Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Salvation Army Fete - Saturday 25 August 2012

Bright and early, and I do mean EARLY, we headed off to what was advertised as one of the biggest do's in the bargain hunter calendar, the Salvation Army fete! It was... an experience!

 Even though we were there before 8am, the official opening time, the place was, oh, some what crowded...

Perhaps all the police there, and guys with helmets and nifty guns they won't let Jo's hold, seems a tad too much? If you think so then you've obviously not seen the horror of one bargain item and three determined housewives! 

 Jo plots her course of action. Maximum ground coverage is essential! Each tent must be explored! Take no prisoners under 99c!

Sadly there were also a lot of lines to get into the more interesting tents. We decided to give those a skip. The crowd could sense we were not die hard browsers and they're always keen to take out the weakest first! Being battered to death with a stuffed chihuahua - they lose more first timers that way...

Oh my section! A tent full of fat, fluffy toys! Just go on without me!!!

Seriously though, these tents held some weird stuff and, like hungry gazelles, we browsed!

Glow in the dark "golden" Halloween witch! A must have!

 PVC toy dog that looks like a prop for a video that could get daddy into a lot of trouble if mummy ever found out about it!

More sweets than you could shake a stick at! (And trust me after eating half of that candy, you would only ever be able to shake!)

Hey they could be selling actual babies for all I know...

A true blood bargain hunter can spot at least 3 things in this photograph they absolutely HAVE to have!

A life size sarcophagus! I'll get one for my mummy!

 Bren enjoys the spoils of war! Victory is sweet!

And I got something as well! Envy is an ugly emotion.

We had a grand time of it, but my my, aren't I glad we don't do this every weekend? The crowds and lines and people, people, people, would just be too much! 
I wonder if anyone bought the sarcophagus?

Monday, August 13, 2012

Candy Making - aka EPIC FAIL!

Right! Making Nougat, granted I'd never made candy before but how hard can that be? 
Oooooooooooooh boy!!

We found a good looking recipe online, bought all the ingredients and commensed candy-fi-cation!

Below we have a symphony in pots of how something so simple can go so horridly wrong!!
We usually have immense success in the kitchen but this time I was reminded about not getting too cocky with Koch in the kitchen!  :P

1. We added all the sugar, honey and maple syrup to the pot to cook. We put in water to ensure it didn't stick. Below we see the sugar and goodies mixing together in a rather unappetizing looking dish. But we are peppy and thinking, well, lets give it our best shot!

2. Ok, 20 / 30mins into cooking and it's yes, shiny and shimmery, but not much else is happening, hmmmm...

3. Ok ages later and besides a bit of bubbling still not much. And then a lot more bubbling! And more! And then we began to suspect that there was just waaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much water in the thing! And what the heck did one recipe need so much sugar for? The scent of fear, like overly warm candy, filled the air...

 4. So if there's too much water add more sugar right? We split the mix, with a quarter into one pot and three quarters into the other. Into the smaller pot we added a ton more sugar. On the plus side things started looking up a bit! The stuff started to thicken and hope bloomed once more in our trampled down hearts!

5. We added the half mix with extra sugar to the egg whites, and hey, things were happening!

 6. We put the last of all the melted sugar in a pot, just cause, and spent the rest of the time cleaning en-sugared pots! A little while later we had a pot full of rock hard candy and no kids to give it to! It really was more of a weapon to bludgeon rhinos to death then something edible!

>Clink! Clink!<

 7. The Nougat came out half soft and squishy and almost too sweet to eat! Ironically it did taste like nougat apparently but it was neither a sauce or a sweet, more like some hideous mutant creature caught between!

8. But fear not, we shall try again! This time a little older and a whole bunch wiser!! So, want to taste test?
Hey! Where are you running off too???

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Snow-Burg! 7 August 2012

Into August, the windy month, and lower temperatures are rather the norm, but what a surprise we got today! *Vibrates happily!*

It all started with some pretty low, low temperatures, at least for a South African province, (-1 to 8C) and some rather ominous looking clouds like so:

 And then... The magic! Snow started to fall! First in isolated places, so you were like, "Humph, why did X town / city / destination, get snow and we didn't? I never liked them anyway!" and then suddenly -  right at an outdoors near you - down came the snow!!
Soft flakes, small flakes, delicate flakes but still snow! In Johannesburg!!! You can imagine the excitement?!
I don't think anyone talked about anything else the entire day!

I tried to get a video of the stuff falling but it's not easy on your cellphone. I meant to try again later but was far too busy enjoying natures freakish quirk! It was awfully cold though! I got frosty patches on my ears!

 Mind you in some areas it did snow a tad bit more than others...

 But how could you not just go outside and gape at the wonder of it all? Even adults were being silly, in fact especially adults, and snowballs were thrown and snow men made, and probably rather a few colds and sniffles were picked up as well! But it was all so worth it!

 Not sure the plants knew what to make of their sudden frosting!

By the looks of it, neither did the animals! That's king of the jungle, not winter wonderland!

 It was so pretty! All those tiny ice crystals! I know to a country that gets a lot of snow this stuff is a pain in the everywhere (It really is awfully cold), but to us it was just enchanting!

Sadly in many areas it dried up rather fast. This is Africa after all! Come back snow we miss you!!!

Well... mostly.... *Cuddles heater*