Although we enjoyed the Valentine’s Movie Night, there were many people who complained about a tent not being put up etc etc. Coming from an events background I completely understood the need to take a call as to whether a tent should be put up or whether you brave whatever weather may be in store. Luckily they did have an indoor auditorium that we ended up finishing the movie in. Take a look here at the comments on the event page, taking note of Karl’s (aka Mr Man) fantastic post telling everyone where to shove their complaints!
Anyways…based on what happened the organisers advised they would give each guest a discount voucher to use on an upcoming event. I can never let a discount voucher go unspent or unused so I kept an eye out on the events coming up to find one that I hadn’t experienced before or something that would be really different/special for Karl and I to share. Enter the Farm to Table luncheon…
It was held at L’Antico Giardino in Elandsdrift which is one of the venues under The Forum Company. It’s a lovely outside area surrounded by lots of trees and concrete fountains giving you the feeling that you are further from Jozi than you really are.
MrMan and I arrived there around 2pm and were quickly shown to our little table for two. The surroundings were so gorgeous that decor was kept to a minimum which I loved.
The food was delicious and the service impeccable. I really enjoyed the celeriac soup which was part of the starter platter, as well as the garden lasagne as part of the main buffet. Best of all was being able to enjoy this feast while sitting outdoors with MrMan. To add to this fantastic atmosphere we were seated so close to this massive lemon tree which gave off a lovely and fresh citrus scent to accompany the relaxing sounds of the fountains.
We walked around the venue after lunch contemplating the possibilities of using it as a wedding venue. It has a lot of charm and many different areas that could work, but for me it felt like it was missing something special. Perhaps it was the concrete factory right next door that didn’t give the best views, or that no space worked perfectly as a ceremony spot…
We had a ball though and I really enjoyed spending some quality time with MrMan where it was just the two of us.
Continued from part 19…
In the April of 2015, after five glorious months together, we took a trip to Hermanus so that MrMan could meet my mom. We made the most of all the public holidays, put in leave for about three days and ended up getting an awesome ten day holiday!
My mom decided to retire to Hermanus but is busier now than I can ever remember with bridge games twice a week, this meeting, and that outing… We fitted in with a lot of her plans so we could spend time with her but also made sure to make time for the two of us to relax together too.
On the Sunday we tagged along to one of my mom’s social groups that were playing Boules. At first I was happy to sit in the sun but was coerced into playing and I am really glad I did! The objective of the game is to throw heavy balls (about the size of a tennis ball) under-handed as close as possible to a small target ball. There were four people involved in each game, two people per team. With the number of people participating we ended up mixing and matching players until we’d all played several games. It was an awesome afternoon spent on a hotel lawn with the most gorgeous views of the mountains and the ocean.
On the way home afterwards I suggested we take a drive up Rotary Way so that we could show MrMan the whole of Hermanus from this amazing viewpoint.
Most mornings I joined my mom for a walk on the beach with her energetic little puppy, while MrMan had a sleep in. There was one morning where I did manage to drag him out of bed and we took a coastal path between two small beaches where we spotted these cute little messages written on stones.
For all the morning walks MrMan missed out on, I dragged him out on walks in the afternoon or early evening around the estate in which my mom lives. This was an amazing time to catch up, just the two of us, and discuss what happened that day or what we wanted to get up to in the days to come. Plus we got to witness the most gorgeous sunsets and scenery.
Our last full day there was spent driving to nearby wine and cheese farms since the weather was chilly and otherwise. The cheese farm we stopped at was near Stanford and we had quite a few tasters of cheese with different artisanal jams and preserves. We then made our way to a few wine farms where we tasted and tasted and tasted. 🙂 After we’d had our fill of wine and touring the nearby towns, we stopped at a small restaurant for a late lunch before heading back to get ready for our return trip.
One amazing holiday down. Many new memories created. Five months down…a lifetime to go!
The story continues…
Continued from part 18…
The week after our first meeting was unforgettable. MrMan and I made plans to see each other most nights even if it was just for a quick cup of tea. It was a week of discovering whether the initial attraction we experienced on the Saturday was real and not just wine/beer fuelled, and whether the non-stop conversation also wasn’t just a once-off. Based on the Whatsapp conversations, phone calls and chats when we met up I can attest to this not just being a once-off. And the initial attraction just became deeper and deeper with each time we saw each other. (Can you say AWWWW!)
The Friday following our first meeting things became official… (Cue another AWWWW!)
MrMan is old-school and wanted us to be secure knowing we were exclusive and so he asked me to be his. It was a funny conversation actually because he started off by asking me what I thought about making things FBO (Facebook Official). I wasn’t really phased as I am not that present on Facebook as I spend most days online for social media management purposes. I was managing an event the night of the fateful conversation when I went online to check something and the first thing that popped up in my news feed was that MrMan was listed as in a relationship. In his haste and excitement, he’d mistakenly missed one of the steps so it didn’t say he was in a relationship with me so I had to rectify that, pronto.
