In my garden ..

A few piccies from my garden just to say hello .. and I’m still here ;)  I am putting together an ‘exploring Dublin’  post … it’s coming .. soon ;)  In between all the things I do during the day, for the last three months or so I have been to physio, chiropractor and now a biokineticist to ‘fix’ my piriformis syndrome.  Physio and chiropractor worked for a while and then pain comes back.  My next step was the bio.  I went last week for my first session and nearly died!!!!   She put all her weight into her elbow which was deep into the glute area pinpointing this ‘pesky’  piriformis muscle.  Tears rolled down my cheeks from pain and I gripped the bars on her massage bed ever so tightly!!!   Oh my word !!!!  I was in agony!!!  But it worked .. yay !!!!  and I feel so much better !     Very, very bruised .. but I can walk without sciatic pain shooting down my left leg.  It’s wonderful!!

BUT .. I am going for my second appointment tomorrow .. and I am petrified!!!  She said she will do half an hour massage (torture in my book!!!) then half an hour exercises.  We need to get to the bottom (‘scuse the pun) of the cause of the problem.  I’ve been doing yoga and pilates for about 15 years or more, I shouldn’t be pulling muscles at this stage.  I think it’s an age thing but I’m not letting this defeat me !!

Back to my garden ..

Tiny miniature rose … flower is 3cm wide and bush only reaches 50cm.   I’ve had it for many many years in the garden  …  cute hey?

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Some sweetpeas are still flowering despite the heat here ..

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Barberton Daisy – gerbera jamesonii

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Carpet Rose pink …

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Agapanthus dripping with water drops …  sprinkler, not rain sadly (we are needing rain right now!)

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Burgundy Iceberg …

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Lobelia …

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Budding Gaura …

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Posted in flowers, garden, rose | 2 Comments

Walk-about in Dublin, Ireland: Travel Reminiscences

Bear with me … back to Ireland …. nearly done and dusted ;)  !!  but a holiday never to be forgotten !

Having gone around most of Ireland on our 10 day self-drive tour, I will jump back to the beginning of our holiday in Ireland .. our starting point and ending point .. Dublin.  Here again, with large cities, a few days isn’t nearly enough time.

We stayed at the Brooks Hotel , on Drury Lane, for a few days, centrally located, comfortable, very friendly and helpful staff.  Our introduction to the friendliness of Ireland :)  To venture further, we caught ‘Hop on, hop off’ buses

Copy of P1080538- The Brooks Hotel, Drury Street


Unfortunately, the timing of our trip clashed with Elaine’s Honours Graduation at University :(   No matter how we tried, we couldn’t get a firm date for the graduation until after doing final bookings for air travel etc.   Sadly her graduation was on the day we arrived in Dublin.  The day after we left home.  We missed it.  We missed it by a day :(  Jeanette and Carl took our places.  Jeanette, with camera in hand, took photographs … lots .. and lots!!   She downloaded some onto her blog, which is what we saw that evening in the Brooks Hotel in Dublin!   We sat there, in the small computer room off the ‘quiet lounge’ with tears streaming down our cheeks as we ‘watched’  are youngest daughter receive her Honours Degree in Marketing from the University of Johannesburg

P1040331-Reading J's blog-E's grad. lots of tears for us - we missed it Collages136From our window … The Covered Market, which takes up the whole block

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P1080536-Diagonally opposite hotel - The Covered Market

Sadly we didn’t go inside … and I can’t remember why.  We set off early in the morning from the hotel, on foot, and returned late .. maybe it was always closed.  I do remember walking passed the side gate on Drury Lane seeing tables of fresh fruit and veg.  Looking back now, we should have at least gone in to see what else there was ..

P1080537- The Covered Market takes up the whole square

Not far from our hotel was the Tourist Information Centre (Suffolk Street) … inside this church !

P1040311-Tourist Centre inside church

IMG_9226-Tourist Info Centre

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Arriving in Dublin in the morning gave us an opportunity to do a ‘walk-about’ getting our bearings once we’d freshened up in our hotel room.   Stepping off the bus, which we took from the airport, we must have looked a little lost as we tried to make sense of the map directions to our hotel.  A woman stopped to asked if she could help – our first encounter of the friendliness of the Irish.  Actually it was the second, the first being an Irish chappie seated next to us on the flight from Heathrow, who we chatted with the whole way.  He told us that we had chosen the best time to come to Ireland .. October.  It rains less in October he said.  I couldn’t help wonder if he was right as we flew over thick cloud cover the entire journey!!!!   But he was right!!  We had about 2 days of rain!

