They say fresh air is good for a cold, and if so this weekend was perfectly suited – no sitting around on the sofa snuffling into a mound of tissues, if was off to the beach first thing to take part in International Coastal Clean up day. We joined up with friends and went in their combi, the girls in a line on the back bench, happy to be going anywhere with their best friends. The day was gorgeous – light breeze, sunshine, blue sky with picture perfect wisps of cloud.
After lots of milling around and doling out of snacks sponsored by PicknPay, we were issued with bags and set up off the beach. We were on a beach that is part of Blaauwberg Conservation Area, a long, sandy beach that stretches all the way from Big Bay to Melkbosstrand, views back to Table Mountain all the way.
It looked fairly clean as we started out, strewn with shells and kelp, but it was amazing how much rubbish was collected. Plastic bottles, bags, food containers, lots of little sweet wrappers, and sugar packets, all sorts of detritus, including bigger things like brushes and plastic crates. The kids hunted for the more satisfying finds like bottles, while I wandered behind them, scanning for the tiny bits of decayed plastic that are just as bad for the environment, as fish can end up eating them and they get into the food chain. Even after everyone else had gone through there was still stuff to find.
At the end we had to go through the bags, filling in a data sheet of what we’d picked up. The weirdest things – a bra and two cotton reels; most numerous – plastic bottles. Between everybody – about 150 or so volunteers, a lot of them kids, we had amassed a huge heap of bags in just 1 1/2 hours.
Yesterday it was up early again and out to the fun pony show at the riding stables. Youngest had entered the Jumpkhana event and both of the girls the team games. These involved relay style races doing everything from balancing a tennis ball on a bat, riding with a sword to pick up a stirrup from a barrel, riding backwards with four marshmallows in their mouths and so on - much hilarity, much swapping of horses, much running and leading and helping of the younger ones by the older girls.
Rain threatened but held off till later except for a light drizzle now and then. Middle Daughter was on the winning team and so at last received the coveted red rosette that she has been wanting for ages.
Then it was back home to collapse in a heap on the sofa at last and see whether the fresh air had helped that cold!
As for our son – he had a busy time with Dad at home, watching several matches of the World Cup and making sure ‘we’ won, then creating spaceships out of toilet roll inners for a school Entrepreneur project... he has to try and sell them to the primary school kids. I’m slightly dubious about the profit margin on these, considering the amount of super glue and paint used in the construction...! Most of the other kids are including sweets in the package of what they are making, so he is going to have a baking day and make crunchies, muffins and cookies (from the girls' market stall heart biscuit recipe) to try and attract sales.
And now it's Monday.. time to take a deep breath, get back to work and gear up for next weekend's Spring Festival, which coincides with National Braai Day... and I still plan on putting together a braai recipe post for Cooksister's Braai the Beloved Country blog event before then... so much to do!