Friday, 20 July 2012

we bought a house and other blessings

Wooooohooooo!!!


In a series of crazy and only God-conspired events the Hub and I have a house. Our very own house, with a bond and everything. It's in a suburb closer to the sea than where we live now (yes!). The decision to buy was hurried along by the fact that we didn't want to land up like the people in this article - hint: commuting for 6 hours. No jokes.


This is one quarter of our garden...could it be any more tranquil?




And now all that remains (besides packing, moving, unpacking, painting, giggling, clapping and general merriness) is for me to get cracking on Pinterest!

friends

I was reading this article on making friends as you get older (OK so I'm not quite 30 yet, but I'm feeling grown up since we BOUGHT A HOUSE - more on that later)...

Alex (hubby of the fabulous Joanna Goddard), who wrote the article, is very realistic about friendships and how difficult it can be to keep them going. Having lived in 4 different cities in 8 years, I can attest to that.

One of my favourite people, the talented Tam, lives in another country; my best school friend lives in London (I haven't seen her in 5 years!) and most of my current friends I've known for approximately 15 minutes/since moving to the coast. My friendships are rather a mess to an outsider, and perhaps lacking, yet I find it difficult to include anyone else. We have been trying to get together with our could-be friends J and C for 5 months to no avail. Maybe I've reached friend saturation point?



Or maybe, as Alex suggests, I'm just getting old...

In my not so humble opinion, whether you see someone once every 5 days or 5 months or 5 years...the important thing is the sincerity of the friendship. If I see Kirst (the school friend) again tomorrow it will be like she never left. And Tam and I just click, no matter where we are in life or where we meet. And my new friends are so wonderful I could call them in any situation and they would be there for me. Theoretically, they don't even know me!

I am constantly amazed at how life changes over time. We are at the Get married-buy a house-maybe think about a kid Stage and it is becoming increasingly difficult to stay close to our friends who are still in the Single and Loving it Stage (and there are many). For now, I am willing to give old and new friendships a chance; and try not to be as calculating about it as Ms. Degliantoni and her "extremely efficient approach" to friendship. {if you don't know who I'm talking about, read the article!!}


Weren't they just the best kind of friends...?

Sunday, 15 July 2012

6 months!!!

And 60 years to go....

Just kidding! Yesterday was our 6 month anniversary, and the hubby spoilt me rotten. Being married has been the greatest adventure and I feel so blessed.

We went to the Botanical Gardens for a picnic lunch in the most amazing sunny weather (in the middle of July can you believe it was 29 degrees!) and I couldn't believe this oasis exists in the middle of the bustling city. I highly recommend, no matter where you live, go and be a tourist in your own city. You will be surprised at the gems you can find...





Sunday, 1 July 2012

perfect is just unnecessary

Unless you're an accountant and the jobs not done until everything is in neat rows and balances out...well...perfectly!


I started thinking about perfection because of my friend Tam's blog post. I think this is a struggle the modern woman battles on a daily basis. Perfectly straightened hair, perfectly straight eyeliner, perfectly clean pants (this is way harder when you have two muddy puppies who love to say bye in the morning by jumping into the car), work perfectly under control, friendships perfectly satisfied. 


But as Nicky says "it's just not possible."


So for today, it's a Sunday and I'm still in my (muddy, no need to explain why!) pink jamies. I ate marmite on toast for breakfast and picked up my home laptop for the first time in weeks. Pinterest keeps crashing, and my hubby has gone mountain biking with my brother-in-law. I shall be imperfectly clean and imperfectly healthy and lie in bed writing imperfect blog posts....because sometimes imperfect equals happiness.




PS: This was one of life's perfect moments, Small the cat thought she would snuggle up to Chloe in her bed...she did not anticipate Howie's 15kg bulk descending on her as well. The look on her face!



seafoam green mint

Small confession: I had to google the difference between seafoam green and mint.

