The Tile is Laid

Tuesday

Today was the day…

A lot happened at the building site. To start with the tile got laid…it was the first one Werner put down on the first floor balcony. I think he must have enjoyed laying it.

The Granite man came to measure up for the bathroom counter tops as well as the kitchen. He will now go back to his offices, arrange to move our granite, inspect it, measure it to see if he can get out of it what we need and then let us know. We will be waiting for that phone call! We have not had a lot of costly mistakes, but if the granite is cracked and won’t work, it will be one.

Leanne came. She is the lady who got our plans through council. Apart from wanting to show her the build, we needed some advice on a couple of little areas that need a third opinion. She was helpful with that.

Today, Courage, started leveling the ground outside Mike’s study door so they can start experimenting with gabion baskets. When we went down this evening, we picked up Valerie Gail so she could see the building – here she is looking out of Mike’s study door…

Talking of doors, this is the entrance to the lower ground floor which we often refer to as the basement. It’s the first time in its life that it’s had no rocks in or around it.

It will soon get a little porch over it and some paving. December 5th 2019, this was the messy entrance to the basement…

December 14th, a rock was still inside! It was a monster!

For quite a while, the basement was all we had to admire…it was frequently photographed at every little step. I have to laugh at this next photo taken at the end of October last year. I had circled the level expected to be the basement floor! Even that was exciting. Little did we know what was to come!

It’s hard to believe that we have got so far. What a year it’s been.  We are a bit in awe.

Today I got quite a lot of work done. Julian came over for a last coffee before David took him to the airport. I managed to get to gym to swim 50 lengths (4 of them I walked). It was so enjoyable. For most of the time, I had the pool to myself. Water was warm too – 25C

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 87  new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Tues 15 Sept – 772 new cases – 142 deaths (583126 recoveries/52754 active)
  • Wed 16 Sept – 1923 new cases – 64 deaths (584195 recoveries/53544 active)
  • Thur 17 Sept – 2128 new cases – 67 deaths (585303 recoveries/54497 active)
  • Fri 18 Sept – 2055 new cases – 85 deaths (586844 recoveries/54926 active)
  • Sat 19 Sept – 2029 new cases – 83 deaths (589434 recoveries/ 54282 active)
  • Sun 20 Sept – 1555 new cases – 13 deaths (590071 recoveries/55187 active)
  • Mon 21 Sept – 725 new cases – 39 deaths (591208 recoveries/54736 active)

Total cases: 661936  Total deaths: 15992

Psalm 33:18

Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His steadfast love.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 314 days

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Blitzing the Rocks

Monday

Today was the day…

That went past in a flash! A short while ago I thought I must go and write this blog and it dawned on me that there was not much to say. I worked for most of the morning, including our weekly team meeting. I

Julian came around at lunchtime and we drove across to Echo. I’ll take photos tomorrow because today the rocks got blitzed today. The strong men (and they are very strong) broke them up to get them away from the entrance. The biggest rock has been in our vision for a long while. Back when they were clearing the land, we knew it would be an issue…12th November 2019, I took this picture. It needed to come out so we could put the foundations in.

It came out but there were also other monster rocks…

Now the house has been built, these rocks have been moved but are still in the way. The men got them off the stairs…

And they have sat here until today.

When I get there tomorrow, they will be gone! And, I believe, so will the ones in front of the lower ground floor door…where they have been for months! I took this a month ago…

Makes such a difference having those rocks gone.

Dixies dinner and now we are home.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – Only 32  new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Mon 14 Sept – 956 new cases – 52 deaths (579289 recoveries/55961 active)
  • Tues 15 Sept – 772 new cases – 142 deaths (583126 recoveries/52754 active)
  • Wed 16 Sept – 1923 new cases – 64 deaths (584195 recoveries/53544 active)
  • Thur 17 Sept – 2128 new cases – 67 deaths (585303 recoveries/54497 active)
  • Fri 18 Sept – 2055 new cases – 85 deaths (586844 recoveries/54926 active)
  • Sat 19 Sept – 2029 new cases – 83 deaths (589434 recoveries/ 54282 active)
  • Sun 20 Sept – 1555 new cases – 13 deaths (590071 recoveries/55187 active)

Total cases: 661211  Total deaths: 15953

Psalm 147:11

The Lord’s delight is in those who fear Him, those who put their hope in His unfailing love.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 313 days

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How The House Has Grown

Sunday

Today was the day…

I had a good rest. I didn’t do much, that I can say. A Skype call with Stacey and Elsie, lots of rest and lunch with the family. I had a quiet afternoon. This evening I had a chat with my friend Debbie in the UK who celebrates her birthday today. She’s the Debs that had the brain injury after falling off a horse in January 2013. Grateful for another year!

So what was going on a year ago? A year ago we were looking in awe at this picture sent to us from the Light Steel Frame company. What? Is that really what our house will look like?

