Winter Solstice Baking

December 23, 2008

I went a little stir-crazy today. After a week of not leaving the apartment and mostly sleeping (see previous post) my body needed to use up some energy.

So after a few hours of packing (we are moving on Sunday!), I decided to celebrate this year’s Winter Solstice by baking.

Courtesy of Veganomicon (amazing vegan cookbook) I baked the following vegan treats:

Bare with me with the pictures, I never realized food photography was such an art, props to everyone who has foodblogs!

Raspberry macadamia nut chocolate cookies: These are chewy and really unique.


Oatmeal raisin gingerbread muffins: Mmmm if only it was snowing…

Gingerbread muffins

I also tried to make Chocolate hazelnut biscotti but they completely fell apart because I omitted the cornstarch- BAD CHEMIST!…(Dobby head pounding go to 3:00min mark)

Gotta go, dinner is on the stove…Bulgur with Broccoli and Spinach Coconut curry.

Anyone wanna come over for dinner?


Eardrum- burst

December 21, 2008

So this really shows you, don’t take your health for granted.

I had plans to be skiing in Andorra right now, to spend Christmas climbing….but the lovely bacteria now installed in my left tonsil and ear had other plans….

I woke up last Monday with an excruciating pain in my left ear.

Exhibit A: Ear


Veredict: Burst Eardrum.

Now, for those of you that immediatly go into thoughts of scuba diving, bombs exploding or someone blatantly punching my ear let me clear this up-I didnt do anything!! It burst thanks to the bacteria in my tonsil, yikes. I had no clue this was even possible. I am beyond happy that this isn’t serious and that i am actually really lucky in life in excellent health.

So, fully loaded with antibiotics, I am now healing, planning for the upcoming trip, cooking and reading my favorite blogs.

I love food blogs for cooking ideas. Here are some links for your inspiration: Goddess of creating fun healthy meals and my personal fave blog. Super fitness instructor, always funny. I come here to drool over Candle Cafe meals and waffle breakfasts. Best fake meat recipes in the planet. Balancing health and treats in Boston.

and of course…I also visit climbing sites: My friend Oskar’s climbing adventures. Guilty pleasure of climbing news and ranking…. Colette’s climbing blog, super strong chick. Spanish bolting and climbing maquina. Uber-Strong, vegan, cute.

So just in case you are confined to your bed, biting your nails, wishing to climb and run like me, or simply sitting at your desk procrastinating…i think i left you with enough entertainment.

and if you wanted climbing pictures…fine fine…here is the REAL DEAL

Richard on Iron Man in Rodellar, Spain

Richard climbing Iron Man in Rodellar by Mauricio Fuertes

I hope the next post is climbing related!!!

December 5, 2008


We recently took a 2 week climbing vacation in Catalunya.

This was made possible because of Victor. He let us use his car. He rocks. 

After much deliberation (as usual with climbing trip planning), we started in Tres Ponts and Perles.


Soon we were chased away by the fog and cold and we moved to warmer territory: Margalef.





The more I visit this conglomerate paradise, the more I fall in love with it. Thanks to Jordi, refuge keeper and Margalef equipping master, Margalef has gone from a small town to an internationally renown climbing paradise.


We moved on to the less known Mont-ral and spent a few days “camped” at the football field. We visited the legendary Mont-ral organic bakery: whole wheat goodness packed breads and muffins that created fireworks in our mouths. We were energized and ready for more.




We spent a night in an Ermita (old church) where a lovely nun has been living alone for the past 14 years. She was kind enough to offer her porch as shelter from the strong wind. These things make me happy I don’t have enough money for hotels. How boring would that have been? Instead we were sheltered by the nun- priceless.





Siurana´s homey campground was calling our name, and hence we headed for the world famous cliffs. As usual, the place was filled with climbers from all over the world. While drinking wine at the bar we met 2 kiwis, Sarah and Matt:


Sarah is adventurous, smart and spunky. (hehe, see pic below)


Matt is incredibly sweet and well….an elf (the gorgeous lord of the rings type).



Just see for yourselves:






Hence, the warm wine and braais parties were started.


Warm wine attracts fun climbers, and so it did. Kalman (Chris), Jess, Gwen and Teague aka Team America joined us and we were off to Margalef (once more).






Its so nice to have strong and fun girls to climb with and learn from.







Saying goodbye was sad, but I am so happy to have met them all. They will show up in this blog again when we go visit them! That’s right! We get top of the line tours of New Zealand and Rocky Mountain National Park.



How lucky are we? Those are the 2 places we did not know ANYONE. The itinerary was completed and the warm wine parties will be reenacted. 


41 days….but who’s counting?


let the countdown begin

December 1, 2008

A countdown seems like a good choice for a first post.

A 7 week countdown to my round the world climbing trip.

Living in the city of Barcelona has brought many joys, the first being RIchard, my boyfriend and travel partner. I have met many other fantastic people and visited many climbing areas in Catalunya, so why leave?

The fire was started by a very harmless spark: Richard has not seen his family in 3 years. Away from South Africa, his family and his friends, living in Spain, unable to leave – until now.

Visiting his parents and brother who have immigrated to Australia was one part, but going to his native South Africa where his aunt, grandma, cousins and friends live was also essential. So why not turn this adventure into a round the world trip.

Hence, the fire was lit.


The link to circumnavigate the globe is the force that pulls me stronger than any other, my other half, my lovely sister. She is glowing like the newlywed she is and living in Cambridge, MA. That will be our final stop.

The itinerary has a shape, but the path will surely change with our footsteps.

London-South Africa-Australia- New Zealand- Japan- United States- London

I plan to visit friends,make new ones, eat vegetarian delights, climb sandstone, quartzite, granite, conglomerate, limestone and many trees.

I must not forget to be kind to others, happy, safe, love, keep my eyes open and live in the moment.

I dedicate this blog to my dear friend Cristina Gomez, she died climbing in Montserrat this July.

I leave you with a taste of our recent climbing trip, an appetizer to our future adventures.