Saturday, 29 December 2012

CHRISTMAS!




I love Christmas – it is by far my favourite holiday of the year.   For me, Christmas signifies so many wonderful things: the summer sun, spending quality time with family and friends, and a much-needed break after a long year.   In the Tennent household, the job of choosing the colour scheme and decorations for the year always falls on me ... and I love it!   I am a firm believer that you shouldn’t use the same old decorations year after year, and one of my favourite things to do is planning how I am going to decorate our Christmas tree and table.   This year's colours were pink, blue, and silver - awesome right?!   I've posted some pics so you can check out the decor as well as marvel at how awesome my Christmas was!





    

Friday, 21 December 2012

Toad in the Hole




I heard this great story on the radio that I thought you’d like.   On Tuesday a woman was shopping in Mr Price Home in Cavendish, Cape Town with the intent of buying a Christmas present.   She was looking at a ceramic candle holder when she noticed that there was something poking out of the hole at the bottom where the barcode usually is.   After calling the shop’s manager and further inspection, lo and behold, the unidentified object was actually a frog’s leg!   

Luckily, the staff at Mr Price Home called the Cape of Good Hope SPCA and the candle holder was carefully broken.   Sitting amongst the ceramic shards was a perfectly big, perfectly alive Asian Gold Toad.   Since the candle holder was made in China, it is guessed that this is where the toad came from, meaning that it had spent at least 3 months inside its ceramic casing!

Apparently, many amphibians are able to live for months at a time without food or water – a survival tactic employed to deal with situations such as drought ... or getting stuck in a candle holder.   Thanks to the SPCA, the toad is fine and is being well fed and watered until it gets handed over to Cape Nature.   Now that’s an awesome Christmas story if you ask me!

For more information about this post, visit the Cape of Good Hope’s Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/CapeofGoodHopeSPCA?ref=ts&fref=ts.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Cherry Christmas!


I love cherries.   They are, without a doubt, my favourite fruit and one of the main things that I adore about the Christmas season.   Every December, I find myself scouring the shelves of Woolworths in search of an incredibly over-priced but oh-so-worth-it punnet of cherries, which I inevitably will end up devouring all in one sitting.   It is for this reason that one of the items on my ever-growing bucket list is to go cherry picking – something that can now be ticked off.

This weekend 6 of us packed up our cars with clothes and camping gear and set off for Klondyke’s Cherry Farm, which lies about 35 kms outside of Ceres.   Ever since I heard about cherry picking earlier this year, I have been determined to organise a road-trip with some friends and my plans finally came together.   The cheapest form of accommodation was camping (something that I had never done before this weekend), and so we rustled up some tents and sleeping bags and hit the road.   Little did we know that as camping trips go, we were pretty un-prepared having only brought one torch between the 6 of us and no camping mattresses.   Needless to say it was a weekend of limited sleep, sore backs, crashing into things, and dirty feet but it was still one of the best trips ever!

You know how everybody has their own mental image of paradise?   Well Klondyke’s cherry orchard is now mine.   I have never before seen so many cherries all in the same place.   The trees were full of them and this glorious fruit hung off the branches like rubies sparkling in the sun.   We spent the first few minutes with empty containers and bulging mouths, and then took full advantage of the abundance of bright red cherries that surrounded us.   At only R40 per kg of cherries picked, we didn’t hold back and came home with a cooler box full of fruit.

So now that I have inspired you to visit Klondyke’s yourself, here is what you need to know.   Cherry season usually starts in the last week of November and ends in the middle of December.   Because we camped, we didn’t have to pay to visit the orchard, but for day visitors the entrance fee is R20 per person and R40 per kg of cherries you pick.   There are 1kg containers available for visitors, or you can bring your own that will be weighed along with your cherries.   If you are planning on staying at Klondyke’s, it is a good idea to book in advance as even the campsite fills up very quickly in cherry season.   

If you need any other information about Klondyke's, visit them at www.cherryfarm.co.za.

Thanks to everybody who made this weekend so amazing - Cherry Christmas my awesome friends .x.



Monday, 3 December 2012

SEW exciting!



