Category Archives: Photo Gallery

World of Birds in Hout Bay (2015-02-15)

Last Sunday (following our relaxing picnic on Saturday), Chantelle and I rounded up the girls and headed off nice and early across the Boerewors Curtain to Hout Bay, where the plan was to meet up with Monty and Cheryl at the world renowned World of Birds sanctuary. As it turned out, neither of us quite made the 10:00 meeting time – we got stuck behind a sightseeing bus whilst they got stuck behind cyclists! (Not that one complains though – driving past Kirstenbosch and then on to Hout Bay is always a fantastic treat in terms of the scenery).

Anyway, in the end we arrived at the World of Birds at pretty much the same time, and first stop for the in-laws was a cup of coffee at the little Robin’s Nest restaurant. There it was a rather nice surprise to have Robert and new squeeze Tarryn join us for the day, and with everyone now awake, and Jess pretty restless, it was off to view the feathered fowls!

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World of Birds bills itself as such:

“World of Birds is the largest bird park in Africa and one of the few large bird parks in the World. Over 3 000 birds (and small animals) of 400 different species are uniquely presented in more than 100 spacious landscaped walk through aviaries, allowing you the most intimate closeness with nature.

A tropical garden setting in the Hout Bay Valley is the environment in which the aviaries are spaced over 4 ha of land, framed by the back of Table Mountain, the Twelve Apostles, Constantiaberg, Chapman’s Peak and Little Lion’s Head. A paradise for nature lovers and photographers, the World of Birds is one of Cape Town’s premier tourist attractions which no visitor should miss.”

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Yup, that’s a lot of ground to cover and a lot of birds to see, so it’s no wonder that we ended up wandering around the sanctuary for 3 hours or so! The variety of bird life (from literally right across the world!) is always astonishing, not to mention the fact that you literally walk alongside them in the enclosures it an absolute delight. In fact, it is best summed up as a proper treat of an outing!

(If I was a photographer with a proper camera I would be in seventh heaven thanks to all the feathered models I would have access to… but I’m not, which explains all the tiny, tiny birds on the photos taken with my phone!)

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The weather was perfect, and apart from a little slip and slide that saw Jess soaked to the bone, boots and all, everything ran pretty smoothly, with the kids (and adults) thoroughly enjoying themselves.

As you can see, I was pretty busy with my camera phone as well:

Having seen our fill of eagles, owls, storks and chickens, we ended our adventure in Hout Bay by joining the heavy traffic to the harbour, where our initial plan of enjoying some takeaway fish and chips fell through based entirely on just how busy the harbour was – i.e. it was packed!

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In the end, we headed up the ramp to the nautically themed Mariner’s Wharf, where after a bit of a wait in the bar for a table, we sat down and enjoyed some particularly tasty (but expensive!) fish and chips.

All in all, a fantastic day out for the family, and as always, a trip that I can highly recommend! :)

Related Link: http://www.worldofbirds.org.za/

Weekend Away in Jacobsbaai (2015-02-07)

The Oppiwa Festival held annually in Jacobsbaai is a brilliant little Afrikaans music festival with an interesting twist. Each musician get assigned a tractor-pulled wagon for which you then buy a ticket for, the end result being a two hour excursion that includes a ride around the dusty town with the artist, getting up nice and close and personal, with the whole thing then culminating with a stop at a random guest house for a spread of delicious eats and of course an impromptu private session with the musician.

Oh, and at the start of it all you get given a tin mug which is kept filled with wine from start to finish. In other words, a recipe for a guaranteed fun afternoon out!

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Monty and Cheryl had invited Chantelle and myself to join them for the festival this year, and after an eventful journey from Gordon’s Bay to Jacobsbaai, we found ourselves in the calming and tranquil little West Coast village of Jacobsbaai late Friday afternoon, meeting up with everyone at Priscilla’s The Artists’ Retreat Guest House – our usual go to destination for whenever we’re on that side of the world! :)

Joining us for the weekend was Robert and his new girlfriend Tarryn Botha, and with all the sleeping arrangements organised and bags unpacked, it was decided to keep out of Priscilla’s hair (who was scrambling about, trying to get all the food preparations done for her hosting of a wagon on Saturday) by going out for supper to the Weskus Mall (in Vredenburg).

