Tag Archives: obstacle course

Lunch at the Lake House Restaurant in Somerset Lakes, Somerset West (2017-04-08) Photo Gallery | Restaurants 30 APR 2017

The other day Chantelle came up with a rather strange suggestion – “Why don’t we go out for lunch at Somerset Lakes?”. Now I know that Somerset Lakes is one of the new fancy Somerset West residential estates that they are building here rather close to us (in fact, it is right next to the brand new, rather posh Reddam School that recently opened its doors), but residential estates aren’t normally open to the public now are they?

Well as it turns out, Somerset Lakes has in fact allowed its clubhouse facility to be converted into a restaurant (aptly called The Lake House), operated by the same team that own the excellent Southey’s Family Bistro (also in Somerset West).

The restaurant itself is situated in this beautiful contemporary designed building that overlooks Somerset Lakes’ titular lake (which is of course nearly empty now thanks to the drought that continues to plague the Western Cape), with its open plan spaces spilling outside in the form of lovely open deck, complete with small swimming pools for both big and small.

Pizzas are currently the hot item on The Lake House’s menu, and it is pretty easy to see why after having tried a few of them for ourselves!

(Unfortunately the restaurant is still waiting to receive their liquor licence, meaning that for now you need to remember to bring your own drink if the non-alcholic stuff doesn’t quite do it for you any more).

The girls were of course completely lost to the pool (which is literally right next to the tables on the deck), meaning that Chantelle and I had even more time to just sit, relax, and enjoy the view.

(Or, if your kids don’t enjoy the pool, they can always go play on the artificial beach in front of the clubhouse as well!)

After lunch, we decided to take a delightful stroll along the lengthy boardwalk that takes you around the central lake. Naturally, the area is usually a lot more pretty (and will be once the rains start coming in again), but nevertheless, it was great way to stretch the legs whilst watching the abundance of bird life that still call this area home.

Along the way we came across a jungle gym for the kids to spend some of their energy at, and a little later, an outdoor gym (complete with concrete weights).

Obviously, without not a single other soul in sight, we had a ball giving everything a quick go ourselves! ;)

Back at the clubhouse, Jessica and I decided to take a quick stroll over to the nearby grove of Pine trees, where we were rather excited to find a full on obstacle course lurking in the small forest. (A pretty handy find considering the fact that Chantelle would be tackling the Muddy Princess obstacle race rather soon!)

Note: I found out later via some Googling once back at home that these are all a leftover from the recent The Grind obstacle race which was held back in February this year.

Also, as you might have suspected, I took loads of pictures with my phone on the day, some of which didn’t come out half bad if I say so myself:

It is kind of strange that a private residential estate has allowed for the establishment of a public restaurant on their grounds, but I for one am rather glad that they did, because the location is rather stunning and thus well worth the visit if you ever find yourself anywhere near the area!

Related Link: The Lake House Restaurant | Somerset Lakes

Miniature Horses and Alpacas at Vredenbosch in Stellenbosch (2016-08-27) Photo Gallery | Restaurants 17 SEP 2016

I stumbled across this gem of a kid friendly place in Stellenbosch by the name of Vredenbosch. It is situated along the R304, heading out of Stellenbosch, on what is or was Pete’s Adventure Farm (I’m struggling to ascertain as to whether or not Pete’s is still a thing – certainly the horse rides through the nearby wildlife sanctuary appears to still be alive and well, based on the website some Googling turned up).

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According to the waitress that helped the girls and I out with some ice cream and coffee on the day (we were a little hot and bothered following our morning of gallivanting at Klein Joostenberg and its surrounds), Vredenbosch hasn’t been operating for all that long, but has already proven quite popular for the hosting of kids birthday parties, kitchen teas and that sort of gathering – thanks primarily to its remote location and humongous wide open space which is just perfect for letting the kids run wild in.

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I didn’t really order food, so I can’t comment on that, but the menu seemed to cover all the bases, and the girls certainly enjoyed both their milkshake and ice-creams. (Apparently though, they are still waiting on their liquor licence – which was a bit of a surprise considering the location). 

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We sat in the shade of the outside area, but once the group of ladies celebrating a kitchen tea moved on, we did venture inside to get a better look at what turns out to be quite a spacious restaurant interior.

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The real stars of the show were however the miniature horses roaming around the enclosed field, which Jessica immediately made a beeline for. There are also these two awesomely chilled alpacas wandering about, Lucio and Frost, who are quite curious about anyone that steps into their domain.

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While Jess rather enjoyed having all these animals freely wander about, Emily was of course absolutely terrified – meaning that whenever they would come in close to investigate us, she would tearfully disappear behind my legs faster than what I could blink!

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Apart from the animals roaming about, the expansive field also houses a wooden obstacle course as well as a wooden jungle gym. However, the star of the field is without a doubt the foofy slide (or zipline as it is otherwise known), which at the end of the day provided at least an hour’s worth of entertainment (if not more) to the girls! (More pics in a follow up post!)

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So yes, as you might imagine, the girls and I ended up spending quite a bit of time at Vredenbosch on the day. In other words, a good find indeed!

Here it is on the map in case you think your kids might also like to give it a go:

Related Link: Vredenbosch Restaurant

Playball Certificate Evening (2015-11-19) Photo Gallery 19 NOV 2015

One of the best extramural activities that we ever enrolled Jessica into at Vergeet-My-Nie playschool has to be without a shadow of a doubt Playball.

IMG_20151119_173141 playball signage

Established in 1986 (and offered in numerous countries), Playball is essentially a sports coaching system for children between the ages of 2-8.

The primary objectives are to improve basic movement and sports-related skills, but at the same time to also develop kids’ cognitive abilities and group social skills.

Each age group has a specific programme which is adhered to, and with this evening’s certificate ceremony done and dusted, Jessica has now progressed through two of these levels during her time at Vergeet-My-Nie.

(Next year she is off to Gordon’s Bay Primary, which is of course a whole new kettle of fish!)

IMG_20151119_173805 jessica balancing on playball kids obstacle course

In terms of the programmes that she’s now done:

Ages 3+ Programme: This program covers the following basic areas and provides a sound foundation for the next age group.

1. Introduction to basic ball skills.
2. Development of student’s enjoyment for sport.
3. Confidence to participate in sporting activities.
4. Social integration with other students.
5. Development of concentration.

The emphasis is on having fun and playing games with a ball so that the child’s first introduction to sport is a happy and positive one.

Ages 4+ Programme: This program covers the sections listed below and provides students with a solid grounding and a basic competence in ball skills. The children are exposed to a wide variety of different skills in each lesson. It is in this stage that they have the opportunity to practice the skills more rigorously developing competence.

1. Development of a wide variety of ball skills.
2. Emphasis on individual participation.
3. Overcoming the fears that dis-encourage sports participation.
4. Introduction to organized ball skill activities.

IMG_20151119_182640 chantelle and jessica lotter

Already behind in terms of physical prowess thanks to her prematurity, Jessica has benefitted immensely from this very structured programme of play, and I am thoroughly impressed at just how much her motor skills have improved thanks to all the hard work from the great Playball team.

In other words, if you have the opportunity then I would definitely recommend enrolling your kids into something like this! :)

Related Link: Playball