is Scottish. My older children have welsh names. 

My heart was broken when Norm changed jobs and we left Northern Ireland, I loved it there. It felt like home. I didn’t see my future there long term however. I knew that wasn’t my destiny. It was just part of my soul history and therefore felt familiar.
Many years later when I had past life regression and remembered the wedding and marriage Norm and I had in the turn of this century, I had felt that the Estate I remembered my parents owned in that life was located in Ireland. 
I’ve had ancestors send me messages via multiple mediums that I’m a healer, that I’m not fulfilling my destiny as a healer. This was validated by the experiences from when I trained in sports therapy and I could feel things in my patients bodies that no one else felt. Small lesions in their tissue, they felt so large to me and I could clear these areas easily. I found it easy to get great results. My teacher could not feel the things I felt, but the patient validated my findings.

In the Appalachian areas the local healers were called Witch Doctors. There was no negative connotation to these roles or to their names. In Africa, where my heart feels most at home they also call their native healers Witch Doctors. 
We all come full circle, the Universe might just take a few cycles to get us there. 
It brought me comfort and a feeling that I glimpsed something deeply embedded in my destiny.

Last Sunday we had Roast Chicken for dinner. I made fondant sweet potatoes, and mushrooms and as I had a big container of zucchini, I both grilled some zucchini and also cooked some with sliced mushrooms and cream to make a sort of sauce. 

  

Monday morning the sunrise was so stunning! But as always this red sky heralded some frenetic weather. 

  

Monday night after work I fried some tender Beef Fillet steaks, mushrooms, steamed gem squash and broccoli with lemon. It was delicious. The steaks were marinated and room temperature when I cooked them and they were ever so tender.

  

Tuesday I got away from work on time as we had Book Club in Constantia at Mel’s house. Everyone met at my house and drove through in Dawn’s car to Mel’s. We had a lovely dinner of chicken, kale and couscous and as we celebrated Mel’s birthday I wasn’t sticking with Banting as I had a huge piece of rich chocolate cake. Oh well. YOLO. 

That night I was so hot as I was in boots and a sweater but we were having a Berg wind which means it is unnaturally hot. 

We were all wondering about one of the women who is missing book club at the moment due to her son’s extra murals lifts times conflicting. We had heard about a local woman who was rushed to hospital for picking mushrooms in the forest and mistakenly eating a toxic one. Her kids didn’t eat the mushrooms luckily and rushed to get her help. Our friend picks and eats forest mushrooms and we worried it was her but later I checked and found out that she is fine, I hope the real victim has no lasting damage. I will stick to mushrooms purchased at the shop! 

Recently there was news that many of the kidnapped girls and women held in the Sambisa forest were freed by Boko Haram but the news is all fuzzy, depending on which source it seems to differ. Some of the victims were part of the #BringBackOurGirls campaign in Nigeria. I can’t bear to think what these girls’ lives have been like. 

We had a bit of good news closer to home this week re Norm’s recent redundancy, he was paid his insolvency pay which we were not expecting due to the company’s bankruptcy, so that was a fab little bonus! 

Wednesday evening I made baked Chicken breasts with spinach, mushrooms and coconut cream and to go with it I made roast butternut. 
 

The sauce was delicious.   

Thursday I had another workshop in Bellville so Nomtha and I drove through to the northern suburbs. We finished up about 4 so I came home and started dinner. I made pork fillet with mushrooms in a creamy sauce. To go with I made mashed cauliflower and to break the monotony of beigeness I added some bright avocado. I can’t bear a monochromatic plate of food. The pork was so tender and delicious.

This past Friday afternoon we went to Easy Life Kitchens to see the kitchen designs they have done for us. They showed us a few options and we gave feedback. We then chose the style of door we liked, the paint finish and colours, the floor plan design and handles. They then put together a complete design and we go back to get an actual quote. 

This is an example of the style I chose, a simple Shaker style with this exact handle. I am having a quote of a buttermilky cream colour and a very, very pale greyish blue. 

 

It will be so wonderful to have a functional beautiful kitchen. I don’t have enough cupboards, I have very little counter space and exactly 2 plugs. 

Now that I am cooking I need a better space to create. 

Friday evening the girls were both home so we finally watched the movie ‘Sisters’ with Tina Fey and Amy Peohler. It was very funny, we loved it. It is recommended for sure. 

  
We ordered takeaway pizza and I again had a non-Banting night and a normal pizza. 

We had a nice family night in and I was asleep soon after the movie.

