Bits and Pieces

Apologies upfront for the bad quality photo’s in this post.

Pete and I enjoyed a lovely few days on a road trip away where I touched a 1000 year old yellow wood tree in the Tsitsikamma Forest…

Big Tree 00001

Imagine the stories this tree could tell!

and ran on a treadmill in a hotel gym for the first time.  I know, country bumpkin I am.  I haven’t had a gym membership for the better part of 2 decades and don’t live anywhere near a gym (great excuse) so until now, road/trail running has been it.


Look at me go!

We also visited (sorry no pics) a wine estate in the hopes of getting some brut rosé bubbly but alas – it was insultingly expensive.  We thought it was due to there being a wine festival that weekend but on chatting with family and friends who have all visited wine estates over the last few years, all said that purchasing wines at local stores in all our provinces is much cheaper than buying directly from an estate!  That makes no sense.

The lovely Cristina over at The Blog Around The Corner , who writes about everything that inspires her from interior design, to travelling, cooking and photography awarded me the Versatile Blogger Award.  Thanks again Cris, it was such a lovely surprise receiving the award from you. 🙂

The time had come to get rid of my beloved car as she was getting a little long in the tooth and to invest in a new one.

5 series

We enjoyed many happy miles together.  I will miss her.


All new and sparkly. This is a pic from the brochure – mine is far too dirty from playing on dirt roads yesterday to have her photo taken but looks exactly like this when clean.

There hasn’t been must to share on the cooking front, the cooler weather has necessitated comfort food. so we have been indulging in all our favourites – oxtail casserole, vetkoek and curried ground beef, braai’s (barbecues) and roast dinners.

I promise to share something tasty next week.

42 thoughts on “Bits and Pieces

  1. Go girl! I don’t have the guts to run on a treadmill! I reckon I’d come off for sure. Love the story about the tree!

  2. I can tell that you are FLYING on that treadmill! Why pay for a gym membership when you got a free road to run on? I always get so annoyed with my doctors who ask me if I get exercise…it’s usually men who have a wife or housekeeper and someone to take care of their yards so they think that the only place to get exercise is inside a smelly room.
    That’s quite a tree and reminds me of the great redwoods in California. Pretty amazing.
    Love your new wheels. You guys have really long license plate numbers though! Who could ever remember their plate number? We only have 6 letters/numbers and when I check into a hotel and the ask my plate number I just roll my eyes – like I go around memorizing my plate number right? Too many other things clogging up my brain.

    • Diane, you are always so kind, thank you so much for your love. Must say I really loathed the smell of a gym and the thought of everybody else’s sweat just makes my skin crawl! I would love to go to a redwood forest – the are the most impressive trees. I have never really thought about how long our number plates are and funny enough just this morning I updated our document with all our important info with our vehicles registrations as I never know what they are.
      Pete has hurt his knee quite badly – an old injury rearing its ugly head so he is not able to run with me at the moment, we did however go for a lovely long walk this afternoon and I thought of you.
      Hope you are having a nice rest day today. Have a wonderful week ahead. 🙂 xoxo

      • I’m sorry to hear about Pete’s knee…um if he needs a new one I’ve got a great surgeon for him over here and you could book the suite to stay with him. I think knees are much harder to recover from than hips and I can tell you after yesterday’s PT, the muscles around my knees are quivering. Lot of work getting these muscles back in shape but I’m determined to be playing tennis next year.

        • Imagine if we could come over for your surgeon to sort Pete’s knee out. You and I could sit chatting for days on end while he is recovering.
          It is scary how long the body takes to recovery after surgery. I know you are doing a stellar job with your exercising so you will be back in the swing of things soon.
          Have a beautiful weekend Diane. 🙂 xo

          • I think you would really enjoy the Boston area. I’m seeing the surgeon today for my post surgery follow up and X-rays. I’m sure he’ll tell me it’s fine to drive again…oops maybe I shouldn’t have been doing that for the past 3 weeks but I’m not exactly on a bus line out here. I once had a physical therapist explain to me that the amount of time for full recovery of muscles is pretty close to the time you haven’t been able to use them. I’ve just started on my stationery bike though, so trying to push it along a little faster.

          • Please do let me know how it goes after your appointment, I bet the doc will be surprised at how well you have been getting on post op. Seems you are as patient as me with recovery. I always seem to do too much before I should but can’t help myself, or should I say I do help myself. 🙂 How interesting to learn about muscle recovery, thanks for that. Have a beautiful weekend. xoxo

  3. O, the 1000 year old tree is pure magic.
    What would it say? What stories would it tell?
    Great photo of you on the treadmill, Mandy!
    Love the BMW! xxxxxxxxxx KISS from DULUTH.

    • Isn’t the tree just magical! If I could hear just one years worth of it’s stories – I could sit forever at the base of its trunk documenting it all – oh that would be fun!
      Aww, thank honey, wasn’t so sure how good an idea it was posting the pic on the treadmill, so you have just made me feel better about it.
      Oh I am going to miss my dear old BMW – quite something driving a “truck” now. hee hee.
      Love and hugs to you across the oceans. xoxoxo

    • Hi Cheri – yellow woods used to be used for masts for boats many years ago because they grow very straight. We have two in our garden and look so very different as they don’t have to fight through the canopy of a forest for light. Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by. 🙂 xo

    • Oh my goodness! I have just noticed the typo in my last line! So very sorry about that Laura. Thank you for picking up on it. I have just corrected it to say Tasty and not Nasty!
      Have a wonderful day. 🙂 xo

  4. Thank you so much for your kind word! I’m glad that you accept the award! Love your blog! I’ve never been in Tsitsikamma Forest, must be gorgeous .. My best experience of this type was in Yosemite three years ago… I have great memories of this. Have a great day! See ya!Cris

