Blogger’s Books: Robbie Cheadle

Today, I am delighted to be featuring the new book by the lovely Robbie Cheadle, and her son, Michael. Robbie is my kind of blogger; committed, engaged, and generous with her time and comments. Robbie blogs from her home in South Africa, the land that brings us gold and diamonds, and perhaps more importantly, my favourite red wine, Pinotage. She has sent me an introduction, and a short bio too. Please enjoy her work, and if you think it might appeal to you, links are available at the end.

Thank you, Pete, for inviting Michael and I over for a visit to tell you about our new book Sir Chocolate and the Condensed Milk River story and cookbook.

When Michael was learning to read, he would do anything to distract me from the work at hand. He started off by running away but later that year he got cleverer and he started making up stories. He quickly realized that I was also easily distracted from the boring task of learning sight words when he started talking about his imaginary world where you could eat everything, even the flowers, trees and houses. Sir Chocolate was born and we developed his character and those of his friends during these conversations. When Michael started learning how to write, it quickly became apparent that it was very hard for him and a processing disorder was diagnosed. We started writing his little stories down together as a nice way of practicing something that was very difficult for him.

Michael and I wrote Sir Chocolate and the Condensed Milk River while we were on holiday in Ballito, a sea-side holiday town in KwaZulu Natal. My sister and her little girl, Emily, were staying with us in a holiday house and one unusually cold morning we were all sitting chatting and drinking cocoa made with condensed milk to warm us up, when the idea of a river made of condensed milk was born. By the end of the morning the whole story had been discussed and written and read out loud to all the other children. They loved it and the idea was so much fun that Michael and I were very easily able to make [and eat] all the delightful illustrations including this lovely condensed milk pool.

Please explore Robbie’s book collection via these links. You can buy them at very reasonable prices.

Here is Robbie’s own bio, by way of introduction.

About Robbie and Michael Cheadle

Robbie Cheadle was born in London in the United Kingdom. Her father died when she was three months old and her mother emigrated to South Africa with her tiny baby girl. Robbie has lived in Johannesburg, George, and Cape Town in South Africa and attended fourteen different schools. This gave her lots of opportunities to meet new people and learn lots of social skills as she was frequently “the new girl”.
Robbie is a qualified Chartered Accountant and specialises in corporate finance with a specific interest in listed entities and stock markets. Robbie has written a number of publications on listing equities and debt instruments in Africa and foreign direct investment into Africa.
Robbie is married to Terence Cheadle and they have two lovely boys, Gregory and Michael. Michael (aged 11) is the co-author of the Sir Chocolate series of books and attends school in Johannesburg. Gregory (aged 14) is an avid reader and assists Robbie and Michael with filming and editing their YouTube videos and editing their books. Robbie is also the author of the new Silly Willy series the first of which, Silly Willy goes to Cape Town, is now available.

Robbie’s own blog can be found here. Please visit, whenever you have the chance.

Many of you will have seen Robbie’s comments on my blog posts, and on many others in our small community. Let’s all try to give her the support she deserves, by sharing her links, and if you feel inclined to, buying her books. Best wishes to you all, Pete.


Another guest post: Sally Cronin

One again, Sally has been kind enough to feature one of my posts on her delightful blog. It is a good few years old, so anyone not around back then might like to read it. If you do, please comment there, on Sally’s blog.

Here’s a link.

Thanks in advance, and best wishes to everyone. Pete.

Twitter friends: A message

This is a general message to all my blogging friends who also follow me on Twitter, as well as those who kindly share my blog posts on that platform. Also to everyone who constantly retweets my own Tweeted blog posts, and ‘likes’ them too.

I used to always take time to thank you for doing so, and add a comment where appropriate. However, Twitter have stopped sending me individual notifications. Instead, they send me an email with any number of notifications, all lumped together in one batch. This makes it much more difficult to continue my former practice of thanking you all every time.

