Tag: Ecolodge

A wedding cake, an olive tree and three feral chickens.

Early in the mornings we hear the cackle, scratch and crow of our three feral chickens. Always roosting in a new place – never to be seen.

To cut a rather long and gumbooted -in-the-dark story short, after a false wringing of one chickens neck, he let his two buddies know their pot luck fate and they never came within three metres of us again.

Yesterday, however, they were tired and hungry and sneaked into the chicken hok. But Taskmaster was on spy mode. He saw them out the corner of his eye through the passage the window, jumped out the window and closed the door on them in one fluid movement. Ninja farmer skills. Kingoftheplayground has inherited said skills and captured 4 songololos the other day while I was cracking eggs for breakfast.

The Fynbos and Food event is getting closer and closer….a confirmation of more stallholders today who will be selling organic apple juice, farm honey, gluten-free bakes, unsulphered dried fruit, kids fun stuff, crystals and gemstones.

We are lucky lucky lucky to have three pretty ladies playing guitar and singing for us on the day. Shady tree and lunch anyone? Aaaaah.

Here is our olive tree:

This is the first year is has bore us/fruited/produced/developed olives. (Must look in John Seymour’s book for correct term..that book is constantly open in this house) We picked these: It may looook like a little – but you try doing yoga moves in a pokey olive tree and then say “Small bushel” or whatever the collective for olives are. A host of olives? A hoard of olives…a press of olives? hmmm. Anyway, here:

A gloriously decadent Rooibos and pink buttercream icing wedding cake was made last week for a wedding in Stanford. Please note: If you are delivering a fully iced and decorated cake some three hours car ride away…its best to buy coverup goods for the unforeseeable meltdowns….in my case in the form of meringues and strawberries 🙂 Oh and drink chamomile tea to calm the jagged nerves. …Think we stopped about 17 times to check it was still fine. So not too much tea or more stops, which means more checking up. Which counteracts the chammomile. Ahem. CAKE PLEASE!!!!

So concludes this post. Off to jump in the Ecolodge jacuzzi and then water the animals and veggies too. We jamming this week, and preserving veg, so any spare glass jars you have lying around – recyclers/hoarders/bottled produce lovers …. I would love to use them! Pretty please 🙂

When goats do roam my fynbos does moan

Hi. I’ve been a bad blogger again – but life has been busy busy busy!

Our baby goat AKA Greeny (dont ask – Kingoftheplayground named him) has been running around the nursery and getting into trouble. With me. Cant really dicipline a goat though, so just trying to feed him up so he gets too fat to escape through the fence. And eat more of our garden. Again.

The daddy goat gets stuck in his fence at least once a day:

Which is quite funny except then you need to go and get him out which is like wrestling a mountain with horns and yellow devil eyes and you stink like manky goat for a while after. Lovely.

Our veggies are coming along ….











And King of the playground is enjoying helping…









Some pics of the Fat of our Land:











The Ecolodge has been fully booked every weekend (Lots of flower arranging and meeting happy faces) and the landscaping has been non stop. But no matter how busy we all are – we still always make take time out to go for meanders on the Fynbos Walk…

At our next event  (Details in next blog entry) we will be giving a free Guided Fynbos Walk so be sure to be there and come experience our nature!!!


Cool links and the new spring poster.

So the sale date is beckoning, as well as all the little billion things that need to be completed by then. Here are two cool links advertising the Spring into Fynbos event:




Also,  a rather brilliant blog entry was sent to us from an obviously incredibly intelligent woman 🙂 A rave review on the nursery! We clustered round the computer screen and in between grunts of delight as we scrolled down, we declared it the Best Review Ever. Check it out at


Our article finally came out in the Home/Tuis magazine on the Fynbos Ecolodge. It was well worth the hard work as the pics came out all beautiful and shiny….mmmmm, nice. Go out now and buy yourself a copy – it’s the Eco edition so it’s a good read too. In the mean time here is a scanned version:

Fynbos Ecolodge article
Fynbos Ecolodge article page 2
Fynbos Ecolodge article page 3

Then our good friend Harry-the-girl who is a whizz at design, generously created this bright new poster for our Spring event:

Spring into Fynbos poster

So a week of really getting out there has been fun. Right now though, the rain has stopped, the sun is peeping through the clouds and we are going out to play in the playground and eat a pie in the tea garden. xxx

Garden club and lovely Kids of Nature visitors

Business as usual…had another garden club in this past week…

Bergvliet Garden Club. The weather performed marvelously, they had a fantastic talk by Ownerlady while Kingoftheplayground performed tricks in the sculpture tree.


And tricks.

And we served them tea and tea and

Rose cupcakes                                                                                 and                               Pecan and white chocolate cake with

My new experiment…Crystalized indigenous flower decorations!!! Yes those are Tecoma capensis flowers on the cake, and Yes – you can eat them!!! And some more tea.

The carrot cake was served and served until and only one lonely slice remained:

Awww shame. And so then I ate it. Yum.

Blooming fantastic in the retail were these beeeutiful Erica’s:

pleased with our morning in the retail, we trotted off home to bake something else.

This weekend our lovely guests at the Fynbos Ecolodge were Petra Vandecasteele and Paul Goddard, esteemed creative writer and brilliant photographer, creators of the books “In Celebration of Fynbos”  and “Enya and James  in the land of Magic” (currently for sale in the retail….get one now!) but most importantly creators of James and Enya…. Kids of nature!

They enjoyed the experience of a weekend in and around Scarborough, including a Guided Fynbos walk and a Fynbos Fusion lunch at the Tea Garden.

And now on a Monday misty morning its raining and damp, just the way the plants like it. There are wet paw prints on the floor, another cake to bake and seeds to sort out and label.

Have a great week!