We knew that Panarottis in the mall has a play area, but our plans were scuppered when on entering the mall, Jessica spotted Yukon Spur’s huge outdoor play area – which of course meant Spur it was! With Jess immediately off to play, the rest of us settled down to enjoy some family food (I can never really bring myself to call Spur’s food good) and plenty of excited chatter.

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Happily, despite all the tummy bugs that seemed to be in the air (Emily, Chantelle and I were struggling a little), and despite Emily’s horrendous head butt of the wall a little earlier when we were first setting up the room (the bump on her forehead pretty much remained there for the rest of the weekend!), the kids and Chantelle and myself enjoyed a good night’s sleep, only waking up on Saturday at a much later time than normal! (Sleep, beautiful sleep!)

The morning was spent walking, eating a delicious guest house breakfast, playing pool, and of course a trip through to Paternoster for a beer (with the lovebirds) at the Paternoster Hotel.

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Back in Jacobsbaai, everyone got ready for their Oppiwa experience – well everyone but me.

As things turned out, when we’d originally bought tickets for the sold out festival, we managed to get just enough for the five of us (Anna Davel, formerly of Cut Glass, being the only wagon we could still book). However, with Robert now bagging a girlfriend at the last minute (and the first one in a very, VERY long time), I refused to stand in the way of young love and gave my ticket up to Tarryn, meaning that for the afternoon whilst everyone was drinking wine and making merry, I would be spending some time with Emily and Jessica, treating them to clothes and ice cream at the mall. (Which I always enjoy doing anyway!)

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From all reports the Oppiwa experience was loads of fun, Anna Davel was mesmerizing, and we’ve pretty much already decided that we’ll just have to be back next year again! The evening was then spent around a blazing fire on the roof deck, dancing to some Afrikaanse treffers and chowing on all the Oppiwa stopover leftovers – the perfect way to round off what had been an excellent day.

As for Sunday, well that was spent mostly around the pool table and big, big braai on the deck – yet again the perfect was to spend a Sunday at the close of a good weekend away. Oh, and of course, I managed to grab some photos on my phone whilst we were there:

(Oh, and unlike our trip there, we didn’t get lost on the way back).

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Related Link: http://www.oppiwa.co.za/

Baby Steps Picnic at Helderberg Nature Reserve (2015-02-14)

Valentine’s Day fell on Saturday this year, and as such I treated Chantelle to a lovely candlelit dinner in the braai room* (whilst she bought me a selection of delicious Woolworths choccies) – but that’s completely beside the point, because what I wanted to mention here is the lovely picnic we enjoyed in the morning with the kids at the Helderberg Nature Reserve.

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Baby Steps owner and head honcho Rochelle Kelders had organised the morning picnic as a way for the parents and kids to have a bit of a social get together together, and pleasingly, despite the heavy clouds that looked rather threatening, there was a nice little turn out and everyone was able to enjoy some seriously relaxing time on the grass with the kids. (So, so many tiny cute faces!)

Emily was adorable (as expected), and even managed to stun Chantelle and myself by rooting out a nectarine from our bag and devouring it whole – nothing subtle there. It was basically just nectarine juices on everything!

(The rest of us made do with the blueberry muffins we had picked up from Woolworths on our way – though Emily was quite adept at stealing quite a bit from those as well!)

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We’ve been with Baby Steps for quite some time now – just short of three years with Jessica and now 1 and a little bit years with Emily – and funnily enough, this is the very first time that our schedules actually allowed us to join in on the fun.

And I’m kind of glad that we did.

*small kids are so, so limiting.

Pitstop at the Weskus Padstal (2015-02-06)

Friday saw our weekend away down the West Coast kick off, and with the kids collected early, it was off in the Accent (which embarrassingly turned out to need two full cans of oil added before our departure – been a while since we last checked it would seem!).

Even more embarrassingly though, our trip to Jacobsbaai took an eventful turn when, as we were hurtling down the N7, it dawned on us that we had completely missed the Melkbosstrand turn-off to join the R27, meaning a sudden and slightly confused stop was in order.

With the radio immediately silenced because I couldn’t think (beautifully detailed in Defending the Caveman, well worth checking out if you ever get the chance), it was a quick husband/wife argument, then some fumbling with Google Maps on Chantelle’s phone (the GPS on my phone remains broken), followed by some jerky wandering around through the Atlantis area.

Sadly, our (unnecessarily) chosen route to join up with the R27 turned out to be a long, dusty, gravel road affair, which needless to say didn’t please me very much. However, as luck would have it, we did stumble upon a pretty cool sight: a light aircraft coming in for a landing right across the road in front of us – turns out we had happened upon Skydive Cape Town’s home base!

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Anyway, we did eventually join up with the R27 and were soon happily hurtling along again (or at least, driving as fast as the average speed camera system would allow us), and before long we happened across the eccentric West Coast Farmstall, that farm stall/diner/aviary/lion park/nursery that we’ve stopped at before.

Perfect… time for lunch (and a well deserved lunch if I say so myself)!

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As per usual, the Weskus Padstal is an absolute assault on the visual senses, the artistically inclined owners literally throwing anything and everything on the walls, creating an absolute visual treat that keeps you interested despite the fact that you just know that you’re actually sitting amongst a giant junk site.

I love it. It’s like being in a typical, junk-laden Afrikaans bar that just happens to have spilled outside.

Anyway, with Jessica and Emily happily entertained, Chantelle and I both ordered some wildsvleis (venison) pie, which I am happy to report was quite delicious.

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A relaxing, tranquil and enjoyable stop, it’s no wonder that I now seem to always include the West Coast Farmstall on the itinerary whenever we head down the West Coast! :)

Related Link: http://www.westcoastfarmstall.co.za

The Morning of Jessica’s Birthday (2014-11-14)

Last year Jessica’s actual birthday fell on a Friday, which is of course a normal Vergeet-My-Nie playschool day, which in turn then meant that it was “wake the kids up super early” day!

Sticking to tradition, we spruced up some cupcakes, placed some presents on the floor, and then filed into Jessica’s room singing “Happy Birthday to you!”, which needless to say woke her up with an enormous smile on her face! :)

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Then we encountered a bit of a flaw in our plan.

We lit the candles on the cupcakes, placed the tray on the floor, and asked Jessica to blow them out – only to quickly react after she had bent over to blow out the candles and her loose hair dangled in the flame.

Instant smell of burning hair in the morning. Yummy.

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Nothing serious though, the cupcakes were devoured, and the presents ripped into – all of which brought tremendous joy to our little girl who had just turned four!

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Le Bonheur Crocodile Farm (2015-01-17)

The Le Bonheur Crocodile Farm is a CITES registered breeder and tanner of the African Nile crocodile, a crocodile that is a resident reptile in many of South Africa’s game reserves but which no longer roams free in the country – meaning that this is a great spot to see them in real life if you haven’t done so before!

In addition to its primary crocodile farming activities, Le Bonheur (which means “happiness”) also just happens to be a beautiful estate in Simondium, offers catch-and-release fishing, has wedding and conference facilities, and also caters as a children’s party venue.

Oh, and it is one of the few places in Cape Town that you can of course get a delicious crocodile pie.

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Always on the lookout for things to go see with the girls, Chantelle and I decided to head out towards Simondium/Paarl one recent gorgeous Saturday afternoon after hearing about this Le Bonheur crocodile farm. It’s a great drive out there if you’re coming from our Gordon’s Bay side of the world, though the last stretch to actually reach the estate itself is a quite a bit of a bumpy gravel experience!

The Le Bonheur setup is such that you can spend the day at the estate without ever visiting the crocodile dams (which is a paid for experience), though if you haven’t yet seen the crocodiles before then of course this would be a rather silly thing to do.

