This week’s bits and bobs

24 June , 2019

So the longest night came and went, and in its wake the first proper cold front of the winter that is supposedly halfway over already.

Our house has been hit by the plague. Nicola breezed through it, and has just a slight cough left. Andy looks like he’s over the worst of it too. It’s hit me HARD. I’ve been sick as a dog for about a week now, and it doesn’t really look like it’s letting up. It might have let me go somewhat I suppose, if I took a day or two to spend some quality time with my duvet instead of what I am actually doing…but it’s a bit out of my hands so I’m soldiering on with my red nose and my spectacular cough.

I feel like shit, and very sorry for myself….haha. It’s funny, cause it’s true.

So, if you just peeped out from under your rock you might not have heard yet. The entire Johannesburg will have it’s water disrupted this week, allegedly for 54 hours. Good times! We have heard that citizens are being assured the reservoirs are full to capacity and no one should stockpile any water, but we’ve heard a great many things from government and we’re obviously putting emergency plans into action of our own. In a somewhat unrelated situation, in our valley it has taken them 6 years to bury a pipe so far, and they’re still not done. We’re not taking any chances and we don’t believe the 54 hour fairy tale at all.

We didn’t do massive stockpiling to be honest. We have about 20 liters of water ready for coffee and drinking, and about 60 liters for toilet flushing, and then another 80 liters of water for fish tank top ups if needed. We’re fortunate that my folks have a borehole and that my dad has made provision for just such an occurrence, so we’re doing shower parades at their place all week as our landlord has preemptively switched off all the geysers so that they don’t burn out when the water dries up. We can also top up all our own reservoirs if the 54 hour thing turns out to be a complete myth like we suspect.

Buckle up kids, let’s see how this plays out.

And now, for some pics of my two over the weekend. We popped in to Thunder Gun on Saturday to say bye to Andy’s favourite server who is retiring. Sadly the kitchen was closed when we did our rounds, Nicola has been dying to try out their famous ribs. Oh well, next time maybe…

We also had to do some emergency winter wardrobe additions. This pink terrorist is growing like a weed! Jeans we bought in April are already looking a bit short to see out the winter.

I can’t complain really. At the same age I grew 18cm in one year, and then never again after that except sideways. πŸ˜‰ Maybe she’ll do something similar? We are already buying clothes for her in the ladies section and she’s 9, so it looks like it might end up that way.


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19 June , 2019

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19 June , 2019


I asked the barman to surprise me, and he surprised me with a pink gin of note! It looked a bit like a fish bowl and went straight to my head.

I’m such a big drinker it takes me about 4 months to work my way through a bottle of wine, but it was the big launch of the project I had worked my butt off on for the last few weeks and a pink drink was definitely in order.

I think it went very well (many things went sideways, but we dealt with them). Project members are still sending each other virtual back pats by email, and it’s been almost a week now. πŸ˜‰


Polka-rito. She really does sleep more than the average house cat and she is not a fan of winter.


Nicola bought a blue shrimp for her tank, meet Dave…he is actually very cute! Can’t wait for him to get a bit bigger so that I don’t have to spend so much time looking for him and wondering if one of the guppies got him as a snack.


First Father’s Day for my two December babies.

Let’s just say that these two have very different ideas about what Father’s Day means. Not worried though, they’ll find a middle ground.


Lots of loves…


My Brother-bear, Sister-in-law and Cuzzy-wuzzy…


My Dad and Mom…


And even I was there. πŸ˜‰

If it looks like my eyes are half closed, it’s not an optical illusion. I’ve managed to pick up a fluish thing and I feel horrendous. I am indeed squinting at the world through swollen itchy eyes.


Frozen toes and green things, and lasagna

11 June , 2019

Lucky me, I got an unexpected long weekend! Justin doesn’t let us work on his religious holidays, so I got a bonus day off Yesterday. We kicked off our weekend with some Challa, also from Justin, in the car on the way home.

It was yumm…still hot from the oven…and another great surprise. Nicola has informed us that other than my home made raisin bread, this is now her most favourite bread.


BIG Harry Potter fan here. Nicola has now finished reading all 7 of the books! She’s wrapping it up with Cursed Child. And she’s already eyeing the bookshelf to see what she can get into next.


On Saturday Andy and Nicola went to play golf with my brother and my dad at the Mashie course. I went along to take a few photos and to get my fill of green things.

Also, to be Nicola’s getaway driver when she inevitably got tired of walking. It worked out well. πŸ˜‰


It was a little bit chilly when we started.


Haha. my brother in this get up with the flag sort if reminded me of someone summitting Mount Everest or the likes.


The men.

It was very entertaining to me to see all the ritual that goes into this game. πŸ˜‰


I absolutely love this photo of Andy and Nicola walking together. So darned cute!


Saturday afternoon we went to visit Simma and her family. She asked me aaaages ago if we could come through and if I would make my lasagne for everyone if she made the pasta.

I haven’t made lasagna in about 10 or 11 years, haha! But I said yes, and Saturday was D-day or L-day however you wanted to look at it.

I made two huge pans and not a crumb was left over. Could have probably made double and it would still have all been eaten. Andy says I should start cooking dinner now, and why in a year has he never tasted the lasagna? I had to remind him that we don’t have an oven…


Kitchen table kuiers…


The girls decided to remodel a peach tree into a tree house. I’m actually sorry that I didn’t get a photo of that, it was a bit extreme!

How was your week?


This past week, and a story about a green budgie

4 June , 2019

Winter is here, sort of. Only in the mornings really. We’re still hitting 20’C plus during the day. I feel like maybe I’ve said this before, but in a few short weeks on the 21st it will be the longest night! Theoretically, after that it’s supposed to be downhill to spring.

Of course the cold usually only comes after that and doesn’t worry too much about when we think it should be spring.


Friday night we decided on a board games night with Nicola. She picked a name out of a hat and we went with it. Andy kicked our asses! I got held up in jail for the first three rounds and by the time I got out I was faaaaaaar behind in property acquisitions!

This might be the first time ever that Nicola has not cheated at Monopoly, hahaha!


Saturday was monthly grocery shopping day. I dread it each month.

Food in general has become insanely expensive, so we were delighted a month or so ago when Simone’told us about EconoFoods in Honeydew. Seriously, if you’re anywhere close to this go check it out, you’ll love it forever. Opposite them is Honeydew Fruit and Veg, and what EconoFoods is to meat and cheese, they are to fresh fruit and vegetables.

We filled up the entire boot for just over R1000, and having tried it last month as well I can say with certainty that the quality is good, it’s just packed for catering purposes.

The three little bags of PnP goods (toiletries, coffee etc) cost more than the rest of the boot, believe it or not.


My dad gave us some sampler cheese made by a colleague of his. He’s been punting yogurt for a couple of months now, which is divine so we were curious about the cheese. A real treat!


Now, about that budgie…

The budgie story started a couple of years ago, with my mom’s birthday. She didn’t want to say what she’d like for her birthday,Β  so I asked Nicola what she thought Ouma might want. She said a budgie!

My mom very definitely did not want a budgie…

So now, when my folks don’t want to say what they’d like I always threaten them with budgies, and sometimes I start sending them pics of budgies on whatsapp a couple of weeks in advance for extra measure.

This year, my dad got a green budgie for his birthday.

He’s retiring at the end of June from the company where he’s worked his entire life. Their rules, not his choice. And after experiencing how much healthier he feels on the CBD oil, which was originally intended to help my mom with her ears (which she has since stopped taking, and refuses to start again), he has now become an agent for the oil.

My dad is on a roll with this. Last year he babied a plant, harvested this year and is busy producing his own oil as well, and he’s already sold to a few health shops for the company where he works now.

So we decided to get him a few varieties of seeds to try his hand at. These are specifically high CBD content, and a few E-books on how to get the most out of your crop.

In a million years I would never have guessed that my dad would be growing his own cannabis and selling CBD oil, but here we are. And honestly, you can actually see how much better he’s doing now that he’s using the oil! He’s never in pain anymore, he sleeps and he’s more energetic than he’s been in probably 20 years.

I’m also trying the oil now. It’s less than a week into this, but I’ll let you know how it goes. Apparently it’s a bit like homeopathic meds though, you only start seeing the results after a month or two.

What I’m hoping to get out of this is to not feel tired all the time, and just generally to feel a bit more well. I’ve been hit by one after another mysterious illness lately, and I think I could just do with a proper reboot of my immune system. I am feeling a whole lot more chill and less anxious than last week this time.


Birthday boy with all his budgies…


Oh…and I found this stashed next to our front door at home. Eeeuw!

Do you think someone is trying to witch our house? There is no natural way that I’m aware of for a lizard to lose a foot with such a straight cut, have it burnt…and then if the lizard didn’t do it himself, why would someone go through the effort of maiming an animal like this to stash this foot next to our front door?

I don’t like it.

Anyhoo, it’s haunting the bin now. Yuck.


Words of wisdom – Home Affairs Edition

29 May , 2019

Yesterday, Spiggy and I got to spend some quality time at Home Affairs. I took a day’s leave to attend a friend’s funeral, and we decided to “pop” in while we had a bit of time to see if our marriage has been registered at last. There is A BOAT LOAD of paperwork that’s all in limbo waiting for this little thing to happen.

Happy days! It finally was registered! We got to stand in many many queues and shared laughs with many many people also enjoying the day out in the stuffy Births, Deaths and Marriages waiting line.

One very worked up lady was trying to get some sort of proof that she was now classified as a widow, 19 months after her husband passed away. Her pension payments are quite dependent on it. Anyhoo, once she realised that Andy was German she was delighted and rattled off quite a bit at a super fast pace. I can’t speak it (yet), but I can understand a fair amount (when people aren’t going at a mile a minute – then I only catch keywords here and there).

She was at some point talking about Germany and she said (I double checked this with Andy of course): Es gibt kein schlechtes wetter nur unangemessenes bekleidungsangebot, which means There is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.

I like this. A lot.

I think it can be applied to many things other than the weather too. Words to live by really.


Wedding Photos and Videos

23 May , 2019

Well, we certainly have quite a few…

We received lots from our guests and I’ve shown you my favourites from the first batch already. We also received some from Tiaan taken with his drone, which is something different and very special – thanks Tiaan! (I haven’t shown you those yet)

And then we received the official wedding photos from our photographer. It’s a bit of a mixed bag.

Keeping in mind that we didn’t do the classic white lace and suits thing the shots he got are not bad. Some of them we really love actually, but the editing – oh my hat! Nicola described it as, “Why do we all look like we come from the Super Mario Bros game?” and she’s not wrong. Even so, we laughed and “oohed” and “aahed” when we got to see the photos he took under the willows.

He got a “teeny” bit enthusiastic with the colour filters on whatever he used for editing and on the red we practically become light bulbs.Β We’ve asked for the raw images and we’ll edit them ourselves. This is taking forever though, and I want to show you NOW! So I’ve taken the ones I like and just toned them down a bit to protect your retinas. When we’re done with our version of it I’ll show you again, maybe. πŸ˜‰ I have just about run out of free space on WordPress – can you believe it?! Okay, it did only take 12 or 13 years, but still. Guess I have to decide if I want to upgrade to a domain or open another free one with a new name? Or cull some history?

We also have a few video clips. The sound isn’t great but you can get a general idea of how it went, and you can more or less hear Alison who married us. πŸ˜€ She was hilarious! Turn up as loud as you can and maybe approach with head phones.

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Drone footage

Wedding ceremony video

I couldn’t get the video compressed to a size where I could upload anywhere. Here’s a google drive link. Be warned it’s about 20 minutes long – let me know if it works for you. πŸ˜‰

Our vows:

(Both) “I take you to be my partner in life, I promise above all else to live in truth with you and to communicate fully and fearlessly, I give you my hand and my heart as a sanctuary of warmth and peace and pledge my love, devotion, faith and honour as I join my life to yours.”

(Andy) “And I promise to unclog the tub, even though you are the only one of us with long hair.”

(Louisa) “And I promise to turn on the air conditioning when you are hot, even if I am totally freezing.”