Have you heard of the delightful new book, ‘Too Busy Sleeping’? Recently, I had an opportunity to put my hand up to review this lovely, lovely little children’s book, through the Parent Talk Australia collective. I was very excited when the author, Zanni Louise, contacted me to say she would be happy for me to review her first book.
It’s just gorgeous! It is a little story about a new baby coming home – how will Eleanor, now a big sister, react? It is delightfully illustrated by Anna Pignataro, with a kind of vintage, crafty feel to the drawings. Ms 4 tells me every time we read it, that she thinks the first and last page looks like stickers and buttons, and she tries to take them off.
Both my kids love this book. Little Mr 2 just loves babies at the moment, and on every page points to Reuben and exclaims “bebe!” It’s a positive story, that looks at the arrival of a new sibling through the eyes of a little one eager to play and eager to love.
It’s a lovely book whether you are preparing your kids for the arrival of new baby or not. A little story about excitement, learning patience and love.
I love Too Busy Sleeping because it is positive and joyful, and shows that older kids, even preschoolers, can look forward to the homecoming of a new baby. Even if they’re not quite happy with the sleeping needs of said newborn!
If you would like to get your hands on a copy of the gorgeous Too Busy Sleeping, you can here*.
What books do your kids love to read? Is it the same one, over and over, or a new one every night? Let me know in the comments, I love to hear from you!
Linking up with Mamma Raj Says for #ReviewRoundUp!
*This is an affiliate link. If you click here and purchase, I will receive a percentage of the sale. This won’t affect the price you pay.
How’s your house smelling lately? It’s the end of winter, the kids have been cooped up for the last few months and you’ve got a dog, a cat and you use cloth nappies. Oh, wait, is that just us?! Thankfully, it’s spring now in Melbourne, and the sun is starting to hang around a bit more and the kids are able to get on outside. And the nappies and the washing can actually go outside on the line – woo!!! Because let me tell you, sometimes I come back to the house after being out somewhere and I think – does the house really smell like that?! Now, I’ve got a pretty sensitive nose to scent, good and bad. But man, sometimes I really hope noone drops in unannounced. That pervasive smell of damp clothes drying over the heat vent (constantly!), a nappy bucket, that is emptied regularly but still, and litter tray sometimes just becomes a little too noticeable.
So when I was offered the chance to review and giveaway some new home fragrance products from Airwick, my first thought was, how did she know and secondly, yes, dear lord yes! And there is a giveaway for you my lovely readers! Sweet.
The little package of goodies that I got to review and you will have a chance to win includes products from Airwick’s new Life Scents Collection – scented candle, plugins and room spray. Now, we don’t often use plug in air fresheners, and at first I thought it was going to be too strong, and maybe irritate the Mister’s hay fever. However, I’ve had it going in the laundry, on the low setting and it’s lovely. And now, when I’ve been out of the house, when I return the smell is much nicer! We’ve liked the Winter Moments scent, and I really like the Mystical Garden room spray. It’s quite lovely. Click through the link to read a little more about this new collection, and the different scents they have. There’ll be one you like for sure!
So, to enter the giveaway, I want to hear from you! Fill in the options below, and comment on this blog post: What is your favourite scent and why? It could be anything – food, perfume, flowers etc. Good luck with the giveaway, and please remember – sharing is caring! Let your friends know too.
Bought to you by Nuffnang and Disney Junior.
I don’t know about you, but Disney stories are very popular in our household. The modern and the classics. We have quite a collection of Disney DVD’s, most bought post children, but not all J. Toy Story, Cars, Tangled, Aladdin and of course Frozen have all been watched over and over here, and still retain their magic for the kids and for us too.