In the beginning…

December 2019

29 January 2020

13th February…

March 1st…(David’s birthday)

April was the hard lockdown. May 2020

June 2020

July 2020

August…

This week it looked like this…so right on point…

Day by day we see progress but I don’t think the builder will be off site by the end of the month and I can’t see us being in before middle of October.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 145  new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Sun 13 Sept – 1579 new cases – 20 deaths (577906 recoveries/56440 active)
  • Mon 14 Sept – 956 new cases – 52 deaths (579289 recoveries/55961 active)
  • Tues 15 Sept – 772 new cases – 142 deaths (583126 recoveries/52754 active)
  • Wed 16 Sept – 1923 new cases – 64 deaths (584195 recoveries/53544 active)
  • Thur 17 Sept – 2128 new cases – 67 deaths (585303 recoveries/54497 active)
  • Fri 18 Sept – 2055 new cases – 85 deaths (586844 recoveries/54926 active)
  • Sat 19 Sept – 2029 new cases – 83 deaths (589434 recoveries/ 54282 active)

Total cases: 659656  Total deaths: 15940

Proverbs 10:28

The hope of the righteous brings joy.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year 312 days

 

 

 

 

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Sink Shopping

Saturday

Today was the day…

We met Werner at Echo at 8am for Mike to hand over the cutting list for Julian’s kitchenette and bathroom cupboards. Once that was done, Mike pretty much has the weekend off!

We then went to Harbour Bay for breakfast. Neither SAV nor Cattle Baron opens before 9am on a Saturday, so we went to the Blue Door coffee shop and had breakfast there. They cashed in on all those who arrived before 9am.

Then Mike and I went sink shopping. We need a kitchen sink for our scullery. We looked at a number of them at a variety of different shops but didn’t find exactly what Mike was looking for so we didn’t buy one. We are expecting the Granite guy to come on Monday to measure up and Mike will speak to him about what he thinks we should do with the sink. Perhaps we will buy two single ones.

I had a long catch up with Stacey which is always lovely.

I did some shopping.

And then went to Echo for a look before joining Julian for a walk to Fish Hoek Beach which is looking majestic!

Such a beautiful spring day.

As we see a second wave of Corona sweeping across Europe, we hope the same doesn’t happen here.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 259  new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…Yesterday Spain overtook us knocking up to 9th in the world.

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Sat 12 Sept – 1816 new cases – 49 deaths (576423 recoveries/56346 active)
  • Sun 13 Sept – 1579 new cases – 20 deaths (577906 recoveries/56440 active)
  • Mon 14 Sept – 956 new cases – 52 deaths (579289 recoveries/55961 active)
  • Tues 15 Sept – 772 new cases – 142 deaths (583126 recoveries/52754 active)
  • Wed 16 Sept – 1923 new cases – 64 deaths (584195 recoveries/53544 active)
  • Thur 17 Sept – 2128 new cases – 67 deaths (585303 recoveries/54497 active)
  • Fri 18 Sept – 2055 new cases – 85 deaths (586844 recoveries/54926 active)

Total cases: 659656  Total deaths: 15940

Hebrews 6:11

We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, so that what you hope for may be fully realized.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 311 days

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The Bath

Friday

Today was the day…

Our bath got put in place. It had been stored on the ground floor, looked at with interest by all who passed by. Some raised their eye-brows. It was an unexpected purchase. I had just had jaw surgery and was convalescing when Mike and Julian went off shopping. Next thing I had a photo of this bath whatsapped to me. It was a bath of great stature! A tub of note. Today it got put in its final resting place.

It was carried up from the ground floor…

To the landing over the massive rocks that still need to be moved…

Up the internal stairs…

And into place…

I had to try it out…

Quite fun!

I worked this afternoon and this evening we had dinner with Julian and David. Mike has made good progress this week and hopefully will have a few more restful days ahead while he waits for wood to be delivered.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 151  new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Frid 11 Sept – 1960 new cases – 113 deaths (574587 recoveries/56433 active)
  • Sat 12 Sept – 1816 new cases – 49 deaths (576423 recoveries/56346 active)
  • Sun 13 Sept – 1579 new cases – 20 deaths (577906 recoveries/56440 active)
  • Mon 14 Sept – 956 new cases – 52 deaths (579289 recoveries/55961 active)
  • Tues 15 Sept – 772 new cases – 142 deaths (583126 recoveries/52754 active)
  • Wed 16 Sept – 1923 new cases – 64 deaths (584195 recoveries/53544 active)
  • Thur 17 Sept – 2128 new cases – 67 deaths (585303 recoveries/54497 active)

Total cases: 655572  Total deaths: 15772

Acts 2:26

Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will live in hope.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 310 days.