The best aubergine recipe and a garden club visit

I have been asked a couple of times for this recipe so I thought I’d be nice and share it with you too.

You will need:

Two organic aubergines …(these babies came from our garden)

And two free range eggs (thank chicken # 2 & 3) and a plate with seasoned flour ( I used a mix of rye and corn flour…wheat-free and all that)

  • Crack the eggs and mix them in a bowl.
  • Slice the aubergines up and salt them so they sweat a bit..
  • then heat some oil in a pan on medium-high heat.
  • Dip slices first in the egg and then in the flour and pop in the pan…like so:
  • Let it gently brown on both side and then drain on absorbent paper.


Deliciousness in minutes. Even those who don’t normally like aubergines will love these.

This week we had another garden club visit. They had a talk and 10% discount on the retail plants and relaxed in the tea garden in between.

It was drizzling a bit, that’s why one lady has a plastic packet on her head.

Then we fed them









Wheat-free of course.

The Home/Tuise photographer and creative designer came over again to shoot the exterior of the Ecolodge and the interior of our bedroom. Apparently we have a Bohemian/Eclectic style happening. Cute label for secondhand loves! So don’t forget to buy the September issue of Home/Tuis magazine because that’s when the Ecolodge will feature in it…its their Eco-edition.

Thats a while off, in the meantime, this weekend we will have the honour of Petra Van de Casteele from Country Life magazine and her family visiting us in the Ecolodge for the weekend. She wrote ‘Celebrating Fynbos’ amoungst other magical articles and books. Nervously wondering what to serve them at the tea garden after they go on a guided fynbos walk. Maybe scones, a variety of  indigenous flower jams and fynbos tea? Mmmm.

As Kingoftheplayground would say: ” I better get crackalacking outta here”and go hunt for flowers.

The dam and the honeymoon.

Yesterday we all took a break from the Big Move, and headed for the dam.

Rocks were explored and  plants were examined.

At the dam, Pollox went to cool off and Lucy had a scope around.

On the way back, we had the luck of seeing a very clear Table Mountain with its cable car twinkling, and an owl hooting on a rock!

Today we had to get the Ecolodge ready for a newlyweds.

KindofthePlayground helped to clean the jaccuzi… “Oh, got we to clean it all up?”

Me: “Careful around the edge please!” Him: “Oh my word-Im being careful!”

And added a romantic touch with flowers in vases, proteas on pillows and a wreath on the door.

We wish you a Happy Ever After!

New day, new project.

Yesterday was really, really, ridiculously hot. Hot is not a good enough descriptive word…shmaaaahggg or pshaaaaaweeee might be better. Took a melting Pecan & vanilla cake down to the tea garden with Kingoftheplayground.

“It’s so so hot. It’s too hot for me” He said.”Yes, it’s too hot for me too.” I replied.

To distract him from the heat I pointed out a pretty butterfly flitting from flower to flower. He looked at me crossly.

“That butterfly makes me hot!”

Later on, we went to cool off at the Ecolodge with family.

It was a perfect evening. No wind, the pastel evening shades making the mountains look fairy-tale like.

Lucky is the word!

Well, with house renovations and the Ecolodge beautified, its back to work. Our next Good Hope Nursery event is coming up on the 5th of April, and its time to spread the word.

This is the poster so far:

And here is a peak at whats in store:

Nice hey?

So write it in your diary/cell phone/ scrap of paper and tell all your friends and family – it’s going to be a spectacular day!

Off to have a retail meeting so all the gardens and plants will be looking their best on the 5th.

The Fynbos Ecolodge after pics!!!

It is over.

Our crazy, no-words-can-describe THREE day revamp is over…had to have a day to recover before sitting down and writing this. To recover and to get the paint out of my hair.

Well, the Good Hope Nursery team were AMAZING. Resilient, unstoppable, no 1 team. Taskmaster was working so hard you could only see sawdust. Designer friend had fantastic ideas that really worked well. And the magazine photo shoot went well…cant wait to see it in glossy print!!!As words cannot describe, below are the photos that will tell a thousand words.

Drum roll please…..

Here goes:

There you have it folks. I am proud! I am indebted to all who helped – thank you is not enough…it all turned out so beautifully! I’ll leave you with these words of wisdom (to caption the last photo) from Kingoftheplayground:

“Lets go in the WAKUUUUZI!!!”

Day 2 of the Ecolodge revamp

Day two. Am. The birds have barely started singing and Kingoftheplayground flutters an eyelid open. Blinks once. Sits straight up in bed. “Oh. Ok, its time to get up now. Its a beautiful day outside. Lets go for a walk.”

Yawn. The wind is howling again. Think I saw a whole Protea bush blow past the window…but it went past really fast. Coffee!!!!

The renovations went well, got everything painted, just the rest of the roof, the outside window frames and the bathroom ceiling to do still. The new double sink and cupboards are in, the tiles are up and the gas stove is fitted. The amazingly stunning paintings arrived today – wowie….

More tomorrow….So much to do before the Magazine people come!!! ***Wish us luck***

Day 1 of Ecolodge revamp.

Day 1 went smoothly enough.

Raced off to fetch camera (mine broke…think it heard it was really, really needed) and paint and galvanized nails. Designer friend came to help and Mabuthi, silent as a ninja, painted the ceiling beautifully. We painted the front room and main bedroom ceiling, fireplace and stove tiles primed and painted, colour panel in the entrance and main bedroom painted. The pergola is up, the fencing is underway and the kitchen counter is almost in.

Today we hope to take out the old sink and install the new two-basin sink in the kitchen, complete the wall and ceiling painting, and the fencing around the Jacuzzi.  Our backs are stiff, we still have paint in our hair, but it’s amazing to see the ideas in our head actually coming to life! Very exciting.

Here are some ‘during’ pics: