Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Healthy Halloween movement with Philips Sonicare for Kids

source: pinterest

Halloween is quickly approaching and it is becoming more and more popular in Australia. Halloween was never a “thing” here when I was growing up but now it’s advertised whenever you enter a department store. Most parents want to embrace the Halloween fun, but feel guilty about allowing their children to indulge in lollies and chocolate. I have been a bit of a mean mum in the past and not let my little ones get involved; I just don’t like lollies and I don’t like my kids having endless access to them, they’ve never been part of their life. This year though, with our Princess P at school now and being surrounded by all the hype, I do feel al little guilty of her missing out on the fun of dressing up and just being involved.

So this year, I’ve partnered up with Philips Sonicare for Kids and pledging for a Healthy (but fun) Halloween movement and taking on halloween guilt free. I want to focus on the positive things that the day can bring like spending time together as a family. We all want to encourage our children to have a healthier Halloween by making healthy choices. Philips Sonicare is helping parents take the guilt out of the day with top tips and expert advice on how to have a healthier Halloween. Philips Sonicare is a parents’ partner in oral health and helps put kids on the right oral health path.

Here are my top 5 tips for a healthy Halloween: 

1. Focus on dressing up, costumes, socialising and having fun with music and crafts!
2. Don’t go around the whole neighbourhood; we will just take our children to only a few houses for trick-or-treating, then move onto the fun above in point 1.
3. Steer the focus away from greedily collecting lollies to handing out some of your home made healthy treat they swap the rest for a toy. I know that changes it to another “thing” but as a health conscious parent I’m more than happy to trade for something else they might like. I’ve also know others that have bought the sweets back off the child, swapping the treats for some coins for them to save. It’s all up to you where you want to take that… others might just keep it to spread it out for the child to have a small piece every now and then. You get the idea.
4. Bribe them; haha yes I said it. Get your children to eat a big healthy meal before they are aloud out trick or treating or even before they eat each treat, they must eat a veggie, that sounds pretty good to me! haha.
5. Help your kids ease into a proper oral health routine with the Philips Sonicare Kids toothbrush; this amazing electric toothbrush is a winner with my kids. It’s great to slowly increase the brushing time over 90 days until reaching the ‘dentist-recommended’ 2 minutes to help instil healthy habits naturally. Philips' has a fantastic cash back offer, you can received $30 cash back on your Sonicare for Kids purchases at the moment. Go here to find out more.

Halloween is a fun, family day. Don’t miss out on the excitement due to guilt - enjoy a healthier Halloween with Philips Sonicare for Kids!

What are your tips for a healthy halloween??? Be sure to join in the fun by sharing your pics on social media with hashtags #PhilipsSonicareForKids #PhilipsHealthyHalloween

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

3 Healthy Snack Recipes from Swisse nutritionist Sherree Banh

Carrot Sticks with Hummus Dip
Carrots are the ultimate triple threat – boosting immunity, promoting digestion and preventing constipation. If kept in an air-tight container in the fridge, carrot sticks will stay fresh for up to a week. Serve the vitamin A-rich root vegetable with a homemade hummus for a lunchbox or after school snack.

400g no-salt-added chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 garlic cloves, crushed
½ cup water
¼ cup tahini
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
Carrot sticks to serve
Place chickpeas and garlic in a food processor. Pulse five times or until chopped. Add water and the remaining ingredients. Pulse until well blended. Serve with carrot sticks.

 Sweet Potato Chippies
Trade in regular potato chips with the sweet potato variety. These root vegetables are a great source of beta-carotene which is essential for maintaining eye health and vision. Go on, swap it like it’s hot.

2 large sweet potatoes
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil

Wash and cut sweet potatoes into thin slices, drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat. Bake for 35-40 minutes until crisp and golden. Leave to sit for a couple of minutes then serve.

Banana and peanut butter ‘ice-cream’
As nature’s version of the perfect packaged snack, bananas provide an energy hit and source of folic acid, vitamin B6 and potassium, which are essential for growing kids. Combine this with the proteins and heart-healthy nutrients in peanuts like niacin and magnesium, and you’re onto a winning duo.

3 ripe bananas
2 tbs peanut butter
Roasted peanuts for topping

Peel and slice bananas. Arrange banana slices in a single layer on a large plate or baking sheet and freeze overnight. Blend the frozen banana and some peanut butter until smooth. Top the dessert with crushed roasted peanuts then serve.