I got up late Saturday morning and Norm brought me a frothy milky latte in bed in one of my new cups.

  
I loves me some Elvis. Eventually I got up and made some zucchini fritters,

  

some colorful peppers, onions and tomatoes,

  
and it was all rather yummy.

  
Saturday was a pajama day, I slobbed about with Lily watching the crime channel and old movies. We watched Now Add Honey with Portia de Rossi. It was not completely 100% dreadful but it had some rather dreadful moments. Don’t bother with that one. We also watched Daddy’s Home with Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg. We enjoyed this but we are big Will fans.

  
That evening we tried the new fish and chip shop we couldn’t get into last week. Yes I had both chips and mushy peas. The fish was thick, fresh and moist. The chips crispy and hand cut. A few of the mushy peas were still a bit hard, but all in all I would rate it 9 out of 10, we will definitely go back it was a much needed gap in Hout Bay main strip. 

The local Oceana Group owned factory was pumping out it’s poisons again on Saturday. We live in the most beautiful place on earth and the corrupt government allows various corporate entities to destroy it.

The other thing in the local news which is annoying me is that the South African Broadcasting Company has made a decision recently that they will play 90% local South African music. This is so narrow minded to me. The main station, 5FM had already decreased in quality in my opinion with their line up changes. I had already started listening to other stations during the childish, misogynistic and juvenile Roger Goode show during my drive home so I will have to find more non-parastatal stations or download more music. I just usually rely on the radio to expose me to new music, but I want my horizon to be wider than just the narrow borders of South Africa! 
I love SA but it has its challenges, I met a fellow American while queuing for lunch on Friday, we both moved here from LA in the 90’s. We agreed that SA gets under your skin. We also agreed that if it was perfect it would be too crowded, you just have to take the good with the bad in life. It is what allows you to see the highs, the roller coaster ride of coming up out of those lows. 

Sunday Norm and I got up and out after I had a bit of time to play with the dogs.

  
We went to The Riverway Cafe for breakfast.

  
We had scrambled eggs, crispy bacon and avocado with Banting bread. It was cooked perfectly. 

  
After we ate,  the waitress who served my friend Retha and I last week came over and told me we had short payed our bill by R100! I was mortified that she had to pay that herself! I was so pleased she came over to tell me. Bless her heart. 

I did think my bill was very cheap last week and even mentioned it in my blog! Anyway, I reimbursed her and we had a laugh about it. She said she knew I’d be back and it would be resolved. It’s nice to be a local in my lovely little village.

The Pleasure Principle

I am a bit of a hedonist and I have always found a lot of pleasure in eating lovely tasting food and yet I’ve never really been someone who regularly cooked. I could, I just didn’t. Especially when working late. Now that we have changed our lives I get pleasure from cooking when I have time to do so at my leisure and sometimes food is eaten only for function and sustenance, not to bring pleasure. For example breakfast is plain full fat yogurt with seeds, a few nuts and a tsp. of honey. Not the pleasure of a muffin, but it’s only a meal.  

Lunch is usually a few bits from the previous night’s dinner or sometimes just a few slices of cheese, cucumber or olives. It’s just a few nibbles as the fat of the yogurt satiates my appetite. It’s completely a different way of eating. 

And it’s still slowly paying off, I am 13kgs down so far. That is 28.6 pounds in U.S. Mom. 😀

I do miss going to the tasting menus we frequently used to enjoy. I miss elegant food. My own food is never about appearance, it’s all about taste.

Tuesday I was told that I am being assigned to a new project which is based on the opposite side of town, miles away. It will add an extra half hour each way to my already long, stressful drive. 


Apparently Cape Town has the worst traffic in the country. 

   

So due to that bad news conversation on Tuesday night I was home late from work but as soon as I got in I got stuck into the pork roast that had been in the slow cooker for 24 hours. It just fell off the bone and I easily shredded it. I had been wanting to try these provolone cheese taco shells. I hadn’t had the cheese pre-sliced which was a big mistake.

  
I tried everything, even an electric carving knife in my attempts to get thin, even slices but I had no success. I baked til I thought it was ready.

  
I didn’t leave them all in the oven long enough though so some were a bit dodgy. But I managed to feed us. It tasted pretty good.

  

Wednesday I was also home late and couldn’t start cooking until I had driven Cordelia home so I quickly threw together our dinner. I fried some mushrooms in garlic butter and cut up the half beef fillet, put the steaks in a bowl and rubbed with olive oil, Worcestshire sauce, garlic and pepper to marinade. I stir fried some baby spinach and steamed some broccoli. 
  
