Something Borrowed, Something Blue

I had such lovely weekends both last weekend and this weekend. After such sunny weather last weekend we woke to overcast and damp weather starting again on Monday and it has been back and forth all week ending with freezing rain this weekend. Cape Town is so quixotic!

Last Sunday night I made a big pot of beef stew using the broth and meat from my pot roast made during the week. I put it through a sieve to make sure no fat blobs or weirdness made it through and shredded the beef by hand. We added a tin of sweet corn, a tin of peas, some more beef stock, passata and spices. I served it with buttery toast and it was really warming on a cold winter’s evening.

That served us for two nights, so a single beef roast fed us for 3 hearty meals!

Navajo went off to the vet first thing on Wednesday morning as the physio wanted him to get an up to date x-ray to see how his ankle looks now. They have to sedate him so we asked them to give his teeth a good clean while he was out. The Pomeranians were baffled by Navajo going off on his own and when Norm came back and tried to feed them they would not eat. When the pack is separated or their routine is disrupted it causes a lot of anxiety.

When Norm collected Nav and brought him home Nava was still soooo high. He staggered around the house for ages, bumping into things and refusing to give in and lie down. He stood for ages with his tongue hanging out looking dazed and confused.

Eventually he crashed into the most awkward looking position ever.

Five minutes after he relaxed a motorbike came up the road and all of the dogs started barking and Navajo started howling like a lunatic! This went on for about 15 minutes before he finally crashed again.

The vet said he did not see any fractures or chips or extra calcification, but there is a lot of swelling in the joint. He does not recommend surgery as it could make it worse. He has sent the x-rays to the physio and to a specialist for his opinion. If the physio can just strengthen his back upper legs it will help immensely. Hopefully we can get him in to see her this week or next.

It was so cold this week that even Pixie, who normally avoids the sun like I avoid this pandemic, went out to lie in a sunbeam and get some warmth into her old bones.

On Wednesday night Norm cooked fillet steaks. I kept it simple and baked some potatoes and steamed baby broccoli to go with it. I made a creamy mushroom sauce and we drizzled the broccolini with lemon juice.

The next day I was very excited as my youngest daughter Lily and her husband Josh drove down from Mossel Bay. They arrived just before 5pm.

I cooked a chicken and butternut curry for dinner that night and Caitlin came around to eat with us.

Lily had just received the full timeline video of her wedding and so we all gathered around the fire to munch our curries and watch it.

It is so beautiful it looks like a Hollywood production. I love the simple elegance of the grooms’ and bridesmaids’ outfits contrasted with the stark beauty of the sea and simple elegance of the venue. It is just so wonderful. I especially love how my Mom gets to be apart of it all via FaceTime. If you have time here it is.

If you know of anyone who is getting married, I recommend Pinnacle Studio, I give them a full 5 Kitten Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

We also watched a few episodes of the South African version of Family Feud which is absolutely hilarious. Steve Harvey is the host in our version too as he bought the rights to create the show in Africa. It is so funny watching him try to understand the local lingo.

We wept over the wedding video and then laughed ourselves silly over Family Feud. It was lovely to hang out with the girls and Josh as I miss seeing them all.

We rang my Mom but she was at the hairdresser and could not really talk but we giggled over the pics of her with the silver foils in her hair.

It started pouring with rain on Thursday and Friday was no exception. Lily and Josh headed off to their friend’s wedding in the afternoon. I think this was the 6th attempt for Mike and Cai to try and get married. The virus and lockdown hit right before their planned big day and a series of unfortunate events has led to various delays and cancellations of every attempt since. It was lovely to hear they finally made it! They are such a cute couple and I wish them every happiness.

On Saturday we woke to freezing cold rain. Norm had popped out for fresh milk and pastries and Caitlin came for coffee late morning and the girls made us all a frothy cappuccino and we sat talking and laughing and drinking our coffee in front of a roaring fire. We rang my Mom again and had a laugh with her about various bits of nonsense.

The kids all put in towards a lovely package of goodies for me. All thoughtfully chosen just for me, things I need or love. I had been saying I wanted to try liquid blush, I love cherry lip gloss, I love facials, peanut M&Ms are my favourite candy, the sanitizer and hand cream go together and are self explanatory! #PandemicBirthdays

I am very pleased and feel so spoiled.

Around 1pm Caitlin headed off to do her weekly grocery shop and then she and Wes were off to a friend’s birthday braai. Lily and I went upstairs to shower. I tried out my new cream blush and cherry lip gloss.

Norman, Lily, Josh and I had booked to go to High Tea at Hout Bay Manor again. It was a bit soon to go back after my visit last weekend but Lily loved the idea of High Tea and as my birthday is this week we decided to let this be our birthday celebration while Lily & Josh were down in Cape Town.

To refresh your memory this is the Hout Bay Manor High Tea menu.

It was really cold and was pouring rain outside and I am not comfortable sitting inside yet so we messaged the hotel to ask for takeaways. They replied to say it was not a problem. Norm popped down to collect the food just after 2pm. For those of you who are not happy going out or who have very small children that is a great option for you too. You just do the drinks at home and relax!

