House Reno Update

Well, my piano arrived yesterday, and almost right on time. Hubby had made a sterling effort over the weekend to get the wood flooring down in that area, and on Sunday evening we unwrapped the carpet which we’d shipped all the way from South Africa. His parents bought it for us about 25 years ago when they came to visit, and it still looks almost like new.


When the piano guys arrived, they had to move it out of the way to tip up the piano and fit the legs on.


Soon it was done and put in place under the domed ceiling which hubby had so laboriously crafted and painted.




The underneath of the chandelier, which came in many pieces and took half a day to assemble. There are fifteen candle-lamps in it.


I was quite surprised at how long the piano is. It’s 7 ft, but didn’t look so big in the store.


Today, hubby is finishing off the floor in the kitchen and in a few days we’ll be able to put the refrigerator and dishwasher in place. All the painting is done, and the cupboards and granite tops are in, so I’ll soon be able to start unpacking boxes, and in a few days we’ll have a working kitchen


The dining room is still unfinished, but is next on the ‘to do’ list.


The TV room, sitting room and study just need the floor done, and there’s still all the skirting boards to put in and the pillars to paint and a few other finishing touches.


Here are some of the rooms which he finished before we moved in. Those of you who’ve been following me over the past couple of years, may remember what the ‘abandoned’ house was like when we bought it. It’s been a long journey from this , but the end is in sight.

Apart from the new roof, doors and windows, the work has all been done by one pair of very hardworking hands. Hats off to hubby.

Hope you’re all having a great Tuesday. Now I’m going to feed the worker.




Macro Monday: Sweet Basil

The Sweet Basil plant is one of my favourite herbs, but in this case,  he’s one of my favourite Backyardigans. As far as I can tell, he’s still single, but yesterday I spotted a very tiny Basilisk Lizard in my lanai, so maybe Basil is a bit of a ‘dark horse’. 🙂



Happy Monday to you all. Hubby did a sterling job over the weekend, and the necessary amount of wood flooring is down.  I’m now waiting on tenterhooks for my piano to arrive. So exciting!




A Photo a Week: Death By Chocolate

“What you see before you, my friend, is the result of a lifetime of chocolate.”
~Katharine Hepburn

I suppose that there are some people who are indifferent to chocolate and maybe even a few who absolutely abhor it, but I’m certainly not one of them. Most of my chosen desserts just happen to contain that delicious substance.


Even a scoop of ice cream is for me best when it’s double chocolate, and to add to the delight, why not sprinkle on a few M&M’s?


My ‘Death By Chocolate’ pie is legendary, and on many an occasion, has been requested to grace my sister’s Sunday lunch table.


This very large chocolate cake was to say “Thank you” to the wonderful staff of  Mom’s care home, just over a year ago. The other residents enjoyed sharing it in Mom’s memory.


One of my most popular posts on my old blog, was a recipe for this ‘Decadent Chocolate Cheesecake’ which I made for Easter. Those cute chocolate bunnies and eggs  made it extra delicious.


“If there’s no chocolate in Heaven, I’m not going.” ~ Jane Seabrook

If you also have a penchant for chocolate, be sure to visit Nancy’s chocolaty ‘Photo a Week’ challenge.

Hope you’re all having a delicious weekend. Work is progressing very well here.


Feathers On Friday: Blue Flash

This Boat-tailed Grackle posed so nicely for his photo at our local nature reserve.


It’s been a very busy week here especially for hubby, who after finishing all the painting, except for the dining area which has all the wood flooring stacked up in it, immediately started putting the hardwood floor down right through the living area. Yesterday, he said that I could phone to see which day next week my piano could be delivered. The answer came back “Monday morning”, which was a bit sooner than we anticipated, so it’s all go this weekend to lay the floor  before they arrive. I’m so excited about being able to play again and serenade hubby whilst he’s finishing off the rest of the house.

Wishing you all a very happy weekend. Ours will be happy, but it won’t be at all relaxing.


Odd Ball Photos for Cee’s Challenge

Every week, Cee invites us to post those photos we take which really don’t seem to fit into a common category. I often take random photos which just happen to tickle my funny-bone. Here are a few of them.

This freak sideshow at Coney Island, sparked my curiosity enough to take this photo, but there was no way that I was going to go inside for a look, even at the bargain price of 50c.


On our way to Key West, we stopped for refreshments and as it turned out, to buy me a new pair of sandals. 🙂 Finding the restroom proved quite easy, as it was well signposted.


This rather weird reflection in my crystal ball, was taken at our last house just before we packed up all our stuff, and serves as a reminder of a time when I had a furnished sitting room. I’m hoping that before long, the state of our home renovations will be such that I can unpack my ornaments and have fun finding a place to put them.


I smile whenever I look at this photo of Mr. Igasho in his orange jacket. He looks almost human, and like an escaped convict looking to see if the coast is clear.


Wishing you all a very happy Thursday. Hope my oddballs gave you a few smiles.






B&W Sunday Portrait: Mr. A Lives On

Paula’s B&W theme this week is a ‘Portrait’ of someone or something. Here’s someone that I really miss since he was captured and taken away by the ‘Nuisance Alligator Trappers’.

Poor Mr. A was my favourite photo model of all time, and far from being a ‘nuisance’, he just happily minded his own business, cruising  backwards and forwards in the lake outside my house. Unfortunately, my next door neighbours felt that he had no right to be there.


What a cute face he had, and sometimes I could almost imagine that he was winking at me.


Mr. A, wherever you are, I hope you’re alive and well and swimming free, or dreaming away the day, catching the rays on some muddy bank.


Happy Wednesday everyone.




Travel Theme: Guilin’s Scenic Peaks

Alisa’s Travel Theme this week is ‘Peaks’. An old Chinese saying states that “Guilin’s mountain and water scenery is the best under Heaven.” I’m sure this is correct, as the most picturesque and amazing peaks I have seen, are those along the Li River from Guilin to Yangshuo.


A leisurely cruise along the Li River will afford you a wonderful view of Guilin’s famous natural karst formations.


In the early morning light, these mountains which rise straight up from an otherwise flat landscape, looked quite ghostly.


The limestone karsts looming large, make for a dramatic backdrop to the charming scenes of village houses which stand right along the water’s edge.


Guilin is situated on what was once an ancient ocean floor, and the limestone peaks are made up of shells and also the skeletons of long extinct marine animals which lived millions of years ago. This is their final resting place, beneath the greenery of the towering peaks.


As you can see, they are all shapes and sizes, and the scenic views look just like an artist’s masterpiece.


It’s a most beautiful and fascinating landscape, and as you may imagine, there are many myths and legends woven around these iconic peaks.


If you want to learn more about the history of how these peaks came into being, just click this link.

To join in the challenge and to see more entries for Ailsa’s Travel Theme, click the badge below.




WPC: Mirrored Water Reflections

The Weekly Photo Challenge ‘Mirror’, encourages us to show some of our best reflection photos.

This is one of my favourites taken at our local nature reserve, where it looked like the sky had fallen down into the water.


In Costa Rica, a single lotus blossom floating on really still water, was an absolute must to photograph.


This lovely canal scene in Amsterdam, also has to be included.


I never tire of the view from my backyard, and often try to imagine all the creatures busily going about their daily chores in those trees and also under the water. Probably that’s where all my ‘Backyardigans’ sleep at night and I’m pretty sure that there must be an alligator or two lurking there.


I hope you enjoyed my mirrored reflections, and wish all my American blog friends a great Labor Day. Hope this week will be a good one for all of you.

I participate in WordPress' Weekly Photo Challenge 2016

I participate in WordPress’ Weekly Photo Challenge 2016