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I thought I’d pop back onto your screens with a few (last minutes) ideas for Mother’s Day this year. Given that schools are not running as normal, the good old stall will not be happening. Kids are not going to be bringing home the lovely hand made crafts and cards and little gifts that they normally would. And popping to the shop for a last minute gift is also mostly out of the question – unless the supermarket stocks what you have in mind! So here is a round up of some ideas and links to some lovely online stores that conveniently have email gift vouchers available, so you don’t even have to worry about the post arriving on time!
I love Biome – they have an amazing range of zero waste and toxin free products all selected with a strong ethical structure. They post waste free and offer gift vouchers via email. Check out this lovely selection for some ideas.
Etsy is perfect for shopping small and local. You can drill down to the local area you wish to purchase from or select world wide, and find an amazing array of hand made or vintage beauties. And you will usually be supporting small business, often run from the person’s own home.
A Harte voucher would be a fabulous gift to receive for Mother’s Day! Or any other day! A local Melbourne based business, that stocks gorgeous pieces sourced with mums in mind. Well priced, stylish and comfortable I love this shop!
Another lovely shop, started by a mum to meet the needs of her family, Hello Charlie stocks some gorgeous, eco friendly products that are great for mums, homes and kids. And of course, the gift voucher via email is just perfect for this week!!
You could also think about purchasing local – does the lovely woman you are buying for have a favourite cafe, or food store? Another shop she loves? Buying a voucher not only is a win for her, but for the small businesses that are finding it tough at the moment. Even more so in the fire affected areas of Australia. Think small and local and you can’t go wrong. And even small and online. Doesn’t even have to be local to you, in this age! Print off an email voucher, put it with a homemade card and voila! A lovely gift.
I hope these ideas have helped! Do you have an online or bricks and mortar business offering gift vouchers? Let me know in the comments, or via email, so we can share your details!
Well, hasn’t 2020 turned out to be fun? In light of the massive amounts of thoughts constantly racing around my head at the moment, I’ve found myself back on the blog again. Shocking, I know. With the corona virus pandemic playing havoc with the world, we here in Victoria, Australia have found ourselves practicing physical distancing. Well, some of us have. Some are a little slow on the uptake. But given we are now a family of five, finding ourselves all stuck at home for the foreseeable future, I have decided the blog will be a way to keep myself mentally healthy. Hopefully!
I’ve had loads of ideas, and really want to try and reach out and support anyone who may need it, and get support in return! These are difficult, uncharted times, and we will all need some kind of support over the coming months. Whether that be new ideas for the kids, support for you as parents/adults or just some good old fashioned validation that you are doing alright, I hope to provide it here.
I’ve also created a facebook group that you can join, where we can all share tips and support. I know there are loads of different facebook groups that have been created for all different reasons in this new corona age, however I would love to share support and ideas that we have either tried ourselves or plan to try. And even a space to share local or online businesses that are either new or struggling with the physical distancing measures in place now. I know there will be a lot of business that will have already or will be trying to make the move to an online platform, and would love to spotlight them if we can.
Now keep in mind that I’m at home with two school age kids who “go back” to school via remote learning on Wednesday, an almost three year old and husband who is frantically working from home, so I am not sure at this point just how regular my posts will be. I’m hoping that once we get into the school term and work out our routine, it will be clearer then.
In the mean time, please feel free to sign up to the email list, join the FB group or link up on instagram, and let me know how are you all going? I would love to know what your would find useful, are you working, not working? Are your kids home from school?
Stay safe and stay home (if you can!).
So it seems that sometimes, the universe sends you things you need. Little things, big things, important, not so important. Recently, the universe sent a little, but very useful thing to me by way of a chance to review AND giveaway some new “On-The-Go” Travel products by Dreambaby®. Now, this has been very useful for me because since we got our current car, I have not had a big enough sun shade for the back windows, and the new range includes The Dreambaby® Adjusta-Car Shade® Stretch-It, Shape-It, Fit-It™ and the Dreambaby® Insta-Cling™ Car Shades. Sweet! And just in time, I received the products to review just before we took off for our little Cup Weekend getaway. Road trip sun shades sorted!
Did you go away for the Cup Weekend? We go away every year with a group of four other families – chaos and madness! But super fun. We all pack up and travel off to a Big 4 somewhere in Victoria and hang out for five days. This was our fifth year, and the tradition is going strong. Such a fun way to catch up with friends that we don’t get to see as often as we’d like. Lots of jumping pillows, swimming, usually rain and wine. Lots of wine!
Now to the products. Firstly, the Dreambaby® Adjusta-Car Shade® Stretch-It, Shape-It, Fit-It™. This is perfect for our car – we have a bigger, suv type, and this just stretches right to all the corners. Which is great for Ms 4, because she is at that stage where she is VERY particular about things. Like the sun touching her at all when she is in the car! It was easy to use, it sticks right on with big suction cups that don’t pop off easily, ie when little hands are trying! (RRP $19.95 two pack).