This was a huge thing for me as I didn’t want my time to be wasted or to be strung along while he decided whether I was worth it, or waiting to see if someone better would come along (which is what happens these days). In fact on our very first meeting I had laid everything out, plain and simple, in terms of what I was looking for and what I wanted. If he wasn’t on the same page then there would be no need in continuing our date. Based on how quickly things became official, he was definitely on the same page as I was.
I may be one of the few Tinder success stories, and I am definitely glad I was coerced into joining that fateful day…
The story continues…
Although I absolutely adore the smell of a new book and the excitement held within its pages when you open it for the first time, there’s also something magical about the eBooks on my iPad. Mainly it’s because I always have a myriad of books available at my fingertips when I finish the book I’m reading. Since I discovered BookBub the number of books I have available to read at any given time has grown and the bookworm is me is ecstatic!
I first came across BookBub on Twitter when someone shared a link to the daily discounted eBooks. Some were discounted and some were completely free. The bargain-hunter in me was thrilled! I signed up to their site and noted the genres I was interested in, and the rest is happy, book-reading history!
Of course the cheapskate in me has only downloaded the free eBooks but these have kept me enthralled over the past weeks/months. Some of the eBooks I have downloaded are quite short where I can immerse myself in someone else’s “life” for a few hours (according to the speed of my reading measured on the Kindle app). So far these are the books I’ve devoured.
An Eclair to Remember by Rich Amooi
Finding My Prince Charming by JS Cooper
Girl’s Guide to Witchcraft: A Humorous Paranormal Romance by Mindy Klasky
Remember This by Shae Buggs
Something in the Heir by Jenny Gardiner
Summer at Sea by Beth Labonte
The Housewife Assassin’s Handbook by Josie Brown
The Wedding Trap by Adrienne Bell
What Stays in Vegas by Beth Labonte
Winter in Sweetwater County by Ciara Knight
I really love that over the past few weeks I have got home from work and opened up my iPad to read rather than switching on the TV. (This could also be because I’m running out of things to watch that I’ve downloaded to the hard-drive.) Not to mention waking up on the weekend (when I am lucky enough not to have any plans) and making myself a cup of coffee then continuing on with my latest story.
I started the year off with a fierce desire to change my house into my home. As it goes with decorating, things take time… I started off with installing blinds in the kitchen, bathroom and stair landing to allow more privacy. We also bought a special couch for the TV loft which fits absolutely perfectly but I still want to add some scatter cushions and colourful throw blankets.
I’m really lucky that MrMan is so good with DIY. Every now and then he gets a bee in his bonnet and rushes around tidying things up or sorting things out that are on the to-do list. (This also happened a few weeks back when he had a special proposal planned for that evening and couldn’t sit still even if he tried…)
Although I think we actually did this last year, we put up my iPhoneography Exhibition prints above the one couch in the lounge. There are a few other images I am wanting to print and include, but as it comes to choosing images for iPhoneography, this is pretty difficult. (And yes, the cushions not being symmetrical when I took this pic will haunt my OCD for life.)
When I lived with my dad I had two gorgeous shelves in my bedroom which I’ve kept over the years. They’ve been lying around in the loft study for the past few months while I’ve tried to decide where it would be best to put them. We settled on installing them in the loft just at the top of the stairs. The plan is to adorn them with photos of family and friends and other little ornaments.
My mom is coming to stay with us on her return part of her overseas trip so we need to get the spare room in order. MrMan installed the rustic wooden headboard a couple months back which was quite tricky. The headboard was two sides of a crate that needed to be “stuck” together. We then needed to find a way to hang it on the wall without using deadbolts, which we luckily managed to do with the help of our nearest hardware store. Recently we installed the curtain rail that we’d bought last year when we bought the rail for the main bedroom. Now all that’s needed is to buy some bedside lamps, more pillows, hang a pic or two, and move the leftover boxes to the study (for now).
At a Christmas party last year I got these awesome “hanging men” hooks that are just too cute. I was looking for the perfect place to put them and we decided they would work well on wall behind the main bedroom door as hooks for my multiple dressing gowns (summer, autumn/spring, winter). I had over-the-door hooks for all the gowns but it just looked messy. Now I smile every time I take off or put back my gown in the morning.
The colour scheme in my house is quite neutral which was the plan to ensure it was modern/classic. I decided the bathroom needed a pop of colour and red was the first to came to mind. My mom found a fantastic bath mat from Ikea when she was overseas last year so all that was needed was to find a similar colour red. This was a feat as each place I went to sold pastels or didn’t have the right red. Eventually I came right and I’m loving how the colour changes the bathroom!
We have also been searching for the right shelf to install in the shower. This has been a mission! I have found ones that don’t have enough shelves or space for all the stuff. Or ones that were great but that fit over the side of the shower, which would work if I didn’t have a corner entry shower. We eventually found one and it happens to fit perfectly and give us the right amount of space.
