• Nemo party hats DIY
    DIY,  Family,  Kid Friendly,  Parenting

    Nemo & a 2nd birthday party.

    Turning two way before I am ready
    Our Little Miss as a bubba

    Our Little Ms turned 2 recently.  How the hell did that happen so quickly?!  Not that long ago she was our little bub, with no hair and no teeth (for a loooooong time!).  Now she is running around having conversations with everyone and being way too smart for us.

    We decided to have a little party for her – family and some little friends.  And me, being me, kept thinking I had at least a month to sort it out.  Then we realised we had a week and two days.  Gah.  Amazing how time slips away when there is a new little one in the house.

    Somehow I was stumped as to what theme to have for her decorations.  Just a colour? Music? Hmmmm.  Then, when she was watching ‘Finding Nemo’ for the one hundred and eleventh time, it hit me!  Finally.   So ‘Finding Nemo’ it was.  Thank goodness for Pinterest.  So many great ideas – check out my boards to see what I mean!

    So the goal was not to spend too much and not to get too stressed out.  Hmmmm!  Via Pinterest I found a great site that had invitation templates, decoration templates and ideas, name tags etc.  It also has ideas for games, face painting etc and covers all sorts of themes.  We used their invitation template and printed off some of the decoration prints and stuck them to our party bags.  I found blue and orange party bags going super cheap at Spotlight.  Speaking of the party bags, I added these free activity sheets to some balloons and treats.  

    DIY Nemo Party Bags

    We decorated the house with crepe paper and some Nemos that our Little Miss’ super clever Godmother whipped up for us, using this tutorial.  Yup, she is much more crafty (and patient) than me!

    Nemo party decoration DIY

    This link had some easy, printable Nemo party hats – easy to cut out, and staple together.Nemo party hats DIY

     So these were some easy, DIY and cheap decorations and ideas I found via Pinterest.  And best of all, Ms 2 had a great time!  She loved the decorations, and hats and party food – I put a drop or two of blue food dye in a jug of lemonade and bam! Ocean blue drink.  Mostly though, she had a ball running around with her little cousins and friends all afternoon.  Best part of the day.

    What successes have you had with birthday parties?  Do you go all out, or pared back?

     

  • Kids and online safety
    Blogging,  Family,  Parenting

    To Name or not to Name?

    Kids safety on the internet.  Something I have been thinking about, pretty much since I started the blog, is whether or not to post photos of the kids, and to use their names.  So far I have chosen not to.  On my personal FB and Instagram pages I do, but here on the blog I have generally used photos that don’t show their faces, and referred to them as the Little Miss and the Little Mister.  But is this thinking sensible caution or just a touch paranoid?  Most of my favourite bloggers identify their kids either with their names or photos or both.  And these are successful bloggers, with loads of people clearly knowing who they are.

    I come from a professional background that no doubt contributes to my caution (ten plus years in child protection and working with vulnerable/at risk families).  I’ve done a bit of reading around the web, and of course, found conflicting ideas on the subject.  Some people feel that the children should be old enough to agree/disagree with their photos being posted.  Some feel that there is a risk of predators accessing and misusing the images.  Some have even suggested that in the future, other kids could use the images in cyber-bullying – particularly if they are embarrassing photos.  I found this article and this one to be interesting reads on the topic.

    I have to say I’m still undecided.  It’s cumbersome, referring to the kids as the Little Miss and the Little Mister.  And sometimes, I really want to share photos with you!  Like here.  Perhaps I’ll share the occasional photo and think on how to refer to them without too much identifying information.

    What do you do? What do you think?  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this!

  • Five Months Old
    Family,  Parenting

    Cot to Big Girl Bed.

    Ahhhhhhh, the transition from the lovely secure cot (ie can’t get out until mum or dad let you out) to normal sized kids bed. Sure, I knew it would be tricky, but I also knew I didn’t want to move the Little Miss into a big bed until she was ready. You know, climbing out of her cot, happy to sleep on a bed at nanny’s, that kind of thing.  Then we had the Little Mister.  That was all good, all planned.  But – the Little Mister is bigger than the Little Miss was at his age. 

    Five Months Old
    The Little Ones at five months.

    In fact, he is our gorgeous little Buddha really. And that means he is not going to fit in the bassinet much longer (between you and me, he could probably be in a cot already).  Sob!  So that means it’s Big Bed time for the Little Miss.  I made a conscious effort to make her part of the process – she came with me and selected the sheets and doona cover, and she ‘helped’ her dad put the bed together.  She loves helping him construct things. 

    However, bizarrely, she is not cooperating with the transition.  I know right?  A two year old with her own mind.  Who would have thought.  I recently asked over on Facebook if anyone had any good ideas or suggestions for this transition.  So the suggestions confirmed what I had thought we would need to do.  Lead her back to bed when she gets out, keep things calm, tell her it’s her bed now.  And that this could go on for a week or so.

