Showing posts with label De Oude Huize. Show all posts
Showing posts with label De Oude Huize. Show all posts

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Quote of the day

One thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write, draw, build, play, dance and live as only you can.

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Sustainability at De Oude Huize Yard

The veggies in the first section is doing so good and everything is looking happy. The second section is now also planted. More on the the blog spot
https://deoudehuizeyard.wordpress.com/2017/11/02/de-oude-huize-yard-an-eco-friendly-establishment/

Friday, 24 June 2016

Hamilton Bridge in Harrismith

During the Anglo Boer War British troops were deployed near Basuto Hill – the area known as Wilgepark.

To enable the soldiers encamped in that area to reach the town, a suspension bridge was built by the by the Royal Engineers for easy crossing of the Wilge river. 
The first suspension bridge over the Wilge River was erected in 1900 by the Royal Engineers. Designed for pedestrian traffic. The British soldiers would now have easy access into the town from the area near the Basuto Hill.

The structure was washed away in March 1904.  By then the regiments were gradually moving to barracks on King's Hill and complete repair of the bridge seemed unnecessary. The troops made a temporary foot bridge of planks resting on barrels.

Today, at the same spot, a more sturdy structure, called the Hamilton Bridge, names after Sir Hamilton Goold Adams, Governor of the then Orange River Colony, provides access to vehicular traffic from the town crossing the Wilge River.
It was open to traffic on 7 August 1907.
In 1910 with the extension of the President Brand Park toward the south the town council kept the tradition of a suspension bridge and the existing suspension bridge was then built.  

The urban area has increased over the past decades and today there are new developments in this area. But the old Hamilton will stand tall.
Thanks to Nico and Biebie for sharing their photo's
Till next time
Sandra

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Afghan with diamonds and bobbles.

After spending some time looking for a pattern to knit a stunning afghan this was the number one choice.  
This pattern was copied from Freepattern.  You can download it here 

If you do have problems please send us a comment with e-mail address and we will forward it 

The texture and lace effect was a must.  Must say it took longer to finish than expected.  

The texture and leace effect was a must.
Must say it took longer to finish than expected 

I have used Elle Pullskein wool and adjusted the pattern accordlingly

Finished - hand made with a lot of love 


Thank you for visiting till next time 
Sandra

Monday, 7 March 2016

Red Onion Marmalade

Often we utter the words - know what would be great with this? 
Onion Marmalade 
Then I asked myself how difficult it could be to make this sweet sticky onion marmalade. 
It turns out, it's the easiest recipes to fill your own jars with. 

Caramelized Onion Marmalade makes a delicious topping for bruschetta or pizza; it's also a nice complement to grilled steak, chicken, or pork. Try it with pâtés, terrines or a ploughman’s lunch 
Red Onion Marmalade 
2kg red onions 
4 garlic cloves – have used 3 elephant garlic cloves
Enough olive oil and butter
140g brown sugar 
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves 
750ml red wine 
350ml vinegar 
200ml port
 Method 
Halve and thinly slice the onions and garlic. 
Melt the butter and oil in a large, heavy-based pan over a high heat. 
Tip in the onions and garlic and give them a good stir so they are glossed with butter. 
Sprinkle over the sugar, thyme leaves and some salt and pepper. 
Give everything another really good stir and reduce the heat slightly. 
Cook uncovered for 40-50 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
The onions are ready when all their juices have evaporated, they’re really soft and sticky and smell of sugar caramelizing. 
They should be so soft that they break when pressed against the side of the pan with a wooden spoon. 
Slow cooking is the secret of really soft and sticky onions, so don't rush this part. 
Pour in the wine, vinegar and port and simmer everything, still uncovered, over a high heat for 25-30 minutes, stirring every so often until the onions are a deep mahogany colour and the liquid has reduced by about two-thirds. 
It’s done when drawing a spoon across the bottom of the pan clears a path that fills rapidly with syrupy juice. 
Leave the onions to cool in the pan, then scoop into sterilized jars and seal.  
Till next time 
Sandra 