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Meeting with Werner

Thursday

Today was the day…

We met with the builder, Werner,  to find out:

  1. How long before he is finished.
  2. How much we still need to pay to complete the build.

To my astonishment, he said he would like us to try to move in by the end of the first week of October! He says he will be off-site by the end of the month (September)  but will have a painter to touch up. Also, after furniture has moved in, we will have the painter to look out for any dings caused by bringing all the furniture in.

I am not 100% sure he will get the timing right, but I need to ramp up the packing.

Good news is that we will come in not having blown the budget.

Wow, we are that close.

From there, we went to Tile n Stone in Athlone to sort out the counter tops for our bathrooms and the kitchen. Our granite is still there!

One of the consultants will do a site visit on Monday.

We picked up a basin and some hinges on the way home and drove up 3 hours later, looking forward to coffee. Mike returned to Echo to work for the afternoon. He has got a lot to do. He will try to work to Werner’s schedule and hopes to keep on track.

This afternoon I phoned Telkom as their physical phone line is coming down at Echo. We hit it every time we walk up the stairs. I’m not sure how long it will be before they arrive. I also called Tafelberg Furnishers to ask them to deliver the appliances we purchased on 27th June. That was when Julian’s floor looked like this…

How far we have come. It feels like a long time in a short time – I think Covid-19 has had something to do with it – the hard lock-down slowed everything down and made it feel long – but we have raced to the finish line in a short time. A year ago, we hadn’t yet started.

Tafelberg Furnishers deliver on Wednesday.

Btw, the tiles we picked up yesterday are perfect.

Last night the President said the Corona lock-down will move to level 1 from Sunday.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 187  new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Thur 10 Sept – 2007 new cases – 97 deaths (573003 recoveries/ 56170 active)
  • Frid 11 Sept – 1960 new cases – 113 deaths (574587 recoveries/56433 active)
  • Sat 12 Sept – 1816 new cases – 49 deaths (576423 recoveries/56346 active)
  • Sun 13 Sept – 1579 new cases – 20 deaths (577906 recoveries/56440 active)
  • Mon 14 Sept – 956 new cases – 52 deaths (579289 recoveries/55961 active)
  • Tues 15 Sept – 772 new cases – 142 deaths (583126 recoveries/52754 active)
  • Wed 16 Sept – 1923 new cases – 64 deaths (584195 recoveries/53544 active)

Total cases: 653444  Total deaths: 15705

1 Corinthians 13:13

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 309 days

And today it’s three months since my jaw surgery! 😀

 

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Motorbike

Wednesday

Today was the day…

Julian bought a motorbike. Close to 4 decades ago, my older brother Arnie had a Honda 125 off-road bike. When he left Zim and went to Johannesburg, the motor-bike was temporarily left in my care and he taught me to ride it. He actually encouraged me to do so and for that short season it became my wheels around Harare. I was only 17, had my driver’s licence but not for a motor-bike. I can’t remember if I have written about the one memorable incident I had on this bike. I used to take it off road and go along dirt roads and across some rough patches. I remember going down a bit of a ditch – it was a serious dip in the path and as I tried to pull out of it, the bike stalled and fell over. I managed to get off without injury but I was not strong enough to pick it up. A short distance away a few kids were playing. They were about 10/11 years old. I called them over and they came with big eyes. We managed to get it upright and I got on and rode off.

Julian is sentimental and for Cape Town, he has bought the same model – it’s in memory of Arnie for sure! It will mainly be for putt-putting between Fish Hoek and Sun Valley where he will have an office.

The paperwork was done today – collection will be after it’s been registered.

This little excursion to Honda only happened after a trip to Paarl. What I didn’t mention yesterday was that we have run out of this tile for the bathroom floor…

I stopped by the tile shop but they had none left. The only shop in the Western Cape that does have stock is Worcester!! I phoned that branch and arranged for a box to be delivered to Paarl. Julian and I drove out to pick it up. I hope the tiles match. Sometimes there are slight changes with different batches and I think this one is a whole lot lighter.

What I do know is that part of it goes under a bathroom cabinet so hopefully it will be okay. On the way back from Paarl, we stopped at Canal Walk for the motor-bike purchase.

Home now, it’s been a rainy day. I did a full three hours work this morning before going on our road trip. A little later, I’ll go down to Echo. Mike has set up the kitchen island so we can see what the main bottom part of it will look like.

Tonight the President speaks. It looks like Level 1 is coming. This could mean the start of international travel and lifting of the 10pm curfew.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 153 new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Wed 9th Sept – 1990 new cases – 82 deaths (569935 recoveries/57328 active)
  • Thur 10 Sept – 2007 new cases – 97 deaths (573003 recoveries/ 56170 active)
  • Frid 11 Sept – 1960 new cases – 113 deaths (574587 recoveries/56433 active)
  • Sat 12 Sept – 1816 new cases – 49 deaths (576423 recoveries/56346 active)
  • Sun 13 Sept – 1579 new cases – 20 deaths (577906 recoveries/56440 active)
  • Mon 14 Sept – 956 new cases – 52 deaths (579289 recoveries/55961 active)
  • Tues 15 Sept – 772 new cases – 142 deaths (583126 recoveries/52754 active)

Total cases: 651521  Total deaths: 15641

Psalm 130:7

Hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with Him is plentiful redemption.

