Friday, May 29, 2009

Fabulous Friday

The girls are totally excited these days to wake up and come back from school... why? Because we have 4 bunnies! The first thing in the morning they want to feed the bunnies and after school the first thing they do is run into the house and go straight to the yard to greet their new friends ;-)
A friend of us is moving back to the US and had 5 bunnies, one is still at her house, they can't seem to catch him. But as soon as he is caught we will get that one too, so then we have 5!
Today Jasmine and Juliet invited 4 of their friends to have a play date at our house, so all their friends can come and see the bunnies. They are very popular these days, since everybody in their class wants to come over and see the bunnies... yeah, is it not the cute girls they want to play with then it is the cute bunnies LOL!

Jasmine feeding Scamper, the mom bunny

Juliet feeding Thumber, the black-white boy bunny.

Jasmine with Winter, the albino bunny with red eyes.

JJ with Thumber, he is her favorite because he comes to her!

And this is Spots, still a bit shy.

The only one that is missing is Fio, he is a black male. Our friends are trying to catch him for days now, but he won't let them ;-) And then the bunch is complete. Pfew, 5 pets at once, for somebody who isn't used to animals, that is quite a lot. But at least these bunnies stay outside!! That was the only reason for me to take them.

And if you are thinking that soon we will have more bunnies, no, no, no! These are neutered, so no more bunnies!! LOL

And in case you want to know how I am doing, since the girls are doing great! Well, I have a little sit back here. The last 2 days I didn't loose anything, and this morning I even gained 1 lbs!! Shocking to me, since I follow the Detox Diet so well! I am not cheating, so what is going on?? Not too happy with that! I also feel very bloated and a little discomfort. I am glad I have an appointment for a colonic later this morning, maybe that helps. So I am on Day 17, but my weight loss is only 12 lbs.

In the meantime I am craving wholesome veggies to start after my detox and this is a totally yummy recipe I found on 101 cookbooks, but this could have been MY recipe since I do almost always do my cauliflower like this. Especially if you burn it a bit, it gives it this nutty taste that I like so much. So try it out, it is delish!
Here is the link for the recipe.

Have a Fabulous Friday!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Looking ahead....

So I am on my 15th day of my Detox Diet and it is going very well. I feel good, my spirits are uplifted and have a lot of energy. And my total weight loss so far is 13 lbs. But I am looking ahead. Only 1 week left and then I have an 11-day After Detox program. Since you can't just go ahead and eat a steak, you would end up in the hospital! In the After Detox program you add each day 1 food group. And I am craving for sushi, miso soup and edameme and wonder... could I do that?? Maybe not the first day, but the third day??

Oh so craving for sushi!

So what am I going to do to maintain the weight loss and what is a good plan for ME, that I can stick to? This is actually a bigger challenge than the whole detox to me. I really want to go back to basics food wise. We discovered that I have candida, so that means I need to go at least for a month on a anti-candida diet. Meaning absolutely NO sugar, wheat, vinegar and fungi food, like mushrooms etc.. There is quite the list that you have to avoid. The reason why I had such a hard time to loose a few pounds was probably because I have the candida. So I have to tackle that first before I can even start eating 'normal' again. But the normal should not be like the OLD normal. I want to eat healthier and start cooking more without the help of bottled sauces, marinades, dressings etc... Since in EVERYTHING is SUGAR and SALT, among other things that are not good for you!

So I am planning to make fresh, wholesome and simple meals out of the most fresh es ingredients and everything from scratch. I used to do it before, but I strayed lately and the results were not good. So I am going back to basics.

Thai green mango salad, aloy maak!

But I need some new inspirations, so if you guys have some great websites I can browse through, please send me a link! I already have a few, like 101cookbooks and foodgawker, but I need more and hope to get some inspiration from YOU!! I hope to receive some sites from all over the world, since I like to eat HEALTHY ETHNIC food.

