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How to be an awesome human this winter

One of my least favourite days of the month, is the day I (okay fine, hubby and I) get that bill from the City of Cape Town telling me how much we’ve spent on ‘living’. Oh rates and taxes, water, electricity and garbage disposal. You cost me a small fortune.

If you’re living in Cape Town (like I am), surely you’ve already whittled down your water useage. But now that we’re mid winter and it’s FREEZING, is it possible to save money on electricity as well? Well of course it is!

Obviously, it’s not all about saving money – it’s about considering our (often unknown and unintentional) abuse of our environment. Here are a couple ideas, to make your home more cost-efficient and eco-aware this winter.

Use existing insulation

As soon as the sun begins setting, close curtains and blinds to keep warmth inside your bedrooms and living spaces. It will mean your interior stays warmer for longer and you’ll only have to switch on heaters if it is essential. Or install a fireplace… (bucket list!)

Replace and switch off

Replace all light bulbs with LED. Turn off lights, plugs and especially electric blankets and heaters when not using them. Just these few things can reduce your home’s electricity consumption by 15%. Last night I woke up to my scale beeping (weird, I know) and saw hubby’s side of our electric blanket was still on. He got a scathing reprimand at midnight.

Fill it up

Run full loads in your washing machine or dishwasher. And use the eco/short cycles.

Off at the wall

What sits on standby? TV/Wifi/chargers etc. By turning off appliances or electronics which sit on standby for hours on end, you can save up to 6% of your electric bill.

Lose 1 degree

While going solar is the gold-star goal, turning your geyser down by 1 degree and switching it off during the middle of the day can really make a difference. This can provide estimated savings of around R100 a week. We recently bought a geyser blanket but are interested in installing a timer too.

Consider buying a Spindel

As a family of 5, we can’t live without our tumble dryer. I cringe every time we put it on, because I feel like it takes foreverrrrr to dry our clothes and the electricity it uses is nausea-worthy. My recommendation: only wash what is in desperate need of a wash, and investigate using a Spindel (esp if your washing machine is not a super fancy pants one – which ours is not).

If you’ve never heard of it before – a Spindel is an innovative dryer that uses spin power instead of heat to remove up to 80% of the leftover moisture from clothes. On average – one load in a spindel draws out around 1 cup of water from my washing (and it takes only 3 min to do so!). If I need to pop my clothes in the tumble drier, it takes a fraction of the time to dry completely, after being ‘spindeled’. A Spindel saves TONS of time and electricity.

Inspired? What else do you to save money, electricity and the environment? I’d love to know.

Happy end of winter all xxx

DIY Dummy Clips

I have recently become good friends with someone who is a kindred spirit in every sense of the word. We are so like minded it’s creepy. When copy each other’s baking ideas, pinterested pins, home DIY and kids crafts. We also both also find it thrilling to score a good deal and stock up on our kids’ clothes a season in advance. The what’s apps fly between us, with quick online sales, ideas for Christmas crafts, the best place to get this or that, and a mutually shared celebration of a deal scored.


So this is the latest. Dummy Clips. I remember buying a certain brand named baby clip for my first born, and it was about R80 and I lost it a week later. Fail.

Not even being sure if my third would take a dummy (our second vehemently rebelled and re-fused) I wasn’t going to risk buying a dummy clip at that price.

My kindred spirit buddy showed me what she had done – made dummy clips for under R10. So I asked her to show me her ways… and here’s how we (she) did it!

What you need to buy: 

– Silver clip (R6.00)

– 20cm of fabric ribbon (R1.00)

– That plastic platted ‘rope’ (R0.30)


What you need at home: 

– Matches, scissors, needle, thread.

How to: 

Cut the ribbon to the length you want it and singe the ends with the matches. Hand stitch (or sew) the one end of the ribbon around the silver clip loop, and the other end around your rope…

Melt the ‘plastic rope’ together to form a loop. Hide the melted part of the rope where the ribbon has been stitched.

Attach it like follows and you’re done!