Thanks to my awesome and generous parents, I am now the proud owner of my very own Bernette sewing machine!   Technically it’s a Christmas present, but I need as much practice as I can get and so today I decided to try her out for the first time.   And let’s just say that I have a long way to go!   I can imagine that the confusion and bewilderment that I felt today must be similar to how a person feels when using a computer for the first time, and I could feel myself losing woman points with every wrong stitch.   As a friend of mine pointed out, it’s funny how back in the day every female worth her salt knew how to sew, and yet it in this day and age it feels like a completely foreign concept to so many of us.

I remember back in primary school being outraged that the boys got to do woodwork while us girls were forced to be domestic and learn needlework instead.   As a kid, I was always in my dad’s garage making wooden planes and learning how to saw, and so the thought of being cooped up in a stuffy sewing room with scraps of fabric and a formidable needlework teacher left me less than enthused.   We didn’t even have electric sewing machines, but the ones that you wound with a handle, and yet I still succeeded in messing up every project that I attempted.   It was probably at the point when my teacher grabbed my latest assignment (which was meant to be a wall-hanging), threw it on the ground, and screamed “the only thing this would be good for is as a floor rag!” that I lost any hope of ever being any good at sewing.

But now, some 12 years later (wow, that makes me feel old!) I am trying again.   Being a serious shorty, I always have to have trousers and skirts turned up anyway and so I may as well learn how to do this myself.   Armed with my beautiful Bernette, a positive attitude, and a desire to make my own clothes, I am determined to succeed!   Wish me luck!   

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Curly hair is a MISSION



For those of you who have never met me  - or haven’t bothered to peruse my profile page (shame on you!) – I have very long, very thick, and very curly hair with which I have a serious love-hate relationship.   On the one hand, I love the fact that my hair is awesome and makes me stand out and look unique.   But on the other hand, curly hair is a mission to handle, expensive to maintain, and an all round pain.
  
The trick to dealing with curly hair is learning what works best for you, and one thing that I find definitely helps tame my locks is making sure that they are trimmed on a regular basis.   In East London this was no problem, but when I moved to Cape Town I was shocked to discover how much hairdressers expected me to pay for them to simply snip 2cm of hair off my head!
Luckily, I have amazing taste in friends and when fellow curly-haired Camilla heard my cries of woe, she selflessly offered to cut my hair for me free of charge!   (Ok, so it was actually in exchange for a drink, but let’s not split hairs.)   The first time Cam cut my hair, it was in her flat and the whole procedure went off without a hitch.   And so last week, when I felt that it was time for another trim, I didn’t even hesitate to ask my super-talented friend if she’d be willing to once again offer me her services.   Little did I know that things would not go quite as smoothly as before!

Now before you all start jumping to conclusions, the hair-cutting itself did not pose any problems.   In fact, Cam sheared my locks so expertly that I have a sneaking suspicion that she has other hidden talents that I don’t know about!   No, the issue arose when it came to disposing of the cut hair.   Luckily, we’d had the fore-sight to put down a towel before hand, however I had no clue how to rid the towel of my hair without spreading it all over my flat in the process.   So Cam suggests that I throw it out the window and I, without a moment’s hesitation, did exactly that.

The morning passed without either of us giving my discarded locks a second thought, until the moment came when I decided to stick my head out of my window so as to soak up a bit of sun.   And then I looked down and, lo and behold, there sat my shorn tresses in a great big pile ... a pile that had landed on top of my neighbours’ very shiny and very new baby blue Vespa!   Oh yes, the great big mound of curly awesomeness shone in the sun whilst it lay perched atop the motorbike like some kind of hairy crown.  
 
Obviously I couldn’t leave my hair there – what if my outraged neighbours found it and used it in some kind of weird voodoo ritual?   No, it was clear that it had to be got rid of.   And so, armed with a dish-towel and a giggling partner in crime, I made my way downstairs and out to the garden only to discover that my neighbours were home.   The newly-christened Vespa was parked outside an open window and it was obvious that I would be spotted.   And so I did what any sane person would do... I got on my hands and knees and leopard-crawled my way to the Vespa with the sounds of Camilla’s laughter in the background.   After a few minutes of frantic wiping of the motorbike, I grabbed the offending chunk of hair and quickly made my way back in the same manner in which I had come.

So what can we learn from this experience?   1) Always look out of the window before chucking out your cut hair.   2) Cam is a noisy sidekick.   And 3) Curly hair is a MISSION.