Love that: plentiful redemption.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 308 days

 

 

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In the Orthodontic ‘Stadium’

Tuesday

Today was the day…

I had one of my final orthodontic visits. I am in the orthodontic ‘stadium’, meaning, I am nearly at the finish line. As I have peered at my teeth while flossing and putting on the tiny little elastics, I have seen massive changes…significant movement of my teeth and have felt my bite transform to almost perfect. This is what it was all about. I knew, when I saw the orthodontist today, he would be very happy.

And. He. Was.

He was so happy and congratulated me on my evident constant intentional use of the elastics.

There were two things I wanted to ask him.

  1. What happens now with the implant tooth? How does that get done?
  2. When will I get my braces off?

The first question, he raised before I could ask. He has suggested I go to my family dentist and ask him if he can prepare the surrounding gum for the crowned tooth and ask him if he wants to get that tooth done or if I must go to someone else. I’ve made an appointment with him for Friday 25th.

The second question followed naturally onto that discussion.  Simple question, “Do you think I could be done before the end of the year?”

“That’s what we will aim for,” he replied.

“Before Christmas,” I said.

“Yes!”

YES!!!!!!!

This is my September smile. This Thursday it’s three months since surgery. I sent Prof Reyneke the photo and he is also thrilled.

So I’m really happy! Not long now.

Today was also the day another remarkable thing happened. We finally got our car licences. For those outside South Africa, with the Covid lock down, there is a massive backlog on annual car licensing. I was all set to pay someone to do it, but this morning when Mike discovered that not only did we have 2 cars that needed an updated licence but his did too he got a bee in his bonnet. He left home at 8:15am and got in a queue at the Fish Hoek Municipal building that was very, very long.  I drove down to the civic centre half an hour later with Courage so he could stand in the queue for a couple of hours and keep Mike’s place. To our astonishment, Mike was not in the queue (half way down the tennis court – which is where he said he was). No. He was sitting on a chair right outside the door – like 10th in line. He was now in the pensioner’s queue. You have to be over 70 to get in this queue, but as Mike is 5 months away from 3 score years and ten, he was allowed. He didn’t even know about it. He was standing wayyyyy back when someone walked past him and said, ‘you should be in the pensioner’s queue’ and marched him off. Thank you Lord! He was done by 9:40am!

Pays to have a pensioner – he did all three of our cars.

So it’s been a positive day.

I’m posting this early because Julian is almost over Carnarvon and arrives in 41 minutes.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 102 new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Tues 8th Sept – 1079 new cases – 82 deaths (567729 recoveries/ 57626 active)
  • Wed 9th Sept – 1990 new cases – 82 deaths (569935 recoveries/57328 active)
  • Thur 10 Sept – 2007 new cases – 97 deaths (573003 recoveries/ 56170 active)
  • Frid 11 Sept – 1960 new cases – 113 deaths (574587 recoveries/56433 active)
  • Sat 12 Sept – 1816 new cases – 49 deaths (576423 recoveries/56346 active)
  • Sun 13 Sept – 1579 new cases – 20 deaths (577906 recoveries/56440 active)
  • Mon 14 Sept – 956 new cases – 52 deaths (579289 recoveries/55961 active)

Total cases: 650749  Total deaths: 15499

Hope to get to level 1 lock down soon.

1 Peter 1:13

Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at His coming.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 307 days.

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H is for …. the Single Secret to a Lasting Marriage

Monday

Today was the day…

I did some morning work, had a couple of friends for tea and did a visit to Echo to see latest progress.

But the the thing that has been on my mind over the last few weeks has been a very long time in coming. I’ve always been interested in what makes a marriage work. Relationships are complex and when it comes to marriage it ramps a notch because it’s not a relationship you can simply walk away from. What are the secrets to a happy marriage?  I’ve thought about what makes marriage work; I’ve written pages and pages of a non-public document about marriage but I’ve never really settled on a core single element…until now.

There are some private moments in my marriage that surprise and delight me. One of them that happened the other day was a typical example. Mike and I were at Echo and we both went up the stairs to the top floor but Werner had tiled the top landing and didn’t want anyone walking on it because it was not yet set. A scaffold plank was put from one of the top steps past the landing to a ledge, so for me to see what the upstairs tiling looked like, I walked along the plank. It was fine going one way but to get back, it was too narrow for me to turn around, so I had to back-track which was pretty dodgy. Mike immediately came to my rescue, taking my hand and guiding me back to safety.