I am already looking at all these good for you, but great tasting as well recipes and can't wait to try them. Funny huh, I am on this detox and looking at those pictures of the best looking foods available on the web or in magazines and still don't eat any of it!! But I can sure have a look at them ;-)

It is funny, I am NOT craving any fried stuff (I never did really) but even now, I am craving healthy stuff, small bits and pieces, candy to the eye stuff.. I don't want to put anything bad into my body anymore... LOL we'll see how long that takes!! But for now my attitude towards food is changing so much through this Detox, it is just amazing!

Goat cheese, asparagus and beet salad... yummy!

Have a wonderful and yummy day!

Monday, May 25, 2009

A~B~C..... LMNOP

You all know SMALL magazine, well LMNOP is kind of the same but from Australia, and I LOVE this online magazine! LMNOP is a free quarterly PDF magazine for hip, stylish parents and their children. Practical and fun, LMNOP shows you how to laugh, make, nurture, organise and play.

Since some of you I know are very interested in unique children items I thought I share this magazine with you. And especially to Jen my friend who has her referral and her baby is coming home soon.. CONGRATULATIONS Jen! I am so excited for you and Jeff!! I know she wants to be updated with all the new and funky stuff that is out there. But also another blogging friend Rosemary who loves magazines and hip stuff will like this magazine ;-) How is your move going Rosemary?

Check the magazine out, you all will love it!!

I also know that some of you are curious about my detox diet. Well, it is still going strong. I am amazed by myself that I can keep up with this so long, it is day 13 now and I've lost 11 lbs so far. Not bad huh? I really feel energised, my skin and hair is so soft, and I sleep like a baby. Had some weird and vivid dreams last night, but kinda liked that! I hadn't had a dream that I could remember for so long... so this is a change. My shoulder that I had dislocated about 8-9 weeks ago feels a lot better, not so much pain anymore. I really start to feel squeaky clean from the inside! I do my daily walk, dry skin brushing, trampoline, and some sort of treatment, like massages or body wraps, which of course is heaven on earth to do so many! I also do twice a week a colonic, which feels so great afterwards, it is not hard at all. I know that a lot of people look up to that, but really it is nothing.

From all the 13 days there were 2 days that I didn't feel great, one day I was short tempered and grumpy, and the other day I had a headache, but that was because I was out and forgot to bring my drinks with me. So I had more than 2 hours in between my drinks and then you start feeling it. I was a bit woozy, shaky and had a vague headache. But other than that I just really feel energised, in a good mood, and ready to tackle the world! I even cook and prepare dinners for my family... no problem! I went to the movies and the other 7 people/children were eating popcorn... no problem! I surprised myself, being a tougher cookie than I expected LOL!!
It is all in the mind set... if you tell yourself you can do it, you CAN do it!

Here are some funny pictures of the girls, since I won't make you happy with a detox pic ;-)



Have a Marvelous Monday!

Friday, May 22, 2009

'Hidden Recognition' by Justine Vercauteren.

Today I am helping a friend of a friend to pass on some information in the hope that she will get some more help from you guys all over the world who are reading my blog. Wouldn't that be fantastic for her if she got a response from all corners of the world with this project?!

Please read below and see the great ideas of this young and amazing artist, Justine Vercauteren from Belgium. Please help her with this project and send a photo from your corner of the world. You can click on any of these pictures below and it will enlarge, then you can save it to your computer and print it out!

Hidden Recognition.
I’m Justine Vercauteren, 19 years young and I study in Ghent (Belgium).
I’m studying Media and for my practical work I am doing something that has an impact on different (unknown) people. One could say make them to think, I rather want them to feel.
Because I do love photography, I preferred to do something with pictures.
I’m dividing my work in two way’s:

1. I want to create “Hidden Recognition”. A sort of recognition that only is meant for those who see the small things in life. So from the pictures I’ve taken, I made stickers with a personal slogan on it “DON’T THINK, FEEL”. I’m sticking these stickers in my hometown Bruges and Ghent where I study. So if you’re passing through the city or station you might see one, only if you look close enough..

