Lemon Drizzle Cake

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I had never actually had a lemon drizzle cake before, so maybe I’m not the best judge, but from my husband feedback I’ll chalk it up as a big success. I had to share this, as it is one of those super quick recipes that you could easily whip up on a whim. I also appreciated the fact that I already had all the ingredients in my pantry.

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Cake:

Ingredients:

  • 60 ml Margarine
  • 180 ml Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 50 ml Lemon juice
  • Zest of half a lemon
  • 310 ml Flour
  • 2 tsp Bakingpowder
  • 100 ml Milk

Method:

  1. Preheat your oven to 180*C and prepare a baking tray or mini-loaf tray by spraying with Spray ‘n Cook.
  2. Beat the margarine until smooth and gradually add the sugar, eggs, lemon juice and lemon zest.
  3. Sift together the flour and bakingpowder.
  4. Add half the egg mixture and the milk to the flour and start mixing it in.
  5. Fold in the rest of the egg mixture.
  6. Spoon the mixture into your baking tray and cook for 20 – 25 minutes, depending on whether you are making one large tray or mini-loaves.

Lemon Drizzle:

This could easily be adjusted according to your taste, but I find that a good dose of lemon juice really cuts through the sweetness creating the perfect combination.

Ingredients:

  • 185 ml Icing Sugar
  • 50 ml Lemon Juice (Can adjust according to taste)
  • Zest of half a lemon

Method:

  1. Sift the icing sugar and then add all the lemon juice.
  2. Slowly add a teaspoon of boiling water at a time until you reach the perfect consistency.
  3. Stir in the lemon zest and drizzle over the loaves.

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A Garden Route Sho’tleft

Knysna Featherbed dock

I want to preface this post by saying that I am, along with the rest of the country, incredibly devastated at the disaster that Knysna and the greater Garden Route has experienced due to the fire. I can’t personally imagine what it must be like to loose all your personal belongings, everything that has sentimental value to you, and to have to do a dangerous and uncomfortable evacuation not just of your home, but the general area. What I do know is that Knysna needs our help to rebuild and that whilst donations do help, ultimately a large part of the area relies on tourism for an income, which they now sorely need to rebuild and recover. Please don’t let the destruction keep you away, the incredibly beautiful area still has so much to offer. There are still so many amazing properties available to book in area largely unspoilt, so there is literally no excuse. In case you need further motivation, scroll down.

Knysna Heads

I was incredibly lucky to be invited to join SA Tourism earlier this year on a journey through South Africa’s Garden Route. This is an area of our country that I was largely unfamiliar with as I’ve only driven through the region when we attended a wedding in Port Elizabeth. On that trip we spent one evening in Knysna on a very tight budget, so I was keen to return and see what the area really has to offer.

First stop was Port Elizabeth, where we took a quick historical tour. When I drove through on the highway the first time, it didn’t look like much. But Port Elizabeth is steeped in history and has quite a few historical buildings of architectural note.

Port Elizabeth Public Library

We did a walking tour of PE’s central district, called the Donkin Heritage Trail. The highlight on the hour-long walking trail was definitely the beautiful Victorian buildings and statues, but I was surprised by how little I knew of the city’s rich history. Our guide was passionate and definitely made the experience so much more special than it would have been if I’d just read about everything before hand. So I’d highly recommend you get someone to show you around and take you into the Opera House and the beautiful Cathedral Church of Saint Mary the Virgin.

This was followed by a quick stop in the surfer’s paradise that is Jeffrey’s Bay, where we had a lovely lunch overlooking the ocean at the Kitchen Windows Beach restaurant before moving on the millionaire’s playground that is Cape St Francis. I had my first taste of calamari at Port St Francis. Everyone else raved about it, but at the ripe age of 28 I figured out that I am not big on seafood.

We ended off the first of three days with a sunset canal cruise in Cape St Francis (thanks to BriSan on the Canals) before retreating for dinner and bed in one of the self-catering homes in the Cape St Francis Resort. I must give a shout-out to the Joe Fish Restaurant as I had a very memorable chicken and spinach dish that I still sometimes crave and have tried to recreate multiple times.

The next morning we set out for the Tsitsikamma, an adventurer’s dream. We started the day off with ziplining at Tsitsikamma Falls Adventures, something I was very happy to observe from the sidelines. So I enthusiastically observed from the deck and wiped my sweaty palms on my pants any time someone went over the edge. I did however participate in the segway tour and was surprised to find how easy it was with the proper training provided before hand.