And then I got sidetracked looking at all the beautiful images that came up, and this gorgeous blog post...but as it turns out, the common opinion is that seafoam green is a type of mint. Hallelujah I am not a retard, these things are confusing for everyone!


It's such a soothing colour don't you think?



Kitchenaid mixer
Mint candle teacups
Toms wedges
essie mint candy apple polish
skinnies
rose earrings

Monday, 11 June 2012

Our wedding: Honeymoon Part 2

Our third stop was at Storms River Mouth. Anything government run in South Africa usually gets a bad rap (and for good reason), but the Parks along the Garden Route are a wonderful exception. Our chalet had a big screen TV, spa bath and giant white bed. Not to mention the resident seagull, dassie family and buck!

     


Unfortunately, I was quite ill for two days of our stay, but luckily the weather was rainy and cold so I didn’t feel too bad sitting on the patio reading the days away with my new hubby. We did manage a hike to another panoramic view of the coastline though, and found such pretty fynbos.


 
 

Lastly we trekked back inland to Addo Elephant Park. And were chased on the first day by a herd of ellies, dust flying and much scraping of gears to reverse our car! We stayed in another Parks chalet, and it was gorgeous. Tucked away in the bush, our only company was an overly friendly dikkop and a lot of elephant poo.


   

We did an evening game drive and saw some entertaining hyenas, massive buffalo and of course, thundering ellies. Some sadness though, as we were not allowed to track rhino, due to their current poaching crisis, which breaks my heart.

       

And finally we headed back to East London and were surprised by the pile of envelopes on our bed (remember how I was politely against gift registry's?). Our wonderful honeymoon was over, but the adventure was just beginning...



Friday, 8 June 2012

Our wedding: Honeymoon Part 1

When planning our honeymoon we decided we needed a bit of adventure, as lovely as it is to be toes up on the warm sand for two weeks. I’m so excited to show you all of our pictures (finally! It’s been what… 4 months?), hopefully they will do justice to the beautiful Garden Route we had the pleasure of calling our honeymoon destination.





We started at the 5 star Sands at St Francis. Ostrich fillet, infinity pool, white fluffy robes, roaring sea, personal Jacuzzi, champers on tap. We felt so spoilt.


         


Next up was the unspoilt seclusion of Nature’s Valley. We did the last day of the Otter Trail, which was quite nerve-wracking as you can see from the sheer walkway below! But the views were unparalleled.


  

We walked the 2km beach flat, and found the delightful Enrico’s Restaurant at Keurbooms. We canoed up the river, ate a luxury picnic with the seagull family and had breakfast every day with a shy Knysna loerie.


 

We visited Monkeyland sanctuary (which, me being me, I loved and didn't want to leave). There were LEMURS!!! And had a close encounter with a persistent black howler monkey who was determined to break into the curio shop and had to be squirted with water repeatedly!


 
               


While at Nature’s Valley, we took a drive down the coast to Knysna for an unforgettable day in the Featherbed Reserve. The blue water of the Knysna Lagoon reminds me of the Med!


 
  
 


Part 2 coming up…

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

m.i.a.

My dear, wonderful blog readers...I am twisted with guilt at my prolonged absences the last few months.


It might have something to do with my new job, my new puppies or perhaps my fairly new marriage. Stretched a bit thin I am. Big kiss and biggest thanks for patience, new blog posts coming soon...


mwah!

photo by Elizabeth Messina


PS: wouldn't this headpiece of fresh flowers by flowerwild be beautiful for a bride or her bridesmaids? Perhaps in the most chic of bohemian weddings?



Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Mariage fran├žais

This amazing couple has pulled off the most over the top, beautiful, French chateaux wedding...


I think we can agree they have taken the vintage trend to a whole new level. Feel free to drool here.


Vogue-worthy photograph by Shawn Connell

Monday, 7 May 2012

staying together by living apart

Call me old fashioned but I think this is insane.

This article on elle.com is all about married couples living in their own separate spaces, and this being the reason they are still "happily" married.