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The crocodile ‘tour’ happens every 45 minutes throughout the day, and after paying your money, things are kicked off with a short introductory information session before everyone heads out to the walled crocodile pens.

There you’ll have a bit of an interactive session with some baby crocodiles (we handled six month old crocs, and I have to say, it’s certainly the first time I’ve ever held a crocodile!), before being set free to stroll along the walkway that stretches between the various dams, all containing a multitude of different aged crocodiles.

(Though you won’t find anything much older than three years in there – that’s pretty much the best age for harvesting the leather off the crocodile in terms of it still being relatively easy to do. Anything older and it becomes a major mission because of the thickness of the hide!)

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Because this is a working farm, there are a lot of crocodile leather items on display and for sale – but be warned though – a full crocodile hide will set you back R20,000! (After all, this is a luxury leather in great demand over in Italy and some other parts of Europe.)

The crocodile pens aren’t particular large and you’ll breeze through it pretty quickly, but again, if you haven’t seen crocodiles in real life before then this is certainly a good way to go about it.

Needless to say, apart from the nosebleed that kind of spoiled this part of the outing somewhat, Jess did enjoy seeing all these beasts up fairly close – though not enough that she’d actually touch one of course! :)

Outside of the crocodile pens is then the estate itself, and it has a cozy dining area with a kitchen that serves all manner of foods – though if you are first timers like we were then the crocodile pie is definitely recommended.

Chantelle turned out to be not so much of a fan of the crocodile meat, but I have to say that I did actually enjoy it. Very much like chicken in terms of texture and taste, but with a definite, strong venison flavour teasing your palate throughout.

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On the bottom level, next to the fishing dam, is a kids’ play area, plus a few scattered eating/picnic spots under the abundant trees, all of which opens up to a lovely grass bank which is perfect to laze about on whilst you watch the eager beavers hire some rods and attempt to catch some fish.

A really relaxing and beautiful venue then in other words.

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Jess, Emily, Chantelle and I had a thoroughly marvelous day at Le Bonheur in the end, and if you haven’t been there before then it is definitely worth the recommend – again, especially if you haven’t seen crocodiles in real life before!

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The Carpenter and Lötter Family Shoot (2014-06-29)

In the middle of last year, my sister Claire went ahead and organised a professional photo shoot for the family. She hired her professional photographer friend Matt McLagan to handle the photography end and together they decided to make use of Claire and Riley’s gorgeous, award-winning garden at the back of their Constantia home.

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The brief for the shoot was for blue to be the primary colour of everyone’s outfits, and come the Sunday morning, Chantelle, Jess, Emily and I found ourselves up bright and early, and slightly lost in the Southern Suburbs, trying to locate Claire’s house. (There is this one turn which both Chantelle and I are forever missing!)

Not that being strictly on time mattered that much in the end though, as Matt ended up being held up for a fair bit on his end before making it through to Claire’s place, giving the family plenty of time to play catch up with one another. In total we were a nice sized group. Claire, Riley, little Devon and baby Grayson, Riley’s mom Colleen, Kirsty and Mike, Mom and Dad, Ryan, and of course Chantelle, Emily, Jessica and myself!

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The weather played along beautifully, and Matt captured seriously fantastic photos of everyone – some of which I’ve put up in the gallery below. It was loads of fun for everyone (furniture shifting and all), and the morning was ended off with a delicious selection of snacks that Claire had thrown together.

So, what do you think of Matt’s work?

It’s worth mentioning that Jess was totally enthralled by Matt’s setup – and pretty soon he had her pressing the button to take photos, much to her absolute delight! :)

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So thanks for organising this Claire – it was definitely worth the effort! :)

Related Link: http://mclaganphotography.blogspot.com/

Emily’s 1st Birthday Party (2015-01-11)

So the 13th of January rolled in and with it, Emily turned one. Seriously can’t believe how the first year of having the cutest baby in the world as part of our family is already over! Anyway, taking Chantelle’s guest house shifts into consideration, we decided that the best date to hold Emily’s birthday party would in fact be two days earlier, namely Sunday 11 January. (Funnily enough, Claire hosted little Grayson’s 1st birthday party on Saturday 10 January, meaning a weekend filled with 1st birthday parties!)

