Thursday, 2 August 2018

The solution to the mid-week meal dilemma: Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi-Cooker’







This post is supported by Crock-Pot

Since having baby number 4, there is one thing I do not look forward to doing every day and that is making Dinner. I actually used to enjoy cooking dinner, but since having another baby I just feel overwhelmed and limited for time. The days are so busy and full of chaos that when dinner rolls around, I realise I now have to cook for 6 people. It’s either be prepared or have screaming kids. Afternoons are witching hour right? Well, in our house if I walk into the kitchen my kids start attacking me, nagging for food. We have dinner at 5pm so if they eat between 3.30pm and 5pm then there is no hope of them eating dinner. So it’s a bit tricky, I need to cook but if I go into the kitchen I get nagged and nagged and nagged. By the time 5pm rolls around, the kids are bouncing off the walls and I’m feeling overwhelmed.

This is why I was super interested to trial the new Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi-Cooker’ when they offered. I needed something to help me with the whole “cooking healthy dinner” thing. It’s a 12 in 1 multi-cooker that can Pressure Cook, Slow Cook, Steam, Sauté and more so you can easily prepare any recipe, using one convenient appliance.

The best part??? You fill it up and walk away and it cooks all by itself!!! Set and forget. This means less time in the kitchen for me, less winging kids and less psycho mummy!
At first all the buttons and features looked a little overwhelming but once I started cooking, it was so so simple. It has an easy control panel, simplifying the cooking process. 

I have literally been using it almost every day for the past 2 weeks; I’ve slow cooked pork, beef brisket, made curries, bone broth, stock and more. It can slow cook past 24 hours which is amazing. In winter, I really love slow cooking, it just feels so nourishing and warm but sometimes I run out the door in the morning for school drop off and forget to put the food on so the Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi-Cooker has introduced me more to pressure cooking. I made the most amazing stew the other day in 35 minutes!!!! The meat was so tender, it was incredible.
I have been finding cooking dinner such a drag so having this handy machine over the past couple of weeks has inspired me by allowing me to spend less time in the kitchen and more time together with my family.  That witching hour has become so much easier and now if I don’t have my ‘one-pot’ meal cooking I feel a little uneasy as it’s all so simple.

The Crock-Pot is really a modern cooking ‘go-to’ for simple entertaining and convenience cooking and I am 100% sold. It has genuinely made my mummy cooking life so much easier! It’s solved my daily mid-week meal dilemma. I love it!

I love that the Crock-Pot’s ‘Express Crock Multi-Cooker’ can Pressure Cook, Slow Cook, Steam, Sauté and more, so you can easily prepare any recipe without having to use a few different appliances or pots because washing up isn’t that fun either. It has the ability to cook meals up to 70 per cent faster and is time efficient, therefore bringing the family together for a delicious meal with ease. We have really been trying to focus on our family dinners; creating conversation about our day and learning more from the kids about what they’re doing at school or anything going on they want to chat about. It’s been really lovely.

I’ve used some of my own recipes along with the recipes included with the product which are super yummy and gives some great ideas of how to use the Crock-Pot’s ‘Express Crock Multi-Cooker’. I can highly recommend this product for all the Mum’s and people out there that want to put amazing food on the table without spending time slaving over the stove. ;)

The RRP for this product is $149.00 which I believe is very reasonable and more information can be found http://www.crockpot.com.au/product/cpe200-express-crock/

Sunday, 3 June 2018

REAL MUM REVIEW: Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link™


For the past month we have been trialling the Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link™. To get to the point, it's nothing short of amazing. 
Pollution is for the most part invisible and air quality in your home can be a very toxic environment. I once heard that if all your doors and windows are closed then your not breathing clean air as everything circulates inside and can't escape but also if you live in a polluted area, then you can't really leave your windows open in fear of pollutants coming in so your at a cross road.  That is why I believe the Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link™is so great, it cleans the air in which we spend the most time and puts our minds at ease that our children are getting the best chance of breathing clean air at home. 
We are quite lucky here on the far south coast, as we have fairly clean air but our in house pollutants like the fire place can be of concern. 


The Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link™heats, cools and purifies so it's an all in one style machine. We love using the heater in the bathroom or turning it on just before we get up in the morning to warm the area. The Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link™has an easy to use app that you can use from your phone, so yes, you can turn the machine on without even getting out of bed! Pretty incredible right? Within the Link App, you can learn about the quality of the air in your home while using the Dyson Purifier and also the outside air quality. I absolutely love this feature.



The Dyson Pure heats the whole room while purifying, it captures the indoor air pollutants by the 360° Glass HEPA filter, while in heating mode, and Dyson's patented Air Multiplier™ technology projects up to 200 litres of purified, heated air per second around the room. So great. This is particularly important as we head into the winter months - using the Dyson purifier, you can maintain optimal temperature, with clean air which is something you can't do with other heaters as they may create more air pollution, definitely not decrease it.  It also features Jet Focus technology which allows for concentrated personal heating. My daughter loves this function after coming out of the shower as it is so cold now.

The Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link™has highly efficient filtration; the Dyson Purifier’s filter automatically captures gases and 99.95% of fine particles such as allergens and pollutants.

My favourite part is that it actually takes away cooking smells so as a mum that cooks a lot, we always seem to have something simmering and I found that the Dyson Pure removed cooking smells fast and efficiently.

We are super impressed with this machine and my mum has even commented that she is planning to get one as she loves ours so much. We love that is is so light and mobile and can be transported between the rooms in which we want to use it with ease. Though, it's sturdy enough not to be knocked over by little people. It is really safe and that is great peace of mind for parents too.

We can highly recommend the Dyson Pure Hot+Cool Link. For more info go to: https://www.dyson.com.au/fans-and-heaters/fan-heaters.aspx



Tuesday, 22 May 2018

BOOK REVIEW: The Busy Mum's Guide To Weight Loss by Rhian Allen


Last week I was gifted The Busy Mum's Guide To Weight Loss by Rhian Allen; aka the founder of the Healthy Mummy website. In the past year; my cooking mojo has been at zero, pregnancy and breastfeeding doesn't bring the best out in me and I'm just tired and can't be bothered. Life is so hectic right now, having 4 kids at different stages is absolute chaos and finding time to make stuff is just too overwhelming. Plus the fact that so many recipes online have so many different ingredients in them. Don't get me wrong, I do cook everyday, I have to, I'm a mum but lately it's just not much fun stuff.
Receiving this book gave me the inspiration I needed to get in the kitchen for fun, honestly, it was quite funny. That afternoon I was at the supermarket stocking up on a few basics to get cooking.



The Busy Mum’s Guide to Weightloss is a month's plan of recipes for three meals a day plus smoothies and snacks. It's super easy to read and follow. What I love most about the book is that their are a lot of family favourites, just made healthier, and the recipes use simple ingredients and are affordable for families on a budget. That is the key to enjoying cooking as a mum I believe, things have got to be quick, easy and healthy.

Chocolate Peanut butter crumble balls

And by quick, I will tell you that by the time I had bought the ingredients, I got home and it was 1.30pm. I needed to leave for school pick up at 2.30pm, so in one hour I made the raspberry muffins, chocolate peanut butter crumble balls, the slice and breastfed the baby. Now that is some serious time savy cooking and I felt like I'd really accomplished something great. Nothing like a bit of a confidence boost to get back in there. We had handy, healthy snacks for all of us for the next couple of days.




Rasberry Muffins


When I got home from school pick up, I was little bit over excited so I decided to make the choc-oat Granola. It didn't need many ingredients and was so simple. Really delicious too! The kids loved the "treat" for a few days of breakfasts.

I can highly recommend checking out The Busy Mum’s Guide to Weightloss, the recipes I've tried so far are delicious and all the rest look so tempting, I can't wait to try them. head over here to learn more about the book and where to purchase. https://secure.healthymummy.com/busy-mums-weight-loss-book

Choc-oat granola


Disclaimer: I was gifted the book to review but all words and comments are honest and my own. ;) 

Monday, 30 April 2018

REAL MUM REVIEW: BABYLOVE NAPPY PANTS


This post is supported by Babylove and Mum Central

The newest big sister of the household is currently toilet training herself, well, because clearly nobody here has any time. We are so proud of her though, she decided that she wanted to start using the potty just as she became a big sister and she’s definitely a girl on a mission with no accidents so far. This has been perfect timing as we were asked recently to trial the BabyLove Nappy Pants and they have been a real hit with our Miss Mabel.
As most of you know, Mabel is our toddler and she has recently turned 2. Before she turned two, we put the BabyLove Nappy Pants into action for day time, nap time and over night.

We wanted to trial the BabyLove Nappy Pants as we didn’t want to have accidents while out and about throughout the toilet training period. We wanted to feel confident and know that if their was an accident or I couldn’t make it to the bathroom with her, it wouldn’t be the end of the world with a newborn attached.

Overall Miss Mabel loved wearing the nappy pants, she thought they were so cool in the fact that they looked just like undies. She made a real fuss out of being big girl and lapped up that they are really special.
On average, we changed the nappy pants about 3 times over the day as she rarely had any accidents. Fresh pair in the morning, new pair after a nap and new pair for bed time at night. I was amazed at how absorbent they were at nap time and night time as she isn’t ready to be nappy free while she sleeps and definitely needs them as she drinks quite a bit of water to go to sleep.
This really impressed me!



