Entertainment, Inspiration, Lifestyle

10 most child friendly places to eat in Hout Bay

September 23, 2016

While on our recent holiday in Houtbay, the number one challenge we were faced with was finding (updated) child friendly eateries in the area.

You only realize how truly valuable this information is once you’re a mom of little tots. The very idea of bringing your busy brood into a fancy restaurant with little place to move, let alone run around, while having to endure the stares and snares from fellow diners, is enough to make any parent cringe with panic.

Usually, we just pop in at The Lookout deck for their amazing fish and chips, but mostly for the view. However, this time we wanted to try somewhere different. Little did we know just how incredibly hard it would be to find  good alternatives.

What a relief when we found Scarecrows on the net! So, we punched in the GPS coordinates and off we drove for brunch; only to get there and learn Scarecrows no longer exist and has now been replaced by Massimo’s, which, by the way, was closed this Sunday afternoon. Wonderful!

Tummies rumbling and frustrated, we headed toward our holiday destination, and stopped at the first restaurant we saw. Just as our luck would have it that day, the place was not child-friendly at all – not even a kiddies menu in sight. We ended up enjoying our meals anyway, because hey, it’s Houtbay, and everyone makes you feel so at home here.

I did however vow to find out exactly where all the sneaky kid-friendly eateries are hiding in the Valley and share them with my fellow fab moms. So, here they are!

Spiro’s 

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Child friendly, family Greek restaurant in the heart of Hout Bay with a fully equipped children’s playroom with a full time child minder. There is also a well balanced kiddies menu to make this a suitable family outing where children are well cared for!
30 Main Road, 7806 Hout Bay
Call: 021 791 3897

Earthworx Garden Cafe

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Cute little restaurant for breakfast and lunch. Great play area for kids and milkshakes!
Corner of Valley and Victoria Road, Hout Bay
Call: 021 790 3033

 

Wharfside Grill Restaurant – Mariner’s Wharf

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Although I couldn’t find it anywhere on the website, I was able to confirm that The Wharfside Grill (On the deck) has a very lovely kiddies menu. Although they don’t have a play area to entertain the kids, I as informed that the waiters are very aptly dressed in sailor attire, which I am sure will keep the kids more than entertained. 
Mariner’s Wharf, Hout Bay Harbour, Hout Bay
Call for bookings: 021 790 1100

Massimo’s

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Oakhurst Farm Park, Main Road, Hout Bay 
Friendly Italian owners, the best Pizza on the Atlantic and a play area for the kids!
Call: 021 790 5648

Snoekies

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Arguably the best fish and chips in Town and at a good price! I have been told by a regular with two kids of her own, that this joint also has the best play area she’s seen. 
Quay 4, Harbour Rd, Hout Bay
Call:  021 790 6677

 

Dunes Beach Restaurant

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Well-known as a family friendly destination, and it has a play ground and kiddies menu with lots to keep the little ones happy. 
1 Beach Rd, Hout Bay
Call: 021 790 1876

 

Valley Farm Stall 

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A place for parents to relax while their children play and have fun. The farmyard is home to ponies, dwarf goats, teacup pigs, bunnies, ducks, geese, turkeys and chickens. Children are allowed to safely interact with the animals under adult supervision.
Valley Road, Hout Bay
Call: 021 790 3803

 

The Lookout Deck

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Sit right above the water’s edge and watch the seals frolick and climb up the stairs of the nearby boats. 
65 Harbour Rd, Hout Bay Harbour
Call: 021 790 0900

 

Bay Harbour Market

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Delicious aromas of braai fish, freshly baked breads and citrus fruits and so much more. You pass a robotic mime drawing gasps from giggling kids as the air is filled with the sound of a township guitarists and a groovy sax …. punctuated by singing seagulls ….
31 Harbour Rd, Hout Bay
Call:  083 275 5586

I hope this was helpful mamas! Please let me now if you discover any other treasures like these 🙂

Love,

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Entertainment, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

Flora Bay Resort: Our Family holiday slash anniversary get-away

September 21, 2016
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This year Lesley and I decided to take all three kids along on our anniversary weekend away and ended up being more excited for them than for us celebrating 6 years of marriage.

To make sure the little ones had as much fun on our three day, two night get-away, we needed to make sure we include all the things they love. First on their list of demands was to make sure we are within walking distance from the beach, thus eliminating mine and Lesley’s usual wine route exploring, and instead we settled for our beautiful Atlantic seaboard. Boy, were we happy we did. We found everything their little hearts desired at Flora bay, nestled neatly between mountain and sea, at the foot of Chapman’s Peak in Houtbay.

This self-service resort isn’t exactly 5 star, but you damn sure get your money’s worth and then some; and what’s more, its an ideal holiday destination for the whole family and boasts a luscious green lawn for the boys to kick some ball, a park and a private beach if the tide is not high. Our kids were this close to abandoning us and moving in for good.

The beach-inspired decor is light and breezy and perfectly suited for the neat rooms all of which are overlooking the bay. You feel right at home from the moment you walk in the door. The linen is clean and crisp and white and we could sleep for days non-stop if it wasn’t for the kids that somehow got it in their evil minds that there will be no sleeping-in on this holiday.