In future, I will just ‘like’ your retweet. This will let you know that I have seen it, and tell you that I am grateful too. I still appreciate them just the same, and hope that you will understand why I am changing to this. And please forgive my usual absence from Twitter. I rarely go on the platform, and just use it for promoting my blog posts.

Thanks once again, and best wishes to you all. Pete.

Promoting a fellow blogger

My good blogging friend David Miller has been away from the blogs for some time now. As well as working on a new novel, he has been writing song lyrics for his musical partner, Chris Almoada. Chris’ band produces a great rockabilly sound, real foot-tapping stuff from the old school, and David is his lyricist. After a lot of work, those lyrics are now available on Facebook, for all to see. As I do not have a Facebook account, I cannot like or comment, unfortunately. But if you can, then please do.

As well as writing these lyrics, David is an accomplished writer of Limericks, and has published books too. His last novel, ‘Pope On The Dole’, was a quirky and amusing read that I thoroughly enjoyed. David works from his home in Nevada, close to Las Vegas, and also enjoys hiking in the desert and mountainous countryside there. I am adding some links, in case you would like to know more about him and his work.

Facebook page for those lyrics.
Blog site.
Pope On The Dole.

If you are able to, please share these links around.
Thanks in advance, Pete.

Not knowing

During our longer than expected break this week, I didn’t access the Internet. I didn’t read a national newspaper, watch the news, or bother about what was going on outside of the quiet peace of the Suffolk countryside. This from someone who has rolling 24-hour news on for most of the day, and spends hours reading political commentary posts online, as well as those posted by bloggers.

I chatted to my relatives about ‘the old days’, and caught up on family news that I didn’t know about.
We drove over to the coast, and wandered around a timeless seaside town that hasn’t changed much in my lifetime. We ate food together, had a few drinks, and played with the three dogs. The others enjoyed lounging around in the huge hot tub (not my thing) as I brought them drinks from inside the house. Then we strolled on the edges of the fields that surrounded the old farm, tucked away almost a mile from the main road, down a stony driveway.

Not once did I concern myself about the EU, the antics of Mr Trump, weather disasters, North Korea, Iran, Pakistan, or the in-fighting in our own government. I didn’t catch sight of the buffoon of a Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, or the maligned Socialist opposition leader, Jeremy Corbyn. For three whole days, I was cut off from my normal life, and the events in the world that usually consume my every waking moment.

And nothing happened. There wasn’t a nuclear war anywhere, and America didn’t invade a single country. We continued to argue with the EU, and the Prime Minister stayed the same, without being ousted. No famous actors died, and we didn’t have any serious coastal erosion, or weather events here in Britain. On the smaller scale, there were no family dramas. Nobody ended up in hospital, or contacted us on mobile phones in a panic. In fact, there wasn’t so much as a head cold to worry about. I started to realise why people used to live the life of a hermit, and I came to a conclusion. When you don’t know about what’s going on, nothing goes on. You are better off not knowing, it would seem

I should go away more often.

I have finally got to the end of ten pages of emails. If I missed any of your comments, or didn’t get to one of your posts, I apologise. For the time being, beetleypete is back to normal.

An unexpected break

We went to visit some of my family at their holiday let in Suffolk, and ended up staying for a couple of days. Naturally, I had nothing but my phone, so couldn’t keep up with the blogging. Thanks to those of you that asked after me, and apologies for the delay in getting back to your comments, reblogs, and your own posts.

I returned to well over 200 emails this afternoon, so it will take me a while to wade through them.
Back to ‘normal service’ soon.

Best wishes to you all, Pete.

Archive posts: Sally Cronin guest spot

Once again, the lovely Sally has been kind enough to feature one of my old posts in a guest spot. Some of you will have read it of course, but if you didn’t follow this blog before the end of 2014, you might not know it. If you would like to read it, and see more of Sally’s blog, please follow the link, and leave any comments over there.
Thanks in advance, Pete.