Last minute weekend escape


The noisy guitarist & I had a last minute weekend away this past weekend to his parents farm near Ermelo. I didn’t make it to the Exclusive Books warehouse sale but the weekend away was a welcome change of scenery and a very relaxing weekend. I have been spending my Saturday mornings looking at cars for the past five weeks, I greatly enjoyed getting out of Jo’burg and not spending my Saturday test driving cars!

Here are some photos from a weekend including a few photos of the two wild cats on the farm. Photo credit to the noisy guitarist for this sunset photo of us while going for an evening walk on Saturday. I also picked up a porcupine quill on the walk, hopefully next time I will see a real porcupine, that would be thrilling!

Spying on the wild cats on the farm:

Spotted a Ginger Ninja cat



Exclusive Books Mega Warehouse sale!


I have just seen that Exclusive Books is having a warehouse sale which is starting this Friday 9th March until Sunday 18th March. I haven’t been to one before but I have heard that there are great bargains to be found at these warehouse sales.

The books are sold per kg with it being R50 per kg. That sounds to be even cheaper than the bi-annual Exclusive Books sale prices!

In January I bought some books from the Exclusive Books sale as I mentioned here so I should be all booked out! I have also run out of book shelf space in my little house but this is very tempting! 

Here is the poster and the link to read more along with a map on the Exclusive Books blog site.

Let me know what you pick up from the sale. 

– Speurder Linda



The start of my recycling my food waste into food for soil


I am very excited, I now have my own Bokashi digester bin!

I am very happy that my food waste will now longer go in the bin but in the Bokashi/Earth Probiotic bin in this way, my dustbin won’t smell as the food rots, I will reduce my impact on the landfills and I will be generating food for the soil to help my vegetable garden grow with these nutrients I will be providing. The liquid that accumulates can also be used to clean out drains which is certainly needed in my little house.

There are many very interesting tips and articles on the Earth Probiotic website: Look on the Earth Probiotic website for stockists.

It seems to be an extremely easy system to use and very compact. I am currently keeping mine in the garage for easy access. 

I have already added some left over mielies, peas, broken up left over roll that had gone hard and a few other items. I was also keen to find out that the food scraps ferment in the Bokashi and don’t rot so there isn’t smelly moldy or rotten smell that will come off. It has only been two days but it smells a little like yeast so far. 

I think this Bokashi system could be very useful for many homes. I was glad to see that hotels and guest houses are now using it too. I am sure it will make a great difference to my life too.

I will update the blog with my progress.

Hope you are all having a super Monday!


– Speurder Linda

Lilic roses to brighten my day


Whew this has been an up and down day, productive in terms of getting the design brief approved and getting work done, new dishwashing powder didn’t foam up my whole kitchen which is fantastic but less positive in the repeated way I have been treated and under valued as a customer by Renault Melrose (Johannesburg).

But my energy has been re-stored, listening to Bruce Springsteen while I do stock take for Nature’s Cycle. The Boss is sure to make everyone feel positive again! I will continue to work smart then will go off for a run this evenings. What a beautiful city in which I live.

Look at these gorgeous lilic roses I bought last night from a street side flower seller on the way back from pottery.

Personally I do prefer growing plants to cut plants but  I was worried that he would lose money if he hadn’t sold them by the end of the day. I know he needs the money and can benefit from it.

I am also glad to see someone trying to sell items particularly beautiful flowers rather than just begging. You never know he might have a genuine interest in flowers and in a few years open a florist. 

I gave four of the roses to my mom and gave four more to the security guards to the entrance to the boomed entrance at my road. I hope it can brighten their  day as well or for them to be able to give it to their wives/girlfriends and in turn spread the joy. 

Here are the roses I kept for myself in a glass vase to brighten my desk – note the photo was taken of the vase on the floor, that isn’t my desk! 

In South Africa we are very lucky to be exposed to entrepreneurs, artists, budding businessmen and crafters on many street corners. Some of the wire work sold at the traffic lights is magnificent. The wire proteas that are sold are beautiful. 

– Speurder Linda


Gardening Sunday


I hope everyone has had a good Sunday.

I spent a few hours gardening this afternoon in my small vegetable patch nestled between the rose bushes (no joke!). I planted spring onions, sweet potatoes, red onions and also finally planted the Lemon Verbena I had bought last month. I also harvested a few more potatoes bringing the total number of potatoes harvested from my patch of land to 155!