    Helping put big bed together

    But, best laid plans and all that.  The Little Mister chose this time to revert back to wanting two hourly feeds over night (no way Mister!) and I was not getting any quality sleep.  Trying to stay calm and encourage a two year old Little Miss back to bed for over an hour at a time was not something we were coping with on so little sleep and she just did not seem to be ‘getting’ it.

    So I’ve pulled the plug on the big bed for the time being and am working on getting the Little Mister to drop some feeds – luckily he has at least gotten over this two hourly thing!  If things become dire and we need to move the Little Mister out of the bassinet, my mum has a cot at her house we can borrow.  Luckily.

    I think the Little Miss is just not ready for the bed yet.  And you know what?  That’s fine.  She is only two and frankly, I’m not sure I’m ready for her to be in a big bed yet either.

     cot to big girl bed

  • Blogging,  Parenting

    Baby Blogger

    baby bloggerI’m writing this post with a four month old sitting on my lap.  Literally.  It’s a slow process.  I had been working on a different post about cloth nappies, but between the Little Mister deciding that sleep is not cool, and the two year old Little Miss deciding the same, focusing on that was a little hard.  All I could think about was the question ‘how do I find time to (insert any activity here!!) with two little ones?’  I’m sure it’s a question all parents are inevitably smacked over the head with.

    I have no answers at this point!  But I am making an effort to be organised, and to try and work out how to set some time aside for me.  It’s not easy – there is always ‘something’ that needs to be done.  And a baby to be cuddled.  The baby cuddling must always come first though.

    So here is a question for you – how do you find time for you, for the things you want (or need!) to get done with little ones around?  I’d love any tips or ideas!!

  • Parenting

    Guess Who’s Making a Delivery?

    That’s right, this guy will be visiting at the end of the year:

    Vintage Stork via  The Graphics Fairy

    We are very excited here, although our Little Miss, who is 14 months old, is quite oblivious to the fuss! We are also very thankful that this has happened when we wanted it to, knowing so many people who have had to travel a hard road with their pregnancies.

    So I’m about 15 weeks along, and finally starting to feel more like me again! With my first pregnancy, nausea was nearly non-existent. Not this time. I had quite a few weeks of it, but thankfully it’s gone now and my energy is coming back. Thank goodness! I was getting sick of feeling tired and feeling guilty that I wasn’t paying enough attention to my little one. Luckily, she LOVES books at the moment so we have been reading a lot (over and over!). She has also found her legs, and seems to love toddling around and getting into what ever she can.

     
    The new bub and our Little Miss will be about 20 months apart in age. There are so many different ideas out there about ‘the best’ age gap to have between babies. But in reality, you have to go with what suits your family. There are pros and cons in waiting or going ahead earlier I think. A con for us – two in nappies!!

    copyright 2012 Tully & Mishka
    I’d be interested in hearing about your experiences in your second (or subsequent!) pregnancies and how any hot tips for entertaining small toddlers along the way!
  • Family,  Parenting,  Sustainable Living

    Change

    Change is coming to our house and we are excited!  My husband finishes up at his current employment today and after the Easter weekend, will be going back to work with a previous employer and good friend.  The best bit about this?  He gets to work a couple of days a week at home!  Yay!!

    Photo by Flickr user mae.noelle
    I really think this is going to be fantastic opportunity for our little family.  He will get to spend a lot more time with our Little Miss – in the mornings, evenings and at lunch time.  It is a shift toward the lifestyle that we would love to build for our family.  Obviously working from home will require discipline from both of us – he will need to do his work and I will need to let him!
    Photo by Flickr user The Field Museum Library
    And let’s hope a change is as good as a holiday, because we won’t be able to do that for a while, with him starting the new job next Tuesday!
  • Blogging,  Family,  Parenting,  Sustainable Living

    What a year.

    Right – what an amazing year it’s been for us.  But clearly, blogging has not been high on the priority list!  I intend for that change from now on!

    Brief run down of the year and my broad plan for this blog:

    We moved to the beautiful, green outer eastern suburbs and are loving it – I intend to share pictures and posts of how we are slowly changing our new house to become our new home.

    I gave birth to our amazing, beautiful and gorgeous little girl.  Awe inspiring.  Hard.  Scary. Wonderful.  I plan to blog about many parenting inspired things – birthing, changes to relationships, to self, the fun, the hard, the good, the unexpected.

    Frugal or budget smart living – I’m not great at this, but I plan to throw myself in to it this year – the overall goal for us being that I don’t go back to work for as long as we can manage!  This has already begun with us having a detailed budget, growing and preserving food, looking at making our own foods like yoghurt and breads and considering getting some chooks!  We are keen to live as sustainably and ethically as possible, but know this will entail changing how we currently live.  We’ll see how it goes…….

    I am also learning to sew – inspired by my mother, a close friend and many blogs I am really quite keen on developing this skill.  I would love to eventually earn some money from sewing but we’ll see.

    My other goal is to develop my blogging skills – to both challenge myself and for the sake of anyone who stumbles across this blog!!!

    I am going to aim for two posts a week as a minimum.  Let’s see how it goes!!