The kitchen is fully stocked if you plan to cook anything in there. The pan non-stick, the fridge ice cold and the microwave small yet powerful. Caution: You may want to take your own coffee along as the three or four complimentary sachets does not get replenished once done. Lucky for us we go nowhere without our Jacobs. However, I wouldn’t be too concerned since the shops and restaurants are just down the road.

The bathroom is right at the front door, but this didn’t bother us at all as it was the first place we headed anyway after a day at the beach. The shower is large, and the water warm. There really is nothing bad to say about the spacious bathroom, other than it did not include a bath.

We stayed in one of three beach front suits – the one with a balcony – this is where I started every day with a cup of steamy coffee and ended those days with a glass of bubbly. The kids loved having their ice-creams there too. There are suits without balconies, so if you are a balcony person such as myself, then you might want to remember this before you check in. The place is a gem and truly has one of the most majestic views in Cape Town.

The master bedroom is upstairs and you literally feel like floating on a cloud while lying down on plush white linen, the sea breeze streaming in and, of cause, the endless ocean view. The kids “room” is downstairs, at the foot of a long flight of stairs. Definitely not ideal for younger kids and although we kept reminding ours about the dangers of falling, they kept climbing anyway and it so became their playground and kept them entertained for hours. We are happy to report no kids were harmed during the making of this holiday.

What we loved most about this arrangement was that Miguel would not sneak into our bed like he does every night at home; maybe because climbing those stairs in the early hours of the morning, while still befell with sleep, must seem like too much of a hassle. Note to self: find a house with a long stairway inside and make kids sleep downstairs.

If stairs is not for your family, flora bay offers many other suits, all with breathtaking views from every angle.

Our first stop when we arrived in Houtbay was Ruggafellas. Not kid-friendly, but their burgers are pretty good.

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I couldn’t get hubby to move from this spot since we arrived 🙂

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On our way to seal Island

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No, they are not actually waving goodbye, like I thought they did

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Where the kids spent most of their time

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Where I spent most of my time!

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Goodnight beautiful Houtbay

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It wasn’t the time alone we were hoping for, but it sure was a memorable and fun holiday!

To Happy Holidays.

Love,

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Books/Movies, Inspiration

The most fabulous moms are readers

September 11, 2016
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How did I even miss national book reading week this year? Answer: most likely because every week is national book reading week in my head.

Not only is the very important activity of reading celebrated by myself since…forever, but the literature bug seems to have also bitten my kids.

Jada’s been asking me to take her to the library ever since she could say the word library. We finally collected her first ever library card just the other day. I haven’t been to one since high school and as soon as we entered the building I was overcome with nostalgia as the sweet sound of silence and the familiar smell of books hit me smack in the face. I’ve forgotten how much I used to love that place. I can only hope J will be as happy there as I was.

Growing up around books has no doubt given me a profound appreciation for reading and is the reason I am always starving for knowledge, am so curious and always want to know more.

Although sadly, my passion for reading has been somewhat pushed aside the last few years because of well…motherhood, I still find myself unable to resist a good book or to pass the bookstore without literally drooling. My addiction can easily be compared to that of a shoe addict, only my weakness (or strength) is books and never goes out of style.

I feel horrible for not always having the time nor energy to read to my kids at bedtime. But if I can’t, you can be damn sure my husband will. And he doesn’t even like to read. Whether or not we love to read, its vital that we make time to read to our kids.

According to the Book Development Council of South Africa, reading statistics show that only 14% of the South African population are active book readers, and a mere 5% of parents read to their children.

Now, I could preach to you about all the benefits reading to your kids have, but I know that’s not necessary. Also, this is not a parenting blog. I’m not telling you how to raise your kids; you’re already doing a great job by doing the best you can. This is however a blog aimed at fabulous moms; and I firmly believe the most fabulous moms not only read to their children at bedtime, but are readers themselves.

Reading starts with us. So I challenge you today to get yourself a book, find a quiet place in a sunlit room in your house while the kids are watching cartoons; or under a tree while they play in the park; or go to the library – I guarantee you will love it and you’ll never want to stop. There really is no better escape from all the crazy in our lives.

We don’t have to love to read, to raise  kids who love to read, but it sure makes the journey a more pleasant one.

I’m currently reading “Everything I never told you” by Celeste Ng and am torn between finishing this book that I cannot seem to put down; completing my portfolio exam that must be in by next week; and being an ever-present parent. I can tell you this, I am still alive. It can be done. I’ll put up my review soon!

Love,

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Entertainment

Win Wine For a Year – Competition

September 9, 2016

Like George Clooney, fine wine simply gets better with age; and if you are anything like me, you appreciate a good glass of vino with your supper every now and then or on chilled weekends catching up with your friends.

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Cybercellar, voted South Africa’s Number 1 Online Wine Shop, is giving away wine for an entire year to one lucky winner. All you have to do to stand a chance is spare a few short minutes of your time and complete the entry form below.

That’s Not All!