However, I have to admit that until quite recently I did not know about Disney Junior The Channel. Now, we don’t have pay tv (where it is found on Foxtel, channel 709) but for those like us, it’s also available online here. And this week, Book Week, they are launching the new season of ‘The Book of Once Upon a Time’, a beautiful, locally produced storytelling series hosted by Kate Mulvany, a fabulous Australian actor and playwright. And it’s brilliant to hear and watch an Australian accent! Kate’s storytelling is fabulous. They kicked the new series off on Monday 24th August at 7:10pm with “Snow White and the Great Jewel Hunt” and they’re going to follow up with new stories from “Winnie the Pooh”, “Aladdin”, “Sleeping Beauty” and, wait for it, “Frozen”. Yes that’s right, there will be more Frozen for the kids to shout wildly about.
Last night, we watched “Snow White and the Great Jewel Hunt”. Our normal bedtime ritual is reading a story all together in Ms 4’s room, before Mr 2 goes off to bed. Last night we all watched the story together on the couch and it was lovely to see how the kids reacted to it. The story was approximately 6 minutes, perfect for toddlers and preschoolers, who can’t always sit and concentrate for too long, especially in the evening when they’re tired. It was a lovely little magical moment to watch the kids faces as the story was told. The format is a little nod to the tradition of classic story telling – Kate Mulvany sits in a comfy chair, turning the pages of a lovely big book, not only using character voices but also jumping up and re-enacting different scenes. And there are moments of animation that add to the magical quality. I was thrown back to my childhood, watching the seven dwarves and the classic Disney animated characters. And I could see Ms 4, her face alight, loving the story telling as well.
At the end of each episode, the “Land of Once Upon a Time” lullaby is sung, and it was great! The kids were about to launch into requests for another episode when the lullaby started. It encourages kids to prepare for bed and snuggle down. It was brilliant! It supported me in pointing out that it was the end and time for bed – thank you!
I know some parents are unsure about screen time and how to balance it in their kids’ lives. I know we do, and it’s always something to monitor. I quite like these little episodes because they are short, we sit with the kids and it’s storytelling, something we are very passionate about encouraging as parents. Disney Junior know that parent’s want to encourage imagination in their children and that they also want educational content to include things like: Social skills, moral values , good basic habits and creative thinking. And so, they combine the story telling with the following learning components: Early language and maths skills, encouraging healthy lifestyles and emphasising social and emotional development.
We had lovely time last night, and we will definitely be watching more episodes. If you want to watch online just click here to go through to the Disney Story Room. Or if you have Foxtel, you can tune in at 7:10pm every day on the Disney Junior The Channel. The stories are available as eBooks from the Disney Store Central app, available to download from iTunes.
How about you? Are you surrounded by a small army of Disney fans who will love this? Let me know what you think!
This product talk is bought to you by Nuffnang and Crayola.
In this house, when the kids choose colouring as their activity of the moment, I think two things. What are they using to colour and what are they colouring on?? Because, you know, we are inundated with colouring books, and pencils, but somehow drawing on other things and with pens, textas or even crayon is a much more permanent way to display their artistic endeavor. I present you exhibit A:
Yes, the other day, Mr 2 was having a great time colouring the chalk board. He was very enthusiastic and when he called me over to see “look, Mum! Look!” I realised he was colouring with crayons. Not chalk. Sigh. So when Nuffnang offered me the opportunity to try the Crayola Color Wonder range, I was all for it. After all, it was offered as a “mess free” activity. Mess free? Hells yeah. Because frankly, this house doesn’t need more mess, for reasons best described by the forthright and awesome Janelle at Renegade Mothering.
And joyously, the review included TWO packs! Frozen and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (high school flash back anyone?). Both kids sorted. Basically, each pack comes with five textas and once colouring book. The textas are clear, and it’s not until you (or your child, whoever gets the texta first) draws on the Color Wonder paper that the colour starts to appear. When you’re a 2 year old kid, that’s hands down amazing. I give you exhibit B:
Yes, that’s one excited little man! And really, this stuff is cool. It’s non toxic, there are hidden patterns in the pictures, and I have not found texta colour anywhere else, not their clothes, their hands or the walls. Well, not from these textas anyway! Seriously, I just got interrupted by Ms 4 telling me Mr 2 was drawing on the wall. Gah! At least that was with chalk……
What activities do your kids love doing indoors? Is it mess free, or full of fun and educative messiness??? Let me know! And let me know if your kids love the Color Wonder range too 🙂
I’m linking up with Mama Raj Says’ Review Round Up!