In marriage we need to guide each other back to safety.

Our entire building process has been one of negotiation – figuring out what we want, what we need and what we like. There are myriads of decisions that need to be made – thickness of cornices, colour of walls, what to make balustrades out of, tile colour, toilet design, types of everything – it just goes on and on and on. And a lot of the time, Mike has had something very specific in his head and has a good reason why he will want a particular design. I’ll come along and say I don’t like it or want it. Mike has spent HOURS on the design and in 5 seconds his plan is squashed by my four words. He then has to explain why he has that in mind. I have to explain why I don’t like it.

Negotiation negotiation negotiation.

Sometimes I surrender and Mike gets his original design. Other times Mike capitulates and I get what I want.

And after 34 years of marriage and 9 months of building a house, I finally hit on the single secret to a lasting marriage.

HUMILITY.

Both husband and wife need to be humble to enjoy a lasting and happy marriage.

It actually applies to all relationships really.

Go forth and be humble!

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 97 new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Mon 7th Sept – 845 new cases – 115 deaths (566555 recoveries/57803 active)
  • Tues 8th Sept – 1079 new cases – 82 deaths (567729 recoveries/ 57626 active)
  • Wed 9th Sept – 1990 new cases – 82 deaths (569935 recoveries/57328 active)
  • Thur 10 Sept – 2007 new cases – 97 deaths (573003 recoveries/ 56170 active)
  • Frid 11 Sept – 1960 new cases – 113 deaths (574587 recoveries/56433 active)
  • Sat 12 Sept – 1816 new cases – 49 deaths (576423 recoveries/56346 active)
  • Sun 13 Sept – 1579 new cases – 20 deaths (577906 recoveries/56440 active)

Total cases: 649793  Total deaths: 15447

Jeremiah 17:7

Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 306 days. (Yesterday was 1 year and 10 months!)

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Visiting John and Avril

Sunday

Today was the day…

We had a very quiet morning at home. Mike rested a lot which was good. He has a busy week ahead. He also has been reading. We also Skyped with the family in Swellendam. Elsie’s face lights up when she sees us. I ate my breakfast with her watching and took her round the house showing her different things. So cute to watch her interest.

After lunch, we read for a while and then went and had a socially distanced visit with John and Avril. We had a meaningful afternoon with them. Our friendship goes back close to 30 years, although Mike knew John for much longer as he was at Bible Institute with him in about 1979.

We moved to the Fish Hoek area from Paarl in 1989 and started going to Tokai Community Church which was over the mountain. Then one Sunday, my minister from Harare and his wife were having their first service at the Plumstead CESA and I went through to welcome them. Frank Retief was also there and after the service I had a chat with him. He asked me where I went to church and I told him and said I lived in Sun Valley. He said he didn’t think people in the valley should have to leave the area to go to church and as there was no CESA church in the area at the time,  he highly recommended Fish Hoek Baptist Church where John Thomas was the minister. I came home and told Mike and that was how we started  going to Fish Hoek Baptist Church. It must have been around the second half of 1992.

The Lord used John in our lives from the get-go – particularly when it came to my Mom. My parents were divorced and my Mom had married a man who started getting abusive. Julian found out about it and organised for her to fly from Jo’burg to Cape Town to get away from him for a while. The trip was arranged very quickly and on about a Thursday we went to the airport to pick her up and she stayed with us. My Mom was not a Christian. She was 60 and I had been praying for her since I came to know the Lord in 1979. Sunday morning came and she agreed to go to church with us.

We were very keen for her to leave her husband, so you can imagine our dismay when the Pastor John stood up that day and preached on ‘God hates divorce!’ I just could not believe it! I truly felt it was the ‘wrong’ sermon for that moment in time. But God is BIGGER!  After the service, my Mom sat very quietly for a few moments in the pew. Later she turned to me and asked, “Did he know I was coming?” “No!!” I said, desperate for her to know I hadn’t set this up. She went on to say that it felt as if she was the only person in the room – he was speaking directly to her and that the message was written just for her.

My Mom went back to Johannesburg and the rest of the family went to the airport to pick her up. On the way, they were taking friendly bets as to how long it would be before she went back to her husband. They all lost. She never did. She never went back to him, but she also never divorced him. She started attending church and she gave herself fully and completely over to the Lord Jesus Christ. That year my Mom was saved and her entire countenance changed.  The catalyst was largely that Sunday in church – the message from Pastor John.

That was just at the very start. Then came Radio Fish Hoek and Living Hope. The impact that John and Avril have had in our lives as well as the community both of Fish Hoek and beyond is enormous. I really appreciate them and pray for them.