If a fabmom reader is the Winner, I am sending you a wine rack worth R500 so you can enjoy your new wine selection in fabulous style. Don’t forget to comment your name below once you’ve entered.

Good luck!!!

HERE”S WHAT YOUR CHOICE OF WINE SAYS ABOUT YOU

Shiraz

You’re sophisticated and fun. You prefer red meat to white meat and definitely aren’t a vegetarian. You enjoy warm weather and love going for long, scenic drives. You can be a tough nut to crack though, and only laugh at jokes if you actually think they’re funny.

Merlot

You’re very genuine and make a great friend. You prefer to stay in than to go out and love hosting small groups at your place. You’re surprisingly competitive and weirdly good at Cards Against Humanity. You like both cats and dogs, but if you had to choose, you’d choose dogs.

Chardonney

You wear your heart on your sleeve. You love warm weather and going to the beach. You also like to pretend you don’t like Taylor Swift, but you secretly love her and listen to her music when you’re driving and/or cooking.

Pinot Noir

You sexy minx, you. You’re mysterious, spicy, and flirtatious. People are naturally attracted to you and your saucy nature. When you’re not busy seducing everyone around you, you enjoy taking long naps with a soft blanket

Moscato

You’re very physically attractive and love to dance. People are attracted to you like a magnet. You love animals and romantic comedies. While you may appear a little like an airhead sometimes, you’re actually very smart and almost always on point.

Riesling

You can be shy at first, but once you warm up to someone you’re full of lively conversation and laughs. You love the hustle and bustle of big cities but appreciate a quiet night at home with a good book. You prefer fruity candies over chocolate ones and cats over dogs.

You’re down to earth and very genuine. People appreciate your intelligence and laid-back demeanor. You’re great in relationships because you’re extremely loyal. On top of all of that you’re also great in bed!

Chanpagne

You know how to enjoy the finer things in life and love any excuse to celebrate. Your choice of champagne reflects your bubbly personality. People love being around you and that works out because you love being surrounded by people! You’re the life of the party.

Sauv Blanc

You love delicious food and seek out new good restaurants wherever you are. You’re generally very calm and put together. You try to stay active but feel guilty that you don’t do yoga more regularly. You prefer the fall to the spring.

Chianti

You’re a very warm and outgoing person. You’re close with your family and fiercely protective of them. You give great hugs but squeeze a little too hard sometimes. You have a favorite restaurant that you go to regularly. You’re a little soft around the middle but it works for you.

(Sources: Buzzfeed.com)

Love,

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Inspiration, Lifestyle

I lost my bravery when I became a mom

September 6, 2016
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Of cause you would think it’s the other way around, that becoming a mother actually makes you braver and more courageous, tough as nails and fearless, gives you nerves of Steele, but every time I pushed out another 3.5 kg from my uterus and gave birth to a precious life, a little bit of my bravery died.

Where first I couldn’t bear to see someone hurt another child, whether physically or emotionally, abused kids has now been added to my long list of phobias. Its a hurt so hard to explain I am unable to put the feeling into words. I am unable to describe the magnitude of the pain that ripples through me when an adult touches a child with anything less than love and tenderness, but if I had to, soul crushing would come close. Heartbroken now seems like a walk in the park.

Almost a year ago I made the mistake to watch the movie Sarah’s key. I cursed my husband throughout the movie for not warning me what it was about. That night I cried and prayed myself to sleep. If you are brave enough and more fearless than me, then you should definitely see it. I knew at the time of watching that it was only a movie, but being a mother, the reality of it became so vivid that I imagined my own kids in those concentration camps. This is what makes motherhood so indescribably hard. You can never again experience anything bad without putting your kids into that same picture.

You call me Superhuman. Supermom. But if I could choose  only one super power, I’d choose to have the ability to keep every child, on this God given planet, safe.

I am scared. Not for MY life and what could happen to ME, but for the well-being and safety of my children. I realise I’ve started praying more often and with more conviction since the day my first child was born six years ago. Because I love God, and also because I know, without a shadow of doubt, there’s no other way to protect my family.

Where once I reveled in peace and quiet, I now go into a fit of panic if I don’t hear my kids’ constant bickering with one another while playing around the house, or if a minute goes by that I don’t hear the word “mommy” being shouted for one reason or the other. When those cold chills run down my spine and I break into a cold sweat, my nerves can only be calmed once the familiar chaos continues.

When I was younger I thought spiders were the scariest things on earth. Now the scariest thing for me is allowing my kids out of my sight, which is crazy because how do I keep them locked up. How do I keep my kids from playing outside, or from going to school, or from spending weekends at grandma’s?

I don’t. So, I kiss my kids goodbye every morning just after 5am, before I make my way to work.

In that moment I am aware that in just a couple of hours their dad will drop them off at school and they will bravely face another long day without me there to keep them safe. I don’t need to be there. I can’t. Tonight they will assure me again with beaming smiley faces how much fun they had and excitedly tell me of all that they’ve learned.

I then softly kiss three pairs of cheeks and hurry out the front door to face another day in pursuit of bravery.

Love,

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