Clearly I’m Getting Old.

I must be, because I’m reminiscing about “The good ol’ days…” and muttering into my coffee about “Thats not how we did it back then…”

I’m talking about blogging. And heaven knows my blog has gotten quiet since my son grew into an adult and said I couldn’t write about parenting him anymore.
I still write about my animals, and my cake art, but those are on seperate blogs to this one.

Seeing Facebook group posts like “Hi! I’m new to blogging! How do I get 10K readers?” or “Hi! I’m new to blogging! How do I make money?” and one of my favourites “Hi! I’m new to blogging! How do I get free stuff?” makes me want to ask them if they can even write worth a damn.  🙁

Ugh. I miss what blogging used to be.

Make no mistake, I’ve had my share of some AWESOME freebies. I still get invited to an event once in a blue moon and I blog about them. But I got lucky because I was there when SA businesses started asking bloggers to talk about their products, before you had to be an “influencer” with an audience of thousands.
But that isn’t why I started blogging.
I STARTED blogging because I wanted to share my life as a single mom.
I DISCOVERED I could make friends – many of whom I treasure some eleven years down the line. Hell, I met my darling Glugster, my husband, through our blogs!
If I remember correctly, there were easily fifty local and international blogs I was reading on a weekly basis at the very least back in the day. I loved reading them and leaving comments*.
Very few of those blogs even exist anymore. And now there are only a few blogs I still read, and I can’t remember when last I started reading a new one.

In the early days, before Facebook and Twitter (and and and), we didn’t use our real names, and we were super neurotic about people discovering our identities, and being stalked and murdered by the weirdos on the internet.
Now the weirdos are loud and proud, and everyone uses their real names.
Bloggers I got to know long before blogging was a business, or social media was a career in South Africa, have succeeded in turning their blogging into a business. These people are incredible writers and/ or photographers, and their work is worth paying for.
I am not a writer, not by a long shot. I am a blogger. 😛 And there is a big difference. I have seen my writing turned into a masterpiece when edited by a writer, so I do know the difference. And I am a happy snapper, not a photographer.
IMHO, if you want to blog to make money and get freebies, then you had better be a good writer, and at the very least a half-decent photographer, and work on your blog daily, to get and keep “influencer” status.
It takes WORK.

But I do miss the days of reading about each other’s adventures just for fun.

*I am a serial comment leaver, I will comment if I read your blog. It never occurred to me to lurk

History in Photographs

I found a whole box of photos in the garage, while tidying up last weekend, and going through them was so much fun!

It brought back so many memories looking at them, I found several pictures I could give to other family members, and, AND – I actually THREW SOME AWAY!
Thats personal growth for me! 😀

What did strike me though, is how many of those pictures could be super precious memories now – but they have a person in them that is no longer a part of our family…
They weren’t technically a part of the family when the picture was taken, either… 

It made me wonder about deliberately excluding people from group family portraits if they’re not technically family. I deliberately excluded my brother’s date to my wedding from the photographs – but that was my wedding – I could get away with it. 😛 

What do you think? Ask them to step aside?

Get to @Mugg_and_Bean for #SmokyFlavours!

Can you get addicted to barbecue sauce…? After the #SmokyFlavours launch last Thursday, they sent us home with a little bottle of the sauce their sauce and I am hooked! 😀

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Recently, my Glugster and I were invited to attend the exclusive launch of the Mugg & Bean #SmokyFlavours menu at Morrells Farmhouse, where we were treated to a feast and a half!

These delectable, perfect for winter dishes, will only be available will August – so don’t wait!

You know – when you head to a Mugg & Bean – that you are going to eat well, and you’re going to get a generous plate of food.

 

Here’s the official press release!

NEW ON-TREND SMOKY FLAVOURS FIRES UP THIS WINTER

There are few things as true to South Africa as the smell of a smoky summer braai, but Mugg & Bean is reimagining and introducing these aromas to a new category in its winter menu, launching on Tuesday, 05 July 2016.

In the past smoky food that is charred or burnt is a sure sign of ruined meal. Not anymore. This season, smoke is the hottest trend. Rising in global popularity in recent months, smoky food dishes are complex with their sweet and bitter undertones, where various cuts of meat are flavourfully infused with a smokehouse treatment, prepared over an open fire or smoke-filled with speciality sauces. Lesser known cuts such as brisket and flank steak are dominating the meat market using the smoky trend.

Marketing Executive for Mugg & Bean, Lee-Ann Cullingworth explains that this addition was made to satisfy their customers’ adventurous palettes, “We want to enthuse our consumers, feed their growing appetites for exciting and new dishes and take them on a flavour adventure.”

Because this smoke flavour cannot be pinned down as a specific taste, the trend is rather defined by its distinct scents, similar to a nostalgic memory of campfires and the sense of being warm and comfortable. The smoke-kissed meats are complimented with fresh salads that can comprise of ingredients like crispy onions, root-to-stem veggies and seasonal citrus flavours, perfect for the winter time.

“The new additions will see use of smoked paprika, chipotle and other smoky sauces,” says Cullingworth. “Flavour and innovation are at Mugg & Bean’s core. Our new-product development team is constantly adapting our menu to the latest trends while ensuring our food is always generous, made-from-scratch and authentic.”

Mugg & Bean has always been about generosity, which comes to life through its generous portion sizes, flavours inspired from across the globe and the warm and welcoming food experiences that has remained true to the brand for the past 20 years. “We will continue to push our culinary boundaries by bringing new ingredients and flavourful combinations to our customer’s plates and palettes,” concluded Cullingworth.

Do yourself a favour and walk into a Mugg & Bean restaurant this winter to try the newest category and let us know what you think of the new offerings on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, using the hashtag #SmokyFlavours.

I’m Gonna Have Another Birthday!

My birthday is a week away, so juuust in case anyone is interested – I do have a wishlist…

And since I’m turning 40 *snigger* it is a special occasion! 😛

I have a few long-ass wishlists on Craftsy, Yuppiechef, and Exclus1ve Books, for courses, baking equipment, and books, so vouchers are always a winner!

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Especially this one!

Grown-up coloring books and snazzy crayons or fine liners will score you MAJOR brownie points, as will a bottle or six of dry bubbly, although that goes without saying…

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I’m learning to be a hooker too, so wool and crochet hooks would be grand!

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AND I have FINALLY started collecting the Schleich horses (I already have the Appaloosa foal)! The detail is incredible, each one is hand painted so no two are exactly alike! Click through and see!

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Yay!

HAPPY ALMOST-BIRTHDAY TO ME!