Once the mushrooms were nicely brown, I added a container of cream to the hot pan of mushrooms and brown butter, as well as a tiny bit of grated cheddar and a spoon of Dijon mustard. It was delicious! The steaks from Woolies were soft like butter.

The next day I had the left over steak sliced thin with cheese, cucumber and olives.

Thursday this week was World Health Day. Coincidentally it was all about targeting the conquering of Diabetes. 

  
If I hadn’t got this weight off and instead had continued to gain more weight then diabetes could have been my destiny. I intend to go soon to have my blood pressure and cholesterol tested to see what impact my diet has had on either as both were elevated before my weight loss.

Traffic is back to being busy now that schools are all back and everyone has returned to work. Tuesday I decided I would leave work at 4 in order to be home to deal with all my responsibilities. I hit traffic quickly and by the time I got onto New Church it was chockablock and not moving.

When I got to Rafikis I saw the road up Table Mountain was blocked by a police car. Beyond was the portal to hell.

  
Allegedly the driver of the Dump Truck was unlicensed. BTW – What do you call that type of truck lying on its side? My Scottish hubby calls it a Tipper Truck. In the U.S. it’s a dump truck. But in the UK the rubbish is taken to the ‘tip’ and in the U.S. it’s called the ‘dump’. I get confused with terms between all the places I’ve lived. 

Anyway. This guy wiped out a street. And I turned down a road that just stopped and did not move for ages. An hour and a half since I left the office and I’m then heading back to Sea Point. 

I drove for 2 hours to get home. It’s normally a 20 minute journey if it is not rush hour. 

Thursday I left work at 4 and came home to meet the dog walker. The lad who normally walks Navajo was busy so his brother came. He had never met Nav and complained about how Nav pulls. That’s the reason we have to have a dog walker if Norm’s unavailable as he is too strong for most women.

Navajo that is, not Norm. He’s a sweety.

I was very industrious, I made some soup from a bag of butternut that needed to be cooked.

  
 I also made the sauce for Friday’s lasagna and when Caitlin came home she cut up the zucchini and layered them with the sauce, ricotta and mozzarella. 

For that evening’s dinner I took the remainder of my shredded pork shoulder and added puréed onion, garlic and peppers, a bit of tomato purée and a bit of stock and added Mexican spices, cumin, paprika, chili powder and chopped chili. 

I was determined to master those Pecorino taco shells. Especially as I bought a crap load of that cheese. So I tried again as we also needed to finish off that Mexican flavoured meat. I concentrated more on the thinness of the slices the second time, rather than the thickness. I made the bits form circular patterns on the baking paper and baked til golden. I removed the tray, let them cool a second or two then carefully slid them onto a cutting board covered in foil which I had balanced on its side.

  
And after they cooled they hardened into cute little taco shells!

  
They are small so 2-3 per portion per person. I block of cheese fed 3 of us. 

I left work at 3.30 on Friday as I had done my 40 hours and I needed to shop for that evening. I got salad, garlic bread and a chocolate dessert for the kids. For myself I popped into Ice Dream in Hout Bay village for Banting Italian gelato. 

  
They only had chocolate so I bought a few liters of that for R140 per liter. Ice cream is normally about R45-50 for 2 liters. But the xylitol makes the price extreme. But it’s so worth it.

Friday evening Josh drove down from George and Caitlin’s friend Wes came over and we had the lasagna for dinner and all played Cards Against Humanity which is always such a laugh.

If you do not know the game, it is so non- PC. You draw a black card and read the card out to the group, then each player gives you a card face down and you then shuffle. You read them all and then pick the one you like best.

   
 
It can be hilarious.

Saturday started off rather abysmally. I woke to the sound of Navajo heaving and bolted out of bed. He was ill on the landing. I opened the balcony door so he ran outside and vomited again. In the first hour after I got out of bed I cleaned up 2 large ponds of dog vomit, washed the outside patio (due to aforementioned dog vomit), washed down 2 bloody trays from defrosting raw dog food, cut up a raw chicken carcass and a pile of raw liver, cleaned the kitchen and washed both Friday night’s dishes and a Pomeranian ass.

I live such a glamorous life.

Mzudumo arrived bright and early and I had to organize his breakfast and dinner while he sorted out the last few weeks overgrowth. He was impressed with how much the grass had revived and grown since the bout of rain. It hasn’t completely revived but it is not as brown.