2. With this slogan I want also to reach a small part of the world. So I taught to send out the pictures to people I know and don’t know, a bit all over the world. Then I ask them (you) if they (you) can take a picture with my sticker/slogan in front and at the background a view of the city (it can be out of the window of your hotel room) or a popular monument know in that particular place or any typical local something. For those whom I send a mail please print a copy of one of the 4 pictures (the one you prefer the most) and use it to insert into the new picture and forward this new picture to me.
At last I will gather all these pictures together and present them on a blog online. So that our communication will be shown.

But what does “DON’T THINK, FEEL” means?:
Well, for me, feelings are very important. The “don’t think” stands for not always listening to your head, because the head & the brains are something very rational, but rather listen to your heart. Your heart is the real you.
For once, let the heart decide and not the head.

Below an example as of how your picture could look like, a recognizable building or people in the back that are typical from your country.

You can send your picture directly to Justine BEFORE June 2nd at:
justine dot vercauteren at gmail dot com

Good Luck Justine!!

Have a Fabulous Friday everybody!!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The things I see, hear and smell...

Below are the things I see, hear and smell during my morning walk. It is still chilly and the morning dew is still on the grasses and reeds next to the pond. The birds are tjirping away, the wind breezes through the leaves.

The small waterfall is trickling down on some days and rushing on others. The maids are chatting or relaxing on the grass. The construction workers are singing in their native tongue while working or just standing around.

The gardeners are mowing the grass in the park, and I smell fresh mowed lawns.. yummy, such a nice springy smell... although it is fall! I smell the first cooking out of some kitchen windows. My senses are stronger it seems by this detox ;-) or am I just craving some food??

Some dogs bark as I walk by, but they are safe behind a gate, so I don't worry and walk fast since it is nippy these days, but the never failing sun is shining on my face and I feel invigorated, energised and in a good mood.

Maids and gardeners are walking to their job, each house will be filled with at least one of them. Kids are going to school and I see many many different flowers. Purple agapanthus and African daisies, pink roses and the orange from the Bird of Paradise. Just beautiful to have my morning walk around the pond here in the park. I am enjoying it and take the beauty of nature in.
The big bird, Hadidah Ibis, is screaming and you can here him coming from afar, while the others just mind their own business and are looking to build a nest of finding some food. The ducks in the pond seem happy and content, just like me ;-)

My progress is going steady, but slowing down a bit. I am on my 7th day today and lost 7 lbs. At first it went at 1,5 lbs a day, now I am to about 0,5 lbs a day. So I am hoping that it continues and not slows even more down. I am feeling good, not tired, crancky or anything of the negative side effects I actually expected. So that is good. Had some great body wraps, cellulite treatments and massages the last couple days and I am still contiuing to do the next days. I am going to add the sauna to my regiment and I am looking forward to that. We have one in the house, but it hasn't been used yet. Since it wasn't cold enough, but now is the time!!

Have a good day, I hope you feel as energised as I do!

Monday, May 18, 2009

I ♥ Faces, week 19: Blurb Book Photo Contest~Amateur

This week is an exciting week at I ♥ Faces!! We can enter one of our best face photos and be chosen to be part of the Blurb book. You can enter in the Professionals and Amateurs section. And since I am not getting paid for taking pictures... I wish! this is the amateurs section.
Check out Blurb's website! Blurb lets you self publish your own photo book, cookbook, portfolio, and more with free software. Amazing and creative ideas to get your photo's printed!!

Juliet and Jasmine are 5 1/2 years old here and this picture just came out beautifully. We tried hugging pictures many times, but never was it either this close or that both girls looked right into the camera. Once in a while you have a lucky shot :-) And probably this turned out so well, because it was so spontaneous!

I am submitting this photo into the Blurb book photo contest. If chosen, I grant I ♥ Faces permission to use my photo in a printed version of a book for commercial use and possibly advertising of a photo book on both the Blurb and I ♥ Faces web sites.

Have a wonderful Monday and a beautiful week!
Ciao, Mireille

Friday, May 15, 2009

2nd day, easy peasy lemon squeasy...

This isn't as hard as I thought! I am not hungry at all, I forget sometimes even to drink my drinks every 2 hours!