Mom and Dad graciously let us use their home as the venue (we wanted the space and more importantly the pool), and to sprinkle Smarties on the top, the day’s weather was absolutely perfect!

Chantelle, Jess, Emily and I made the trip through to Bellville early morning to start the setup operation, and believe it or not, our timing was exactly spot on because we finished up just as the first guests started arriving – in other words, right on time! :) (So, so many rolls were cut and buttered, Spanspek diced, and Watermelon sliced!)

It didn’t take long for the kids (and the parents) to find themselves in the pool (where the coloured balls soon made an appearance and were an absolute hit – with the dads, who couldn’t stop pelting one another with them!). The fire was soon on the go, and lots of boerewors rolls, spanspek, watermelon and cold salads eventually descended onto the outside table in order to attempt to feed the hungry hordes.

Needless to say, Chantelle had prepared an awesome upside-down ice cream cake for Emily (hastily prepared seeing as we were out the previous day attending Grayson’s party), but the real treat for the day was without a doubt the kids’ ice cream station that Chantelle had set up – complete with about eight flavours of ice-cream, a selection of cones and bowls, and a gazillion different topper treats! Young and old alike gorged themselves (multiple times) on the sweet treats, and then as before, it was back in the pool for pretty much the rest of the afternoon!

Towards the end of the day, the guys mostly gravitated towards the television in order to sit down and watch the unfolding T20 game between the Proteas and West Indies (sadly, South Africa lost), whilst the girls remained outside, rolling their eyeballs and chatting up a storm. (At that stage I’m not sure what the kids were up to because I was watching cricket).

All in all, the day was a huge success story, the kids had a blast, and the parents looked to have thoroughly enjoyed themselves (even if that sentiment is based entirely on all the dads pretty much pelting each other in the pool with coloured balls for the entire day – seriously, we never grow up, do we?).

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Gibson’s for Date Night in the Waterfront (2014-05-10)

So my quest to play catch up in finally getting around to posting all of my phone camera photos up to the blog continues… Last year Chantelle and I did something uncharacteristic for my birthday by heading out for a very rare date night on the evening before the main event. We really wanted to try out this fantastic burger joint everyone had been recently raving about, namely Gibson’s Gourmet Burgers & Ribs, tucked away somewhere in the V&A Waterfront.

With the kids safely tucked in at Oupa and Ouma’s house, Chantelle and I headed south across the Boerewors Line, and not only successfully located the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town, but actually managed to find parking as well (We hadn’t been there for a very, very long time, so I count that as something worthy of noting)! Then the hunt for Gibson’s was on, and after a long, enjoyable and sightseeing jaunt around the area, we realized that the restaurant is in fact a small little shopfront tucked in the food court in the actual Waterfront mall itself!

Initially a bit disappointed with the size of the restaurant then, our tune quickly changed when once seated, one quickly realized how cleverly the setup has been done – you pretty much feel that you’re inside a proper eatery, despite the fact that the mall walkway is literally right there in front of you!

Anyway, in terms of the food, we were definitely NOT let down. An awesome selection of burgers made the final choice difficult, but the end result that was put down in front of us were two of the best, freshest burgers that we had ever tasted.

In other words, a definite ‘recommend’!

By that stage it was pretty dark, and so we capped off an enjoyable evening together by taking a ride in the big ferris wheel that dominates the waterfront these days – the aptly named Cape Wheel. Neither Chantelle nor I had ever taken a ride on it before and so we were understandably excited stepping into the designated pod after slapping down our money on the counter (which was a little too much in my opinion, but hey, tourist fees – comes with the territory I suppose).