  
I thought it was winter but this week turned hot again! Saturday was 31 degrees. Lily and Josh had friends around and hung out at back. 
I enjoyed having a relaxed day and it’s great having the kids and their friends  around. Caitlin went to the theatre and then her friend Annie came back with her to watch a movie. 

Later we got a take away from Asia Bay in Hout Bay. It wasn’t very nice. Meh. We desperately need a good Chinese restaurant in HB. We have loads of sushi places. We all just chilled out Saturday, it’s a decent telly night with Graham Norton and Saturday Night Live both on. 

Last night I saw on Facebook that a local woman had committed suicide. I had met her once or twice but didn’t really know her personally at all. She was due to be married yesterday but her fiancé had also recently committed suicide and her heart was broken. Such a tragic story, now her children will have to survive without either of them to guide them. That is yet another hanging linked to someone we know, I went 50 years without hearing of a single hanging and now they occur so frequently, unlike an overdose it is  so final and full of despair. I do understand that desperation, I have been there. I hope that none of my loved ones ever feel that level of darkness. I wish protection over the souls of this woman’s 2 young children. My heart breaks for them. Their destiny is changed forever.

RIP C.

Today Josh drove back to George after he and Lily went through to collect the secondhand couch they bought in Stellenbosch. They tied it to the back of his truck and he Clampetted off up the motorway.

  
Today I did a big grocery shop for the week. I stopped for brekkie at Allegria Cafe at Mainstream Mall. 

  
Photo from their FB page.

I ordered a latte and the waitress disappeared briskly off and was gone for ages. She eventually brought it and apologized about how long it took. I ordered my usual choice of Eggs Benedict with bacon.

  
I asked for soft eggs and well done bacon. It arrived quite quickly, especially in comparison to the time it took to fetch the latte. I removed the sourdough bread and got stuck in, it was after 12 and I was ravenous. The eggs were almost well done, not at all liquid and the hollandaise needed more lemon. It was about a 3,5 in comparison to The Riverway Cafe, my current leader in the local Eggs Benedict Championships. 

  
I finished all my chores and Lily and I intend to relax for the rest of the day. It’s boiling hot and gorgeous outside. We are parked off in front of a fan and the Crime Channel. 

Happy days.

I hope you enjoy the remainder of your weekend. 

What Doesn’t Kill You

Our family have now been on the Banting diet for 6 weeks and there are many noticeable changes in our bodies. The obvious one for me being the 8.5-9kgs weight lost, but we all have noticed other things, loss of cellulite, stomach bloat going, our dry hair and skin is better, my joint pain went, the swelling in my hands and feet went away.

There were some unpleasant things such as intense thirst which luckily eventually went away, tiredness and headaches were an issue for a few days. But mostly, I felt great. 

On Sunday we went out for Valentines dinner and decided to enjoy the food and not follow Banting. 

We indeed enjoyed the food, it was amazing. But my body reacted rather viciously to the first instance of sugar it had encountered in 6 weeks. I had an upset tummy both that night as well as the following day, my feet and hands swelled and my joints hurt so badly. To me it seems like a reaction to something, chocolate or sugar or gluten or whatever that may be.

However we jumped back on the horse the following day, I cooked dinner but it was very late when finished and we ended up eating at almost 9pm.

I sliced up some aubergines and baked them on a tray in a single layer til mostly cooked. I chopped up a yellow pepper, lots of garlic and an onion and fried in butter. Once cooked I put it in the blender with a tin of tomato and puréed it. I fried a chopped up packet of bacon, then when brown added a chopped punnet of mushrooms, then added a bag of spinach and the puréed pepper mix. I let it simmer a bit then layered the tomato mix with the eggplant. I topped it all with mozzarella and baked.

  

It was delicious. If you want veggie just leave out the bacon and add coconut oil.

Tuesday I hosted our book club. There were 6 of us and I decided not to stress myself. I asked Norm to shop and I just carved up 3 woollies roasted chickens, sliced 2 loaves of fresh bread, steamed some broccoli and made a giant salad. That meant all I had to avoid was the bread and all I had to ‘cook’ was the broccoli.

It was Chris’s birthday month so we celebrated with an apple crumble and custard. Luckily I’m not a fan of either so I resisted. I didn’t even have a glass of wine, I stuck to water.

The next day I gave Cordelia the leftover breads, pie and custard.

All week I had the same breakfast of full fat yogurt with pumpkin and sunflower seeds, a few mixed nuts and cinnamon. My lunch the following day after book club was a bit of salad and chicken. I tend to take a small lunch.