The only time I have a craving was last night. I was watching American Idol (first time we're getting it here and I am so excited!) We are a bit behind you guys, so don't tell me the results!! We were down to the last 4 and now we are in the top 3. However we see 2 shows every week, so we will be finishing the same time as you guys!

I had a lymph drainage massage planned, but the therapist advised me to do a reflexology massage, to kick start the detox. So I did, which was great!

I did my morning walk, jumped on the trampoline with the girls after school, brush dried my skin before shower, so all my extra curriculum was done. Followed the program to the T and lost another 1,5 lbs. So I am down now in 2 days.... 3.2 lbs. Not bad huh! I am hoping that I can stay this positive :-) otherwise I will share the other side too LOL!

African Face Painting

When you go to an African restaurant they will wash your hands in a bowl and paint your face. It is a fun way of saying welcome and have a good time! Of course there is more history behind the face painting than this. I mean each country has their own traditions. Look here for more info if you are interested.

I like the simple designs, and every time it is different. How intricate the designs can be by just adding some dots.... Cool!

Enjoy your day, I hope it is a sunny one :-)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Day 1 went smooth...

OK, the next 3 weeks I will let you in on my emotions and results of my Detox Diet. I know some you of are maybe not that interested, so I try to write about the kids, hubby or other things that are happening around the house. Since I put my social calender on hold for these 3 weeks, not much else is happening.

Let me know how you feel about me doing this diary, if nobody is interested I will keep it to myself and find some other stories to blog about!

So what can I eat?? NOTHING, only drinking, this is my schedule. Every day the same:
Berry drink = antioxidant supplement
Herbal Cleansing, some herbs mixed with water to flush harmful toxins & elements
Herbal tea
8 0z water
High-density drink mixed with 8 oz. water = green drink derived from green vegetables
Herbal tea
1 cup green vegetable juice
1 enzyme capsule (to speed up digestion & minimize the effects of food allergens)
Herbal cleansing
8 oz. water
High-density drink mixed with 8 oz. water
Herbal tea
Berry drink
1 cup cleansing soup (made from fresh vegetables and pureed, so it is drinkable)
1 cup broth (the broth of soup above, NO salt, so tasteless!)
Herbal tea
1 enzyme capsule
Herbal cleansing
8 oz. water
Water or Herbal tea
Aloe vera (supplies anti-aging antioxidants, helps to restore pH balance and repair cellular health)

Whenever you feel hungry you can drink more cups of the soup you make fresh everyday. Which so far I haven't felt hungry, just the cravings of chewing was hard for me last night. When I was watching American Idols (and I vote for Adam!) I wanted a cookie with my herbal tea, but CAN'T have it!! During the day I was fine. Preparing the drinks and having every 2 hours something to drink keeps you quite busy.

And then each day I have a special treatment, yesterday I had my first colonic, which was great. It cleanses out the colon with a machine that has a tube that gets inserted in the back. Water flows into your bowel, the therapist massages your belly and then it gets released. It actually is quite soothing and my belly is already a lot flatter, although not much came out, it was full of air bubbles. So I was more bloated than I expected! Tomorrow I have en encore, and I hope more will come out. Today I am having a lymphatic drainage massage. Tell you more about it tomorrow!
But on top of these special treatments I do at home, walking, trampoline, dry brushing your skin before showering, sauna. All this helps to detox better. Yes, did you know exercising on the trampoline helps a lot!! So if you have one in your backyard, start jumping :-)

So, all in all I had a good first day! It went smooth, and oh I lost 1,7 lbs... but I realize that that is mostly water, since I had to pee at least 20 times!

The girls had at school a 5,3 or 1 mile walk. The elementary did 1 mile, so fun to see all the kids exercising together. They had fun, here some pictures with their class mates running around the football field.

Sonia, Svenja, Jezz, JJ and Divya. Proud of their medals!

Here JJ running in the front almost completing 1 mile, you go girl :-)

JJ and her friend Lyng.

JJ and her friend Divya.

The school grounds with view of Johannesburg in the back.