The second one we got to try, was the Dreambaby® Insta-Cling™ Car Shades. The static cling shade just attaches to the window, you just smooth it on and there you go! There is no need for suction cups, and it doesn’t affect any tinting surface that may be on the window already. Really easy to use, and it’s stayed on for a couple of weeks now. Hasn’t fallen off and it’s great for Mr 2 – he can’t reach the window, so he can’t pull anything off!! These have UPF 50+ sun protection, the mesh screen can help to reduce glare on sunny days and they simply fold away into a compact, easy-to-store, re-usable bag. (RRP $11.95).
Are you starting to think about the Christmas and Summer holidays? Any road trips coming up? Then get your fingers clicking and enter toot sweet! These have just been fabulous for us, and the kids have been much happier in the car, without the sun annoying them. To enter, check out the options on the little app below – please consider sharing with your social media pals as well – it’s good karma!
Last week, our little family, The Mister, Ms 4 , Mr 2 and myself, participated in the 2015 Walk For Prems. It was a great day, and we all had fun! Although it was quite windy for much of the day, it didn’t seem to put anyone off and there was a great crowd gathered around Albert Park Lake in Melbourne. The Walk For Prems is a regular Walk, that raises funds for the Life’s Little Treasures Foundation. Life’s Little Treasures Foundation is Australia’s leading charity dedicated to the families of babies born sick or prior to 37 weeks gestation. This year, the aim is to raise $250,000 and the walk was held in six cities around Australia simultaneously. The major sponsor for the race, was Medela. Medela understands the importance of human milk in the NICU and know that the content of human milk makes a considerable contribution to the best possible development of premature babies. According to Medela CEO, Jarrod Percy, the organisation is looking forward to helping the foundation in the very valuable work it does to support the families of premature and sick babies.
We have been blessed with healthy, full term pregnancies with both our children, and feel incredibly grateful for this. When I was presented with the opportunity to participate in the walk with Team Medela, to raise awareness and funds, I discussed it with The Mister and we both agreed it would be a great way to support those that have not been as lucky as we have.
You see, this cause is also important to us, as we have friends who have experienced the roller coaster ride that comes with the premature birth of your baby. Their little man Thomas was born at 27 weeks. What followed was three months in the Royal Children’s Hospital with surgeries, IV tubes, humidicribs and more. The family received support from Life’s Little Treasures, and others throughout this bewildering and scary time. Eventually, they were able to take their wee little man home, where he received lots of early intervention in the form of physiotherapists and occupational therapists from the Royal Children’s Hospital. Thomas is now in primary school, and continues to work on his motor skills and is also learning keyboard, riding his bike and participating in running try outs. He is an amazing little man, who in the words of his mum “is a very caring boy who loves learning about the world he lives in and it has been possible because of the Royal Children’s Hospital including all the staff and availability of equipment”.
It’s amazing what babies and families can do when they have the right supports in place. The Life’s Little Treasures Foundation want to ensure that no family endures the traumatic and life changing experience of having a premature of sick baby without easy access to critical information and community support to help them through their journey. The Walk For Prems event continues to raise money, and in the last three years has raised half a million dollars. The actual Walk was great – there was such a fun atmosphere, with families walking with their babies and kids and even their dogs! There were prams and toddlers and lots and lots of teams walking for the little one in their life who made their way into the world too early. At the end of the walk, the kids enjoyed music and food and all sorts of fun activities. It was a great day!
If you would like to find out more about the work that Life’s Little Treasures do to support prem babies and their families, click here. And if you feel like you would like to donate some money, and help the Foundation reach their goal of $250,000 you can do so here.
Have your kids participated in a fundraising walk/run? How did they go? I would love to know!
We’ve hit the second week of the school holidays in Victoria and it got me wondering; are you looking (frantically) for things to do with the kids? Have you run out of ideas, or did you not realise just how awesome the weather was going to be here this week? Well never fear, I’ve got your back with a list of of last minute school holiday activities that cover the gamut of free to not so free, DIY to out and about.
With the Grand Final happening this Saturday, the AFL are putting on a Footy Festival, starting Wednesday and going through to Saturday. It’s free entry and there is a heap of things to do there. The kids zone includes Aus Kick activities, kicking competitions, free face painting (winner!) and a whole lot more. There is also a section where parents can get free coffee, snacks and mini massages whilst the kids are participating in some Auskick. Sweet! Check out the site – the trams are free from Wednesday through to Saturday and service the area of the Footy Festival, which is Yarra Park, right next to the mighty MCG.
The Gallery has a range of activities and exhibitions on for the school holidays for under 4’s to teenagers. Some activities/exhibitions are free, some have entry and booking requirements. I am planning on taking the kids to the Open House Tromarama For Kids exhibition. It’s free and located at the NGV International. It’s interactive, and is set up like a real house, allowing kids to move from room to room, experimenting with stop-motion apps and making films. It looks cool! I know a few kids who would just love it.