Wednesday night I was home quite late and Norm just grabbed a takeaway from Spiro’s. We had grilled chicken kebabs, tzaziki, salad and grilled halloumi so bar the occasional bit of sauce on the chicken we were Banting compliant.

 I had my manicurist coming round to my house on Thursday after work so I left the office a bit early. I enjoy our sessions, gossiping, laughing and getting a pedicure in the comfort of my home with my dogs milling about. 

  

Luckily they went to the groomer on Thursday. They were filthy, stinky and tangled. No matter how often we groom them it’s not enough. I asked Norm to take their pics when they were clean as by the time I’m home they are a mess. 

He tried bless him. Norm’s animal pics are as bad as my food pics.

  

He said they kept moving.

After Vanessa left I just threw together some bits and pieces for dinner. I asked Norm to get pork chops but he was too busy (aka forgot). I made my friend Guy’s stuffed gem squash recipe. I steamed some gem squash, cut them in half and scooped out the seeds, then put the squash and full fat cream cheese into the blender til smooth, then added chopped crispy grilled bacon and stuffed the empty shells with the mixture topped it with cheese and popped them in the oven. I made a huge pan of red cabbage, frying it in butter and lots of balsamic vinegar and then putting a bit of boiling water over to make sure it cooked through. 

Friday morning I woke to a fine drizzly mist of rain. And lots of clouds.

  

We had our usual Friday Mexican salad for lunch and we got quite wet walking over town to the Icon building. The rain is badly needed, the ground and plants are struggling. 

That night Lily had her friend Talia over so we rented Pan and ordered pizza. Norm and I got Banting bases but the girls got normal bases. I just ordered cheese and tomato and jalapeño and at home I fried onions, chorizo & green olives and then popped it all in the oven as the cauliflower bases don’t hold the heat for the journey home.

It was a lovely family night in, the cooler misty weather meant snuggling under blankets.

Saturday I had no commitments and opted for a pajama day. We watched a few movies, messed about on our iPads and Norm worked.

Pixie and I played frisbee.

  

I made us a Banting brunch of chorizo, onion and cheese omelettes with fried tomatoes. The sky was overcast all day, misty and occasionally a bit of rain,

Lily had to open a new bank account and while out she popped into Pep Stores and got the cutest fake Converse for me. Only R99!

  

  

Norm popped down to the shops and got in some things for dinner. I fried a mix of red and green cabbage. I cut up 3 pork fillets into bite size chunks and sliced up a huge punnet of mushrooms and fried them both in butter. I fried an onion and an orange pepper in a separate pan and once cooked I popped them in the blender with a container of double thick cream and paprika and liquidized. I then added to the browned pork and mushrooms. I left it to simmer for 15 minutes. I just stir fried the cauliflower rice and served it all with plenty of the creamy sauce.

  

Trust me it was a million times better than it looks. 

Today we got up about 9 and had a slow morning. We eventually made it to our fave venue The Riverway Cafe for a late breakfast. 

  

I love the charming decor such old world charm!

  

I had the Eggs Benedict with Banting bread.

  

Norm had scrambled egg & Banting toast.

  

After we finished eating we did a run round Pic n Pay and a full shop at Woolworths. We were going to the harbour as I wanted to get Banting pizza bases at the market and some fish to cook on the grill at the fishmonger but the traffic was queued back for miles! We decided to give it a miss and headed home.

It’s a gorgeous day today and I didn’t want to spend it in traffic.

  

Tonight I’m going to make a lasagna for tomorrow’s dinner and a pork roast in my slow cooker for tonight. I’m really enjoying my lazy weekend. Next week is going to be busy.

I’m attending the Xtraordinary Women Networking Awards Gala Event on Tuesday. It’s formal and I hope that now I’ve lost weight I will fit nicely into one of my existing dresses. I certainly have no chance to shop. 

  

The following night I see David to have my body re activation session.  Keeping working on clearance of my deeper issues

I’m also very excited about going to Cape Farmhouse next Saturday as we are going to see several very funky local bands.

  
It should be brilliant! 

I hope you have all had a great weekend and I hope your week is full of fun.

Pixie’s Adventure

It seems Summer may properly be on the way, or that Spring has properly sprung? Whatever is happening I’m loving the warmth & sunshine! 

  
All of the greenery has flourished, the roadsides and gardens blooming. It’s been fabulous to go to work in bright light and come home with a few hours of sunlight remaining.  I had been waking in the dark and rushing home before complete darkness hit each night. 