The ride is over pretty quick, and I have to say, we probably robbed ourselves of some of the views by doing it at night, but nevertheless, it was an enjoyable 10 to 15 minute sightseeing ride, and as always, the lights of Cape Town certainly didn’t disappoint!

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Vergeet-My-Nie Year End Picnic (2014-12-10)

Last year Jessica’s awesome playschool Vergeet-My-Nie ended off their year with a big weekday morning picnic, to which all the parents, grandparents, and whomever else wanted to come along were invited. We were treated to a beautiful Summer’s day with fantastic sunshine, soft grass, and of course large patches of shade provided by the multitude of trees standing tall in the picnic area at Helderberg Nature Reserve.

The kids were out in force, the teachers (complete with Santa hats) had their hands full, and it quickly became apparent that this was to be a day of play and certainly not a day of structured activity!

Songs were sung, prizes handed out (Jessica loved receiving her little ballet certificate), and of course a few Christmas-themed snacks made their way into the crowd. The parents had been instructed to drop off a gift for their child earlier in the week, meaning that there was even a chance for some much enjoyed present handing out – which as you can see, Jess was more than just a little enthralled with! :)

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All in all, it was a awesome morning out with Jessica (we left Emily at Baby Steps creche in order to give Jess our full attention), and Chantelle turned out to be pretty popular whilst manning the climbing wall and fireman’s pole! (I lucked out – my injured knee meant I wasn’t overrun with hyperactive kiddies!)

In fact, Jessica must have had a ball – seeing as she pretty much passed out once we got back into the car!

Betty’s Bay Penguins and Dinner at Kleinmond (2014-04-19)

Back in April of last year, Monty and Cheryl joined Jessica, myself, Chantelle and a very small Emily on a journey to go and see the penguins at the Stony Point penguin colony in Betty’s Bay, followed by an impromptu drive through to Kleinmond, a place I haven’t personally been to before.

There we found a fantastic place to get a bite to eat and more importantly, catch the Stormers in some rugby action on a big screen.

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All in all, a good outing indeed.

A Walk on Paternoster Beach (2014-03-02)

Paternoster is one of the oldest fishing villages on the West Coast of South Africa. It is situated 15 km north-west of Vredenburg and 145 km north of Cape Town, at Cape Columbine between Saldanha Bay and St Helena Bay.

It also happens to feature a very nice beach.

One which early last year saw the whole gang of Debby, Gail, Peter, Cheryl, Montgomery, Robert, and of course the Gordon’s Bay Lotter Clan descend upon it for an afternoon out and about in Paternoster.

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This little outing formed part of a great weekend away in Jacobsbaai – which also happened to be little Emily’s first official getaway! (Not bad going for someone who was only a month and half old at the time!)

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Holiday Adventures with the Girls (2014-12-27)

As you might have noted from the recent run of blog posts (almost all photo gallery entries mind you), Jessica, Emily and I really did get up to a lot over this December break. The girls all ended their respective playschool years around the 12th of December, and I joined them on leave around the 18th, meaning that we’ve had a good two or so weeks of each other’s undivided attention.

Unfortunately Chantelle was working for pretty much the entire duration of my two weeks’ leave period (in the end, she actually got two days off over that entire period, when at the start of the run she was expected to get none!), meaning that it was pretty much just me and the girls most of the time, and as you might have been able to tell by now, I did my absolute best to ensure that we did at least one fun outing on each and every day of our holiday together!

We fed ducks, we fed rabbits, we saw monkeys, we saw butterflies, we played at Blasters, we looked at lions, we visted with Oupa and Ouma, we swam with Granpa and Granny, we opened Christmas Presents, we ate Christmas lunch, we played on New Year’s eve, we ate New Year’s lunch, we went to the beach, we went to outdoor markets, we fed chickens, we played at Mondeor, we devoured McDonalds ice cream… well, you get the picture.

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Grayson’s 1st Birthday Party (2015-01-10)

Yesterday Chantelle, Jess, Emily and I found ourselves making the trip through to Constantia in order to join up with the Carpenter Clan in order to celebrate Grayson’s 1st birthday. (Incredibly enough, today we’re actually out celebrating Emily’s first birthday – what a weekend for 1st birthday parties, eh?)