Have you been here yet? Have you?! If you don’t mind a bit of chocolate, you should probably check it out. The chocolaterie is well set up for kids, with space to run the sugar high off outside, and kid friendly menus (of course) and activities. It’s in a beautiful spot in the Yarra Valley, an hour from Melbourne. There is no entry fee, and free tastings, but the fun comes in the cafe and the store, where all sorts of chocolatey goodies can be purchased. Currently, they are hosting Hop For Hope, an outdoor exhibition raising funds for the wonderful Alannah and Madeline Foundation. Check out their website for more information, including classes, menus and activities.
I’ve perused Pinterest for you (no need to thank me, I’ll take one for the team), and found a couple of cool things that we will be trying over the next week. Check out this easy volcano eruption you can do in the back yard, and will have the younger kids entertained, no doubt for hours.
Another fun activity, for the backyard or around the neighbourhood park is this scavenger hunt for kids. The post includes free printables! Awesome. And timely, given Ms 4 burst in this afternoon after talking to the kids over the back fence asking for a treasure hunt.
So what do you think? Will you try any of these or are you all sorted for activities? If you have some ideas, share them here, or over on facebook for everyone to enjoy 🙂
We’re well and truly into the pointy end of the footy season here in Melbourne. Yep, September not only brings spring, but footy finals too. We are definitely an AFL family, listening to most matches across the weekend and usually watching at least the Friday night match on the television, no matter who is playing. And we’ve been club members since Ms 4 was about 1 1/2. Which brings me to the question: Which club? Who do your kids barrack for? As in, if you and your partner support different teams, whether it be AFL, rugby, netball, soccer or basketball, who do your kids support?
Have you left it a clean slate, ready for them to choose when old enough? Or have you and your partner chosen for them? I’ve ‘surveyed’ a few friends to get a bit of an idea about this very important issue! We’ve done the old, one for me one for you. The Mister got to choose for the first born, because he seemed to care more, and second born was for me. Because, we do not support the same teams. Nope, The Mister is a Hawthorn man and I am North Melbourne. When Mr 2 is old enough to work it out, he may have some resentment toward me……… 😉
So of the 5 or 6 families I asked, I really got a mix of responses. One couple had a similar response as ours, although they aren’t too interested in the footy anymore. Another told me that they were going to let their offspring choose for themselves, and had provided scarves in both teams in order to provide a balanced approach. Although they had quickly removed the Essendon scarf placed in the cot by one grandmother, as and I quote “I ain’t having that shit go on in my house” (Love it!)
Another friend, and they don’t have kids at this point, advised that he isn’t a fan of the “one for mum and one for dad” approach and will respect any offspring’s decision, as long as it’s not to support Collingwood, or Hawthorn. Another decided to start supporting his wife’s team. He says because he just liked the song (he swapped to the Tigers, so fair enough. I hasten to add this occurred some time before the Tige’s current good form!)
And one friend told me how they had one for each, but complications had occurred after they had separated and since re-partnered. The nature of the new relationships has meant that which ever parent the kids are with, one child is not barracking for the team that everyone else is. It can be a passionate, emotion filled experience, following a sporting team, that’s for sure.
There are not many games left now, in this year’s AFL season, another round of finals next week and then the big one. Which has, for the first time, bought a public holiday to the people of Victoria as well, thank you very much! No matter who is in, we will be watching the big game and enjoying the atmosphere it brings to Melbourne – please, please, let there at least be one Victorian side in!!! And there is a remote, vague chance that things could be tense here on the day – at this point, both Hawthorn and North Melbourne could still make it to the big game.
So now tell me – has the choosing of sporting teams been tricky for you? Let me know!
This week, we’ve had to hunker down. The Mister has had to go overseas again this week for work, and the only way I can describe my coping process is: hunker down. Especially this week in Melbourne – until Thursday, it’s been cold and wet and grey. So we’ve been coping by watching movies with popcorn, some crazy dancing, baking and eating not so great food. Because at this point, when it’s me and the kids 24/7, and they don’t eat food at the best of times, it’s whatever’s easy. You want pasta with cheese? You got it. Seriously, I don’t know how my kids are growing and developing intelligence. I swear Mr 2 only eats white foods – oats, milk, pasta, cheese, bananas……
Thursday bought sunshine, and temperatures above 12 degrees. Yes! They’ve been in the backyard, and Ms 4 could play outside at kinder. So some of the crazy can be run out of their systems, and maybe tonight they will go to bed with less resistance – ha! Cheeky things know how to push it when there is only one person here!
You may remember from this post, that my little ones luuuuurve to sneak into our bed at night. They’ve been better, but when it’s only me, I don’t have the energy to fight it once I’m asleep. So this week has seen lot’s of snuggles in the morning, and lots of edge of bed sleeping for me. For they surely cannot use the WHOLE EMPTY HALF of the bed that is free with The Mister away!!!! No, they must sleep attached to me at all times.
Thankfully, he’ll be back on the weekend, and there are no more overseas trips planned for the year. How do you go when you’re normal parenting routine is thrown out of whack? Do you bunker down, or carry on as normal? Any tips, throw ’em at me!
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