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Entertainment, Lifestyle

Old Mill Guest House and Restaurant Swellendam

April 26, 2017

After having driven 2.5 hours to see the faeries at the Faerie continent of Sulina, we were famished and having never been to Swellendam, we decided to give the Old Mill a try. It was just before 2 pm on a Sunday afternoon and it was very quiet. More peaceful than quiet rather and it seemed we have just missed the Sunday lunch rush. We took our seats on the lower deck and welcomed the peace and quiet of the Overberg.

By this time the kids were also pretty worn out from the long drive and all the excitement of the morning that for once they didn’t mind the quiet at all. They devoured their tasty burgers from the kiddies menu while chatting away about all that’s happened and as soon as the food had pumped life back into them, were off running around the restaurant’s large decks to see how many of the acorns laying around, they could find. Lesley and I finished our delicious chicken breast with mushroom sauce, rice, and veggies which reminded us of a home cooked meal. It felt like Sunday’s at grandmas house. It and the hospitality were that amazing. This is definitely a place we will return to whenever we’re in town.

Needless to say, the kids were out like lights on our way back to the Cape. We woke them just before we drove through the Huguenot tunnel as they would never have forgiven us for letting them miss it.

It was a day well spent and one we would like to recreate soon!

You can check out www.oldmill.co.za for better pictures and more information 🙂

 

 

 

 

Love,

 

Entertainment, Inspiration, Slider

Fairies Are Real

April 25, 2017

 

…or so we were assured by the wonderful folk of Sulina.

Hidden not-too-deep in the valley of Swellendam, is the continent of Sulina, or Faerie Sanctuary as it’s lovingly known, founded by Ian and Minky Sulin more than 25 years ago.

When I first heard of this magical place I just knew I had to take the kids there. More accurately, I knew Jada would be blown away and I’ll once again be mom of the year!

So we took to the road one Sunday morning early after breakfast and began our almost three-hour journey from Kraaifontein. Luckily we packed snacks and made sure the USB was loaded with all our favourite jams which kept the kids, Lesley and me, happily entertained all the way there. The breathtaking views as we passed one wine farm after another also contributed largely in making the drive so much more enjoyable.

I made a mental note to pack a picnic basket the next time we decide to visit and stop at one of the many dams along the way.

 We arrived just after 11 am to find a beautiful, sunshiny and serene Swellendam, with a car full of excited kids and adults. Although the sanctuary, where the faerie folk lives, is well hidden, there are signs all along the road directing you there, almost from the moment you arrive in the ‘dorpie.’

When we finally reach our destination, we are surprised to find so much than what we hoped for. Except for Jada, who was expecting to be greeted by tiny flying, sparkly winged beings, but was soon filled with all kinds of excitement as we made our way through the enchanted garden with gnomes, angels, unicorns, sleeping dragons and of cause, faeries nestled behind, on top and in-between flowers and plants and red polka dot mushrooms. She was even more thrilled when the hosts showed us an image of a picture taken right there in the garden, of a real-life fairy. The image was even blown up double its size to prove to every hopeful 6-year-old  and skeptical adult, that faeries may very well exist. And if indeed they do, then I bet The continent of Sulina is where they all hangout.

The boys were just happy to have found the charming play area which neither wanted to leave without being dragged out. One could literally spend hours between the faerie folk and still not have had enough time. But we were hungry and needed to eat and decided we’ll be back again very soon.

 

 

 

 

 

Wednesdays to Saturdays 9am – 4:30pm
Sundays from 10am to 4pm
Every Schoolholidays from 9am to 4:30pm
Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays
Also closed during the month of June for resting and restoration and Christmas and New Years Day.
Children under 13 yrs old….R10.00
Adults….R20.00

All fees are shared with local charities

Email: iansulin@gmail.com
faerienuffolk@gmail.com

Love and Light,

 

Entertainment, Lifestyle

Family Safaris: How To Plan a Trip of a Lifetime (Guest Post)

April 5, 2017

Africa, without a doubt, is host to some of the most amazing destinations for family vacations. In the great wilderness, children can get up close and personal with the animals they’ve only before seen on their favorite cartoons, be in touch with nature and have fun learning about a new culture.

If you’re thinking of planning a safari for your next family adventure, the team at BookAllSafaris.com is sharing some useful things to consider, to help you have an amazing experience in Africa. As a bonus, we’ve handpicked and included three options that we think you and your children would both enjoy.