*All recipes by Swisse nutritionist Sherree Banh

Monday, 29 August 2016

GIFT GUIDE: The Ultimate gifts for Dad this Father's day!

These are the gifts that Dad will be absolutely stoked with! 

1. Under Armour Charged Compression Gear

Under Armour have just launched Charged Compression, the first compression garment that is scientifically proven to aid in recovery. UA conducted 2 independent studies in the last 2 years and found that the gear offers 34% less fatigue, 33% less soreness and 10% faster muscle repair. The active Dad will be super stoked with his new Under Armour.
Stockists: http://www.underarmour.com.au/en-au/mens/fits/compression/

2. Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 3 $349. 95
Onyx Studio 3 Harman Kardon pairs exquisite design and unparalleled sound to launch the Onyx Studio 3, a wireless Bluetooth speaker that unites audio and ergonomics in perfect harmony. Fusing form and function, the Onyx Studio 3 delivers powerful audio with the quintessential Harman Kardon design audiophiles have come to love. The Bluetooth Wireless Speaker from Harman Kardon Onyx Studio is an ideal companion to all your Bluetooth devices. Onyx Studio’s Wireless Speaker delivers high-quality audio performance with deep bass and authentic sound. 
Dad will love the following features:
* Reliable Bluetooth connectivity allows a stable connection and music streaming with any smart Bluetooth-enabled device.
* With a battery time of up to 5 hours, the speaker gives you the convenience of taking your music with you from room-to-room or even out-and-about.
* The included rechargeable battery provides up to 5 hours of play time.
* The Onxy Studio Speaker follows the award-winning Harman/Kardon elegant design principles
Stockists: http://www.harveynorman.com.au/harman-kardon-onyx-studio-bluetooth-wireless-speaker.html

3. Hugo Boss – Boss Bottled Unlimited $122.20
Inspired by the BOSS man’s determination and drive for success, BOSS BOTTLED. UNLIMITED. is the energizing new scent from HUGO BOSS Fragrances. Available from 12th June 2016 this limited edition fragrance is inspired by the endurance required to succeed combined with the rush of adrenalin when a goal has been reached. Celebrating that exhilarating sense of energy that comes with achievement, BOSS BOTTLED. UNLIMITED. is an instant invigorating boost. Available for a limited time only, it’s the must-have scent during this exciting summer of sports.
Stockist: Myer & David Jones

4. VS for Men V Double $89.95
VS for men’s new V Double is a dual blade self-cut clipper that delivers bang up-to-date styling from short and even to the lastest in faded cuts. So easy to use – simply move the V Double backwards and forwards in a sweeping motion for a faster, more effortless self-cut. It’s the prefect Father’s Day gift! Yes, this extraordinary new clipper from VS for Men means Dad can style and cut his hair with confidence, expertise and ease. He can go short all over or allow for progressive length on top. The choice is his and so is the skill – with the V DOUBLE in hand.
 3-year warranty. www.vdouble.com.au Stockists: 1800 650 263

How to create an UNDERCUT with the V Double:

5. 3D Shiatsu & Vibration Massage Pillow with heat by HoMedics $99
The #1 brand in massage products relaxes and comforts tight muscles around the neck, back and shoulders. It features 3D Technology to deliver circular kneading plus in & out motion for a vibration massage that invigorates and melts away tension. Soothing heat for added comfort and convenient integrated controls for ease of use. Designed so you can relax and pamper yourself on demand, treat sore muscles, sports injuries and ease the stress of daily life. 
Stockist: http://www.myer.com.au/shop/mystore/homedics-sp100hau-shiatsu-massage-pillow

6. Lightweight Hug-a-Bub wrap $89.00
With the warmer months starting now, the Hug-a-Bub organic Lightweight wrap will make a perfect gift for new dads or dads-to-be!
Hug-a-Bub wrap carrier provides orthopedically correct positioning, supportively cradling baby from head to toe, and is recognised by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute as a Hip Healthy product.
Hug-a-Bub is easy and simple to tie with Hug-a-Bub’s step-by-step instructions. 
Stockist: www.hugabub.com