Have a good day y'all!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Detox Diet

Today I started my detox diet, the next 3 weeks I am going to 'eat' actually drink the equivalent of 21 servings a day of fruit and vegetables. And that's the only thing... So no meat, fish, diary, wheat, pasta, sugar, salt&pepper, alcohol, caffeine. Just fresh live fruit and vegetable drinks, herbal teas and vegetable broth with NO salt. No chewing for the next 3 weeks!

It's the Martha's Vineyard Diet Detox called 21 lbs in 21 days by Roni DeLuz! Anybody heard of it?

I've prepared myself already for a few weeks, since mentally I HAD to prepare myself for this. It won't be an easy 3 weeks I am going to have. But I am determined to go through with it, for 2 reasons. I really believe in the fact that you need to detox your body at least once a year and I am thrilled of the possibilities to lose 21 lbs! Whenever I follow a diet I NEVER lose the amounts they claim, so this time too I don't think I will lose the 21 lbs, but even if I lose 10 I would be so happy!

This is a drastic measurement, but I need those drastic measurements, otherwise I give up too easily. So wish me luck and I will keep you posted on my days, today there is not much to write yet, since mostly I write my blog in the morning, but I already started with the mile walk and dry brushing your skin before you go into the shower.

I started now since Dirk is quite some days gone this month, so at least I don't need to cook for him, just for the girls. Which I can do easily beside preparing my fresh live fruit and vegetable juices!

In the meantime the girls had this little project going on at home, they bought this kind of 'potato' head, as they call it. But it is a pantie hose filled with sand and grass seeds in the shape of a head. Each day for the last 3 weeks they have been watering this head and this is the result. Every day when they came back from school they rushed to their 'potato' head to see how much hair had grown, so cute!

(Jasmine left, Juliet right)

Have a good day!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

It's getting cold....

Brrr... it is getting cold here! While it is heating up on your side of the world it is getting colder on the southern hemisphere! And we are not liking it! The peak hours of the day are still nice and warm, between 15C-20C/50F-68F but in the mornings and evenings it drops already to 0C-5C/32F-41F. And our houses are not build here with insulation, so it feels even colder in house!! Our house has only underfloor heating, but that is not enough, so we are warming the house with those gas heaters on wheels (with a gas bottle in the back). And I roll it from here to there, depends in which part of the house we are. It warms sufficient, but the rest of the house is still chilly... yikes!

We need to get our fire place started soon, but Dirk is traveling and I don't dare to start that fire place on my own. It has not been used yet, and if this goes as everything else we used for the first time, it will not go well. So I rather have my hubby here to do it. So I can stand on the side with the fire extinguisher (which I should go and buy, because we don't have one!) In SA people don't sweep the chimneys, I don't know why but it is not done here, so what if there is a bird nest or something else in there?? Living in a different country gives you all these situations that you are not prepared for, so starting a fire is not as simple as it sounds!

This is how the girls go to school in the morning, waiting for the bus in warm tights, fuzzy boots and a body warmer. When they come back from school everything is peeled off again.

Living in South Africa feels a lot colder than I expected!! But then from 1-3 pm it is nice and sunny, warm in the sun and you can sit outside with a t-shirt on. I change about 3 times a day. In the morning a warm sweater and socks, then I peel it off again around 11-noon. And then put it back on again at 4 pm.

Another thing which comes with winter here, is no rain for the coming 6 months, so it will become really dusty and dry. We have this red dust everywhere, in every nook and cranny. Glad I am having a full-time housekeeper because she will be busy the winter season with dusting, mopping and sweeping.... And we need to moisturize our skin, thick layers of body cream otherwise my skin will look like parchment paper. It keeps us busy....

Have a good day!

Monday, May 11, 2009

I ♥ Faces, week 18; Laughter.

YooHoo!! It is Monday again, time for a new challenge!!
This week the theme at I Faces website is: Laughter. Immediately when I read this I knew which picture I wanted to submit.

Last year my friend Suzy and I started a small photography business (we were only working together for 5 months and I had to move to South Africa, what a bummer that was!) She was mainly the photographer and I did mostly the styling and came up with the ideas for a theme.