 

Choosing a destination

 

Having a great experience during a safari for families can depend a lot on choosing the appropriate destination. When making a decision, be sure to take your children’s age into account. For example, South Africa is an excellent choice for children under eight.

Have children that are slightly older (8 to 12)?  Consider a family safari which includes guided walks. At this age, children can learn basic tracking skills and exploring nature by foot is a great experience for them.

If you have teens (13-18), you need to consider safaris with a lot of activities included, such as guided game drives, walking, horseback riding, boating or cycling.

 

 

Choosing the best time to go

 

In most of southern Africa, the peak safari travel period is during the dry season (May to November). This is when you can spot the wildlife as it comes to water and the vegetation would less likely be. Plus, this season coincides wit the western hemisphere’s school children’s summer vacation!

If you’re planning to head to countries with excellent infrastructure, such as South Africa and Namibia, you can go year round as there’s always something in season. East Africa is another place where you can go anytime of the year.

Peak season for Tanzania and Kenya is during the Christmas vacation. But if you want to see the wildebeest migration, it’s best to plan your trip between June and September.

If you decide to go during the rainy season, you are likely to spot more baby animals, which children usually enjoy observing. This makes the Easter break a good option for a family safari, too.

 

 

Choosing activities

 

Research on activities which allow your children to really get up close and personal with nature. Watching a lion sleep in the sun is not as exciting as being able to lure an ant-lion from its pit with a blade of grass.

Safaris, in general, are quite passive. And children can become bored a lot easier than adults. Make sure there are some activities available to “burn off” all that energy. A swimming pool at the lodge is a great idea. Even putting up a tent or a campfire can keep them busy and engaged.

 

Consider self-driving

 

Self-drive safaris offer the ultimate freedom when it comes to the family needs. Surely, it can only be done in places where the infrastructure – and the parks’ rules – allow for it. If this is something that you’re interested in doing with your family, South Africa and Namibia are excellent choices.

 

Consider exclusivity

 

In the countries where self-driving isn’t an option – such as Zambia, Tanzania or Botswana, private safaris are the best way to ensure freedom.  The itinerary is shaped around your needs, tastes, and preferences. You will have an experienced guide and you are free to explore the nature at your own pace. If these choices are too pricey for your budget, you can “team up” with another family and split the cost.

 

Learning during a safari

 

Many lodges offer Junior Ranger programs in which children take guided walks and learn how to track animals. This allows children to get a better understanding of the wildlife and its environment, as well as the importance of preserving it.

Other lodges offer programs centered on the local culture, where children play traditional games, for example. And they can even learn astronomy by pick up constellations in the unpolluted sky.

 

Staying Healthy & Safe

 

The major concern when it comes to visiting Africa is malaria. It is important to remember to use insect repellent and treat your clothes with bug spray. Also, remember to take your malaria pills before and after the trip. It is, however, recommended for families with children under the age of 8 to avoid countries which still have a risk of malaria.

Another health or safety concern to look out for is the water. Unfortunately, Africa doesn’t have the best drinking water and diseases can easily be transmitted through it. But this shouldn’t be a huge issue as your safari tour operators would usually have bottled and filtered water available.

Last but not least, to prevent from getting ill during the trip, make sure that you and your children have all the necessary vaccinations done well in advance.

 

Cris Puscas is a contributing writer at BookAllSafaris.com. An avid hiker and passionate landscape photographer, she believes that all animals should be protected and loved.

 

 

Happy Traveling!

Love,

Entertainment, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

Fun things to do with your partner during the month of Love…and every other month for that matter

February 8, 2017

Here at Fabmom, we believe that although Valentine’s day is a cute idea thought up by ‘someone‘ to show our love for one another, we should make our love visible every day. This might sound cliche, but in the end, it’s the little things that make for the most wonderful of relationships. From sharing in your partner’s favourite things like watching a football game together or simply hanging out playing PlayStation with hubby and the kids, to getting out of your comfort zone and going skydiving.

In fact, psychologists research have shown for a long time experiences bring people more happiness than do possessions.

We live in such a beautiful City! There really is no reason for anyone not to be romantic. If you cannot think of a single romantic thing to do with your love, then you’re just lazy. There, I said it.