Afterwards, we went to Echo. David and a few of his friends were keen to see the house progress. Hope to take more photos tomorrow, but meantime, here’s the 2020 etched on the wall…

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 123 new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Sun 6th Sept – 1633 new cases – 110 deaths (563891 recoveries/59737 active)
  • Mon 7th Sept – 845 new cases – 115 deaths (566555 recoveries/57803 active)
  • Tues 8th Sept – 1079 new cases – 82 deaths (567729 recoveries/ 57626 active)
  • Wed 9th Sept – 1990 new cases – 82 deaths (569935 recoveries/57328 active)
  • Thur 10 Sept – 2007 new cases – 97 deaths (573003 recoveries/ 56170 active)
  • Frid 11 Sept – 1960 new cases – 113 deaths (574587 recoveries/56433 active)
  • Sat 12 Sept – 1816 new cases – 49 deaths (576423 recoveries/56346 active)

Total cases: 648214 Total deaths: 15427

Romans 5:5

And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 305 days

 

Posted in Day to Day Blogs | Comments Off on Visiting John and Avril

The Full Quarry Hike

Saturday

Today was the day…

Sue and I hiked to above the Glencairn Quarry. Mike and I had gone about half way one drizzly Sunday. Today I got to go the whole way. It was Sue’s 10th time and it’s quite the adventure! It was just Sue and I and her two dogs Chino and Tazz. We left home at just before 7am and got to the Shark spotter’s hut in time to see the sun rising over the distant mountains. What a sight…

We walked away from Fish Hoek and beneath the Elsie’s Peak cliff…

We passed under the ledge Mike and I got to and progressed around the mountain. The rising sun shone brightly in anticipation of a lovely warm day. No wind. Sue heard news last night of her Dad’s passing. It was expected, but death is so final and the loss always hard.

After a bit of ducking and a little scrambling, we soon arrived at a perfect spot for a break…

Just after this stop, we left our bags under a ledge and made our final assault towards our Quarry-side destination…..the squiggle roughly shows the path to the cliff edge.

More clambering up big rocks and the ledge lay before us. It looks dangerous but it is safe. Sue at the end of it…

I promise there is more space than there appears. Round the bend and we arrived at an outcrop of rocks that overlooks the Glencairn Quarry which is home to the False Bay Sport Shooting Club.

Quite a spectacular view of Simon’s Town…

My cell phone has a timer, so I decided to put the timer on and take a selfie, but the timer didn’t seem to work so I ended up taking a series of shots of me pressing the button, squinting at the phone! They were hilariously bad, so with those at the forefront of our minds, I snapped this shot of us on the mountain…

We headed home back along the cliff edge….this is looking over it…

Walking along it…

More crevices…Sue is so sure fitted…

And me not so much….looking decidedly red-faced…

The view from the crevice…

Sue on the homeward track..

We left at 7am and were back at 9:30am. I hope to do it again some day. Quite a hike. I have to admit, I have a few bruises, but absolutely worth it.

At lunchtime, I went to pick up the tile Wayne was working on. I had a wonderful little visit with Wayne and Rene. Their garden is amazing. Rene sure does have green-fingers. The tile:

I took it back to Echo and put it in a cupboard. Werner arrived a short time later and I told him I had the ‘modified’ tile. He did not know what to expect. I took it out and turned it around for him to see. He was very touched. The wording is cut with a laser so that’s permanent – can’t wipe it off ever.

I had a nice afternoon chat with Stacey followed by a quick Whatsapp video call with Elsie and Stacey. Elsie is too cute. She wants to see Blam-pa. She figures if Granny is around Blam-pa must be somewhere too and we seem to go together so when she sees me, she asks for him as well. Glorious smile when we appear. It’s too adorable! ❤

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 211 new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Sat 5th Sept – 1806 new cases – 101 deaths (561204 recoveries/60901 active)
  • Sun 6th Sept – 1633 new cases – 110 deaths (563891 recoveries/59737 active)
  • Mon 7th Sept – 845 new cases – 115 deaths (566555 recoveries/57803 active)
  • Tues 8th Sept – 1079 new cases – 82 deaths (567729 recoveries/ 57626 active)
  • Wed 9th Sept – 1990 new cases – 82 deaths (569935 recoveries/57328 active)
  • Thur 10 Sept – 2007 new cases – 97 deaths (573003 recoveries/ 56170 active)
  • Frid 11 Sept – 1960 new cases – 113 deaths (574587 recoveries/56433 active)

Total cases: 646398  Total deaths: 15378

Psalm 94:19

When doubts filled my mind, Your comfort ave me renewed hope and cheer.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 304 days

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House Special Projects

Friday

Today was the day…

I got one of the house special projects finalized. There are 4 of them – little things that are not essential to the build but are great to have. The first was putting the Bible in the foundations which we did months ago.

The other three are:

  1. Time capsule which I got the cylinder for today.
  2. The year 2020 put in concrete on the side of the house.
  3. The builder’s name on a tile on our balcony.

