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Monthly Archives: April 2017

One of the many 'excavations' from our garden: A ladle

One of the many ‘excavations’ from our garden: A ladle


This ladle is only one of the many kitchen utensils we excavated from our garden: Pots, pans, can openers, mugs, cutlery…


Now, did all these kitchen tools break and were dumped decades ago in what is now our garden?


Or are all these items part of the kitchenware from The Broken Palace? But shouldn’t they then have been packed up and moved before The Broken Palace was destroyed?


It feels so curious finding these long forgotten leftovers from a house that is shrouded in hearsay.

If you know what happened to The Broken Palace, please get in touch: 🙂


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Hi, I’m here to pick up a parcel.


What’s the reference number?


Wait, just a sec, let me fire it up.


Ah, on your phone, is it?


Yeah, you know, it’s all binary.


Ja… we don’t do much of that around here…



Maybe that’s why Christmas post arrives in February in South Africa?



Hi, I’m expecting a letter from my mom, if it can’t be delivered, would you let me know?


Yes of course, if the parcel doesn’t fit or nobody’s at home, we leave you a note.


It is just so strange, I’m waiting since Christmas.


Wait, did you say Christmas?


Yes, my mom mailed it early to arrive before the festive holidays, and it’s already January. I’m worried it got lost.


Oh, no. It’s still way too early for Christmas post, come back by the end of the month and check then.


But, that’s February!


Yes, that sounds about right.


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Rattie MJ enjoys her ice cube.

Rattie MJ enjoys her ice cube.


When the days get hot, rats can do very little to stay cool:

They don’t sweat, they don’t pant. The only way they can release heat is through their tail.


Help your pet rats to cool down by giving them ice cubes as a #RattieTreat. Even if made from just plain tap water, ratties love them.


Bonus Tip: Make it an extra special treat by adding a bit of juice, and your ratoots will love you even more when you hand out these miniature ice popsicles. 🙂


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Some of the marbles we excavated from our garden.

Some of the marbles we excavated from our garden.


This is how I remember marbles!


A quick Google image search reveals that marbles really revved up over the years, have you seen modern marbles, they are amazeballs. Each one like a piece of art.


So I guess the marbles we found in our garden are a pretty good indication for a time reference: These look like from the 80’s / 90’s.


Anyone remembering playing with marbles at The Broken Palace back in the day? If so, kindly get in touch: 🙂


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Carrying pet rats on your shoulder is child's play! :)

Carrying pet rats on your shoulder is child’s play! 🙂


Rats are made for shoulder rides, they curl up snuggly around your neck and love being part of the action.


But, as with every ride, there’s a risk of falling off.


Tips how to safely carry your rat on your shoulder


Only indoors

Taking your pet rats outdoors can pose dangers such as exposure to illnesses, your pet getting lost, or your rat being attacked by another animal.

Start by carrying your pet rats on your shoulder indoors only.


Wear a scarf

For your pet rats every step you take is a leap into a new adventure. If they trust you they will enjoy it. But ratties are easily spooked and feel more comfortable if tugged away securely. A scarf they can nestle in gives them hiding space and something to hold onto.


Scratchy nails

You can cut your pet rat’s nails.

Or you can develop a very thick skin.

But there’s little other option, as no matter how high-neck your pullover is, the ratties will make it inside and their tiny little nails can leave scratches like paper cuts.


Needing to go

When your pet rat becomes restless and just won’t sit still, it could be because they really need to go for a wee.

Pet rats like to keep their environment clean and can be toilet trained. When your pet rat wants to go down from your shoulder, give them the chance to go to the toilet by placing them into their litter tray.


Keep your posture

You will quickly realise that bending over or twisting to the side is not going to work without your pet rat sliding off your shoulder.

Rats are very good in holding on, but the responsibility lies with you to make the ride enjoyable.

Your posture will improve accordingly: A straight back, broad shoulders, bending only in the knees, the chin up, a strong core are just some of the benefits that come with carrying rats on your shoulder. 🙂


Don’t get too comfortable

Your rats will love being part of your activities by sitting on your shoulder.

If it’s brushing your teeth or doing gardening work, it’s all great entertainment for your ratties.

At the same time they learn to trust you and your bond grows even stronger.

Be careful though when they get too relaxed: It happens to me quite often that one of the rats falls asleep and almost off my shoulder! 😮


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Zenning our garden: The circular pattern is nice to look at

Zenning our garden: The circular pattern is nice to look at


Just because our garden seems to have an entire house buried in it, and the soil is full of building rubble and other curious rubbish, doesn’t mean it has to look like a construction site:


You can always create a Zen Garden

A Zen Garden is a doubly good idea:

1) Creating a Zen Garden is meditative

There’s something very soothing about raking patterns in the sand. Apparently a circular pattern is specially relaxing, as it takes more concentration.

2) Looking at a Zen Garden is meditative

In Zen Buddhism zen gardens were designed to stimulate meditation. As places of quiet contemplation and reflection, zen gardens offer a counterbalance to the modern life stressed out FOMO existence.


Even our puppy Lola added her contribution: 😉


The design of a zen garden is not meant to stay permanently. It gets easily disturbed and invites to create new patterns.

It is also a fun way to try out different landscaping ideas:

Zenning our garden: A pathway and some flower beds give it structure

Zenning our garden: A pathway and flower beds give it structure



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