I am loving spending time in the garden planting the vegetable seedlings I bought. I have been reading up about companion planting as well as how different plants and herbs have an effect upon pest control. Urban gardening does seem to be experiencing a revival.

I will post photos once the tiny vegetable garden has started to take shape.

I can just imagine the noisy guitarist from my bedroom commenting on my ‘farmstress‘ skills. Well I hope it is skills as my basil is dying, I cannot understand it. The leaves are starting to go yellow and it is not growing at all. I cannot understand it.

Here is a photo of my rose succulent I bought and planted in the square pottery container I made last year at my old pottery class. It is growing very well, I am so excited watching it grow! I have made another round terra-cotta pot plant container, I should be able to bring it home tomorrow evening after pottery class.

I recently found out about Michael Pollan, highly recommend reading his books. Genius! His ‘Food Rules’ book is next on my must buy wish list.

I love this quote of his that I found online:

The garden suggests there might be a place where we can meet nature halfway. – Michael Pollan

I came across this recipe on Alicia Silverstone’s Kind Life website for Red Quinoa salad which looks delicious.I hope to try make it myself this week. Quinoa is an excellent source of protein for vegetarians like me.

Red Quinoa salad from Alicia Silverstone's The Kind Life

Hold thumbs I will get my car back from repairs on Tuesday! Although I had thought I was going to get it back on Thursday or at least Friday last week. Customer service from Renault Melrose is non existent!

– Speurder Linda

Preparing for a Valentine’s day picnic


I hope everyone is having a wonderful Valentine’s Tuesday. 

I bought myself a spring form pan and mixing bowls yesterday afternoon, I am excited to have my own spring form pan to not have to borrow from my mom all the time.

Now I can do my baking in my own little kitchen!

I am busy baking and cooking treats in preparation for a Valentine’s picnic!

Watch this space, I’m trying out lots of new recipes, I hope they work out.

The noisy guitarist from my bedroom & I are going to the Walter Sisulu botanical gardens for a picnic this afternoon. 

I came across this Pueble Indian prayer ‘Hold On’ last week which I enjoyed. Enjoy the rest of your day.

Speurder Linda

Hold on to what is good,
Even if it’s a handful of earth.
Hold on to what you believe,
Even if it’s a tree that stands by itself.
Hold on to what you must do,
Even if it’s a long way from here.
Hold on to your life,
Even if it’s easier to let go.
Hold on to my hand,
Even if someday I’ll be gone away from you.
– “Hold On,” A Pueblo Indian Prayer

Flashback to Madeline


By chance I caught ETV showing the movie version of one of my favourite childhood story books which brought back such memories.  I had forgotten about Madeline but goodness gosh how I loved the Madeline books! 

I must’ve taken them out of the library tens of times and watched the animated programs on tv many times as a child. The noisy guitarist from my room even asked if I learnt my eccentricities through reading Madeline on repeat on so many occasions, this was when  we were watching the scene of Madeline befriending the chicken in the car then proceeding to refuse to eat roast chicken that night at dinner after naming the chicken Fred. I give animals a name (Peter for spiders etc) too but I am not sure if it is due to reading Madeline. 

Which titles were your favourite books when growing up? I believe that it is vital to encourage reading amongst children and read to them very regularly even from when they are babies. 

I bought seven books from the Exclusive Books sale this afternoon after a delicious lunch at Food Lovers Market, now to relax and enjoy the approaching thunder storm.

What delightful treats! Hope you can also find some gems at the Exclusive Books sale, Fanatics members get 10% off the sale price today and tomorrow. 

In case you were wondering, the 5 km running race I completed this morning was excellent, I met lots of new people and the noisy guitarist from my bedroom completed a great 21 km running race.

Although a low point was the litter. Shocking! It was very upsetting and frustrating to see how many people littered during the run and afterwards.

They took their coke / waters from the outstretched hands of the kind volunteers then proceeded to discard on the ground after drinking it when there were plenty of bins around. I picked up as much as I could after the race but hundreds of waste items remained. When is this mentality going to change?

The finishing line and surrounding areas was covered with plastic and paper. I find it very shocking how lazy South Africans are regarding disposing of waste.  

I hope everyone is having a splendid weekend! Thanks for reading.

Off now to inhale this delicious thunder storm air and enjoy the storm.

Speurder Linda