Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Sunday, March 21, 2010
Don't you all just LOVE the wonderful world of blogging? I do! Arriving home from our bike tour to the Cape, I was spoilt by a parcel from Mississippi. It was from fellow blogger, Grant, of Uncertain Horizons. He kindly sent a variety of products and memomtoes from his part of the world. What a lovely treat. Thanks Grant!
We have had a slight change of plan. We came home directly from the Cape and will motorcycle down to Kwa- Zulu Natal on Wednesday next week. Our oldest (seven-year-old) and youngest (one-year-old) granddaughters share a birthday next weekend and we'll join John and Debbie in the Drakensberg for this occasion.
We will then motorcycle inland to visit hubby's aunt. On Sunday we ride down to Durban on the east coast of Natal to visit mum-in-law and her husband.
Finally we will head back home and began our preparations to fly back to the Sudan towards the end of March.
To all who have visited my blog while I've been away, thanks for your well-wishes and comments.
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
South Africa: wide open spaces, big blue sky and glorious weather
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
An early morning stroll in the garden
Megan is just visible between the sunlight and shadowsA very excited Labrador...
Eddy as always, on the prowl for rats!
The littlest Hedges asleep in the dappled shade
of GranJo's garden
Oi, I heard all about this crazy Gran who always takes photos.
Bet you I'll end up on her blog!
Monday, March 8, 2010
I'm just checking in to say we arrived in Johannesburg on Thursday afternoon. No delayed flights, no missed connections, praise God! Yesterday (Sunday) was family day. Today I'm in the garden with my dogs and cats. I will post again later today and hopefully catch up on reading and commenting.
For more scenes around the world, click here.
Friday, March 5, 2010
For more skies across the world, click here.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
In the light of the narrow time limit, we may be in Johannesburg just after lunch, or we may be in Addis Ababa until tomorrow. Either way, I will only be online again on Saturday morning in South Africa.
Today is also our wedding anniversary. Grant and I have been married for 38 years. We met at school in 1968 and have made it together through thick and thin. On that momenteous day of our lives, my sister, Rose was my chief bridesmaid. My sister-in-law (then still my brother's fiance) was the other maid while a young cousin, was a sort of in between flower-girl/bridesmaid. Grant's best friend was his best man while his brother was the groomsman. We all look like school-kids in the photos.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
I always seem to surround myself with pets of some sort. So going home to South Africa on break, I have to find someone to look after our budgies. Our general manager, Issam has agreed to have them in his house downstairs. We inherited Sweet Pea from him when he went over to the USA last August.
I've asked Grant to make an elbow for the cage to be suspended in Issam's flat. I also asked him for a second elbow. This would be fixed to an outside wall for the budgies to get some fresh air.
I've been watching the course of the sun in the courtyard below. Every wall of our building gets full sun at some stage during the day. To hang the budgies there would mean slow-death-by-roasting. Poor things. Then I noticed that a storeroom opposite had a wall that never received the sun. Grant will suspend an elbow there today.
Mirriam works for Issam on Wednesdays and Sundays and will come in to clean in our absence on Thursdays. I have shown her how to change the birds' water and food daily. She will also ensure the birds are indoors when she leaves work in the afternoon.
I'd been concerned about Calico Cat. She seems to be thinner so perhaps she's had her kittens. Every evening and many mornings, she waits for her food which Grant takes down for her. Now I have asked Mirriam to leave food (which is stored in my fridge) for her every time she comes in to work.
Now, I'd better get packing for my holiday back in South Africa. We cannot wait to see our new grandson who is already five weeks old!
God willing, I should be back online and blogging on Saturday from my own office back home! Until then, everyone take care and be blessed.