The style of the nappy pants are really great. My husband and I both have commented on the ease of pulling them up and down and how our toddler can do this herself when she needs to go to the potty. We also like that you can rip the sides to take them off if needed so it’s quick.
They are super soft and you can tell they would be comfortable on little bottoms and move with them as they play. Mabel has definitely put them to the test with her trampoline antics and loves jumping around in them!

What is also very appealing for parents like us, is the price point. They are really reasonable in price and that makes them more accessible to everyone. Being a large family, we need to be on a budget and knowing we can purchase these great nappy pants at such a good price makes them affordable for us.

As mentioned above, the comfort of our babies is paramount and our toddler loves wearing these so we know they are a comfortable fit. They are super quick and easy to remove if we need to and  so easy to pull on as they are so soft and the elastic waist is perfect.

The thing we liked most about BabyLove Nappy Pants is the ease of wear as we can treat them like underpants but know that they have our backs if an accident occurs. 

After trying BabyLove Nappy Pants, I would definitely purchase these going forward, simply because they are great and do the job we need. For this reason, I would recommend them to friends and family and I can be confident that they would love them too!

All in all, we are happy customers, BabyLove Nappy Pants work. They are a super absorbent, easy to pull on and off, soft, and a comfortable nappy pant for toddlers that just want to get on with their little lives, getting dirty and having fun! Miss Mabel and I are sold. We love them.

You can watch our full video review at the top of this post.

Disclaimer: I was gifted the Babylove Nappy Pants to review along with payment although all words and comments are honest and my own.


Sunday, 29 April 2018

REAL MUM REVIEW: KOALA KING MATTRESS

source

Knowing we were on the verge of becoming a super huge family, whilst I was pregnant with baby Clover, I was always looking out for the perfect king bed. It was the transition that I was so excited to be making, having that extra bit of room in the bed, I never thought my mum life would come to such simple joys being so exciting! For the past 8 years, I’ve slept most nights with a foot, an arm or a face on the face from little one, OR just lived in limited room of pregnancy. The queen bed, which I wont lie, has always been really comfortable, but is just not big enough for us. It’s always cramped because of an extra set of limbs. 

Thats when the Koala kept popping up in my social media news feed, it was like it was calling me to check it out. I’m a mum of 4, at that time I was heavily pregnant with 3 and getting to the shops to try mattresses was never going to happen. Getting out the door just for school drop off is hard enough! So first tempting part was that you can purchase online with FREE DELIVERY!!! Free delivery for a mattress is pretty unheard of because they are such a heavy item. And delivery is usually expensive right?

Next thing is that beds are expensive, especially big beds so knowing that they have such an incredible return policy was a selling point. Can you believe that you can purchase the bed, sleep on it for 120 nights and then if you don’t like it, they come pick it up and give you a full refund? Completely hassle free. I love this. Each mattress has a 10 year warranty and each purchase includes a symbolic koala adoption through the WWF. Amazing. 
It’s also all Australian made, they pride themselves on taking the highest-quality Australian materials and ingenuity, combine them magically in their cutting edge facilities and service.

source

They say that the Koala gives you a “cool, comfortable and supportive sleep.” I was very happy to be able to put this to the test. 

Well the verdict is in… We are keeping the Mattress! 

Ordering online is easy, click a few buttons, and it can ship in metro areas in 4 hours. Wow. We live in the country so it arrived 2 days later which is still pretty amazing considering normal mail deliver to this area can take up to 10 days. The mattress comes rolled in a box, its very compact and easy to move to where you need it. 
It’s super fun unpacking it; you unroll it and it pops up into a large mattress, it was like a magic show for the kids. 
The Koala is a foam mattress, this is definitely a different feel to our old mattress but I have embraced it and really like it. When compared to our old mattress, it is quite a bit firmer but it’s comfortable as it also feels soft which is hard to explain. I like that there is no movement or disruption to other people in the bed. It’s a big bed being a king size so we have slept with 4 of us in it so far and didn’t notice each other too much which was different for me as I’m usually pushing little arms or legs away. Haha.

All in all, we are really happy with our Koala mattress, its affordable, supportive and comfortable. 

If you interested in taking a look, asking any questions or getting one for yourself, just go to: https://au.koala.com/products/koala-mattress

Disclaimer: I was gifted the Koala Mattress to trial and review although ALL comments and words are my own. 

Thursday, 12 April 2018

RECIPE: Gluten Free Buckwheat Pancake Stack


Wow. It's been a while since I've written on this little platform. Sorry for the neglect, but you know, I've just had my 4th child so I'm just living in complete chaos. This morning though, we made a fun pancake stack that was a huge hit so I thought I should quickly pop on here and share it with you guys. Our beautiful Miss Mabel turned 2 today and my husband is away so our plan was to "pretend" her birthday is tomorrow BUT the big kids got a bit excited this morning and started wishing happy birthdays all around and nagging me for pancakes as that's what we usually do for birthday breakfasts. In my sleep deprived state I actually said no about 3 times before mother guilt set in and thought I needed to get my act together. Baby went into the Manduca wrap and off we went to the kitchen to whip up a simple, yet delicious buckwheat pancake stack, candle and happy birthday songs and all. This followed by a birthday kitchen dance party and lots of laughs. What a special way to start the day, we had fun and it was so worth the extra effort to get out of bed that bit earlier. So here you go, gluten/dairy free pancakes for you... 