Caitlin and I were keeping us all meat free early this week, we made fresh veggie burgers from chickpeas, coriander, sweet corn, an egg and cumin. We floured and fried them in coconut oil until crispy and brown. We bought fresh rolls from our local Oakhurst Kwikspar which has an amazing wee bakery, we have their savory and their sweet pies often. We did the shopping for our entire dinner from there! 

Caitlin made a tzaziki from the Greek yogurt and cucumber we picked up and I made fresh salsa from a yellow pepper, tomato, red onion and fresh cilantro. I made crispy fried potatoes, pepper and onions and we topped the burgers with slabs of fresh avocado and cheese, a creamy Camembert for Norm and the girls and a sharp pungent cheddar for me. 

 
Caitlin went for the no bread option. 
  
Norman had also picked up Malva pudding and custard so we had that for afters and we watched a movie, the last in the series of Night at the Museum films, it is sad to see Robin Williams making us all laugh and now knowing with hindsight just how broken he was. I think of his poor children left to live with that burden. It’s so heartbreaking. 

I can’t discuss the movie itself as I mostly snoozed. As usual. 

I never follow recipes, I just wing it. Hence I’m crap at instructions and used 2 tins chickpeas instead of one, and a whole tin of corn instead of half so we had a lot of mixture left so the next night we went Mediterranean! 

Again, that Spar sorted me with the extras I needed. I picked up some small auberines (eggplants to you Yanks 😉). I also got pita bread and a few other bits and pieces to feed us for a few breakfasts and lunches. 

I cut the aubergines in half and baked them for a bit then topped with crumbled feta and popped them back in the oven to melt the cheese.

 
Caitlin rolled up the chickpea mixture and we covered the balls in flour and deep fried them. We toasted the pitas and filled them with tzaziki, salsa, onion and feta. It was so yummy! 

Wednesday I hadn’t prepared for dinner and got home late so I chucked in the free arriabita sauce I received in one of my Girl Geek Dinner event goody bags and chucked in some crispy grilled bacon and served with pasta. It was edible and it was cheap! Sometime a girl just has to go for function, without the frills. One can’t always live the caviar lifestyle. (Any local Hout Bay readers will get the tongue in cheek jab I’ve made.) What a load of bollocks exists on the Internet. 

Thursday afternoon I had a meeting in the northern suburbs which finished after 430pm. The only benefit of sitting in traffic in Cape Town is the views. You are driving parallel to Table Mountain.

  
As I only got back to Hout Bay at 6.30 we decided to get take aways. Lily and Norm had cassarechio ravioli and Caitlin and I had pizza from Mimmi To Go. I opted for a half and half. I got half Salame – tomato, mozzarella, salame, mushrooms, olives and half Manuel – olive oil, mozzarella, cooked Parma ham, avocado, basil. 

As always it was divine, I so love their tomato sauce, you so seldom taste it on a South African pizza but it is a thick base for the slabs of proper creamy mozzarella on a Massimo pizza. 

  
Luckily after 2 hours in traffic munching that pizza and vegging out with my dogs and family saved my day. And possibly me from death row if anyone crossed me. 

  
I finally remembered to email the doggy Chiropractor David Black that I had Read about on a random blog. I was delighted when he rang me on my way home and we made an appointment for the next day to take Pixie to see him. 

Friday evening I finished about 4ish and headed home. Caitlin was out and Norm and I fancied a curry. We are so blessed to finally have a decent take away since Indian Oven opened in the bay. We got our usual, a portion of saag aloo with soft potato cooked in creamy spinach and a buttery garlic naan bread to share, I had prawn curry and Norm the chicken korma. It is so divine.

As Lily only eats mine or her mom in law’s curry she asked for a chicken chow mein from K1 sushi. Norm came home ready to scream as they were so disorganized it took 3 attempts to pay. Luckily their food is so good you forgive their idiocy. But they will drown in season if only 1 dude can work the bloody card machine. FFS.

Saturday Lily and I got up and had a lazy morning and then scooped up Pixie to head around the mountain to Noordhoek. The house is in San Michel and love this area and if I didn’t have to trundle into the city every day would love to live here.  Such stunning views.

 

We were taken in promptly at 12 and Pixie looked so anxious. She kept giving me the side eye on the drive there.