Thursday, 18 February 2016

An up and down route Karoo to Wilderness 3

A road trip is always packed with fun and when driving only on the back roads time is not relevant. 
We had time to chat, to look and to explore.
This will be our last leg of our journey that zig-zag through 3 provinces and travelled more than 2000 km 
You can read about the first leg of our trip here 
To read about the road trip through the Northern Cape click here 
Part 3
We needed to stop in Britstown 
The church in the centre of town
Our next stop was Victoria West
We passed all these wind turbines and wonder what was it all about. 
It was Noblesfontein Wind Farm
Beyond the valleys of Victoria West and Drie Susters in the Northern Cape lays a vast landscape boasting a new kind of bloom. Noblesfontein Wind Farm is situated 40km from Victoria West and is one of the first privately owned wind farms in the country. The erection and completion of the wind farm was in 2014 and there is 41 towers currently in operation. The farm, which belongs to the Roux Family Trust, was chosen not only due to the position of the land, but also due to the family’s own commitment to renewable energy in South Africa and it does not only focus on the environment through the use of alternative energy resources, but is also trying to give back through various projects in the community.
Thank you to Noblesfontein for sharing this picture
Beaufort West
Beaufort West is the largest town in the arid Great Karoo region, and is known as the "Capital" of the Karoo. Did you know? Professor Christiaan Barnard, the town’s most famous son who performed the first successful human-to-human heart transplant is honoured in the local museum, which houses a display of awards presented to him and a replica of the original heart transplant theatre.
Beautiful architecture 
After travelling for some time we stop for a bite at Boeteka Farm Stall 
They have proper padkos and the warmth and authenticity cannot be replicated. You will find this Farm Stall on the N12 
A selection with a difference 
When driving to the coast you have to make time to stop in Meiringspoort. The poort follows the natural gorge hewn by the Groot Rivier (big river) through the Swartberg range connecting, on either end, the towns of Klaarstroom and De Rust or the Groot and Klein Karoo respectively.
The 24 drifts are numbered and named according to something that happened. Some of our favourites are:
Spookdrif (Ghost Drift) A supernatural light, was seen at this drift.
Damdrif (Dam Drift): Upstream was a large waterhole. 
Boesmansdrif (Bushman's Drift) There are broad deep clefts in the rock, where bushmen lived. There artefacts were still to be found as late as 1965, but now the area is overgrown by wild fig trees. 
Skelmkloofdrif (Hidden Ravine Drift) Legend has it that layabouts (skelms in Afrikaans) living in this ravine stole Petrus Meiring's sheep. 
Aalwyndrif (Aloe Drift) named after the beautiful mountain aloes, which bloom from 
July to September
Nooiensboomdrif (Maiden's Tree Drift) Given this name because of two Kiepersol trees on either side of the road, their branches intertwining. 
Steweldrif (Boot Drift) Legend has it that Petrus Meiring's wagoner's boots were washed away at this point, causing him to return home for another pair. 
Herrie se Drif named to Herrie se Klip after CJ Langenhoven chiseled the name of his imaginary elephant in the stone which is found a little further up the river.
Witperdedrif or Rabbi se Drif (White Horses Drift or Rabbi's Drift):A Rabbi along with his horses and cart was washed down the river 
Wadrif (Wagon's Drift) A number of wagons were washed away at this point through time. 
Uitspandrif (Outspan Drift) There was space at this ford for the wagoner to outspan his oxen. This is now the site of a very neatly laid out picnic site near the Great Waterfall
Ontploffingsdrip (Explosion Drift) A wagon, fully loaded with dynamite and travelling at quite a speed on the very bumpy "Boer Road" is said to have exploded at this point because of the volatile cargo. Miraculously although the cart and mules did not survive, the driver did. He only carted wool afterwards.
Rooiuitspanning Or Langstraatdrif (Drft at the red Outspan or Long Street Drift) There was room enough at this drift for a number of wagons to outspan. The soil here is red, hence the name. This is also the end of a stretch of road almost 3 kms long without any river crossings, which is referred to as Long Street.
Peerboomdrif (Pear Tree Drift): A huge saffron pear tree made this a popular rendezvous and outspan. On the road nearby was a house. Two spinsters lived here until the death of one.The other buried her in the lounge and disappeared, never to be seen again.
De Rust a quaint, picturesque Victorian village connecting the Klein Karoo and the Karoo. De Rust has always been the place to rest before challenging the route through the next pass. 
Outeniqua Pass almost there. The Outeniqua Pass was built utilising labour from Italian prisoners of war between 1943 and 1951. 
Wilderness time to kick off the shoes and enjoy the sea. We stayed at Wilderness Dunes and this was wonderful. The only down side 225 steps to the beach. 
When in the area you have to visit Knysna and Belvedere, but that's not all you also have to eat at all the wonderful eateries in and around. Do not forget Victoria Bay, Sedgefield and Hoekwil. There is so much more to see and do. 
Enjoy your trip 
Thank you for taking this wonderful trip with us 
Till next time 
Sandra 

