Tag Archives | holiday

morgan bay magic

Back to school today! I was chatting with a friend yesterday who said she’s dreading second term – all the driving, school lunches etc etc, and I said, I can’t wait for routine to set in again, I thrive on it. We’re all different!

How was your Easter break? Did you do anything fun, go anywhere exciting? We headed off to the wild coast to a small seaside town called Morgan Bay. We decided to do a road trip, breaking up the long drive with an overnight stay at Storms River Rest Camp. I’m notoriously not keen on camping, so of course the night we chose to camp was the night of the most torrential of rains. It was hell. Hubby loved it! Kids loved it! Me and sister-in-law… not so much! Besides the rain, Storms River Rest Camp is a spectacular campsite. Enormous, right on the sea and home to the famous suspension bridge. It really is beautiful.

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Isn’t this the most beautiful beach?

When we finally arrived in Morgan Bay at hubby’s aunt and uncle’s home, it was then that I felt I could finally relax. They really spoilt us rotten, we were fed like royalty, the littles were doted over 24/7 and we got to spend quite a lot of time alone. Always a plus.

Every morning started with coffee and rusks in bed, reading my book (I finished it in a week, haven’t done that in a while). It was bliss to not have to get up and do the whole routine of dressing the littles, brushing their teeth and hair etc. Most days we went down to the beach (with a packed picnic by hubby’s aunt), caught fish in the rock pools and watched the littles run wild in the lagoon. We took them up to The Cliffs – famous for its sunsets – and didn’t stay too long because of the general height / little people / terrified parents combination. One morning we went to Double Mouth where we had the entire beach to ourselves the whole time. What utter bliss. We also went bike riding, beach walking and kayaking on the lagoon and took part in the 5km Family Fun Run – I ran it while hubby walked it with Robbie on his shoulders and Bailey by his side which required much encouragement, especially up the hills – not sure which was more exhausting for him!

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We had a fabulous holiday and returned refreshed and well rested, and relieved the road trip was over!

 

— Liza

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a bushveld break

Last month we headed up to Joburg to spend time with John-Louis’ family and have a little holiday. His brother kindly invited us to spend a week with him at a game lodge called Mabula. The day we flew out of Cape Town it started to rain here, and for the 10 days we were away, it pretty much rained incessantly. We, on the other hand, got to wear sandals and dresses, shorts and tees because it was blissfully warm and dry in the bush. Now as I type this (back home where it’s still raining) I’m wrapped up in a scarf, a woolly jersey, socks, boots, the works… brrr!

Although holidays with littles are not very relaxing, it was still good to take a break from routine, drink champagne at midday, lie on a lounger in the sun, read my book, see wild animals and just not think about work (sort of).

Some holiday highlights:

  • I drove myself and the kids around Joburg all on my own. I’ve always been too nervous to navigate Jozi streets but I did pretty well, considering I left the house in my slippers and had to do a detour and start all over again.
  • Discovering the wonder of Bambanani – seriously, there is such a need for one of these in Cape Town. A great restaurant serving good food, with a huge, amazing play area for your kids and a bunch of child minders too, so you can actually sit down and relax and enjoy your food.
  • Breakfast at Moemas.
  • Meeting some of John-Louis’ cousins and family that I’ve never met before and seeing others we haven’t seen for many, many years.
  • Having our own private game ranger – in the form of John-Louis’ brother. It’s not what he does for a living, but he got his game driving licence just before we came up so it was awesome to have our own vehicle to do drives in whenever it suited us.
  • The bonus of having our own private game vehicle meant we could strap Robbie’s car seat in it so he could nap while we enjoyed the beauty and silence of the bush.
  • Bonfires every night.
  • Warthogs in our front yard.
  • Seeing elephants, rhino, hippo, warthogs, giraffe, zebra, bush buck, jackals.

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Before we left for our holiday, I tried out the new Tan Organic self-tan oil. It’s super simple to use – simply exfoliate your body with the buffing glove, then put on the tanning mitt, spray a small amount of self-tan oil onto the mitt and rub all over your body. I did it the night before we left as well as the following morning and the tan came out evenly with no orange to speak of, just a gorgeous golden glow. I love the fact that Tan Organic is eco-certified too. I’d definitely recommend it if you’re heading somewhere sunnier during the mid-year school holidays or if you’re just wanting to look less ghostly this winter!