And here’s a bonus video of Mr 2 and his speed colouring.
*I received an ASG Little Learner Pack in order to complete this review. All opinions expressed are my own.*
Have your little one’s started school or kinder this week? How are you feeling – anxious, proud, relieved?! Our Ms 3 starts three year old kinder this week, and BOY is she excited. For the past five days she has appeared next to my bed in the mornings declaring it is kinder day, and wanting me to get up. She’s very gorgeous 😉
This will be our first year parenting in the world formal education. So I thought, why not start a series about it. With tips, hints, resources, product reviews etc that might just be helpful to other parents out there, new or otherwise. I think I’ll call it The Kinder Files.
To kick the series off, I’ve got a review of ASG’s Little Learner Pack. When I was offered the opportunity to do this review, it was perfect timing, having just started planning this little series. So let’s start with the nuts and bolts. The Little Learner Pack comes to you from ASG. ASG is focused on supporting children’s education – it’s all they do. They’re typically known for their educational funds, however this pack is an example of the educational resources they provide.
The pack contains the following:
- The Cat in the Hat DVD
- five hardcover children’s books from highly regarded education consultant, Michael E Bernard, featuring stories on how to get along, confidence, resilience, being organised and persistence
- a membership to MY ASG, an ever-expanding source of articles and resources from parenting experts
- discounted access to Parentingideas Club, an online parenting centre founded by Michael Grose – one of Australia’s leading parenting experts
- discounts on CDs and DVDs distributed by Marcom Projects, ASG’s multimedia educational products division
- discounted health insurance with MediGUARD Health Cover, provided by Australian Unity
The pack is targeted to pre-school kids, up to about six years of age, and contains $180 worth of products. I’m really impressed with this pack. Of course, MS 3 loves the DVD – Dr Seuss has been a hit in our household ever since we started reading to her, when she was just a wee bubba. I love that she loves Dr Seuss stories. They are such fun to read. But the books have also been a great hit with her. I thought they may have been a little ‘old’ for her – they’re stories about things like getting along, being organised and persistence, but she loves them. She loves the story about getting along, all about Sally learning that other people’s feelings matter, and she loves the one about Lucy and her dream to play the violin. Given that she is starting kinder, I really think these books will be a lovely way to talk with her about these subjects. The fact that she keeps suggesting them at bedtime is a pretty good indicator that they’re a-ok 🙂
Something that I think is going to be of great benefit is not only the MY ASG membership but the discount to the Parentingideas Club. MY ASG provides articles and resources aimed at supporting children’s education. The subjects covered span from toddler tantrums to teaching children about social media and safety. The Parentingideas Club provides support, information and resources covering age appropriate parenting strategies. I think I’ll be signing up for this ASAP! I’m finding this current stage of development with Ms 3 to be “challenging”, and the Parentingideas Club covers parenting styles, birth order of children, sibling matters and a whole lot more. It looks to be a fabulous resource, for parents with children of all ages.
If you think any of this sounds like it could be of use to you and your family, head on over to the ASG site here, where you can purchase ASG’s Little Learner Pack. It costs $49.95 and has over $180 worth of material and resources.
As an added bonus, check out the competition ASG are running – you could win a share of $15,000 to put towards your child’s education. Enter here.