It is this third one that I worked on today. I went to my old friend and colleague, Wayne Turner’s house and he put his laser cutter to good use…this is the test run…

The builder doesn’t know this is happening. I’ve just told him I have a special tile and want it on the corner of our balcony. He quizzed me about its size and I just told him it’s the same tile, just modified. He asked how I did it to which I replied, “I have friends!” I hope to get it back tomorrow.

The year 2020 was etched in one place, but it looked pretty awful, so I told the plasterer I didn’t want it there and explained where I wanted it, that I wanted it straight and I wanted all the numbers the same size. (Now you can imagine why it looked bad!) We’ll see if he gets that right.

The time capsule I’m going to need to do some work on. I’m putting a family photo in but after recently finding those old family photos of Mike’s great great grandfather, it would be cool to get copies made of those as well. These will be going in…the bottom one (Motorola) I made good use of back in the day!

I could also get some photos of the house in progress developed and add those. Perhaps the time capsule will be a work in progress and will be completed after we’ve moved in.

I have not answered the Storyworth questions lately, but I have the website bookmarked and will sit down soon and answer a whole batch of them. With the build, it’s been off my radar.

This morning, I went to gym and swam 40 lengths. It was great!

Today we remember 9:11. Hard to believe it’s 19 years ago.

Weekend. Mike will work tomorrow. I’m going on a hike to the quarry with Sue.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 124 new cases in the last 24 hours – that’s better than yesterday.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Frid 4th Sept – 2063 new cases – 115 deaths (557818 recoveries/62582 active)
  • Sat 5th Sept – 1806 new cases – 101 deaths (561204 recoveries/60901 active)
  • Sun 6th Sept – 1633 new cases – 110 deaths (563891 recoveries/59737 active)
  • Mon 7th Sept – 845 new cases – 115 deaths (566555 recoveries/57803 active)
  • Tues 8th Sept – 1079 new cases – 82 deaths (567729 recoveries/ 57626 active)
  • Wed 9th Sept – 1990 new cases – 82 deaths (569935 recoveries/57328 active)
  • Thur 10 Sept – 2007 new cases – 97 deaths (573003 recoveries/ 56170 active)

Total cases: 644438  Total deaths: 15265

Psalm 9:18

God will never forget the needy; the hope of the afflicted will never perish.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 303 days

 

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Spring Has Sprung 2020

Thursday

Today was the day…

I really felt spring has sprung and summer is on the way. The wind blew! For those not in Cape Town, we have had a number of splendid sunny days, with not much wind, but today that changed. The summery south-easter has picked up and it’s blowing enthusiastically.

I left home early this morning and headed across town to do the final tile run. I had to go to Tile Africa to pick up the last 5 boxes of wall tiles and to Kale to get a refund and pick up some mosaics for the ground floor bathroom. I went to Kale first and got some pebbles tile mosaics for the shower. It’s going to look great! Picked up the wall tiles and set off for Echo. I dropped them off and then had breakfast with Mike at home. He went back to Echo. I went to work.

In the afternoon I did a 5km gym run.

Then I went to Echo again to see today’s progress. Werner has been grouting the top floor and it’s looking really good. I chose Taupe as the grout colour and it’s perfect. I hope Julian agrees when he next comes. I sat in the corner of my balcony with the wind howling, but it’s quite sheltered in that nook…

Meanwhile Mike and Courage have been busy putting the kitchen together… it’s like an enormous 3D jigsaw puzzle…

On my way out, I noticed the plumber had been. We now have a loo on our floor and it works.

I know some will wonder what the wires are for next to it. This is a little ‘power room’ loo off the front entrance. It doesn’t have a window so that is for the extractor fan. It also doesn’t have a door at the moment so it’s a loo for when only Mike and I are around. Useful none the less.

Dinner next. Let me get this posted.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – a bit higher than usual 529 new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Thur 3rd Sept – 2420 new cases – 174 deaths (554887 recoveries/63565 active)
  • Frid 4th Sept – 2063 new cases – 115 deaths (557818 recoveries/62582 active)
  • Sat 5th Sept – 1806 new cases – 101 deaths (561204 recoveries/60901 active)
  • Sun 6th Sept – 1633 new cases – 110 deaths (563891 recoveries/59737 active)
  • Mon 7th Sept – 845 new cases – 115 deaths (566555 recoveries/57803 active)
  • Tues 8th Sept – 1079 new cases – 82 deaths (567729 recoveries/ 57626 active)
  • Wed 9th Sept – 1990 new cases – 82 deaths (569935 recoveries/57328 active)

Total cases: 642431  Total deaths: 15168

Job 11:18

You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety.

There is always hope.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 302 days

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9th September

Wednesday

Today was the day…

I remembered my brother Arnold. He died on this day in 2007 – 13 years ago. It’s a painful day to remember . I dug out a couple of photos of us…left to right – Anne must have been about 9, Julian next 5, me about 3 and Arnold 7.

