Category: Kids

Something fun to do this school holiday – Harties Aerial Cableway

Harties Aerial Cableway - new cars

On a recent visit to Hartbeespoort, Shawn suggested we take Zee to the Harties Aerial Cableway. His suggestion was shot down quickly by the horrified look on my face, followed by the tale of how I’d been traumatized by said cableway many years ago – I was eighteen, and during a weekend in Hartbeespoort with family, we bought tickets for a ride. The cars were really old, semi open, and I was scared the entire ride up, and then down again.

Of course by now Zee had heard us, and all she caught of the conversation was that there was a fun ride to be had. Oh boy. My rather feeble attempt to get these two to put off the deathly scary cable car ride was unsuccessful (“Look at those clouds, guys, it’s going to rain! We can do this another time.”), and off we headed to the place I really didn’t want to be.

Fortunately for me, there was a very pleasant surprise awaiting us. The old cableway (which was built in 1973!!) had closed in 2005. It had since been completely revamped, under new ownership. Yes, fancy new cable cars too. 🙂

Harties Aerial Cableway - new cars

The ride to the top felt so smooth and secure compared to when I’d last been there, meaning I was actually able to take in the pretty great view on the way up.

At the top, there’s a bar, and a curio shop – Little Shop at the Top. After a quick stop in there, we strolled along the Dassie Loop walkway, and were treated to gorgeous views of Hartbeespoort Dam, Magaliesburg, and some of Johannesburg. Shawn even pointed out where you could see Pretoria in the distance.

Harties Aerial Cableway - little shop

Harties Aerial Cableway - view

Harties Aerial Cableway - family

Zee was delighted to find the KidZone play area right at the top! We were just glad there was plenty of place to sit, because she was having so much fun, we were not getting her out of that jungle gym anytime soon. You can get light meals while you’re up there too, but with Zee not wanting anything other than to play, we decided we’d wait to grab a bite together at the base.

Harties Aerial Cableway - KidZone

Harties Aerial Cableway - KidZone

Harties Aerial Cableway - KidZone

Once we’d eventually pried Zee away from KidZone, we headed back to the cable car, and straight to Hero’s Cableway Grillhouse and Pizzeria at the base to feed our bellies! We were really impressed with the food – the pizza Shawn and I shared was generously topped and delicious. Zee’s chicken strips and fries were also yummy, and daddy and I couldn’t resist stealing a few! 😉

Harties Aerial Cableway - Zee

Harties Aerial Cableway - old cable cars

Our trip to Harties Cableway turned out to be so much fun, and now I’m the first to say it’s a must do if you’re in Hartbeespoort.

A tip for when you do visit: Carry a jacket, as it can get a little cold at the top, and of course a camera so you can capture it all.

Some information to help you plan:

• Harties Cableway is open seven days a week
• Ticket office opens at 8:30am
• The first car goes up at 9:00am
• The last car comes down at 4:45pm
• Adult ticket: R195
• Kids (4-14 years) ticket: R115
• Kids under 4 years of age ride free

Contact Harties Cableway on 012 253 9910, or visit the website here.

This post was originally published on jozikids.

Tammymum

Our little ballerina’s first “big girl” exam results and photos

Satin ballet shoes

Last Thursday, we received Zee’s grade 1 ballet exam results and photos. And we are so, so proud of this little person! This was her first – as she put it – big girl exam, the first exam where they’re given marks on the different aspects of each dance they perform. As if that in itself wasn’t huge, our tiny tot had to go into that exam room all alone, for a solo exam. Let me go back a bit to why that happened.

About a week before exam practice/extra lessons started, mommy decided it would be fun to walk into the table and break her toe. 😐 It was a break so fantastic, even driving was out of the question. Then, in the middle of that, I was sick – cold, or flu, or something. And of course, I passed this to Zee. What all this meant was a whole bunch of missed ballet lessons at the most crucial part of the year – grade 1 ballet is serious business people. Anyway, when we eventually got back to ballet, one of her teachers advised that it would be difficult for Zee to catch up on group routines in the little time left, and that a solo exam would be a better, less stressful option. I chatted to my girl, and she said dancing alone sounded scary, but she’d do it – my little trooper! So now we’re caught up on how she came to do a solo exam.