Although we definitely didn’t have enough time to do everything the region has to offer, I feel like these activities gave a glimpse of its natural beauty. I’d love to return and complete a few hiking trails. If you’re planning a trip, I can highly recommend the quant Tsitsikamma Village Inn where we stayed as it is perfectly located for a night out with beer tasting and a 60’s diner right next-door. The inn consists of various smaller buildings, all recently converted into comfortable bedrooms with on-suites and each beautiful with a unique architectural style.

Knysna view from the top of the Featherbed Reserve

For our final full day, we went to Knysna, where I mentioned earlier I’d been before. As students we were on a strict budget back then and no boat cruises made the cut, so this time I made up for the missed opportunity and went on no less than two! The first cruise for the day took us over to the Featherbed Nature Reserve (the eco-experience) where I completed an hour long hike in jeans and sandals (we weren’t prepped), but the breathtaking views kept me distracted from my blisters. Sadly large parts of the reserve, including the restaurant, has apparantly been damaged in the fire. Luckily the Cape’s fauna and flora can take quite a beating, and often excell because of this.  The morning’s trip over was folllowed by a short break at the Harbour before we embarked on a sunset cruise (a Paddle Cruiser Experience). This is where I’d like to add that their piña coladas were amazing and I’d encourage everyone to at least try one. In keeping with my seafood aversion, I skipped the raw shell fish known as oysters.  We spent the night at the Premier Resort The Moorings, which offers all that you need in a place of such beauty and incredibly is also rather budget friendly.

Garden Route coast

Our final day in Knysna was spent in George, before our afternoon departure from the small airport. On the afforementioned trip we did a short hike in the Wilderness and on this occasion I got to paddle up the river in the beautiful area thanks to Eden Adventures. We didn’t even mind the fact that it meant we’d have to board the plane wet!

If I were travelling on my own dime, I’d definitely consider driving back from George to Cape Town as it is such a beautiful route and with boarding times and everything taken into consideration, it is probably not even that much shorter. I honestly can’t wait to return to this beautiful region and neither should you!

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Wishlist

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1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11

I don’t know what it is about May, but I always seem to have a longer-than-usual wishlist around this time of the year. Maybe it is the new stock that makes its way into the shops due to the change in seasons or perhaps its just simply the birthday mood that gets me. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely won’t be adding everything above to cart and checking out. For me, it’s more about the growing online wishlist. Knowing there is a safe spot where I can keep an eye on everything that has drawn my attention. Some of these items aren’t even perfect (I’m looking for a smaller purse and have already bought these PJs which are similar but better than the ones above).

I have to say, everything looks so much more pleasing when grouped together. I can also see a strong theme taking shape.

So tell me, am I the only weirdo that still ads things to wishlists to keep an eye on them? I feel like in today’s fast-paced world, people have definitely become less patient and expect to own an item they like within 48 hours since they first laid eyes on it. I also notice that I am becoming increasingly impatient and often have to remind myself that everything can’t happen at lightning speed. For me, there definitely is something more rewarding about waiting, “stalking” and carefuly considering before finally pulling the trigger and purchasing something.

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5 Times We Used Paint to Transform Our Home

About 95% of our home DIYs include or are solely comprised of paint. It is by far the cheapest and easiest way to transform a space! It also requires the least amount of skill, although patience definitely is a virtue (waiting for layers to dry is literally the worst!) I thought it would be fun to think of all the times Ryno and I have used paint to personalise our space. Not all projects have to be as big as our recent garage transformation witht the help of Prominent Paints. Some of these jobs could easily be completed in a weekend.

1. Blush Pink Wardrobe (Acrylic Paint)

blush closet

Whilst we’d tackled our hideous 80’s wardrobes on the outside before we even moved in, the inside remained scarily brown for the first two years of our residence. I tried to cover it in gift wrap and pretend that it didn’t exist, but it wasn’t a big success and I was so happy to finally remove the torn paper when my husband gave in and said I could paint the inside blush pink. For this project I simply used a regular waterbased wall paint as I knew it wouldn’t get much wear. It turned out perfect and now I can enjoy my whole closet.

2. Coat Hook Stripes (Roof Paint)

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This was one of our first home DIY’s I shared on the blog nearly two years ago and it is still going strong! It certainly makes a big impact and required minimal effort. The only challenge was to make sure that all the tape was straight before we started painting. Luckily one of us has a good eye :)

3. Gold Side Table (Spraypaint)

So actually this was a rusty cast iron bookshelf that lived in my grandmother’s foyer, but I saw its potential to become something resembling this (if you squint a little lot). So I sprayed the sucker with my favourite gold spray paint in the garage on a rainy day, waited forever, sprayed it again and now it looks kinda good for something we scored for free. Also, it is the perfect height! I have no idea why most side tables are too low for you to comforably reach for a drink on it. Anyone has any idea why that is?