Now, until tomorrow for her "pretend" real birthday. ;)


Ingredients 
1 cup water
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1.5 cups buckwheat flour
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1.5 tsp baking powder

Coconut oil for cooking
Honey, Raspberries and Banana for decorating 

Makes 12

Method 

Whiz all wet ingredients in a food processor or Thermomix until combined.
Add dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
Heat pan with some coconut oil and pour some mixture in to make a medium sized circle. Fry on medium heat a couple of minutes each side until cooked through.
Make a stack with the cooked pancakes and drizzle one tablespoon of honey over the top so it melts down the sides. Decorate with fruit. 

Add a candle and sing happy birthday. Haha ! Enjoy together ;)


Saturday, 27 January 2018

My Baby Moon in a Private Hospital


This post is supported by APHA

I never thought I would have a 4th baby. I just didn’t see myself to be cut out for such a task of raising 4 children! I have always been a believer that that universe gives you what you can cope with and as I move towards the end of my fourth pregnancy I wonder what the heck the universe was thinking when they decided I was going to have 4. I mean, 2 kids was more than enough for me to give love to. I was really done at 2…then 2 years later life got that little bit easier, we fell in love all over again and we just had to add one more. But 4? Really? I really worry that I just don’t have the energy inside me to give all four little humans everything their beautiful little minds need. I guess that’s where all the personal growth comes from though right? When the universe sends you something you’re not ready for to make you leap out of your comfort zone!

As the end of this pregnancy is drawing near, I’m exhausted and spending a lot of time at home, I’m not in the nesting phase yet but I’m definitely in the phase where I can’t be bothered going out much and just enjoying my own time in my own home. Life is going fast but the pregnancy feels like it’s going slow and I haven’t had time to think too much about having the actual baby or adding another child into our home as I was finding it a bit too overwhelming.

In the last few days though, the reality of it all has finally started to hit and the logistics of having the baby are things we need to face and plan for. The excitement of actually having a new baby is slowing trickling in and the happy hormones are flowing. I’m preparing for birth with yoga and supplements and I’m excited to be supported by my amazing obstetrician and have the baby at the private hospital where I’ve had my previous babies. I know what I’m in for and I know how caring and supportive all the midwives are and what great resources they have on hand in such a great facility.

What I’m most really looking forward to though, are those first few days after giving birth and that love bubble that us Mums fall into; I call this the “baby moon”. It’s that week you have your baby, the first time you have with your newborn, the time when mum and baby get to bond and spend every moment together just staring into each other and feeding on demand. It’s the special time for learning the ropes and the first start of motherhood with baby on the outside.


This time together is so very precious and that’s why I believe it’s so important to be in a supportive environment in your own private room and this is why I’m such an advocate of private hospitals. I have had such amazing experiences post birth, being in a private hospital, having my own room and loving on my newborn. It’s so blissful to have the peace of knowing no one is interrupting you unless necessary and having the support of the same doctor see you the following days for check ups.

It’s lovely knowing that you have the room for your visitors to comfortably meet your new baby and that you’re not disturbing anyone else by chatting to friends or ringing the bell to ask for help. At private hospitals, there’s also great resources like lactation consultants on hand, breast feeding classes that you can wander down the hall to attend, physiotherapy classes where they teach you the exercises that you need to do after birth to gain the muscles back in all those areas that it gets lost. I remember after having both Sunny and Mabel how beneficial attending those in-hospital classes were and how happy I was to be in a private hospital where I got to experience this. The physiotherapist checked our stomach separation and gave us tools to take home with us to recover after pregnancy and childbirth.

The food is also great, they offer an upgrade to a larger room with a queen bed that your partner can stay in overnight and they even give you a “date night” in hospital with your partner. This is so special after having a baby as you know you don’t get to go out with your partner much when you have a newborn attached so the hospital puts on a special dinner for you, very close to the maternity ward and they mind your baby in the nursery while you enjoy a meal together. Isn’t that incredible? The list is endless really and it’s such a wonderful experience after such a big event; child-birth.

Having a baby isn’t the most comfortable thing, so if we can treat ourselves with a loving and supportive environment full of fantastic resources, I’m all for it and I can’t wait for my baby moon in a private hospital in less than 7 weeks!


For more information on private hospitals, visit http://privatehospitals.org.au 

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