If you decide to purchase ASG’s Little Learner Pack, or are already a MY ASG member, let me know! I’d love to know what you think. And I can’t wait to develop this little series further – let me know if you have any topics you think would be useful and I’ll see what I can do 🙂
ASG website: http://www.asg.com.au
Linking up with Mamma Raj Says #reviewroundup
* This is a sponsored post. I received a product to trial and review. All words, opinions etc are my own. *
Are you an organised mamma? Do you make it out the door without getting shouty and sweary and mightily flustered? I don’t. I am forever doing several laps of the house gathering children, nappies, clothes, wipes, children, bags, shoes, children – why don’t they just stay in the one spot when I am trying to get out the door??!!
I am certainly not a mum that upon returning to the house, refills the nappy bag with all the essentials. I use a different bag quite often. Sometimes my handbag, sometimes an actual nappy bag. Sometimes a tote. Just depends on where we’re going, for how long and if I have one or two kids with me. So I can often be found dumping things out of one bag and into another. Adding to the frustration.
But then, I came across the opportunity to review this fabulous item! The BabyButton Mama Organiser. It has been really useful. I spend a lot less time racing about, because I’m able to keep a few nappies, wipes, a pair of knickers for Ms 3 and even a wet bag in it, and it just goes with me, which ever bag I use. It fits disposable or cloth, which is great, because I mainly use cloth. And because I can pop it in the handbag, I usually pull it out when we get home, and that makes me check what is left in there and fill it back up (well, usually).
It has a handy loop to hold on to, and even has pockets that could fit some cards, pens, a phone etc. The external fabric is easy to wipe clean and I think the whole thing could be easily put in the wash on a gentle cycle (I haven’t tried that yet though!). And it’s only $24.95.
This great little product is by BabyButton – a Melbourne based company started by Janelle, a mum who decided to do something about all those things that as mums, we can feel unprepared for – breastfeeding in public anyone? Disorganised nappy bags?! She has a great range of things, including breastfeeding covers, nappy wallets, bibs and blankets. And if you think the Mama Organiser sounds like something you could use, I’ve got some good news for you! The good people at BabyButton are letting me give away one Mama Organiser to a lucky reader! Yay! Just fill in the rafflecopter form below. And if you can’t wait, or want to purchase some of the other lovely products, I also have a special 20% off code, just for my readers! Just enter tmgiveaway at the checkout to receive 20% off your entire purchase. How great is that?!
So tell me, how do you keep organised? How do you get out the door without losing it?
Linking up with Mama Raj Says #reviewroundup!
What’s your skin care regime? Do you have one? Is it comprehensive and regular or sporadic, like when you actually get to have a shower and the shampoo accidentally runs down your face? Hmmm, since having my second bub, I must say it has been more toward the latter. However recently, probably due to said second bub not having slept through a night for most of his 20 months, I’ve thought perhaps I could do with a bit more effort in the skin care department.
And I don’t mean all the “look 10 years younger”, “get rid of your wrinkles”, women shouldn’t age shit. I just mean, man my skin is red and/or itchy sometimes and often dry when it never used to be. I don’t want to look 10 years younger, but I wouldn’t mind looking my age, and not 10 years older 🙂
Then I came across an opportunity to trial and review the Ultra Rich Anti-aging Moisturiser from Rubifresh. Mmmmmm, it’s lovely. It smells like a spa moisturiser. Yep, awesome. And it feels just lovely – I use it at night, and I wake up with soft skin, that doesn’t feel red and itchy. Nice. It’s smooth and creamy and feels lovely. Frankly, it’s a little bit of luxury in the crazy toddler world I inhabit at the moment 🙂
Rubifresh also do skincare workshops – in your home, the office or as a fundraising event. Check out their page here. They have lots of other products as well. Another bonus, the Rubifresh products are 100% natural and organic, they use minimal packaging, as many recyclables as they can and are not tested on animals. They’re also Australian made. So it ticks a lot of boxes.
So tell me – what’s your skin care regime? Any tips for a mum who barely remembers what a straight run of good sleep feels like, and needs to care for their skin?! Leave your comments on this post!!!