Tracey Curtis-Taylor

Had the pleasure of meeting female aviator Tracey Curtis-Taylor when she stopped over in Port Elizabeth on her flight in an open cockpit plane flying from Cape Town to Goodwood, England – in the footsteps (wingtips?) of Lady Mary Heath who did the journey back in 1928.

See the articles below for more info and images:

Tracy Curtis-Taylor and Alan Straton

Tracy Curtis-Taylor and Alan Straton. Photo: Mike Sheehan (thanks Mike)

Jonathan Butler – my first autograph

At my ripe old 40 something age I can finally say that on Friday 9 November 2012 I asked someone for their autograph FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE.

As the Apprentice Longhair said; “Don’t worry Dad now you can share the excitement that I feel dreaming about getting a One Direction autograph!” I still don’t know if she was dissing me or not. Anyway, I still envy my kids for having such an awesome father!

You may well ask who the lucky object of my ‘autograph affection’ was? None other than Jonathan Butler – ex Cape Town, married to a Port Elizabeth lass, living in Los Angeles and who will be the first international artist to perform at the brand new Boardwalk Convention Centre on Thursday 20 and Saturday 22 December.

See: My Musical Journey for more info.

See: That Jonathan Butler Album for more info.

Jonathan Butler and Alan Straton

Jonathan Butler and Alan Straton

Brittany turns 18

As is the norm in the Straton household this birthday was about …………. food.

  • Fruit salad and Muesli for breakfast
  • Nachos for Lunch AND
  • Sushi for Supper.

BUT, not any sushi for our special daughter’s birthday – we took the day off and made fresh sushi at home – there was lots of whistling when we saw that the salmon is more expensive per kilo than crayfish!

You may want to try this at home:

  • Instead of Kewpie Mayonnaise we used Hellmans Light
  • On some of the prawn and crab rolls we added fresh coriander for an eastern twist – quite refreshing
  • For the first time ever I used a rice cooker and it was very successful.
Britany Straton

Happy 18th birthday Binky


Sushi for an army


Sushi – Salmon, Crab, Prawns

Philip’s Birthday

From since the kids could talk birthdays in the Straton household have been an orgy of eating. The person celebrating their birthday gets to choose what they would like for Breakfast, Tea, Lunch, Tea and Supper.

In the early days the Longhair and I would be on a permanent sugar high as we would start with pancakes smothered in caramel and nutella with a vanilla ice cream stuffing, followed by cupcakes and Fanta, Hot dogs for lunch, ice cream for dessert, Greek chocolate cake, chips and iced zoo biscuits with lashings of coke for tea and pizza for supper.

Well it seems as though we have moved on a bit from those days as we now have something relatively healthy for each meal.

For Philip’s 22nd birthday on 26 September we started with Alan’s Famous French Bread – two slices with a melted cheese and mustard centre, smothered in maple syrup. We skipped tea and played Putt Putt instead, popped into Bridge Street Brewery for a chocolate beer or two, had chicken tramezzinis for lunch, Belgian Amarula Chocolate Cake for tea and Sushi for supper. One of the celebrants started drinking his special whisky at 8:00 am though!

And we do it again next month for Binky’s 18th – cannot wait ………..

Philip's Birthday 26 September 2013

Starting early with Auntie’s Big 5 birthday present.

Philip's Birthday 26 September 2013

Sheepcakes from the cupcake lady.Shades of an accountants sheep life?

Philip's Birthday 26 September 2013

All smiles from Glynnis as she is in the lead at Putt Putt. I had to stop taking photos later, though….

Philip's Birthday 26 September 2013

Brittany making like Tigress Woods.

Philip's Birthday 26 September 2013

Duck – Kim is about to tee off!

Philip's Birthday 26 September 2013

Too keen to stand still as Philip realises he has gone into the lead. Competitive much Phil?

Celebrating 10 years of WordPress

First I used B2 Evolution and then WordPress – I suppose a bit like Betamax v VHS or Vimeo v YouTube when the ‘better’ option was trounced by better marketing. In the case of VHS I believe it was as a result of widespread adoption by the porn industry and in the case of YouTube as a result of a massive injection of Google money. That Google is known as a ‘porn fighter’ may or may not have anything to do with this.

You will find more statistics at Statista

Enhanced by Zemanta

Wallace, Glynnis and Alan

We popped down to Cape Town to scatter Niel’s ashes. The ceremony was ‘officiated over’ by an ex PE and Alexander Road High ‘boy’ – Dave Cawood who demonstrated an empathy and love that was wonderful to witness.

Each of the attendees had a word or two to say about Niel. Of course the Straton clan were unable to hold back their tears and were joined by Carys et al in having a good cry.