Here we are again…left to right me about 19 or 20, Julian, Anne and Arnold.

Arnold is hugely missed. If he were around, he would have absolutely been involved in the build. One thing I know for sure is he would want us all to be happy. One day we’ll meet again.

Today I had a work meeting and then Valerie Gail came to pick up some books and we had a good chat and coffee. I’ll be seeing more of Valerie Gail in the weeks and months ahead. 😉

I did just over three hours of work today and then went down to Echo where I got entangled in the chute (tiny tear in my top) as I edged my way up. The men were in full swing loading the truck with rubble off the stairs.

When Werner arrived, they stepped it up a notch and got most of it off…

This was yesterday…

This is today…

Tomorrow I think they will do the last little bit into Werner’s bakkie and then hopefully that will be the end of the chute! They were still busy when we left, so we walked up behind the house and I got this photo of it as we went…

Later we came back and I enjoyed the view from the balcony. I can imagine us spending a good amount of time on the balcony.

Mike and Courage gave the kitchen a big push.  It’s all coming together.

Back at home, James the Gardener came and did a great job on the front lawn and verge. Glad that’s done.

Covid numbers in the Western Cape – 338 new cases in the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Wed 2nd Sept – 2336 new cases – 126 deaths (553456 recoveries/62750 active)
  • Thur 3rd Sept – 2420 new cases – 174 deaths (554887 recoveries/63565 active)
  • Frid 4th Sept – 2063 new cases – 115 deaths (557818 recoveries/62582 active)
  • Sat 5th Sept – 1806 new cases – 101 deaths (561204 recoveries/60901 active)
  • Sun 6th Sept – 1633 new cases – 110 deaths (563891 recoveries/59737 active)
  • Mon 7th Sept – 845 new cases – 115 deaths (566555 recoveries/57803 active)
  • Tues 8th Sept – 1079 new cases – 82 deaths (567729 recoveries/ 57626 active

Total cases: 640441  Total deaths: 15086

Psalm 130:5

I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in His Word I put my hope.

Amen!

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

1 year and 301 days

 

 

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Rubble Road!

Tuesday

Today was the day…

It was quiet in the morning, but got busy in the afternoon. Julian went back to Johannesburg. A week from now he’ll be back. 🙂

Mike and Courage went off to Echo to build bathroom cabinets.  They did a really good job and have got the main carcasses sorted. This is the skeleton for the one in our bathroom…we still need to get the engineered stone counter top and the drawers will both be white. It’s looking good.

Meanwhile, the side balcony has got its roof beams. That’s looking good. I got some photos of different angles…

Below this balcony is ‘rubble road!’ This is what we have been clambering up to get to the front door…

This is looking down …you have got to be pretty sure-footed.

Under all that rubble is the remainder of the stairs and, the news from this evening, is that tomorrow the truck is coming and they will be taking it all away. We will have stairs all the way up to the top. We’ll wait and see if this picture changes…this is from the top step.

It once looked like this…(12th October 2019)

We are looking forward to the stairs looking something like this again. It’s wonderful to have the house built. Crazy that Werner has been working on-site for almost a year. The house wouldn’t be here without him.  I’ll be be there tomorrow evening to see how it looks.

Great to see the Corona numbers coming down…

105 new Corona cases in the Western Cape over the last 24 hours.

Covid 19 stats – South Africa – country-wide…

  • Friday 24th July – 13944 new cases (maximum we had in a day)– 250 deaths (245 771 recoveries/169 882 active)
  • Tues 1st Sept – 1218 new cases – 114 deaths (549993 recoveries/64003 active)
  • Wed 2nd Sept – 2336 new cases – 126 deaths (553456 recoveries/62750 active)
  • Thur 3rd Sept – 2420 new cases – 174 deaths (554887 recoveries/63565 active)
  • Frid 4th Sept – 2063 new cases – 115 deaths (557818 recoveries/62582 active)
  • Sat 5th Sept – 1806 new cases – 101 deaths (561204 recoveries/60901 active)
  • Sun 6th Sept – 1633 new cases – 110 deaths (563891 recoveries/59737 active)
  • Mon 7th Sept – 845 new cases – 115 deaths (566555 recoveries/57803 active)

Total cases: 639 362 Total deaths: 15004

Romans 5:3-4

We also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.

The best is yet to come.

Keep the smile going.

God bless you.

In His Grip,

Helga xx 🙂

Braces:

Ta da!   1 year and 300 days. I’m seeing the difference. I’ve got elastics to wear and they are so effective. I see the orthodontist next week and I’m sure he will be happy!

Posted in Braces, Building a house on a mountainside, Day to Day Blogs, Echo Photos | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Rubble Road!