The hotel gave us 2 separate boxes, one box was packed full of the savoury items, sandwiches, quiche, spanakopita, chicken & mushroom pies:

The second box was chocka with all of the sweet offerings, mini cupcakes, lemon meringue pies, fruit tarts, brownies & scones:

When Norm went to collect the food, Lily and I got the kettle on and made up 2 trays for tea in readiness for his arrival.

The four of us filled our plates and cups and sat around the fire and enjoyed our delicious tea and food. It was so yummy. A few savory bits were missing from one of the boxes but it was still plentiful. I give it 5 Kitten Stars it was really delicious. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Then Lily and I watched Jumanji: The Next Level while the boys did boring stuff like working and gaming. 🤔

It is just lovely to hang out with Lily and Josh as we have seen them so little since lockdown, I had not seen Josh since their wedding. This morning they were up and away early. They have to finish packing as tomorrow they have to be out of their house. They are moving into Josh’s Mom’s house as she works in the UK.

I have now gone through my reading list of items about the history of racism in the United States but if you know of any other important items please let me know. I have found this research very enlightening and I hope you have too.

Unfortunately the BLM protests are ongoing and events such as what has been happening in Kenosha Wisconsin justify these ongoing protests. First Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black man was shot by Kenosha police last Sunday. Mr Blake was shot seven times in the back as he tried to enter an SUV where his three children ages 3, 5 and 8 were in the car watching as police shot him. The incident happened when police responded to a domestic dispute. Jacob was trying to break up a fight between two women and the police now are trying to spin it to say he was going for a weapon, however he was unarmed when they shot him.

This shooting triggered protests across the city.

A building burns in Kenosha.
Morry Gash / Associated Press

Police Chief Daniel Miskinis and Sheriff David Beth said they believed armed members of militia groups were behind some of the violence. This is the usual pattern, a peaceful BLM protest starts, then the armed right wing come in to create chaos which ultimately gets blamed on the BLM protesters.

As tear gas fills the air, police try to push back demonstrators.
Scott Olson / Getty Images

Then on Tuesday, Kyle Rittenhouse shot 3 people. The police had dispersed crowds from the county courthouse and they were congregated at a nearby gas station. He killed a 26-year-old from Silver Lake, Wis., a 36-year-old from Kenosha and injured another person.

After the incident, onlookers alerted police that Rittenhouse — who was underage and not allowed to openly carry a weapon — was roaming the street with a semiautomatic rifle slung around his neck.

But three police vehicles drove right past him. He is white, what harm would he do?

The U.S. Justice Department has opened a civil rights investigation into Blake’s shooting. I hope they investigate why the police just let Rittenhouse walk away. The right wingnuts have set up a go fund me account for Rittenhouse. My mind cannot comprehend that they feel he is one of them and support his defense.

There are many rumours circulating that the SA government are going to re-implement the ban on alcohol due to the careless behaviour of some drinkers. The number of trauma cases doubled in hospitals in the Cape after the ban was lifted and most of those were alcohol related.

The number of people tested in South Africa is 3,652,970 and the overall stats are below.

South Africa is now ranked 6th in the world for counts of positive cases and this is great for us as it is a drop in a level as we have been holding at 5th for several weeks. However we are still climbing on the count of deaths per 1 million and this week we have increased to 28th.

So is that telling us that less people are getting the virus but those who do are dying more frequently? Or is it just that only those who are showing positive symptoms are getting tested and therefore only the severely ill are in the stats in the first place and due to the severity of their symptoms are more likely to not survive? It is hard to disassociate the data from the fact that these are actual people’s lives, not just statistics.

When you view counts globally via a graph it is very clear that the US has by far the greater amount of positive cases than any other country.

That really worries me with my Mother, friends and family there and vulnerable and with no cohesive or logical plan in how to address this pandemic under the current administration. The Trump defenders are still present and showing support despite the lies and insanity he and his family are spouting at the conferences.

We can only keep hoping that the light wins out over the dark.

I have a couple of lovely musical videos to end off for you this week.

My first musical feel good video features Mared Williams, Sophie Evans, Luke McCall, Siwan Henderson, Jade Davies, Tom Hier, Rhidian Marc, Glain Rhys and Samantha Thomas. The Welsh of the West End and The West End of Wales Orchestra have collaborated on a magical performance from the movie ‘Frozen’ in aid of Acting for Others.

And finally, a Tiny Desk Concert by Billie Eilish and her brother Finneas O’Connell. I love Billie’s voice and musical style, it often has a melancholy and wistful sound. And we all know a Virgo loves a bit of melancholy.

Norm has booked to take Caitlin and Wes with us to Foxcroft on Thursday for my birthday and I am so excited! Their food is amazing.

Please stay safe and if possible self-isolate or at least limit your exposure to others. I hope you have everything you need. and that you appreciate everything that you have, I know I do.

Until next time, socially distant Kisses from the Kitten x0x0x0x0x0

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