Now, I never get tired of a fancy dinner at a nice restaurant, but if you are, then here are a few ideas I thought you might like, to show your love and affection in a small, unique and perhaps more adventurous way:

1. Go bike riding together. On the promenade with Upcycles or around the coast with the amazing e-bikes from Venture South 
2. Plan a romantic picnic. You can either pack your own picnic basket or you can dial a picnic and choose from a selection of romantic locations around South Africa
3. Go for a long drive and watch the sunset together. Daddy’s Deals are currently offering a 2hour Harley drive around the coast for 449 only! Hurry before this amazing offer ends.
4. Watch the sunrise together. Book a hotel room for a night
5. After a nice dinner, go out dancing at one of the many lovely dance clubs around Cape Town.
6. Give each other massages with sensual oils from the beautiful and risque Bedroom adult boutique in Buitengraght
7. Take a train ride through the Winelands with the Franschhoek Wine Tram hop-on-hop-off train 
8. Have a candlelight bubble bath together with champers. Now here’s a treat we often take for granted. Especially us moms. I get that there’s hardly ever any time to run a bath for yourself, much less lie in it…with hubby. Do yourself and your relationship a favour and make some time. If you need help with creating the perfect mood, I even went and found you a lovely little guide.
9. Instead of him sending you flowers, send flowers to your man…while he’s at work. You will find the best service delivery from Bunches For Africa and Net Florist.
10. Take a cooking class with the lovely lady from The Little Pink Chef in Durbanville
11. Have a sexy photo shoot done (together!) by a professional photographer
12. Do an extreme sport together. Go abseiling down table mountain, tandem skydive 9000 feet above sea level, shark cage diving with the great whites or simply go to a theme park and go on ALL the rides together. Even the ones that scare you to death. The Italian philosopher Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli said that nothing great was ever achieved without danger. Maybe that’s true for love too!
13. Take a horse-drawn carriage ride with The Cape Town Carriage Company while sipping on bubbly with the love of your life.
14. Go Stargazing at any one of  these SA’s top spots

 

from your Valentine.

Love,

Entertainment, Inspiration, Lifestyle

Experiencing District Six

January 19, 2017

As a coloured who grew up in Cape Town and admittedly always loved to seek out all the interesting places in and around town,  I am ashamed to say that I only recently visited the District Six Museum. Of cause, while growing up, I have been told many tales of the now almost mythical district, and as I listened to these stories, or rather memoirs, I imagined myself walking through the narrow streets, hearing the laughter of children playing in the streets and eventually felt myself being swept away by the sweet sounds of jazz.

Almost 50 years after the removal of more than 16000 families from the only home they knew for many generations, I decided to, along with my best friend, pay homage to an era and culture once known as the heart and soul of Cape Town.

Nadia and I started our expedition with a hearty Mediterranean breakfast at Seelan on the V&A Waterfront, to celebrate the joie de vivre (joy of life) as they so nicely put it.

 

 

later the morning we excitedly boarded the City Siteseeing bus (our first time) where we were treated to some cool, some funny and some sad facts about our culture rich city. We got to chat to the friendly staff and fellow tourists and although the clouds of mist were fast rolling in as table mountain was being covered by the famous “table cloth,” we enjoyed the cool breeze as we savoured the breathtaking views we so often take for granted.

 

 

Because it’s a hop-on-hop-off bus, we decided to hop off at Charlies Bakery for a sweet treat and obviously to meet Charly’s Cake Angels from the 2011 docu-reality TV series.

 

 

  The District six museum located in the heart of the Mother City, serves as a remembrance to the culture and history of the area before the removals.

 

 

On entering you are solemnly greeted by a large street map of District Six, with handwritten notes from former residents indicating where their homes had once been

 

 

Street signs from the old district tell a heartbreaking story of the lives of the District Six families

 

District Six also contributed mightily to the distinguished history of South African Jazz

 

 

Oh how this takes me back to my early childhood! The games we use to play, the fun we use to have. The things our kids will sadly never know.

 

 

The remains of the slave tree – where slaves were sold and leased at public auctions.

 

 

Continuing our journey around the peninsula

 

 

Just another Summers day at Kirstenbosch Botanical gardens

 

Thank you Wiki for helping me piece together this post and bringing to life my photographs taken during my visit to the museum. I encourage every South African, and otherwise, to visit the district six museum on your visit to the Cape.

Love,