There are still quite a few things on our to-do list but it felt exhilarating to to cross off some of the items. I will post another update when we’ve sorted out a few other things…
The other weekend I decided some baking was required! I took out my box of recipes and quickly chose my favourite vanilla cupcake recipe.
While taking out all the ingredients to place on the kitchen counter, I came across a jar of assorted Lindt chocolate balls I had forgotten about. I brought them out too and decided to try create a secret centre or secret filling per cupcake. I happened to have some dark chocolate, milk chocolate, white chocolate, hazelnut noisette, and caramel filled Lindt balls that I set aside.
After making the cupcake batter I brought out some special cupcake holders that I used for the secret centre cupcakes so I could tell them apart from the normal cupcakes which would be in plain white. (I didn’t have enough Lindt balls to make all the cupcakes have secret fillings.) I put a bit of the batter in, then popped in a Lindt ball, and finally topped with some more batter leaving enough room at the top for the cupcakes to rise.
I’m not sure whether it was the difference in cupcake holders with thicker paper or the addition of the chocolate ball but I had to bake the cupcakes for longer than normal. Once they’d baked and cooled a little I iced them with a chocolate butter icing.
The cupcakes had barely been iced or cooled down completely before I took one, gave one to MrMan, and we devoured it! They were perfect! Still warm from the oven. And the chocolate was still soft and gooey. The only thing I realised after biting into one was that the chocolate had sunk to the bottom. It was obviously too heavy during the baking process but they still tasted amazing!
I’m thinking that the next time I make secret centre cupcakes that I’ll try marshmallows… They are lighter in weight and perhaps won’t sink to the bottom but should still go gooey in the heat of the oven.
Last night I got engaged! I am still floating somewhere above Cloud 9 and everything still feels very surreal. But I’m engaged! I have a fiancé! And I was taken completely by surprise.
The night had been planned for a week or so as we had dinner plans with MrMan’s best friend and his wife and it was put into our shared calendar. I had incorrectly read the venue as Piccolinos and was wondering why I would need to go change when MrMan suggested I relook at my outfit. I quickly checked the diary entry and realised my jeans and a tee would not be suitable to dine at Piccolo Mondo at the Michelangelo Hotel. Off I went to have a bath and get myself more acceptable.
No red flags or suspicions arose since we were going to such a fancy restaurant because we were going with MrMan’s friends. Needless to say it was completely unexpected when he asked me to marry him between starters and main course.
He asked me to stand and look “over there” to see something that his friends had already seen. I didn’t understand what could be so exciting with Nelson Mandela Square or something I hadn’t seen before but I stood up and went to where he said I should stand.
He started by reminding me about his four key elements in life – Honesty, Trust, Respect and Love. With watery eyes and a sudden realisation of what was happening, I just said YES YES YES even though he hadn’t asked the special question yet. He then got down on one knee and I answered YES one more time.
The ring is absolutely gorgeous and a perfect fit. It is engraved with the four key elements and will be a constant reminder in our life together.
Babe, it’s you and me together forever. I can’t wait for what life has in store for us. I am so excited about all the new memories we will make and the journey we will walk together.
On Sunday evening I arranged a date night for MrMan. It involved driving through to The Bioscope in the Maboneng Precinct for a special double feature of the 1978 Superman with Christopher Reeve and the 1989 Batman with Michael Keaton. Besides wanting to do something special with my guy, the other reason for watching these particular shows is that tonight we are attending an exclusive premier of the Batman Vs Superman movie which is being released later this week. Why not create some more anticipation for this movie than venturing back in time to the films that first launched these awesome heroes on to the big screen.
The first film was due to start at 7pm so we drove through earlier so we could share a pizza and have a few drinks at The Chalkboard Cafe before the movies. The Maboneng Precinct was still pumping when we got there around 6pm and we only just managed to get a table. I had incorrectly thought that the long weekend would mean most people would be away and the inner city would be a little quieter…
Once we’d eaten and had a drink, we walked a bit down the road so I could show MrMan a teeny tiny bit of the area. I do still want to bring him through to Arts on Main one Sunday as he’s never been…
If you aren’t aware, The Bioscope is a small independent cinema that screens various documentaries and films. I absolutely love their cinema! The seating is made from old car seats so you almost get the feel like you’re at a drive-in. The only thing I missed are the cup-holders…
As The Chalkboard Cafe is managed by the same team as The Bioscope, you are able to order food and drinks and take these into the cinema. So if you do want to go through to watch something but don’t have time to sit and eat next door, don’t stress!
Unfortunately the first movie, Superman, got stuck an hour in which meant we didn’t get to watch the entire thing and thus started the second movie earlier than planned. And thank goodness for that because the Batman movie was over 2 hours long! I battled to keep my eyes open even though I’d had a strategic nap in the afternoon. And I am pretty sure that MrMan fell asleep towards the end.
We both enjoyed ourselves immensely. Not only was it a special date night, it was also something out of the ordinary.