Monday, 1 February 2016

Our route from Northern Cape to Wilderness in the Western Cape 2

We have made time to explore the back roads during our trip to Wilderness. 
With no "padkos" but only cold water we started our journey.
We visited 25 small towns on our route 
And zig-zag through 3 provinces and traveled more than 2000 km 
This is the second leg of our trip and you can read about the first here 
We traveled for many kilometers next to the railroad 
The old steam engines made way for diesel locomotives 
We entered the Northern Cape and the Vaalharts Irrigation Scheme
Hartswater was laid out in 1948. 
There is a monument built in the shape of a miniature church dedicated to the women of Vaalharts for their contribution towards building and developing the Vaalharts irrigation scheme located in the town of Hartswater.
You will find Olives South Africa just outside the town an a must stop on route 
The women monument built a s miniature church
The Vaalharts Irrigation water canals
The Olives at Olives South Africa
And old mobile at the wine cellar
Lots of donkeys along the route 
Our next visit Jan Kempdorp which was the site of a concentration camp for German men. The first plots was wold in 1938 and was named after Genl. Jan Kemp the Minister of Lands.
It is also known for the location of an Ammunition depot.
The most important reason for our visit was that our son Gerald-Cecil and his very special wife, Lesinda,  live in this small town.
A good reason to visit Jan Kempdorp is to go and have a look at stored steam locomotives at
93 Ammo Depot.
You have to get permission to visit this site as it forms part of the Military Base 
We had to say goodbye to our children and move on to Kimberley. 
As you enter the city you pass Kamfers Dam and the Lesser Flamingos breeding site  
Kimberley is known as the Diamond City. It is known for the Big Hole. A hand-dug hole the size of eight football fields. The labour that went into this is unthinkable. 
Next to the Hole is the Mine Museum and you can imagine the frenetic days of the diamond rush. 
Thanks to the photo's that we could use 
The Big Hole from the sky and the Star of the West that opened in 1870
Kimberley is known for the monuments and old buildings
Left: The Honoured Dead Memorial is situated at the meeting point of five roads, and commemorates and the tomb of 27 soldiers who died defending the city during the Siege of Kimberley during the Anglo Boer War. It was designed by Sir Herbert Baker as commissioned by Cecil John Rhodes. It is built of sandstone quarried in the Matopo Hills in Zimbabwe. It features an inscription as commissioned to Rudyard Kiplin:
This for a charge to our children in sign of the price we paid. The price that we paid for freedom that comes unsoiled to your hand. Read, revere and uncover, here are the victors laid. They that died for their city being son's of the land."
Top Right: This bronze work by Hamo Thornycroft depicts Rhodes mounted on his horse with a map of Africa in his hands. Facing north it symbolise Rhodes vision to extend the British Empire into Africa. Rhodes is depicted in the clothes he wore at the memorable Indaba with the Matabele leaders in Matopos in the 1880s.
Middle Right: St Cyprian's Cathedral
Bottom: The Town Hall is a beautiful building was constructed in 1899. Fergus Carstairs Rogers was the architect responsible for this outstanding workmanship.The old tram that stops right outside the town hall
Our next roadstop the Diamond Fields N12 Battlefields. We stopped at the Riet River which commemorates The Battle of Modder River. 
A wall that depict the Anglo Boer War 
The magnificent bridges - on for vehicles and one for trains catches your eye. The old picture of of the reconnaissance soldiers on their bicycles on the train tracks 
The block house that was built during the Anglo Boer War to protect the railway line 
Our next stop was Hopetown and the Oranje Rivier but before we get to Hopetown you have to read about my great grand father's brother and The Grange here.
The wind pumps at The Grange
Alfred Ernest - my great grandfather and Allister Thornton was brothers. Allister Thornton FINCHAM was born in 1871 inherited "The Grange" from his father they were ruined by the ostrich slump and become diamond diggers on the Vaal River, mined manganese at Black Rock and dug salt at Britstown. He was always looking for oil without success. Allister FINCHAM, the diamond millionaire, is his son.
The sign along the N12
Allister snr and Allister jnr with a selection of diamonds
Allister jnr 
Hopetown was founded in 1850 a farming area where several large diamonds, most notable the Eureka and the Star of South Africa were discovered between 1867 and 1869. 
This could be a beauty once restored.  Seeing some potential 
Kambro Farm stall was the stop for something to eat. They offer more than just food we left with some of the wonderful canning and jamming that is on offer. 
You have to try the pears in red wine.
Thanks for traveling with us 
Till next time 
Sandra

