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when one is two and two is one and when things go wrong, they go wrong

Posted by on Nov 10, 2013 in my B&B life | 0 comments

when one is two and two is one and when things go wrong, they go wrong

Last Saturday evening we went to bed early as we only had one couple staying – only to be cruelly awoken at 11.45 by the gate bell being rung – repeatedly…  As I have a slight hearing impairment the bell is set to ring very loudly and to discourage people from ringing it repeatedly it is also set to ring loudly at the gate. Desmond went down to open the gate as we could see that these people were not taking no answer for an answer. To my surprise I could hear that he was actually booking them in – we normally, as a...

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Kale – super food

Posted by on Oct 27, 2013 in Food & Feast, Garden, my B&B life | 1 comment

Kale – super food

      Lately I have been supplying our local Health Shop with leaves. Actually, most of the time I exchange it for organic plain yoghurt!  Apparently, they mostly sell it for people on a raw food diet.  It is known for anti-cancer properties  as Kale is  a source of ondole-3-carbinol, a chemical which boosts DNA repair in cells and appears to block the growth of cancer cells. Because we have familial high cholesterol I was particularly interested to read that Kale has been found to contain a group of resins known as bile acid...

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Remembrance – a poem by Maria Stander-Retief

Posted by on Oct 19, 2013 in History | 0 comments

Remembrance – a poem by Maria Stander-Retief

In March 2008 we had as guest the granddaughter of one of the Stander daughters. She sent me a poem written by her grand-mother . On weekends the daughters would stroll down to the Kat River and obviously the young Maria met a young man from the other side of the river whom her parents did not approve of : Remembrance Twixt bracken banks and shady woods The streamlet ripples gently west Where oft in childhood’s happy days I watched the wood-finch build it’s nest; Where oft in happier days we wove The golden threads of love’s young dream To...

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jokes aside…right of admission reserved

Posted by on Oct 17, 2013 in my B&B life | 0 comments

jokes aside…right of admission reserved

Man comes to the front door of a guest house and says he’s Mr Smith, booked in for two nights. Proprietor: ‘Would you like me to carry your bag from the car, sir’. Guest: ‘No, she can walk, but you can bring the luggage.’ Innkeeper: The room is R1000- a night. It’s R50- if you make your own bed. Guest: I’ll make my own bed. Innkeeper: Good. I’ll get you some nails and wood. Paddy is booked into a guest house,and looking round,notices a sign on the wall. He says to the owner: “What time do...

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the room is fine, but…

Posted by on Sep 27, 2013 in my B&B life | 1 comment

the room is fine, but…

I once  sat in a meeting targeted at  accommodation providers and the speaker twice repeated the words: ‘We can not allow ourselves to become too precious about our B&B’s’. Well, It took all my self control not to shout : ‘if your B&B is not precious to you, you should not have a B&B.’ A fellow guest house owner argues that our B&B’s are so personal to us that  we often take  criticism  about as well as we would if we were told that we have an ugly child. Over the years I have acknowledged...

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about blogging

Posted by on Sep 13, 2013 in my B&B life | 2 comments

about blogging

Before starting my guest house blog I had planned to start a blog where a few guest house owners could share stories and recipes, but it turned out that I was the only one who ever posted! Because I blog regularly I changed to a blog-based site, where my blog posts form an integral part of my website content. I have kept the blogspot blogging going even after the development of my new blog-based guest house website as it attracts a different readership – on average 250 page views per month.I am still humbled by the number of people who...

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background music

Posted by on Aug 27, 2013 in my B&B life | 3 comments

background music

I have noticed that guest houses will often set the television to a news channel during breakfast.To me that is just one notch above listening to rap while having a meal – who wants to start his day with bad news, and let’s face it, ‘news’ will inevitably be bad news. For seventeen years my background music of choice at the breakfast table has been light classical music, but I also have quite a collection of ‘soothing’ background CD’s. I think one should be careful with vocals and I prefer to play...

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our breakfast menu

Posted by on Aug 3, 2013 in Breakfast | 0 comments

our breakfast menu

We take pride in our unique fruit entrées- sometimes a plated fruit salad, other times a mini portion of Bircher Muesli garnished with apple shards, or a homemade smoothie with carrot,ginger, orange and apple… On the buffet we have an assortment of cereals: homemade muesli, pro-nutro, bran flakes, weetabix as well as yoghurt, more fresh fruit and a baked fruit compote, which in season consists of rhubarb or quince from the garden, otherwise stewed prunes,guavas or peaches. Maize porridge made on request in summer , in winter it is...

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questions to Desmond the ‘head gardener’ at Fairview (read: only gardener!)

Posted by on Jul 24, 2013 in Garden, my B&B life | 0 comments

Questions to a man addicted to gardenening: Where do you get your love for gardening from? From my parents. My mother always had a beautiful flower garden and my father was very serious about his vegetable garden. Plant collector or landscape gardener? I am more of a plant collector. Your favourite flower? Aquilegia Favourite tree? Indigenous: Cape Chestnut. Exotic trees: Acer family Your favourite garden in South Africa? Old Nectar in Jonkershoek. And Vergelegen in Somerset West. Your favourite international garden? Monet’s Garden in...

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It is grapefruit time

Posted by on Jul 19, 2013 in Breakfast | 2 comments

 It is grapefruit time again and when my guest told me how much she enjoyed her grapefruit starter (a take on Bircher Muesli served with grapefruit) I remembered how my daughter loved her grapefruit.  ‘ When I was a little girl my mother would give me half a grapefruit sprinkled with sugar, each segment delicately cut loose for me to eat it more easily. I still remember that bitter sweet deliciousness, it’s such a fond memory, but thinking about it now I realise it was quite unusual for me to be eating, not to mention enjoying...

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