Thursday, February 28, 2013

Restaurant Passport 2013

There are so many great restaurants here in Stellenbosch- so much so that when it comes to pick a place for lunch or dinner it can be a little overwhelming.  For Valentine’s Day, I made us a Restaurant Passport (like this one)- a list of 44 restaurants in and around Stellenbosch that we want to try out this year before we head home. Some fancy fine dining restaurants for special occasions and then some easy going type places for a quick bite to eat after work.

On each page, I listed the name of the restaurant, the address, hours of operation, and then a few little symbols and other information that I thought might make our decision a little easier.

We have visited two of the restaurants so far. We put a little sticker in the box with the date that we visited and then jot down a few notes on the back of the card on how our meal was and if we would go back again. 

(this was before I found the stickers)
This handy little passport will cut out the "you choose" "no you choose" conversations when we are trying to decide what's for dinner that night. And we are keeping it in the car so when we are out and about, we can quickly make a decision!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Instagram Art

I have been craving a little DIY ever since we moved in to our apartment! So when I heard it was Pinterest Challenge time, I decided to find a fun project that would be easy enough to do (since I haven’t found the craft store here yet) and put some color up on the bare walls in our flat. 

I decided to make instagram art (sort of like this) to share all of the photos we have taken of our adventures so far in South Africa (and a few of our sweet puppy sprinkled in just because!).  We thought it would be great to hang up as soon as you walk in so when our friends and family come to visit, they can see what we have been up to.  It will also be fun to add to over the year.

All I did was print out the photos (2.5” x 2.5”) on card stock, trim them down and then tacked them to the wall with sticky-tack.

It’s nothing fancy but we can easily take down the photos at the end of the year to take home and then make a more permanent art piece to enjoy.   

If you would like to follow along with our adventures while we are away, you can follow me on instagram (alauraorr) or our blog (

Head over to Young House Love, Bower Power, The Remodeled Life and Decor and the Dog to check out all the other fun pinterest inspired projects!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Birdcage Tea Bar

I have always been a coffee girl but here lately I have found that a hot cup of tea is so comforting. A couple of weeks ago, as David was finishing up the last few things needed to register with the university, I wandered in to a sweet little tea bar in the heart of Stellenbosch.

I had read about the tea bar on The Pretty Blog before coming to Stellenbosch so I was very excited to see it for myself. It is a beautiful little shop with an eclectic mix of chairs with rustic white wooden tables. The walls are decorated with the prettiest and most dainty plates and wreath chandeliers hang from the ceiling. 

In honor of my Nonna, I ordered my dessert first, a delicious red velvet cupcake with cream cheese icing and a teapot of the peach and raspberry tea. After finishing my cupcake, I decided I might need a little something more for lunch so I ordered a great little sandwich and chips. 

It was such a nice place to come across. I’m looking forward to wandering in to a few more hidden gems around town this year!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

{Daydreaming} Turning Our First Home into Our Forever Home

There is something charming about a couple's first home together. When David and I got married, we moved in and rented a nice home from family back in our hometown. At first I couldn't wait to get "our first place". A place that was all ours- sign our names, write a check and are handed the keys to our first home. Then my grandparents told us their home story-

This past July my grandparents, Nonna and Pops, celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. When they first married, they didn't have much. Nonna's dad had a small house "in town" that he basically gave them. She said it needed a lot of work but they moved in and cleaned it up. A few years later, they moved that small house out to "the country" close to her family. Over the years they have added on- a couple of bedrooms here, larger kitchen there, a carport which then turned into a sun room- which is now the house that they still live in today. It was where they raised their kids and all 13 grandkids loved to come for fort-building, swimming and sleepovers all piled up on pallets in the living room.

That got me thinking- what if we turned our first home into our forever home! Now that David and I have moved away from the house for this year, we have really come to appreciate what all that house has to offer! We have fun sketching out our ideas on how we will renovate it- top to bottom, inside and out! We know it's not something we can do all at once, but that over time, we can make this the house of our dreams!

Stay tuned for our ideas! We hope to get started when we get back home next year!
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