4. Drinks Cabinet (Chalk Paint)

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Another piece of recycled furniture was this amazing TV cabinet (remember when box TV’s still need to go into a cabinet? Sooo 2000’s right!?). It was a lovely shade of mohaganey, which with our beloved (sarcasm) cherry wood floors was just way too much. So we decided to make it blend into the wall (and simultaneously visually reduce its weight) by painting it with Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint in Paris Grey. Honestly though, whilst I loved the colour the texture of the paint wasn’t my favourite. Although I’ve heard if you attend one of the classes, they’ll tell you to add a little water to the paint and that it makes it so much easier to work with. If I could however do it all over again, I would have chosen a different paint in the same colour. The thick texture of the paint means that the brush strokes are all incredibly visible and I cursed more than I care to admitas the paint was drying too quickly meaning it pilled as I was working on the first coat.

5. Grey Desk (Roof Paint)

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I painted this wooden desk in the same waterbased roof paint that I used for the stripes and our front door, but I do wish I’d gone to the added trouble of using a primer. From afar, this looks great, but up close you can see all the kitty scratches. The paint made the weathered wood feel smooth again and definitely makes this desk look and feel more like us.

 

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Shopping For Your Capsule Wardrobe on a Budget

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I love scoring a bargain as much as the next person, nay probably more, as it leaves me with an incredible sense of achievement. Especially if it is an item I’ve been hunting for for a while. But when it comes to purchasing your whole wardrobe on a tight budget, it comes down to a little more than just scoring that elusive bargain. Below are my tried and tested steps to ending up with a closet you love.

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7 Steps To Starting A Capsule Wardrobe on A Budget

Closet

I really like the idea of a capsule wardrobe, as it perfectly encapsulates the wardrobe philosophy I’ve had my whole life. Buying less clothing with the intent to wear it often just seems to make so much more sense to me than having a tonne of trendy items you’ll wear once. I also like having a smaller, more edited closet, as it makes it easier to get dressed in the mornings. So the whole capsule wardrobe trends makes me one happy chappy!

But the only thing that bugs me is that so many bloggers seem to promote this as justification for making crazy expensive designer purchases. Obviously that is their perogative and I do appreciate looking at a pretty designer bag, but it needs to be said that you can create a perfect capsule wardrobe on any budget. So if you’ve never done a capsule wardrobe or are just interested to see how I do mine on a strict budget, find out below.

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10 Must-Watch Series

Netflix

Our favourite way to decompress after a long day has to be a serious couch session with whatever we’re currently watching. Over the years we’ve watched some spectacularly good (and some less so) series, and a good murder mystery rarely disappoints. So if you’re currently inbetween series, perhaps you’ll enjoy some of our favourites.

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Cheats Carbonara

cheats carbonara 1

I love all things Italian, especially food. Crusty breads, warm pizzas and creamy pastas are just a few of many things that I dream about. Whilst there is nothing inherently wrong with a traditional carbonara, I love this lighter varient that was born when I combined two of my faves (alfredo and carbonara) with some fresh herbs. I think some of the best recipes can be born out of need. In this instance I simply didn’t have enough cream left over for a alfredo sauce and since then I’ve purposefully recreated this recipe a few times as we love the intense flavours and lighter sauce. If the raw egg in a traditional carbonara worries you, then read on to see how I make myself feel better about it.

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Our Garage Makeover: After | AD

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I am so happy to bring you these pictures of our garage after it received a massive overhaul thanks to Prominent Paints. It is proof that a little bit of paint chosen in the right colours and formula can really transform a room! I was honestly ashamed to publish pictures of our garage before the makeover as it just wasn’t the best representation of our taste, I’m sure we aren’t the only ones that felt like that about our garage.

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Romantic Fragrances

Romantic floral fragrance 2

Valentine’s Day seems as good a reason as ever to celebrate some of my favourite (fruity) floral fragrances. There is just something about the warm weather and cheesy-romance of February that makes it seem a little more acceptable to love the feminine scents (although I wear them year round).

Whether you’re looking for a gift idea or, like me, just appreciate a little pink fragrance: here are my tried-and-tested favourites.

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