Grafton Street ..

P1040277-Grafton Street Statue of Molly Malone on Grafton Street:  It has since been relocated to outside the Tourist Information Centre in Suffolk Street.   She is the fictional fishmonger in one of the most famous Irish folk songs … ‘Cockles and Mussels’   


In Dublin’s fair city,
Where the girls are so pretty,
I first set my eyes on sweet Molly Malone,
As she wheeled her wheel-barrow,
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh!”

“Alive, alive, oh,  Alive, alive, oh,”Crying “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh”.

She was a fishmonger,
But sure ’twas no wonder,
For so were her father and mother before,
And they wheeled their barrows,
Through the streets broad and narrow,
Crying, “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh!”

She died of a fever,
And no one could save her,
And that was the end of sweet Molly Malone.
But her ghost wheels her barrow,
Through streets broad and narrow,
Crying, “Cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh!”



Bank of Ireland …

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Statue of Thomas Moore : Irish poet, singer, songwriter and entertainer …


Temple Bar : dates back to the 18th century when the area was ‘home to many insalubrious characters’.   Today it is ‘an exciting place with bars, restaurants, shops and several galleries’ ..


P1040286One of the many buskers ..


The Ha’penny Bridge (or Liffey Bridge) linking the Temple Bar and Liffey Street over the Liffey River.    It was built by John Windsor, an ironworker from Shropshire, England and was opened in 1816.  It got it’s nickname of Ha’penny Bridge from the halfpenny toll that was levied on it up until 1919 …


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Dublin Castle : For seven centuries Dublin Castle was a symbol of English rule, ever since the Anglo-Normans built a fortress here in the 13th century.  All that remains of the original structure is the Record Tower (1226) and the butt of the (Gun)Powder Tower


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Bedford Tower (1761) ..


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Record Tower (1226) and the Chapel Royal completed in 1814  …

P1040302-Dublin Castle

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Dubh Linn Gardens (Snake Park)  lies behind Dublin Castle  ..

P1040307- 'snake park'

Across the gardens is The Coach House …

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Walking back to our hotel to freshen up before heading off for a pub supper ..

P1040314 O’Neill’s pub opposite the Tourist Centre (we went there on our last night in Dublin) ..

P1040313-O'Neill's pub opposite Tourist Centre

Green post boxes!!!!!   only in Ireland !!


This particular evening, it was recommended by the concierge of the hotel to have pub grub at Gallagher’s Boxty House in Temple Bar.  We were not disappointed :)

P1040287-Gallaghers Boxty House


And .. what does one have on their first night in Ireland .. Irish Stew !!  … looks a little insipid in the photo because of the flash,  but it was very yummy!!

P1040318-Irish Stew

P1040320- seats at Boxty House

We were ready for a good nights sleep after that …. ready to explore Dublin the following day

Posted in autumn, bridges, castles, church, dining out, Dublin, food, holiday, hotels, Ireland, memory lane, restaurants, street, travel | Tagged , | 2 Comments

My first road race !!

This morning Jeanette and I participated in the Spars Women’s Race – I did the 5km and Jeanette did the 10km.  Jeanette has been a member of Run/Walk for Life since the beginning of the year, increasing her distances gradually and doing extremely well, I must say!!   I am very proud of you my girl :)    Her goal being the half marathon at the Two Oceans Marathon in Cape Town next year, Easter weekend.

Me ?   I do the 5 km Delta parkrun most Saturdays … walking most the way and jogging down hills (if my piriformis syndrome can take the pressure!!!!)  On average I do it in 48 mins (my PB is 45:15)

When Jeanette suggested I join her for the Spars Women’s Race I jumped to the idea :)  It would be a breeze .. it’s on the road all the way.  No negotiating wonky paths and stones and skipping around doggies and leads!!!!    It was great fun!!  Packed to capacity with thousands of runners/walkers.  Some men too, in fact quite a lot of men!  They were all supposed to be dressed as women!   Majority were, some weren’t.

I took my little camera with me to take piccies along the way.  An Instagram photo(which is in the side bar of my blog, and which I don’t know how to transfer from phone to blog !!!)   … was taken by Jeanette’s friend before the race  —–>

My time was roughly 54:36 and Jeanette’s was 1hr 10min  .. cutting off at least 5 minutes from those times because of the hold-up at the start

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Copy of P1080965Copy of P1080969At last .. going through the Start ..  (a camera man happened to take a picture when I took a picture .. hence the flash !)