7. FITBIT SURGE: The ultimate fitness super watch. $399.95
The absolutely perfect gift for any Dad. With the following amazing features; every Dad will be totally wrapped:
- GPS Tracking
See distance, pace, split times and elevation climbed & review routes
- Long Battery Life
Lasts longer than competing trackers with a battery life up to 7 days and GPS battery life up to 10 hours*
- PurePulse™ Heart Rate
Get continuous, automatic, wrist-based heart rate & simplified heart rate zones
- Notifications + Music
See call & text notifications on display and control songs from your mobile playlist
- All-Day Activity
Track steps, distance, calories burned, floors climbed, active minutes, hourly activity & stationary time
- Auto Sleep + Alarms
Monitor your sleep automatically & set a silent alarm
- SmartTrack™ + Multi-Sport
Track runs, rides & other workouts with multi-sport modes or automatically record them with SmartTrack
- Wireless Syncing
Sync stats wirelessly & automatically to leading smartphones and computers
Stockist: https://www.fitbit.com/au/surge


1. Mister Minit Klean Kanteen Insulated Coffee Tumbler, 8oz.  $29.95
The 8oz Insulated Tumbler will be the mug Dad sip's his morning doppio or flat white from, and the cup you use when he's ready for an old fashioned or barrel-aged brew. The 18/8 stainless steel ensures that your beer or other tasty treat retains its own flavor and doesn't come away with any sort of metallic taste. The double-wall vacuum insulation keeps things hot or cold to the last drop. Comes with press-fit Simple Lid (NOT leak-proof).

2. JOCKEY Men’s Briefs (International Collection) $26.95 each
Jockey's International collection is a sophisticated range which is contemporary, premium and attractive. Designed from trends around the world our international collection will make you feel just that little bit more confident.
Jockey’s new spring summer range includes stylish and comfortable underwear that Dad will love.
Dad will love these styles because they are inspired by current international trends, made from soft, comfortable, flexible fabrics and they come in trunk and Loose fitting boxer shapes.
Stockist: http://jockeyaustralia.com.au

3. Chapter One 
Price: Pay what you want
100% of the profits funds the future of Thankyou. So far the book has sold over 64,000 copies and raised over $1.5 million.
Chapter One tells the raw and real start-up story of Thankyou. It's a story of three kids with zero business experience who had an idea to help end global poverty and a belief that we have the power to change stuff. This is the story of epic proportions by Thankyou co-founder Daniel Flynn about their gut wrenching decisions, wild mistakes and daring moves in business and marketing.
This book is anything and everything that the Thankyou team have learned. It's for the reader to inspire them on their journey.
Available online at www.thankyou.co/chapterone.

4. EVO – cassius styling clay $32.95
Help dad with his hair this Father’s Day with the cassius styling clay from EVO. The strong-holding clay that provides raw texture, malleable hold and a natural finish which is recommended for all hair types!
Stockist: www.evohair.com

5. Dr Roebuck’s - Pure $44.95
Dr Roebuck’s PURE is the original formulation created in 1978 by Dr Roebuck’s for precious and sensitive skin. Its unique dual action instantly replenishes hydration levels by sealing in moisture. Through a hygroscopic effect, Dr Roebuck’s not only hydrates, but increases the elasticity of your skin – perfect for men after shaving!

Stockist: www.drroebucks.com.au

6. Tontine I’m High & Mighty Pillow $29.95
Perfect for those with a larger frame, or simply who prefer a fuller pillow, this pillow has a firm and high profile and a natural cotton cover for breathability and freshness.

Tontine I Like Extra Support Pillow $30.00
Firm and high polyester pillow that bounces back and provides extra support for the head and neck.

Stockists: www.tontine.com.au

7. Mister Minit Insulated Coffee/Beer Tumbler, 16oz. Available in Shale Black and Stainless Steel. $39.95

So there you have it... Get Shopping!!!

Monday, 1 August 2016

World breast feeding awareness week - Our Breastfeeding Journey

This post is supported by Medela

Breastfeeding is one of those things that you start out thinking it should be really easy as it is a natural thing but once you do try, it can be so different for everyone. When I had my first baby, 5 years ago, I set out to breastfeed. I had absolutely no fear that it would be anything but super simple and natural as that’s what our bodies are supposed to do as new mums, provide food for our babies.

I had huge boobs and a baby with a tiny mouth and from the first night as a mum, my nipples became very damaged and I was in a lot of pain. It was like my baby was attacking me on a 3 hour basis, I was in pain, nipples bleeding and miserable. It wasn’t easy but I was determined.

I used my Medela breast pump around the clock, giving my nipples time to heal, only offering the breast every second feed and serving up expressed breast milk in a bottle otherwise. The Medela pump was truly my saving grace, I spent endless hours on that pump, keeping my milk supply going and knowing I was giving my baby the best stuff even if it was from a bottle.