Although we again missed the street we needed to turn down in getting to Claire and Riley’s house, we were actually – amazingly – pretty much on time (in fact, it was almost satisfying to see a host of cars pull up just as I switched the Accent off).

Despite the fact that we were experiencing a gloriously sunny day back in Gordon’s Bay, here under the mountain things were certainly a lot more cloudy, but nevertheless, the weather played in everyone’s favour as it was warm enough to lounge outside without being so hot that everyone fried.

Chantelle and Riley had prepared a magnificent spread of finger foods, the children were all having a ball on the trampoline (Jess included), and what followed was a relaxing, enjoyable day out for all Claire and Riley’s family and friends (plus Rocky).

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So a great start to what I’m sure will be many awesome parties to follow for young Grayson then – whom I’m sure should by his next birthday be putting out the candle by blowing on it instead of just grabbing it with his hand! :)

Bonus! Seeing as both Ryan and Grandpa had ventured on the trampoline, Chantelle wasn’t prepared to be left behind:

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Fun at Blasters (2015-01-03)

Following a fantastic evening out in Greenpoint and Camps Bay, not to mention the wondrous experience of being able to sleep in late for a change on a Saturday morning, Chantelle and I eventually needed to make the trek through to Bellville to retrieve Jessica and Emily who had spent a fun night over at Oupa and Ouma’s house.

The plan was simple: let’s treat the kids by taking them out to somewhere they can stretch their legs and have a little bit of fun at the same time.

Now I’ve mentioned Funky Frogs before, but this time around we wanted to try out something new – Blasters, situated out at Cape Gate Décor Centre and a venue previously mentioned to us by friends on numerous occasions.

From their website (which isn’t very good mind you): BLASTERS is a new concept in Entertainment, creating a safe and secure environment for children and adults of all ages to relax and have fun. The main services we offer are:

  • Families with young children can come and enjoy a tasty meal from our restaurant or relax in our cigar lounge, while the children have a blast in our jungle gym under the supervision of our attendants.
  • Catch up with friends over a coffee while all the kids play safely together.
  • Parents can drop their children off for a couple of hours, giving them the opportunity to shop, visit the gym, attend to meetings/appointments, or simply take some time out.
  • Birthday Parties and private functions of any sort can be accommodated and themed to your requirements.

We found the place more or less easily enough (remember, it is at Cape Gate Décor Centre and not Cape Gate proper, i.e. where Tafelberg Meubels is situated), and after wandering into the top floor which is the restaurant/cigar lounge, we were ushered downstairs to the kids’ play area.

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It’s a bit of an interesting one really. Honestly, I felt the place came across as a bit “common”, the incessant rave “doef doef” music that blared driving that point home all to well, but on the other hand, the kids’ play area setup is simply amazing, with an incredible, spacious, and safe array of slides (so many to choose from!), climbing walls, gas guns, and all manner of kiddie obstacles available, making it near impossible for a small child not to have fun once they spot the hulking mass of plastic and padding taking up most of the room!

It’s not particularly expensive either mind you, R40 for 120 minutes is not bad, though I was a bit annoyed that I had to pay R30 for Emily even though we were quite clear that she is too young to play and would be sitting with us the whole time (which she did). The kids are outfitted with electronic tags which makes exiting the building without sounding an alarm impossible – a nice touch by Blasters I thought.

Whilst Jessica got to the all important business of playing (in fact, Chantelle joined in, evening going down one of the slides with her!), I ordered some coffee and a pizza for us, and in the end I have to say, the food was delicious, the coffee good, and the waiters very keen and friendly with the kids. (Sadly, the childminders on the day didn’t impress me quite so much though).

Fix the music, make the kids’ area look a little less industrial and I think you’ve probably got a winner on your hands in terms of a kid friendly venue. That said, it doesn’t really matter what I say – after all, Jessica had an absolute ball, and that is what really counts at the end of the day! :)

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