Our first photo shoot together was Valentine's Day. So our girls were our subjects (read victims ;-) and we set up a bright red background in my living room and let the girls play with some balloons.
While we were shooting away, suddenly the half blown balloons were flying out of their hands and went prrrrrrt! Juliet and Jasmine couldn't stop laughing, they almost peed in their pants! And we kept shooting away with our cameras! The end result was just too funny. Look at their faces and hands, they can't control themselves... so hilarious!!

I upped the saturation a bit to make the colors even more pop out!

Go and head over to I ♥ Faces website, I am sure this week you will see some great laughing faces.

Have a Happy Monday and a beautiful week ahead!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day!! Moederdag!!

Happy Mother's Day to you all! Also those moms who are waiting for their child to come home!! And of course to MY MOM Happy Moederdag!! I hope you have a wonderful day, filled with joy and happiness!!

Dirk is gone this month a lot, and so today I celebrated Mother's Day alone with the girls. But he hadn't forgotten me and early morning the bell rang and a huge indigenous bouquet of flowers was delivered. How nice!! Thank you my dear hubby :-) And of course he also called me to wish me a wonderful day!

A huge bouquet of Birds of Paradise, sweet!

The girls slept in my bed last night and when I woke up they were already laying next to me waiting to give me their home made cards and drawings... so sweet ;-)

After that we made a yummy breakfast together, the girls set the table and I made us heart ♥ shaped fried eggs, with some OJ and my breakfast was just simple but delish. Without my hubby (who is the expert breakfast maker in our home) I had to make it simple...

Heart shaped eggs and some OJ ;-)
A friend of mine; Gina, was also without husband today, so we decided to celebrate together. They came over to our house and we baked some cookies, decorated them with sprinkles and glitters and then ate them almost ALL!

Adriaan, Elise, Jasmine and Juliet making cookies.
For lunch we went out and had sushi, not bad, if it weren't that the miso soup we ordered turned out to be a bit sour and Jasmine threw up in the middle of the table.... YUCK! At least everybody was done eating, but the smell was not something we enjoyed, so we moved to another table before heading home.

Better turning in early today, since Mondays are long days at school! The girls are away from home from 7am till 6pm! Tough days are Mondays!! So at 7pm there were in bed... and finally I have time to work on my blog ;-)

Who also called me to wish me a happy Mother's Day is our dear friend Espen, thank you Espi for thinking of me!! I really appreciate that ;-)

Love, Mireille

Our Easter trip through SA, part 2

Finally the second half of our trip. After the safari we went to Plettenberg Bay, the jewel of the Garden Route and a thriving beach town on the Indian Ocean. We stayed 2 nights and enjoyed some seafood, and a whole day on the beach. Just a super nice relaxing stay after the activity filled safari. We are driving now the Garden route, a beautiful area in SA and the coast line is just unbelievable gorgeous!!

This area is also famous and one of the best Whale spotting areas in the world, although we weren't in the right season for that, what we did see where a few groups of dolphins, but unfortunately no whales this time.

From there we went to Oudtshoorn, a town in little (klein) Karoo country, miles of flat country in between mountain ranges. The Klein Karoo is an oasis-like setting in a fertile valley cupped by the Swartberg and Outeniqua mountain ranges. Crops such as lucerne, tobacco, fruit, grapes and grains grow here in abundance. But what was most visible to us were the ostrich farms. Fields and fields of ostriches. Very interesting to see! We stayed for 1 day at the Zeekoe; an ostrich farm. And of course this is when JJ sat on an ostrich. We had some great lunch and dinner, of course ostrich steak :-) which is btw more healthy than beef. Less cholesterol and much more lean.

From there on we had to do our last leg of travel up to Capetown, but first we stopped in Hermanus for lunch. Also described as the Riviera of the South, offers the best shore-based whale watching in the world. Nature lovers from all over the world visit Hermanus to view these magnificent creatures from the cliffs. We had a superb view of the Indian ocean, however no whales, we need to come back around July. It was just nice to be here and have lunch at one of the oldest buildings in Hermanus, the Burgundy restaurant. Wow, what a view we had here! Again a beautiful seaside town with lots of tourists and activities.

Now up to Capetown! YEAH!!