Baby P was thriving, but my nipples didn’t heal easily. It wasn’t a nice time as I was in so much pain when she fed, I couldn’t feed in public, I just couldn’t relax but everyone kept telling me her attachment was fine. People would empathise with me and tell me it was ok not to breastfeed anymore but I was too determined, I had to get this right.

It went on for quite a while, I was searching for an answer as to why breastfeeding wasn’t getting any better until after a couple of months, a nurse just put it down to a logical issue; big boobs/small mouth. That is when things started to turn and everything started getting better, it was like a huge weight had lifted off my shoulders and I could relax and stop looking for an answer on how we could fix this issue, I could know that NOTHING I was doing was wrong. As her mouth grew a little bigger, it all started working better and we finally got it and went on to feed until Princess P was 15 months old. I was proud.

Second time around, it was all so much easier and it all worked from the get go and now, third time around, my milk came in on the second day, it was like a super power. Haha. I have had no sign of damage and we have rocked it with ease. It truly is amazing how different of an experience breast feeding can be for so many people, even different from child to child and how easy it could of been for me to quit that first time around if I hadn’t had the right support. Believe me when I tell you I had a lot of mixed messages from a lot of different people and I had to be super strong in my own beliefs to keep going. I know I would have definitely benefitted from the MyMedela App back then and I’m very grateful I’ve had it by my side this time. The MyMedela really is a personal digital companion, providing practical advice, tips and tricks from experts on pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding. I've loved the advice and tips, it is such an incredible resource for new mums. 

As we move into World Breastfeeding Awareness Week – here’s some insight for you from the team atMedela that conducted a survey with 4000 Australian Mums to discover attitudes towards experience with breastfeeding and where mums go for advice.  Results reveal many women put pressure on themselves to breastfeed because of health benefits breastfeeding provides, yet most go on to experience associated challenges. The survey also showed that to assist in their parenting journey, mums bypass their own mums’ wisdom in place of advice from Midwife/Doctors and online support tools and apps.

Reassuringly, 9 in 10 mums do experience breastfeeding challenges – which is great to know that you’re not alone. From the respondents, 90 per cent cited issues with milk levels (22 per cent) and sore nipples (20 per cent) as most popular problems. Plus common issues like mastitis/engorgement, health, latching, sore nipples, tongue tie.

Like myself, despite challenges, most mums persevere to continue breastfeeding. In fact, according to Medela’s survey, a high proportion (52 per cent) feel pressure to continue breastfeeding. Of these women, the overwhelming majority actually put pressure on themselves to breastfeed, as opposed to feeling the pressure to breastfeed from factors such as partners, society, media, celebrities. The survey further reveals that while most respondents (61 per cent) agree there is a lot of online information and advice available, mums still feel satisfied with the access to information and advice required. The majority of mums do not turn to their own mum for advice first anymore, with the 24/7 convenience of sourcing information online or via Apps it can be easier to “google it”. I know I spent endless hours online myself, trying to find a solution to my breastfeeding issues with Miss P.

Most importantly, I think we have to make new mums more aware that breastfeeding isn’t always easy and it's ok if it doesn’t come naturally. We need to give ourselves time, both baby and mum need to learn and it takes time and sometimes pain. But it’s ok to ask for help and utilise the information and support around us. Becoming a mum is hard enough and feeding our babies can be one of the biggest, most worrying stresses in the world as we just want to nourish them and for them to thrive. That's why I think Breastfeeding awareness week is so important;

Medela have said - “Breastfeeding Awareness Week is an opportunity to educate the wider community about the challenges mums face and the pressure they put on themselves to give their child the best start in life and to remind mums that they are not alone in their journey.” 

For mums who do feel like they are alone and want to reach out to some instant support and advice The MyMedela app is awesome, it’s by Medela Australia and it’s a personal digital companion providing practical advice, tips and tricks from experts on pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding, whilst post birth, acts as an efficient tracking tool to monitor babies progress in key areas such as breastfeeding to suit mums’ needs today. I highly recommend checking it out and utilising it on an everyday basis.