Monday, 25 January 2016

Our route from Kameel in the North-West to Wilderness in the Western Cape 1

We have made time to explore the back roads during our trip to Wilderness. 
With no "padkos" but only cold water we started our journey.
We visited 25 small towns on our route 
And zig-zag through 3 provinces and traveled more than 2000 km 
Part 1
You can read the next leg of our trip here

My Mom reside in Kameel - a farming community in a very dry part or our country. Many years ago my Dad bought 5 houses next to the railroad. 
My mom, Florence - 84 - her house next to the railroad and her pride and joy the garden 
The Railroad was built in 1894. The average elevation is 1336 meter above sea level. In the words of Cecil John Rhodes
" the railway will form the main trunk line connecting the markets of the Cape Colony with the British South Africa Company’s territory and, ultimately, on joining with the Beira Railway Company’s line to Salisbury, will afford through means of transport from Cape Town to Beira."

For accommodation you can stay over at Rust and Vrede.
It is hard to imagine the cool, green oasis that awaits you when your arrive after a 
journey through the hot, dry and beautiful North West
My mom and Hennie in the main picture
Grain Silos at sun set
A ride on a quad bike ride
Some interesting implements under an old blue gum tree
A ride on a donkey cart 
We took a dirt road to visit Devondale. 
There used to be an old Convent and we thought that we will be able to take some pictures but unfortunately it was all very much left to ruines 
Devondale in the not so good days 
Then we took the tarred road to the town Stella. The country town is known for the large salt pan on the outskirts of the town. It is know for the number of early European travelers including David Livingston and Robert Moffat. The area was proclaimed as the Republic of Stellaland and named after a comet which was visible.  
A stamp dated to the era of Stellaland
The church in the middle of the town
Granny Barlow's house in Brand Street
Granny and Grandfather
Salt pans 
My Great-grandfather Fincham and the family had a farm
called Lonely Hill just outside the town. 
Our next stop Vryburg and still remember the milkshakes and the Waldorf Cafe in the main street. 
It is renowned for it's cattle ranching and are often referred to as the "Texas of South Africa". The history dates back to 1882. when it was established and called themselves Vryburgers (Free citizens). The plots were apportioned to the volunteers by means of a lottery and by 1883 400 plots had been established. 
You can also read about Ofelia and Vryburg here 
A monument to commemorate the era of the Anglo Boer War.
One of the beautiful old buildings
A monument in honor of the Great Trek
A cattle loading ramp
The National Hotel in the main street
Farmers at an cattle auction taken by David Goldbatt in 1965
The old gentlemans club
The old Goal that is now part of a nature reserve
Thanks to Yolandi De Vries for sharing her photo's
We again paid a visit to Tierkloof (Tiger Kloof) Missionary Station. The stone church was established in 1904 by the London Missionary Station. It is now a national monument and restored as an educational institute 