Back to the results. She scored 73 marks, only 2 short of a distinction. I was thrilled to see her marks, but her reaction was slightly different. She said it made her sad that she didn’t get a distinction – this surprised me, as I didn’t think she would even know what that was. Turns out she was studying her mark sheet quite intensely, and found “distinction” next to the highest marks “75-100”.

Merit pass

My heart sank seeing her disappointed little face as she tried to figure out what she did “wrong”. I let her know immediately that she did a brilliant job, that her score was very impressive, and that I was extremely proud of her. And while daddy and I obviously like knowing she pays attention in class, and improves in her dancing each year, its not because we want her to score a certain number of marks, or compete with anyone (the competition bit being one of the reasons I love homeschooling too). All we want is for her to do her best, and to enjoy what she’s doing. I also reminded her of the main reason she dances – because she loves it.

First ballet lesson 2012

She loved ballet from the very first day she stepped into the studio as a two year old, and she still lights up each week when we arrive there. I hope that never fades. How special it is to be so passionate about something from such a young age, and for it to still bring you joy even as you get older.

When dad came home, she told him she’d missed out on a distinction by 2 marks, and that it disappointed her a little. Echoing my earlier sentiments, he told her that her score was excellent, and that he was incredibly proud of her. Then he smothered her in hugs and kisses, while she giggled uncontrollably. ❤

Of course, Mom the Deep had to get in on the conversation. I reminded her of everything I’d told her before, and threw in a little extra just to make sure she really got me.

She nodded in agreement to everything I said – and not that annoyed “ugh, I’v got to nod and say yes mommy, or she’ll never stop” nod, but a sincere, “I hear you mommy, and maybe you’re right” nod. #winningatmotherhoodmoment
She was smiling again, and responded with, “I did do really well hey mom?” Then she remembered there were photos, and moved on to admiring her cute self in the pics. 😀

Motherhood, hey. Sometimes you’re the reason they’re sad or crying – you know, because you didn’t write or draw something on every page of a scrapbook they made you (yes, this is an actual thing), or you gave them a packet of Cheddars when what they actually wanted was Flings, or you told them its way past their bedtime and they must to get into bed (oh the horror) – and then sometimes, you’re the one who makes it all better, the one who reminds them of their awesomeness, and gets them smiling again.

Ballet

 

Ballet exam - grade one

Ballet exam - character

Exam photo shoot: West Photography

 

 

Tammymum
One Messy Mama
Mummy Times Two

Candle dipping in Magaliesburg

We didn’t travel far over the December/January holidays. If you caught some of my posts last month, you may remember we spent some of that time in Magaliesburg. It is the ideal spot for a quiet, restful break from the everyday hustle. Of course, there’s only so much quiet and rest a child can handle before needing an activity to make up for all the down time.

Fortunately daddy had spotted something in a “Things to do in Magaliesburg” brochure. It was something our little rascal enjoyed very much. And it was found in this very unassuming looking building, a short distance from where we were staying.

Candle dipping

Candle dipping, something we’d not tried before, turned out to be a fun activity for all of us. I’d say it’s most fun for the little ones, but there was a couple there, having even more fun than Zee. 😀

The lady there does a demonstration of how to dip and decorate a candle, then you’re good to go. There’s a wide selection of candles, from plain and simple, to intricate looking flowers, to cute animals and characters which the little ones would love. You can go wild with the colors and glitter, and all you pay for are the candles you choose (which start at only R10), making for very affordable family fun.

We now have candles at home in the shapes of a butterfly, Mickey Mouse, and an adorable little elephant. 🙂

Moms, next time you find yourselves in Magaliesburg, with little ones who’ve had enough of the guest lodge/resort, take a drive to the candle dipping factory and let them keep themselves busy for a while. And while they’re getting glitter all over themselves, you could grab a cooldrink and decide on which of the many bath salts also sold there, you’re going to take home with you.