Hermanus mini-break

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I mentioned in the gratitude list before last that Mark had planned a surprise for me that weekend.

We have a favourite hotel in Hermanus called Misty Waves and I had been hinting to hubby that I’d like to visit again soon.  We often go there for birthdays and last Christmas we spent 5 stunning days there relaxing and soaking up the sun.

So Saturday dawned and bright and early we made our way to Hermanus.  Hubby then told me he’d booked us a night in the penthouse and I was over the moon!

We had breakfast at The Bistro and then walked around before having a couple drinks at Tapas.

When it was time to check in we made our way to the hotel.

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This was the view from our balcony.  The weather was beautiful 🙂

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The bedroom and bathroom was so spacious and luxurious.  I felt instantly relaxed when we arrived!

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We were treated to a wine of our choice which was such a thoughtful touch.

We enjoyed it along with some cheese and biscuits on our balcony while we soaked up the view.

Misty Waves has a cinema and the rugby was showing that evening so Mark booked us a spot.  What an exciting match it was!

The next morning we enjoyed a delicious breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant.

We took some fun pics around the pool.

It was another beautifully sunny day and we took another walk around before making our way home.

I love surprises like this and need to plan one for Mark now 🙂

xx

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Friday musings

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This week was a good one.  Had an awesome date night with Hubby on Tuesday.  I went to gym and started running again.  Ate healthy meals.  Slept better than I have in months.  The scale took note of me putting my running shoes on and not eating a packet of biscuits just because it was in the kitchen cupboard.

So all in all it was good.  And it is about to get better because today is Friday and the weekend is exactly 2 hours and 10 minutes away.

Each Friday Lindsay http://theflynnigans.com/ Charlotte http://mypixieblog.com/ and Beth http://www.thebethnextdoor.com/  host a link up called What’s up weekend?  Bloggers take stock of what made them happy during the week and it is a wonderful way to start the weekend as we share our gratitude lists.

This week I have lots to list, so let me get started:

  • An amazing time in Hermanus – stayed in the penthouse at our favourite hotel on Saturday night.  I’ll do a post next week but in the meantime will say I am grateful for the lovely getaway Mark planned for us.
  • 2 x 30 minute runs after work this week.
  • Date night with my love on Tuesday
  • Doing a guest post on Lecy’s blog https://asimplergrace.blogspot.co.za/2017/11/asg-creative-corner-anthea.html

This was the first time I was a guest on a blog 🙂  Lecy explained everything perfectly and it was wonderful to share something creative with other bloggers.

  • Wednesday evening was just one filled with contentment. Did grocery shopping and came home and chilled on the bench in our garden.
  • Mark planted a tree in our garden and it finishes it off perfectly.
  • Hot chocolate – yes I know it is summer but I love hot drinks all year round
  • Getting more sleep. Haven’t been sleeping great and it was wonderful waking up feeling refreshed rather than utterly exhausted.
  • The wonderful blogging community that I’ve been fortunate to join. When I started my blog it was just a little creative space for me and I feel so blessed to have gotten to know fellow bloggers in the process.
  • Healthier meals this week.  Been experimenting with different vegetable and chicken stir-fry combinations – delicious.

Hubby and I are going out for dinner tonight, tomorrow we are having a braai and I’ve got shopping with a friend on Sunday so a good weekend is just waiting for 4:00pm to roll around.

What are you grateful for this week?

xx

A trip to paradise – our Sun City and Pilanesberg National Park adventure

Last month Mark and I had a super holiday in Sun City and enjoyed hours in Pilanesberg National Park which is an amazing place to visit.  I’ve finally downloaded my pics so I can share them in a post.

We flew to Lanseria on a Saturday and stayed in a stunning B & B in Rustenburg for 2 nights.

Each day we drove to Pilanesberg National Park which was 45 minutes away.  We spotted elephants, lions, giraffes, zebra, warthogs, kudu, wildebeest and numerous birds (our lifer list is currently 217!) and kept hoping we’d see a leopard.

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On the Monday (after a delicious breakfast) we set off for Pilanesberg and saw many beautiful animals but the leopard continued to elude us.  We went to check in at Sun City, went to the shops to get supplies for our braai and wondered if we should return to the Park before coming back for supper.

Were we glad we did!  Our first sighting of a leopard took place that evening (around 5:20pm) and it was out of this world.  I was speechless at this magnificent creature and hubby positioned our car perfectly which meant that this male leopard walked directly up to our car.  After pausing he stopped within 2 metres of our vehicle before he walked away from us towards some trees.  The sighting must have been a few seconds but time stood still as we just watched this majestic member of the big five.  I am so grateful that hubby grabbed his camera and took this amazing picture (albeit with shaking hands).

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That evening we had a braai on our balcony (Sun City has great self-catering apartments at the Vacation Club) and just sat re-living the amazing moment of finally seeing a leopard!

Tuesday brought with it more beautiful sightings in Pilanesberg.  We had brunch at Lost City Golf Course, walked around and soaked up the holiday atmosphere.

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The Gary Player Country Club was gearing up for the Nedbank Golf Challenge but the salon and spa were still open.  I decided to treat myself to a new hairdo while we were there.

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We were so lucky with the weather – it was hot every day – we were so glad we’d packed accordingly as the weather was still chilly in Cape Town when we’d left.

Later in the week we spotted Cheetahs which was magnificant!  Another early morning drive brought with it a lion which ran directly towards our car!  Sightings wise this was our best holiday to this amazing place.