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A sea of people in front and behind …  this is all the 5 km race. 10km race took a different route

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My time …

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Here comes Jeanette (in the yellow top)…

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My first medal!!!  Whoo hooo !

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It was super !!!!   When is the next one ? !!! ;)


Posted in Jeanette, me, odd stuff | Tagged | 5 Comments

Sharifa … one of my favourite roses

October means it’s rose time.  I don’t have many rose varieties in my garden but those that I do have are grown for specific reasons  .. except the icebergs  .. which I love as they are easy to care for and always full of blooms throughout the summer months.  I have several good ol’ whites and pink  ‘simplicity’s, and one of each ‘burgundy’ and ‘brilliant’.   One of my favourites grown-for-specific-reasons is Sharifa Asma, a David Austin English Rose

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Many years ago I was wondering through the roses section of Lifestyle Garden Centre sniffing every single rose!!!  I was looking for something that had a perfume!!  So many roses don’t have a perfume anymore, as they did when I was a little girl.  Every rose seemed to have a scent, be it strong or faint.   While I had gone through the entire section and ultimately getting rather confused and quite ‘heady’, a lovely man with short beard and cap on head asked me if he could assist.  We discussed various roses and then he showed me his favourite .. a beautiful short but full bloomed frilly pale pink rose with the most gorgeous perfume.    Perfect!!   It was the one that caught my ‘nose’  more than any other

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Little did I know then, that he was Mr Ludwig ….  of Ludwig Roses.    Only few years later I realised who this lovely-man-with-short-beard-and-cap-on-head was.     I saw his photograph and article on Ludwig Roses in a gardening magazine

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It’s also the rose I call ‘Daddy’s rose’  as .. I have mentioned this before .. I was in the middle of planting it when my sister in law phoned telling me that my Dad had passed away

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Posted in flowers, garden, home, rose | Tagged | 2 Comments

Throwback Thursdays : It’s their first anniversary !

On Sunday the 12th of October will be Elaine and Bryan’s FIRST wedding anniversary!!!  A whole year ago we were in the throws of celebrating their wedding at Providence Country Weddings in Nottingham Road, Midlands, surrounded by friends and family.   Wonderful memories !!


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Wedding photographer Eileen  (

A very very Happy FIRST Wedding Anniversary to you both and may you have a lifetime of togetherness, love, laughter and happiness

Love you lots and lots
Mom and Dad xxxx

Posted in celebrations, countryside, Elaine, memory lane, photography, special occasion, Throwback Thursdays, weddings | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Just flowers

I know I planned to do a post or two on Dublin (our 2009 holiday) but have been busy in the garden lately.  With spring/early summer there are jobs that need doing :)     Soooo .. here are some flower photos I’ve taken recently..

Red rose .. no idea it’s name!  I grew two bushes from cuttings

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Sylvia rose …

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Queen Elizabeth rose …


Banksia rose …

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Perlargonium ..

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Murraya exotica (mock orange)

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Lavender ..

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Bougainvillea ..

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Iceberg rosebud ..

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Ladybird having nibbly bits ..

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Posted in flowers, garden, home, insects, rose | 2 Comments

Throwback Thursday : highlights of 1982

Thursdays are coming around rather quickly lately !!!   Time for photos from way-back-when ;)

My son Carl was given a kitty for his 7th birthday !!  One of his little school friends came to his party with a kitten on her shoulder … a birthday present!!   A bit of a cheek actually  .. but little kitty stayed.    The following year she had 5 gorgeous kittens of her own .. we kept one and gave the others away to good homes.  Whiskey was about 20  when she died .. a good age!    Here she is with Jeanette a few weeks after her surprise arrival into our home .. and hearts

Jeanette and Whiskey - March 1982

In this year, we had our swimming pool built ….

New Pool - July 1982

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This is what it looks like now …

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Giggles and laughter:   My Mum and Dad travelled down from Rhodesia/Zimbabwe to spend Christmas with us.  Much hilarity when, one evening, they were showing Jeanette how to measure parts of the body ie  circumference of neck = measurement between thumb and middle finger … length of foot = length of forearm etc  :)

Measuring - Dec 1982..

Posted in children, Dad, garden, Grandparents, home, memory lane, Mum, Throwback Thursdays | 4 Comments