"And I wanted more mystery, too, more of a sense that we were separate people with our own lives and interests who were choosing to spend the evening together because we wanted to, not because we were too lazy to leave the house."

Since we got married, I have encountered a lot of people who make their marriages work in unconventional ways. For example, where the husband has a more chilled job and does bed and bath duty in the evenings, while his wife is a career powerhouse. Or the husband works in another town during the week and comes home on weekends; usually a temporary arrangement. The difference with these couples is that they still share a home. I thought the best part about being married, the point of marriage was to SHARE your life with someone! I understand the importance of man night, and let-Kate-watch-Greys-in-peace-night and independence and being your own person. But this is going too far. 

Or is my thinking archaic and I've missed the point?

One of our photobooth photos by Estefania Romero Photography

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

pin of the week

pinned this beautiful decor inspiration from the pretty blog, and just had to share here:




The eco-friendly couple used recycled bottles for vases, as in our wedding. I absolutely love the relaxed, rustic feel of the whole wedding, and the blue hippie inspired bridesmaids dresses. Trust me, you want to see more...



Tuesday, 1 May 2012

bubbly bubbles


Who knew South Africa had so many sparkling wine varieties?



(You see how I didn’t use the word “champagne” there, it’s trademarked you know. If you misuse it, you may find yourself chased by a hoard of angry Frenchmen brandishing wine barrels. Have you not seen the Richelieu ad?)

I digress. This weekend we went to the very first KZN BubblyFest at Piggly Wiggly in the Midlands. Was looovely. A bit pricey at R180 a ticket for 10 tasting coupons, but WOW did they fill up those glasses. It was less of a tasting and more of a giant bubbly fuelled piss up.

What I did notice was the “Polo Set” mostly in attendance. By that I mean the kind of people who both wear and play polo. Farmers in KZN are not like the Eastern Cape farmers I know and love – all khaki pant and Isuzu single cab with 15 sheep in the back. They are all terribly colonial dahhling. Life is good in the Midlands, given the number of X5’s and Mercs and LV handbags on show. It was quite a cultural experience all round.

Here are some (not very good) pics taken with my Sony point and shoot, as my Nikon baby is having herself cleaned up in Jozi.


There was an ENORMOUS wedding going on across the road

This stand sold the most incredible pea risotto with smoked salmon YUM!

Despite it's name, Piggly Wiggly is tres chic, I love the blue  barn doors

Don't be fooled by the skyscraper mielies in the background...Polo Set


Sunday, 15 April 2012

easter

This was our first Easter as a married couple. And boy did we do it properly! My in laws and sister-in-law stayed over, we went to the most amazing church service and the weather was spectacular.


Mel (my sister-in-law) made us a red velvet Easter cake, with the sweetest bunny on top:





When I told my mom my ambitious plans for Sunday lunch, she nearly fell over. While my friend Tam, and others, were busy making macarons and generally being Domestic Goddesses In Training, I was balancing cash flow statements and fighting with CEO's and being miserable. So I am not known for my cooking.


But look what I made (with the help of wonderful hubby of course):


Butternut soup with fresh chives

Jamie Oliver's Irish champ mash with leeks and  spring onions

Lamb shanks with sticky Guiness gravy (in my gorgeous Le Creuset pot from the amazing Dawsons)

Panna cotta made with real vanilla pods and cherry compote
And just to make the whole housewife experience complete, my two adorable puppy children, Howie and Chloe:

Saturday, 14 April 2012

succulents

I am a huge HUGE fan. Succulents stole the show at our wedding. And we could re-pot them afterwards!


They are so easy to grow, and grow little shoots off the leaves that fall off the main plant. So you can have lots of new individual plants in a few weeks, if you just leave the old leaves on the soil.



Here are a few pretty succulents that inspired my wedding, as table decor and on a cake and in a bouquet...

From the wedding bee
From the beauty bridal
From Green Wedding Shoes
Here is a grey-green one I now keep in the bathroom, due to the destructive powers of puppy.