    • I absolutely love being in a forest. I could easily visit every week if I had they were closer to where we live.
      Thank you for your kind words Cris. Have a super weekend. 🙂 xo

  5. That tree is huuuge! They say you could its age by counting the rings on its trunk! Treadmill won’t feel as natural as a lovely walk or run in the woods 🙂

    Gourmet Getaways

    • I wish I could capture the tree in one shot but alas it is far too big. Pete tried to take a video but it also does not really reflect is magnificence. Pete and I will definitely return for a run through the forest – soon I hope! Have a beautiful weekend Julie. 🙂 xo

  6. I’m just going to guess you mean to share something Tasty next week, though the thought of something Nasty invites all sorts of deliriously Frankensteinian speculation! 😉 In any event, I look forward to every post, and this one was after all very newsy!! Congratulations on your new car, and I understand the sorrow at parting with a longtime faithful automotive friend; we had to give our ca. 500,000 km car up when we moved to TX (had no air conditioning, among other things!). At least that one we gave to our nephews, who managed to put another couple of years into it. Your new baby looks like it’ll serve very well indeed, and if the past weekend is any example, I expect you’ll have many fine adventures together!! Cheers to that! I’ll toast you with a nice brut rosé bubbly, but only if I can buy it from the local grocers’ and not the estate!!! 😉
    Lots of hugs from here, and wishing you a fabulous week,

    • Oh my goodness! Talk about a slip of the finger! Yes, absolutely indeed I meant to say Tasty! Good reminder to proof read before publishing.
      Oh heavens, the thought of no aircon is a bit stressful at this stage of life – especially with the hormones playing games already. How lovely to have kept your old faithful in the family a few more years.
      How lovely to have you be my proxy with the bubbly – thanks Kath! 😀
      Love and hugs to you and may you have a wonderful weekend. 🙂 xoxoxo

  7. Look how fabulous you look Mandy! So impressed you went to the gym on your road trip. Now that takes dedication! What a fabulous old tree you saw too. You’re right, imagine the stories it could tell. That might be a cool book idea!

    • Kristy, you are far too kind, thank you! You have made my day. 😀 I have missed running the past couple of days and I am starting to get very antsy although the colder weather is not much help. Have a wonderful weekend. 🙂 xo

  8. I love your new car. We’re also eating a lot of comfort foods around here. I haven’t run on a treadmill for a very long time but I’m thinking of joining a gym so I can run on a smooth surface that’s not jarring xx

    • Thanks Charlie! I loved the treadmill – think I could easily get used to it, especially in winter. Getting out on the road is getting harder and harder with the colder weather settling in. I hope your knees are okay. Have a happy weekend. 🙂 xo

  9. You are fabulous on the treadmill, reminds me that I should pick it some exercise 😛
    Love the wonderful photos of the infinity tree (I name things :P)

    Choc Chip Uru

  10. You ran on a treadmill? #allhailMandy #greatrunningform Far out girl, that’s impressive! They frighten the life out of me, it’s just not right the ground moving under you like that. Now, Im no gump, actually pretty agile on my feet, but for some reason, I always overstep and hit the front bit, get the wobbles up … Argh, nope, no deal! Loving your new wheels, so hip, for some reason I imagined you in a car like your new one, not at all like your old girl. Crazy!

    It’s exactly like that here in Aus, its far cheaper to purchase from a supermarket or online than it is to buy direct at the cellar door. Super weird, you’d think that they would make it worth your while visiting right?

    Bet it was fun to pat a 1000yr old tree. Hope you gave it a big hug, that thing has done well surviving all these years, must have some magic in it somewhere. 🙂

    Wishing you a wonderful fun filled week my lovely Mandy. Happy hellos to your daddy and to Pete too. Hugs across the oceans. xxx

    • I was also worried about the whole treadmill thing – then again not having been on one before I was blissfully in the “unaware” state. Hmm, wonder what will happen the next time – I will probably go flying off the back like a rocket. Bwahahaha. Imagine Pete capturing that one on camera!
      What is it with these darn estates! At least in store I can view loads of different estates with one visit. 😉
      I desperately wanted to hug the old tree but alas they have a railing around her trunk. I hugged loads of others though. I’m sure people must think I am barking mad, oh well.
      Have yourself a beautiful love filled happy weekend my dear Anna. My Pete and mommy are both driving back to the big city of Johannesburg today. Poor daddy has been on his own for 3 weeks whilst mommy has been visiting here and my Pete is off to Nigeria for 3 weeks. Not nice. I think I shall have to crack a bottle of bubbly to ease my sorrows. 🙂 xoxoxo

      • Hahaha… Barking mad! #treepuns 😜
        Oh no, that stinks the fam bam are leaving you all alone, hope the bubbles eased the pain.
        Not gonna lie though, it does sound very exciting Pete heading off to Nigeria for a few weeks, although I’m sure that’s the equivalent of us here in Aus going to New Zealand, but to have access to so many places… oh how I can’t wait for a visit, to share your beautiful country… Yep, SUPER exciting.

        • Bubbly always seem to improve any situation. 😀
          Soo…when can I start counting sleeps? Oh how long can you stay for? Have you planned your trip yet? Do you know where all you want to go? Okay, okay, I will stop. xoxoxo

  11. It dawned on me that you hadn’t posted for a while – just seems I am not getting the updates 😦 WIll unsubscribe and then resubscribe, see if that helps! Love the car 🙂

    • Oh no! I wonder why you are not getting my updates any more. Hate when things don’t work like they should. Hope resubscribing helps. Have a beautiful weekend Tanya. 🙂 xo

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