While in Capetown we saw so many historic and other beautiful sites that it is almost too much to cramp in one posting, but you just have to come for yourself to SA and discover this beautiful land on your own. It is just magnificent!!

In Capetown we stayed at the Waterkant, which is a unique European influenced village of semi-detached quaint cottages and cobbled streets preserved from the 1760’s. Cradled between the city and the Waterfront, De Waterkant Village is avant-garde, a cultural urban refuge highlighted by the abundance of restaurants, art galleries, gay clubs, salsa clubs, tapas bars and Parisian inspired café’s. So we didn't need to go far for lunch and dinner. Around the corner we had so many restaurants, one even better than the other. So happy we stayed there. It reminded me a bit of the old Soho in NYC, when it was still undiscovered and very artsy. This is how the Waterkant is in Capetown.

We made a half-day trip to Boulders Beach, which is a sheltered beach made up of inlets between granite boulders and where a colony of African Penguins settled in 1982. From just two breeding pairs in 1982, the penguin colony has grown to about 3000 in recent years. It is funny to see penguins in SA, so it is quite the tourist attraction, but of course while here we had to see it as well!

We went up to the famous Table Mountain. The Cableway takes you to the summit in under 10 minutes and is quite the ride! Table Mountain is a flat-topped mountain forming a prominent landmark overlooking the city of Cape Town. The highest point on Table Mountain is 1,086 metres (3,563 ft) above sea level. The views on all sides are just magnificent!! Because it is a level plateau, approximately 3 kilometres (2 mi) from side to side, surrounded by steep cliffs you feel you are on top of the world. Amazing, worth while to visit next time you are there!! On one side there were young girls abseiling and that was quite the view. Straight down, ... scary!! But fun to watch :-)

Of course we had to visit the surrounding wine lands, there are so many great wines coming from SA and this is the area where it happens all. First we went to Stellenbosch. It is the second oldest European settlement in the province, after Cape Town. The town became known as the City of Oaks or Eikestad in Afrikaans and Dutch due to the large number of oak trees that were planted by the founder to grace the streets and homesteads. Soon after the first settlers arrived, especially the French Huguenots, grapes were planted in the fertile valleys around Stellenbosch and soon it became the centre of the South African wine industry. Nature is just beautiful, all these fields of wine. Amazing. We did some wine tasting, but soon we became hungry and it was time for lunch.

For food we had to go to Franschoek, supposedly the food capital of SA. People told us that is was world renowned for its spectacular beauty, superb Cape wines and world class restaurants… the village of Franschhoek is a definite must-visit destination on any trip to the Western Cape of South Africa. So, we went. And indeed it was true, so beautiful so many good restaurants, shops and boutiques. We could have spent much more time there than we did. But I am glad we visited these 2 quaint towns!!
In Capetown itself we wandered around the waterfront. Situated between Robben Island and Table Mountain in the heart of Cape Town's working harbour, the V&A Waterfront has become South Africa's most visited destination. Set against a backdrop of magnificent sea and mountain views, exciting shopping and entertainment venues are intermingled with imaginative office locations, world-class hotels and luxury apartments in the residential marina. Enough to see and wander around, watch all the diversity between the people, having a choice of so many different cuisines, it was heaven for us to wine and dine there!

I wish Hilti was located close to Cape Town, I wouldn't mind moving there, so much to see! Much more a friendly city than Joburg and because it is on the ocean it is just so nice!! Everybody we meet raves about Cape Town. Now I know, and I rave about it too know. We have just seen a tip of the iceberg in those few days we were there. But I want to go back. The quaint shops, the delish restaurants, the cobbled stoned streets, there is so much to see!! The only thing the weather is much better in Gauteng, where we live ;-) So as you see, every negative has a positive!!

All in all, our road trip through the beautiful land of SA was such a memorable trip, and although I don't like sitting in the car for so long. I wouldn't have wanted to miss all these sights, which I would have never seen would we have flown both ways. Now we just headed back in the plane and in less than 2 hours we were back in Joburg.

What a wonderful and memorable trip! We just loved it!!


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