If you need a burst of breastfeeding inspo – please check out this clip to remind you that everyone’s breastfeeding experience is different and some great tips to keep in mind:

Keep your heads up Mumma’s! Your doing a brilliant job. x

Saturday, 23 July 2016

RECIPE: Activated nut & seed nibble mix

Trail mix is an awesome thing to have in your bag for when you are needing a little pick me up or are starving for a little snack. It’s also a great one for little fingers as a snack when out and about or as an energy hit for your bouncing teenagers. Perfect to hit the spot for those breast feeding Mumma cravings too! I like to make a big batch of this every so often and keep it in the pantry in a glass jar. It’s super simple to make but the soaking and dehydrating does need some time. Nuts and seeds are great foods; they are rich is good fats and proteins although nuts contain enzyme inhibitors so thats why many cultures soak them before they are eaten. Soaking them; activates them, wakes them up, brings them to more of a live food state and absorption of nutrients, minerals and proteins is much higher. It also gives them more crunch, I think they taste way better! You can learn why soaking your nuts and seeds is so important here.

RECIPE: Activated nut & seed nibble mix

1 cup almonds
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup sultanas
1/2 cup inca berries
Pinch salt


Into separate bowls or jars, place the nuts and seeds with a pinch of salt in each. Fill with water to cover seeds and allow to sit overnight or for 24 hours to activate.

Once time is up, strain and rinse the nuts and seeds very well, until water runs clear.

Place nuts and seeds onto trays and into the dehydrate to dry out (not cook) for 12 hours. If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can use the oven on very low heat with the door open. Just keep in mind that you have to dry them out well as, if not, they can go mouldy.

Once the nuts and seeds are dry, mix together with your sultanas and Inca berries and store in an airtight container and jar for whenever you need a nibble.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

SCHOOL HOLIDAY FUN: Our Sydney weekender!

I'm one mother that absolutely loves school holidays. Why? Because my favourite 5 year old baby sitter returns to help me out with the 2 that are stuck to me 24/7. Haha yes my princess P is a superstar and I really do miss her throughout the week when she is at school and I believe that our Mr 3 misses her even more. So when school holidays hit we went into a little hibernation for the first week and just enjoyed hanging out at home, resting after a huge school term. Once the Daddy of the house returned home from 5 weeks away for work we ventured up to the city for a weekend getaway at the Novotel Sydney Olympic park. It was amazing! We stayed in the executive spa suite which looked over ANZ stadium and the rest of the city. With a HUGE spa and the most amazing buffet breakfast, there were definitely no complaints, we felt like royalty.

Friday night saw us walk 5 minutes across the road to see the one and only Disney on Ice; WOW! The amazing costumes, beautiful princess stories and incredible ice skating, we were in awe. The kids were mesmerised, P couldn't get enough of the singing and dancing and Sunny just starred in amazement, we all really enjoyed the show. Elsa from Frozen was definitely the favourite and Belle from beauty and the beast really brought back memories from my childhood, I loved that movie as a little girl.

At Disney On Ice

Elsa - Frozen

We had a lovely sleep in on Saturday morning and then ventured down to the delicious buffet breakfast served at the Novotel. The kids faces were priceless when we told them they could eat as much as they wanted. They definitely ate their fare share and didn't ask for any snacks until lunch time! The Novotel had fun games for the kids to play at breakfast like straw building and activity sheets so we could really enjoy a nice coffee and not need to rush out of there with crazy children like usual as they were very content and entertained.

Recently growing from a family of 4 to 5, we were on the hunt for a bigger car. Ughhhhh car shopping sounds great but is really not that fun, so time consuming and so confusing! But with a lot of patience and determination, we found something we loved at the auctions and grabbed it. Serious achievement for us procrastinators! hah.

We caught up with old friends on Saturday afternoon and then Saturday night we spent in our divine hotel room. The kids loved being "on holidays" and we loved escaping home for a couple of nights too.

Sunday morning was slow and lovely; big breakfast once again. Really, how good is buffet breakfast???
We enjoyed hanging in the hotel and then ventured out to explore olympic park. I hadn't really thought much of staying at Olympic park before but it is such a cool place and I'm so glad we did. So many great things to do and check out with great places to eat and have a drink.

Quality time with family is important and that’s why one of the major benefits of a family stay at Novotel is the 5pm late check out on Sundays. We loved that!

The Novotel Hotel and Resort network across Australia offers family packages for weekends away, organising plenty of entertainment for the children (with family passes to some amazing local attractions) and opportunities to unwind for the parents while creating new family memories.

The staff at the Novotel Olympic park for amazing, they were so wonderful and helpful. We enjoyed our stay thoroughly and will definitely be back again soon. Highly recommend.

If you would like to check out what the Novotel Olympic Park has to offer go to: http://www.novotelsydneyolympicpark.com.au/
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