  

But  she wasn’t stressed once she saw David was only going to rub gel on her with an ultrasound device she relaxed and enjoyed the attention. He thinks a few treatments will help with the spasms. Bless her. She struggles lifting her lower body and falls over at the slightest touch since her accident.
We brought her home and headed to The Riverway Cafe for lunch as we were starving. We grabbed a table outside and ordered their delicious lemonade.
   
 
How cute are those bottles? For lunch we each had the special and we shared a portion of their homemade chips. It was fresh prawns wrapped in bacon and grilled and served with warm bread and salad.

  
We thought the riverbank looked lovely.  All the wildflowers are blooming.

  
We finished up and headed to Pep Stores to shop for Operation Shoebox the charity we support every year. We bought almost all of it at the one stop! This year we chose a 3 month old girl and a 6 year old girl. 

  
We got lots of goodies and some clothes, a soft, soft stuffed animal for the baby and 2 Polly pocket sets for the 6 year old as they fit easily in the confines of a shoebox. I love that we make a child happy who might otherwise have nothing for the holidays.

We were so efficient we decided to go and hit the spar again just as the rugby was starting so there were no crowds. We got a filet, potatoes, mushrooms, a bag of spinach and an avo.

We settled in and watched the South Africa and Wales game and then Lily and I made hassle back potatoes, mushrooms fried in garlic and butter, a spinach salad and a yummy sauce. We had blue cheese dressing which was perfect. The steak melted in your mouth and the potatoes were nice and crispy.

  
We had brought home a lemon meringue pie from spar. It was so creamy and tart. Perfect for a warm evening. We rented the new Jurrassic Park but of course I fell asleep. 

Tonight I’m going to roast the other fillet half in the oven but I’m enjoying having nowhere to rush off to. I’m off now to see what Norm is up to, I saw him wandering off with a paintbrush.

Enjoy your weekend all.

Arnold & Ruby

We had such a productive day. Mzudomo arrived bright and early and while he was busy in the garden with great assistance from the Pomeranians, we set off to Hout Bay to hit the shops. I’m just so fed up with takeaways so we vowed to be more organized and do a weekly shop.

Before we did our shop we popped into The Riverway Cafe for a cappuccino and some breakfast.  

  
It was a stunning sunny winter day so we sat outside. 

 
  
I ordered the Old Arnold, this is Eggs Benedict and I chose to have mine with crispy bacon.

  
 
The Hollandaise was not too lemony, it was very light. The muffin was nicely crispy and the bacon was cooked perfectly. My egg was beautifully soft. I really enjoyed it. It was R65.

We shopped at Pic and Pay and as usual had no menu plan, I just selected what looked nice. 

We brought home all of the shopping and packed it away, then we headed over to Main Road to try and find a unit for our bedroom. We need it to put the Telly on and Norm needs some storage space for his office gubbins. 

We were so lucky that the very first place we stopped was Ruby’s Cottage in Bergvleit. They have a warehouse of un-refinished pieces and a showroom of beautiful pieces that have been beautifully restored. We wanted a piece we could refurbish and found the perfect thing.

  

We will sand it back to the raw wood and then stain it, we will try to get it a similar colour to our bed. We will get new hardware and it will be unrecognizable. 

And now I will get my dressing table back as the TV is taking up that space. 

Tonight we just decided to relax at home. For dinner I made a rather yummy pot of chili con carne. To go with it I made crispy potato wedges. We topped it with cheese and sour cream.

Tomorrow is National Woman’s Day so I’m going to lunch with Retha. It’s a long weekend in SA and I will enjoy every moment of it! 

Last Sunday we attended the Harry Peacock and Friends Jazz Event at Spiro’s.

  

We had a lovely day, and it was spent with lovely people.

  

We ordered lunch while we enjoyed the music. I had Spiro’s Platter for One, on at R135.00 which contained 2 garlicky Tiger prawns, 6 mussels in a creamy lemony sauce,  fried calamari, served with fat homemade chips.

  
Norman had a beef burger. It came with a gorgeous mushroom sauce and fat chips. 

  
Our friend Mel had the calamari salad.

  
Cyril had the peri-peri chicken livers.

We had a nice relaxing day and on our way home we drove along the beachfront.

  
The seaweed was a bit out of control, but it is still so stunning and I feel so blessed to live here.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend, wherever you are! 

Back In Black

One of the few advantages of so much load shedding is that it gives me a legit excuse to go out for dinner. Not that I’ve ever needed an excuse, but still, it’s nice to be legit. 