My father-in-law, Niel Villet, became a father to me in the 30 years that I knew him and set an example that I will never be able to follow and yet will strive to do so – in all those years I never once heard him say a bad thing about anyone, he never skinnered and he always looked for the good in everyone (even me!).

Niel became a father and a friend and his memory will be cherished.

After the scattering of his ashes on Llandudno (off the rocks at the bottom of Sunset Avenue) we toasted his memory with some Johnny Walker Double Black (he would have whistled at the price!) and then popped off to High Tea at the 12 Apostles.

Later that evening we went to have sundowners with Glynnis’ cousin June and her husband Willie (visit The Pod to see their boutique hotel)  and the image below is of Wallace (Aunt Cecily’s husband), Glynnis and I at June and Willie’s place in Camps Bay.

Wallace, Glynnis and Alan

Wallace, Glynnis and Alan

Looking for a cost effective web site solution?

A new dynamic web site based on WordPress can be a very steep and daunting challenge for someone new to the platform and it’s requirements. Even experienced web designers sometimes struggle to keep up with the number of changes and upgrades.

Many people start off well and then make wrong decisions about templates, plugins and update requirements – those updates can come thick and fast and sometimes being too quick on the button can result in conflicts that take hours to sort out.

Then the challenges of writing or updating an article or updating an existing page brings the real possibility of losing rather than gaining visitors .

Add hosting, domain name management, social media, Search Engine Optimisation and analyses of visitor trends and it is no wonder that the path to marketing products on the internet is littered with the empty corpses and dreams of many.

After being fulltime on the internet since 2003 I have a cost effective one stop solution to offer anyone wanting a web site that works.

My web design, maintenance and hosting solution includes the following:

  1. Registration of a domain (in YOUR name);
  2. Choice from a growing number of Responsive Templates (one design, many devices – PC to Tablet to Smartphone);
  3. Installation of WordPress (WP);
  4. Installation of WP Plugins;
  5. Template re-design to client specifications, colour and logo;
  6. Installation and annual licensing of the Gravity Forms contact form;
  7. Hosting;
  8. Monthly WP Maintenance and Upgrades;
  9. Advice on posting articles and images;
  10. SEO advice;
  11. Email Setup;
  12. Analytics Setup;
  13. Post to Social Media Setup and Maintenance.

My solutions include all the above and, if I had to value the above services and products over three years with no escalations I get a figure of R10 800.00. My offer is simple: If you sign with me for two years then you pay R475.00 per month, if you sign for three years you pay R325.00 per month.

At the end of the period you decide if you want a complete re-design or not. If not then the monthly prices drop to the ruling price (currently R135.00 per month) which will include hosting, annual Gravity Forms updates and monthly WP core and Plugin Upgrades. If you want a complete redesign then we carry on at the ruling price of the day.

Contact me HERE:
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

You could expect to pay close to R10 000.00 and more just to get your web site off the ground:

  • Depending on the complexity some designs start at R3 500.00 and go on up past the R10 000.00 mark.
  • Decent plugins for WP are from R320.00 (the better ones then cost a per annum licensing fee)
  • Hosting can be found from R25.00 to R180.00 per month
  • Asking your web designer to do minor updates to the site and WP core and plugins can work out at R200.00 to R600.00 per hour
  • Search Engine Optimisation advice can also be expensive on an hourly basis

My solution offers you the following benefits:

  • No large upfront payment
  • A fixed monthly fee to take care of the technical stuff
  • Set and forget convenience
  • You will have a webmaster who is aware of his obligations on a monthly basis

The bad stuff:

  • If you move before the end of the agreed period then I will ask you to settle the outstanding.
  • If you move before the end of the agreed period then the design may not go with you and remains my intellectual property until paid for in full.

My added benefits:

I require a link back to in the footer of every page on your site either as a plain text link (which all web designers take as a matter of course) or RSS feed of latest articles (which actually will be good for your SEO and user experience).

The price choices:

  • R475.00 per month if you sign with me for two years
  • R325.00 per month if you sign for three years.
I tend to be picky and choosy about what I work on so please do not be offended if I turn you down!

My ‘My Complex’

A kind of sort of list of the My Sites:

Do you think I need help?

Progress on the Afrikaans Translation

Edward Labuschagne and I are busy helping out with a tranlation into Afrikaans for the Wysija WordPress Newletter plug invisit MyPE and sign up for one of the newletters there to see how awesome the Wysija (What You Send Is Just Awesome) really is. At the time of writing we had completed 54% of the translation using Transifex.

Top translations: wysija » current-version


The language spread of Afrikaans in the world ...

The language spread of Afrikaans in the world according to Ethnologue 15th and other resources, percentage of speakers in total population. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I purchased the domain in 2006 and did nothing with it until yesterday. Here then is Fark which actually is quite farking addictive – you never really know what you are going to read next ………

Fark – quite addictive despite my obvious bias!