My mom told us about Buxton and the Blue Pools that she visited as a youngster. 
It was worth the visit.
It was very dry so we could not visit the Blue Pools must be splendor due to the water flowing from the limestone cliffs could be a site to remember. 
We visited the Taung World Heritage site and it is known due to the evidence of early hominids that was found. It is the only site at which hominid fossils have been discovered in tufa caves. 
The caves were formed in an enormous tufa flow that came off the dolomite bedrock of the Kalahari escarpment and is situated just west of the village of Taung at the Buxton Quarry, were the Taung Child skull was found in 1924 in an old mine tunnel by a quarry worker. The little skull is to be from a approximately three year old child and is housed at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. This finding proved that Africa truly is the cradle of humankind 
 The Buxton Quarry is no longer mined.  
Buxton 
A beautiful tarred road leads to the Taung Skull Site.
A short hike takes you to the monument.
The remaining abondant buildings at the quarry
The Taung Child
The World Heritage plaque of the monument 
We then enter the Northern Cape Province via the N12 next to the longest lane op poplar trees
The 38 kilometre poplar lane along the road to Hartswater, was planted in 1937 and has often been considered the longest lane of its kind in the world.
Next time we will tell you about the next leg of our travel 
Till next time see you soon 
Sandra 

Saturday, 9 January 2016

The Oliviershoek Pass via the R74

The R74 is the primary route to the Northern uKhahlamba Drakensberg World Heritage site 
The road runs alongside the spectacular Sterkfontein Dam and down the equally spectacular Olivierhoek pass on to the mountains.

For many years this section of the R74 that runs along the dam has fallen into 
terrible disrepair but in December 2015 the newly built road was once again opened. 
We took the road and like to share our experience.

Sterkfontein Dam 
Sterkfontein Dam and all the interesting names
Sandy Bay is the area situated next to the R74
The name Poacher's Corner keeps us wondering
This dam is part of the Tugela-Vaal Water Project and located on the Nuwejaarspruit, 
a tributary of the Wilge River in the upper catchment area of the Vaal River. 
Nuwejaarspruit 
Views of Sterkfontein Dam 
The dam receives its water via the Tugela-vaal Project which is a pumped-storage 
scheme involving the net transfer of up to 630 million cubic meters of water and 
stored in the dam. The Dam is a highly effective reservoir, since it has the depth 
to store a large amount of water with very little loss to evaporation. 
It comprises of a 93 meters high earthfill embankment 3,050 long with no spillway. 
Thanks to Joburg2c for sharing the photo 
It is the largest dam wall in South Africa with regards to volume while the reservoir 
formed by the dam is the third largest in the country. 
At full supply capacity of 2,656 million cubic meters and a surface area of no more than 70 km.
The circumference is approximately 102 km 
It is situated in a nature reserve with 12000 hectares of considered land offering, wildlife, birding, boating, watersports, flyfishing and magnificent views over the Drakensberg. 

It is one of the windiest inland spots with the most consistend wind 
throughout the year and wind can pick up to over 30 knots within minutes 
and makes it ideal for windsurfing. 
Windsurfing 
It is also home to the annual Sterkiesswim 3000 m in February 
The vulture restaurant used to be a place where fresh and poison free carcasses were put out to feed the vultures and it contribute to the survival of the birds especially during periods of food scarcity and when young birds fledge. 
We hope that this project will once again be up and running 
It is home to the endangered Oribi and White Tail Rat, 
the vulnerable De Winton's long-eared bats, 
the Lammergeier
the Near-threatened South African Hedgehog

Kerkenberg 
The site is so named because the Voortrekker’s priest, Erasmus Smit, deemed the cluster of rocks at its base was worthy of a church. The heritage markers that can be visited are the Retief Klip, a stone engraved by the leader's daughter Deborah on his birthday to commemorate the Boer's successful land negotiations, and Retief Pass, the old wagon trail used by Piet Retief to descend into KwaZulu-Natal.
The rock with Retief's name as engraved by his daughter
The Bare foot women
The name packed in lime washed stones
The cluster of rocks that was used as a church 

You can read more about the Retief's daughter Deborah here
Driekloofdam at the bottom
The old sandstone quarry
You will find a little bit more about the quarry and a certain Flip Pieterse
on this blog post

Wild flowers
Old ruin
Oliviershoek Pass 
The summit point of 1758 m above sea level and is close to the most southerly arm 
of the Sterkfontein Dam.  
The descent is gentle and enters a wide S-bed which straightens out at the 2 km point. 
it is often used as an alternative route to Van Reenen's Pass but for us it is a scenic alternative to the Northern Drankensberg. Interestingly, and to add a little history to the mix, it was along this area in October 1837, that Piet Retief and his trek party climbed the Drakensberg.  

Thank you for joining us on this wonderful scenic drive on the newly built R74. 
Sending you lot of love from My Harrismith 
Sandra