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There is so much to do at Sun City – we visited Valley of the Waves, the Casino, walked around the Lost City golf course and then post afternoon drives in Pilanesberg we chilled on our balcony with a drink and enjoyed a braai.  There are loads of restaurants, 2 golf courses, many shops, a maze, a crocodile farm, cinemas, a spa and hair salon, putt-putt and of course all the game drives and outdoor activities on offer.

We left on the Friday afternoon after lunch at Lost City and made our way to the airport.  It was a fantastic holiday and we cannot wait to return.

xx

All images are copyrighted to Anthea Booysen 

Weekly catch up and gratitude list

Hello Friday.  You certainly took your time.  I’ve required vast amounts of tea, patience and – well lets be honest – wine but I’m really glad you’ve rocked up and will be bringing the weekend in a few hours.

Each Friday Lindsay http://theflynnigans.com/ Charlotte http://mypixieblog.com/ and Beth http://www.thebethnextdoor.com/  host a link up called What’s up weekend?  Bloggers take stock of what made them happy during the week and it is a wonderful way to start the weekend as we share our gratitude lists.

  • Awesome weekend. Delicious breakfasts out, long drives, a nap and chilling with hubby. Bliss.
  • I sorted out our wardrobe – moved the winter clothes so there is space for the summer ones. Looks so organised and I’ll be honest I feel rather smug everytime I open the doors and see everything folded and hung neatly.
  • Fresh linen.
  • Reading with a cup of tea each morning.
  • Started a new gratitude journal this week.
  • Dinner at Cattle Baron on Tuesday evening.
  • Lunch with a work friend on Wednesday.
  • My husband and his endless patience.
  • Mark planning something awesome for us this weekend…..cannot wait for tomorrow.
  • Going back to gym last night and running for 30 minutes – felt exhausted but awesome afterwards.

What is on your list today?

xx

 

Hello Friday

Well it is about time!  I thought Friday would never arrive!  The week started well but won’t go down as my favourite week.  Or anywhere near the top 100.  Still struggling with letting things go, finding it is easier to make mountains out of molehills and reaching for a glass of wine instead of my gym shoes after a long day a couple of times this week.  Not my greatest attempt at adulting.

The weather is warming up here and we had thunder and lightening on Wednesday evening.  I’ve been battling to sleep properly for ages now – I wake up for no reason at odd times and then toss and turn until falling into a deep sleep just before the alarm goes off.  And that is without a storm outside!

So I’m not feeling my greatest at the moment.  I climbed on the scale this morning and promptly climbed off.  Good grief!  The comfort food this week came with a price!

Anyway it is Friday and that means sharing what made me happy this week:

  • Meeting a friend for tea and cake at a beautiful wine farm on Saturday afternoon. We chatted for hours and the time just flew.
  • Breakfast at Fraiche Ayres with hubby.
  • Got so much done on Sunday. Hubby trimmed a tree, we bought new doormats, hand towels and a dishrack. I finally decided on an orchid for the kitchen (each time I got to the shop I tried to choose one and they all look so pretty so I couldn’t decide). We had lunch and then took a long chilled drive before going to Cattle Baron for dinner.
  • Flowers that bounce back in the garden with just a bit of rain.

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  • Making Monday evening a chilled one.  Postponed gym and has a slow and enjoyable evening with a delicious but healthy dinner.
  • That Tuesday went well. It was the anniversary of my Gran passing away and so it was the final ‘first’. For ages I’ve been dreading that day but Tuesday went surprisingly smoothly and I felt a lot calmer than I have in a while. Got such thoughtful and kind messages from friends and I was filled with gratitude. My Gran was an amazing lady and I will always miss her but she has left me with such wonderful memories and for that I’ll always be grateful.
  • Boerewors rolls and chips – comfort food after a long day.
  • Getting on top of the laundry.
  • Wine. Tea can only do so much.
  • Finishing another book so I’m on track for my goal of reaching 40 books by the end of the year.

What is on your gratitude list right now?

xx

Book review: Without you by Saskia Sarginson

Book review

It is 1984 and teenager Eva is missing.  She is presumed drowned after her father and her were caught in a storm while sailing.

Eva’s father survives and the guilt he feels is overwhelming.  Eva’s mother is grieving the loss of Eva but also angry at what happened.  Not being on the boat she has unanswered questions and needs to know why Eva wasn’t wearing a lifejacket.

Eva’s younger sister Faith refuses to accept that her sister has drowned and is determined to prove everyone wrong.

There is an island close by but it is out of bounds.  What nobody knows is that Eva is in one of the deserted buildings being held captive.  She is desperate to escape but it is impossible.

Saskia Sarginson has the ability to describe things so vividly that you feel transported to each scene and like a silent visitor watching the characters.  Readers get to understand how each character is feeling as their story is shared.  Eva’s parents and how they met is described as the book moves back in time and the secret that they kept from Eva is revealed bit by bit.  The grief they feel is heartbreaking – they are experiencing this nightmare together but don’t feel as if they can turn to each other in their darkest hour.

Eva’s experiences as she is held captive is described vividly.  The bleak days and long nights, her hunger, her longing to escape and see her family again.  The comforts of home she remembers are vastly different to the harsh existence out on the island.

Faith watches her parents and is enveloped in the sadness that sits in the household but she is determined not to give up hope.  She believes Eva is alive and just needs to get to the island to save her.

I highly recommend this book and I couldn’t put it down!  Another brilliant page-turner from Saskia Sarginson.

xx