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
I rang the gate bell while a number of customers at the shop in the street looked on curiously. Soon I was being ushered into the courtyard by a beautiful woman. With gestures and much arm-waving (I’m getting SO good with charades-lol!) I managed to convey that I’d like to speak to the man of the house. On her call of “Mohamed”, he appeared from the house next door. He spoke English and introduced himself and then the lady with us as Harda, his sister. He said his wife was out, but please would I come in.
Once inside Harda's home where a friend whom she introduced as Saire, was seated on a divan, Harda motioned for me to sit down. The women immediately wanted to know all about me: where do I come from, how many children do I have, where does my husband work. That day, our fourth grandchild had just been born. I explained this to Mohamed who relayed it to the ladies. They in turn, clapped their hands then leant over to pat my knee in congratulation.
Meanwhile Mohamed disappeared outdoors and returned within a few minutes with two bottles of Pepsi Cola. Harda brought out two wine glasses which Mohamed filled. He gave one to me, took one for himself and gave the remainder of the two bottles of Pepsi to the two women.
As I started to leave, another beautiful lady entered the yard. Mohamed introduced her as his wife, Zenab. While greeting Zenab, I suddenly remembered the wardrobe that Mohamed was making. I asked them if I could see it. They took me around a shoulder -high wall to their home. After admiring the wardrobe and asking Mohamed if he’d make an item of furniture for me, they both posed in front of it.
When I finally left, they asked me to please come again.
For more worlds around the globe, click here.
Monday, March 1, 2010
Why low GI? What is Low GI? According to a Diet and Nutrition Health website, eating low-GI is a key nutrition message that goes hand-in-hand with other healthy eating guidelines such as eat less saturated fats and eat more fruit and vegetables.
The Glycemic Index (GI) was devised about 20 years ago when researchers looked closer at the dietary recommendations for diabetics; which was to eat more complex carbohydrates (starch) because they took longer to process and digest than simple carbohydrates (sugar).
How does low-GI promote better health? Research has shown that very high glucose levels after meals, called glucose spikes, are damaging to our arteries and various blood vessels, and they promote far too much insulin to be around.
Eating low-GI foods means you avoid those spikes and dramatic falls in blood-glucose so you get a much steadier stream of energy. You, therefore, reduce your risk of heart disease and other chronic diseases that are implicated by those blood-glucose fluctuations.
Last week we found wheat flour in the supermarket. This is similar to the whole wheat we get in South Africa except not so "whole" ! I decided to bake my Low GI bread here.
When I removed the sunflower seeds from the packet, I realized they'd not been shelled. It took me forty five minutes to shell them (ewgh!). Finally I could get on with the preparationsFrying the sunflower seeds filled the kitchen with a delicious aromaThe bread turned out well and was delicious
1 cup (200g) crushed wheat (couldn't find in Khartoum, omitted)
3 cups (420g) whole-wheat flour
1 cup (120g) white bread flour
1 ½ tsp (7g) salt
1 x 10g packet instant yeast
1 cup (42g) All-bran flakes (e.g. Kellogg’s)
2 tbs (30ml) milk
3 tbs (45ml) molasses or honey
1 tbs (15ml) olive oil
1 tbs (15ml) lemon juice
2 ¼ - 2 ½ cups (560ml – 625ml) lukewarm water
(Set aside ¼ cup (60ml) for garnishing)
Mix seeds with molasses/honey, oil and lemon juice
Add water and stir well
Sift together flours, yeast, salt, crushed wheat and All Bran flakes
Add to liquids and seeds and mix well
Pour dough into loaf pan of your choice; (I used 28 x 10 ½ x 9 ½)
Sprinkle top with reserved seeds and crushed wheat
Leave to rise in a warm place for 30 minutes
Preheat oven to 200°C and bake for 45 minutes
Remove loaf from tin and bake on rack for 19 minutes. (For a crisp bottom crust)
Makes 7 mini loaves, 3 rounds, or 1 large loaf
Dimensions of alternative tins:
Round tin: 12 ½ x 4 ½
Mini loaf tins: 11 x 6 ½ cm