We are in the middle of being load shed as I write this, at least WordPress is still available. We are without power from 10.00 to 12.30. The daytime outages are not so bad, unless you have a gardener in and an electric lawnmower and strimmer as we do, but he can just do the beds. Our garden is small but it is over full of plants and the trees badly need trimming. We gave Mzudumo that direction when we first moved in, but he decimated the vines and ground cover and bushes so I would rather get a landscaper in to do a proper cull for the winter. 

It is still a lovely view, that’s the back of Table Mountain in the distance.

  

And that’s Navajo our Swiss Shepherd contributing to the demise of my grass.

I do love him, but owning him is a bit of a culture shock for us Pomeranian People.

This is Prince Panda. My shadow who sleeps on my pillow.

  

And our old girl Pixie, the matriarch of the pack, just chillin’ by the pool.

  
Pixie and Mzudomo are great buddies, he tosses her up in the air and cuddles her and their ritual is that on arrival he settles down and has a smoke and a cup of coffee and grooms Pixie. We never asked it to be part of his tasks, he asked us for a brush and ever since they have a communal adoration session accompanied by grooming. It’s too sweet. 

As you can see, there is quite a size difference between my boys. 

  
We bought Navajo to train as a protection dog after our armed invasion, but his training has been rather sporadic. He is not keen on new people, he is very cautious and sometimes even aggressive. But with the family he thinks he is another Pomeranian and wants to sit on you and cuddle. He’s a beautiful boy. 

Navajo has unfortunately taken a strong dislike to Mzudomo. We have to keep him inside as he goes insane if Mzudumo comes near the house. Yesterday Mzudumo knocked on the door into the pantry from the garage to get car detergent and Nav lunged at him so I grabbed his collar just to pull him back, thinking he is bluffing and all bark and snarling teeth like always. But when Mzudumo turned to walk away Nav leaped past me and nipped Mzudumo on the back of his leg. He barely broke skin and Mzudumo didn’t even feel it, but still it is worrying in one regard and brilliant in another. 

Bad as we must keep him locked up when Mzudumo is here to keep him from biting again, but great as it confirms I can count on Nav defending me should the need arise. 

Saturday morning Norm took Caitlin to the airport. She flew to George for a long weekend to see her Dad and brother and Amber. Some of their other girlfriends are also in town so they are having a get together. 

Afterwards Norm came to fetch me and we went for brunch at The Riverway Cafe.

We were starving and asked if they would still serve breakfast and when given the thumbs up, ordered The Kitchen Sink which consists of 2 eggs, bacon, a beef and coriander sausage, fried mushrooms, beans, fried rosa tomatoes,toast. Everything except the kitchen sink. 

It was beautifully presented. Love the heart shaped cutting board.

   
 

But the details are always special with anything at Riverway. The array of stunning baked goods. Even when photo bombed by sexy Spiro husband to the owner, the lovely Julie. 

  

   

 The sugar bowl looks like you may have inherited it from your late Aunt Agatha. A proper heirloom. 

I could barely put a dint into all that food. I gave Norm a lot of it and I just had the toast eggs and bacon with a bite or 2 of each side. It was delicious.
We had a few errands to run, I needed my new glasses adjusted and we needed to go to the chemist and do a food shop. I bought a couple of pairs of leggings as boot weather is just starting and I love boots and big baggy tops. 

We came home and relaxed a bit and spent the afternoon doing bits and pieces until the electricity shut off at 18.00 but luckily the light was just fading and we had plenty of candles as that was the thing on my list which I forgot 😦 

The electricity was to be off until 20.30 so we decided to go out and get dinner. I had to get ready by candlelight so who knows how I looked. I still don’t. 

We headed to Pescarne as we heard they have a generator and I knew they had this special on.

  

It was nicely lit up which was so welcoming with the majority of the village in pitch blackness. We saw some friends outside eating and had a quick chat then we were seated sipping cocktails. 

I ordered the Queen Prawns special, 1kg at R199.

  
Regular readers will know that my only issue was the lack of lemon butter so I was thrilled that they had changed from the sharp dips they served the prawns with last visit and actually drenched it in a lemony butter which was divine! Great move, I hope they keep that up. Again I gave my chips to Norm and just focussed on the prawns but still couldn’t quite finish them. But I gave it a good go. 

Norm had a 350 gram fillet with chips.

  
 We really enjoyed it all and both of us had a delicious meal. 

Lily and Josh got home late last night and today they have driven back to George. We are waiting on the electricity to come on so we can watch a movie or something, I am still in my pajamas. It’s going to be a laid back mellow one. I hope you enjoyed yours.