— Liza

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travelling with littles

After months building up to our island holiday, I can’t actually believe that it’s all over. That’s the hardest thing about holidays – having to get back into normal life once all the excitement is done and warm ocean waters and gently swaying palms are just a distant memory *sob*!

Travelling with young kids is unique and there are moments when it doesn’t feel like a holiday at all. Lots of open bodies of water and a 1-year-old who wants to be on the beach and a 2-year-old who runs off to the pool the second you turn around. But nothing beats the plane journey… being in a confined space with our two is nothing short of torture, as I’m sure our fellow passengers will agree. When we landed back at home a few people around us generously shook our hands and congratulated us on making it through. One woman shouted from halfway down the plane, “Next time leave them with Granny.” Apart from wanting to clamber over the seats and sock her one I did feel that she had a point.

Never the less, we learnt a few things that may help you if you are ever flying with your little ones.

Before take off. Looking innocent!

Before take off. Looking innocent!

  • Fill the iPad with new, fun Apps and download a few of their favourite movies. Willow (who’s 3 in July) kept herself entertained much of the time. She doesn’t normally have free run of the iPad so it was a novelty and worked wonders.
  • Hard suckers are great to keep them busy and help their ears pop. Jimmy (14-months) doesn’t get sweets generally and this exception to the rule proved to be a life saver. On the flight home he was busy with a sucker for about 40 minutes. Sucking something when landing and taking off helps their ears stabilise.
  • If you have more than one child don’t try to both eat a hot meal at once. Two tray tables laden with food and hot drinks or wine are a complete disaster when your kids are wriggling and wanting to escape into the aisles. Rather one of you sit by the window and eat while the other is free to see to the kids, then ask the flight attendant to bring you another meal later (with extra wine!)
  • Try not to worry about the people around you too much. When you get on board smile and make initial contact. When your kids get restless and start making a noise they will more likely sympathise than get cross. Hopefully! We were so conscious of the people around us and it ended up making us extremely tense, meanwhile they were all perfectly understanding.
  • Focus on the end goal. It’s all worth it when you reach your destination!

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— Emily

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travel light

Today in exactly one month I will be running around packing and planning for 10 days at Le Cannonier in Mauritius. Please feel free to hate me for one minute, but no longer!

My head is already spinning at the thought of packing and flying with Willow and Jimmy. My two biggest concerns right now – apart from the fact that Her Majesty’s Passport Office still haven’t returned my renewed passport – is how will we remember everything, and how will we make a dignified transition from airplane to airport to shuttle at 9pm with two sleeping babies and a million bags?

My answer is to travel light. Kids come with their own piles of baggage, so I will pack nothing but swimwear and diaphanous wraps. However, packing light is an art and although nappies and bottles, a stroller and small people’s entertainment along with the inevitable Tigger, bunny and frog (aka thog) are non-negotiables, my luggage can be streamlined.

Here are my 7 non-negotiables…

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1. No holiday by the sea is complete without a chic Breton striped tee a’la Mademoiselle Chanel.
2. Minimal make-up but I still want to look presentable. A reliable waterproof mascara is just the thing.
3. My favourite novel. I’ve read it 3 times and could read it 3 more.
4. A beautiful, plain black full piece. After 2 babies in 2 years I’m opting for modest and classic!
5. I’ve never owned a bottle of Chanel No 5. A holiday in Mauritius is the perfect opportunity to splash out.
6. Classic sunnies are a must-have.
7. Lashings of Piz Buin to protect my pasty English skin.

— Emily

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summer staycation

I love Cape Town in December, which is one of the reasons why we never go away this time of year. It’s all the chaos of Christmas, followed closely by my birthday and then New Year. I want to be with my extended family for all of those so we tend to stay close and pack our days full of get togethers.

Over the last two weeks we have laughed, swam, read books during the day, eaten lots, enjoyed afternoon naps, played in the sun and visited some great local spots that we never normally get time to visit. I have kicked off 2014 feeling so privileged to have such a wonderful family and group of friends and to live in an incredible city.

Here’s to a year of plenty!

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Christmas eve

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Very serious Christmas angel

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Jimmy’s first Christmas

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Christmas lamb on the spit and sisters hard at work in the kitchen

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My family. And there’s me receiving the world’s best birthday present

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Willow loves boats

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Beautiful Simonstown

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Afternoon naps

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Scarborough

— Emily

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