Saturday, March 31, 2012

blogging: blog deeply and feel happier


blogging deeply


I really don't have many personal goals for my blog.

I have been blessed to reach all of them already.

One of my personal goals that I do have for this year is to blog deeply.

To not just share the general happenings of our home but to share more from my heart.

For me this involves being braver, addressing more issues and creating more meaningful discussions.

I want to do this to create more meaning in my life, to have a stronger voice.

To use my blog voice for good and to help other people if I can.

To look a little deeper at how I feel and at how others feel.

Don't get me wrong, I love general chit chat, I just want to challenge myself more.

I don't know if I will be good at it but I want to try to see how I go.

As I blog deeply, I know I will feel happier.

Having a blog is a wonderful platform to express yourself and I know it will not be easy.

It means opening myself to more criticism as I share how I feel.

It seems that the more popular you become as a blogger the more people expect from you.

The more people expect from you the more they criticise you.

I know I need to prepare myself for that. 

I find it ironic that I need to toughen myself up so that I can soften my heart to share more.

I have a few topics I want to write about more deeply.

I am a little afraid to address them but also feel it is part of my blog journey.

As I take this step I know I will learn more about myself and also more about you, my readers.

How can I not move forward in this direction?

It sounds wonderful, scary and exciting at the same time.

I also believe I will feel happier as a person and a blogger if I write more deeply.

Having just returned home from a blog conference, I feel really happy about my blog.

I feel confident, I feel content and I feel completely happy with my blog decisions.

I hope you will continue to join me and I thank you for supporting me on this blog journey so far.

I look forward to learning more about you as I share more about me.

Sounds weird, but that to me what blogging is all about.

Connecting, sharing and telling personal stories.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

my goal to stop complaining


I believe in setting goals and in self improvement. I have so many areas of my life that need improving that I find I always have some goal or some area that I am working on in relation to myself. It is either my weight, my fitness or my thoughts that seem to need the most attention. I am not over the top with setting strict goals but I often like to set small goals to challenge myself in these areas.

Recently, I have been working on a goal to stop complaining. Now complaining {to me} means to express dissatisfaction or annoyance about a state of affairs or an event. In my home, I have ample opportunities to put complaining into action and often have to bite my tongue to not make a situation worse than it already is!

I started to work on this goal a little more when a certain event happened at lunch time in our home and I found myself being very vocal and wearing my 'complaining hat' quite boldly.

I started to get the food ready for lunch and the children came in and started taking the food before it was finished. Before I knew it, by the time I had finished preparing all of the food there was none left.

Now I just happened to be really hungry on this day and there was no food left for me.
*Insert me wearing my complaining hat*

So I started to get out some more food and by the time I had finished getting the next lot ready it was all gone as well. Before I had even had my first lot of food the kids had already had a second helping and there was none left.

*Insert me wearing my complaining hat again*

I decided the best thing for me to do was to leave the kitchen as I was feeling pretty mad by this stage. I sat on the couch and started to complain to myself about my complaining!

I was mad that I let myself get so worked up about it and I was mad that I could not get the chance to get any food. So I went back into the kitchen to try to make myself something to eat and in came a child and asked to take my sandwich!

That was it!!!

I sat myself down and thought about how complaining really achieves nothing. I did not feel any better for it and neither did anyone else. I did not stop to make any positive comments, jokes or solutions to solve the food problem at hand. I certainly did not stop to look at the situation through my kids eyes. They were simply hungry and maybe a little greedy and they were just looking to me for food.

I am also mindful that my kids were not looking at how I was feeling in this situation and they were not paying attention to the complaining signals I was sending them and boy was I sending them!

It reminded me of when I attended the Power of Moms conference and we talked about how we need to teach our children that Mummy is a Person. That we have thoughts and feelings, that we have needs and that we need our own time and space as well. My children know that and they are pretty good at making sure I get time to myself and especially time to have my food etc but that one day really had me thinking about how I personally had not been enforcing that as strongly as I should be.

So now I am working more on teaching my children that Mum has feelings, that Mum has needs and that Mum actually needs to eat to survive! I am also working on doing this minus the complaining and I have found it is working out to be a better experience for all of us.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

How we roll in the Seven Cherubs house

This is how we roll in the Seven Cherubs house:
 A little bit nerdy!
A little bit serious!
A little bit funny!

The quality of these pictures are not very good.
They are however too cute not to share!

Monday, March 26, 2012

blogging tips: How to find time to blog


One of the questions I get asked the most as a blogging tip is:
How do you find time to blog?

When I first started a blog I set myself a goal that I would fit it around my family time. My family comes first in my heart and I did not want my blog to become the first priority for me. In saying that I also believe that it is important as a woman and mother to have time to follow your passions in life, to do what you love to do and to make time in your schedule for those passions. With those two ideas in mind I set out to find a comfortable balance of taking care of my family and also following my passion and running my blog. 

In the beginning I found running a blog took up a lot of my time. I would spend a great deal of time on each blog post (mainly because I lacked confidence in my writing) and extra time learning about blog code, SEO and all the other aspects of having a blog. I would write my blog posts at night time after the kids went to bed and would often stay up really late commenting on other blogs. 

Now, I manage my blog very differently. I now get up early in the morning to write. I find my mind is clearer in the morning, I have fresh ideas and I can get my writing done faster compared to late at night where it felt like it would take me 10 minutes to put one sentence together! Getting up that little bit earlier gives me time to myself, I start my day doing something that I love to do and I feel happier for the rest of the day because I have written my thoughts out and I have had some 'me time'.

I also keep several blog posts on the go at once. If I have an idea I start writing out my thoughts and I will often come back to finish it off later on when I am having a day where I am not feeling very inspired. Every so often I will spend a night batch blog post writing. I might get Matt to take the kids out or they might all go and watch a movie in our rumpus room and I will sit down and smash out 5 or 6 blog posts in that one night. Then I can schedule them throughout my week and I can spend more time on my family.

I also have a blog notebook to write down any ideas about blog posts that I have and will refer to it when I do my blog writing. Often with one idea I can get 3 or 4 blog posts out of it. However, I find one of my biggest problems is that I have too many ideas and not enough time!

I also plan out in advance what blog posts I am going to post for the month on my blog. I write up a schedule and then discipline myself to stick to it. I say discipline because often I am not in the mood for writing those blog posts or for posting that topic on that certain day and I find it takes discipline to stick to a plan. 

I think that a lot of people who start a blog are shocked at how much work it is to run one. It really does take a lot of work to maintain but if it is something that you love to do, it will not feel like work as you love it and are passionate about it. 

For me personally, I am constantly working on ways to balance it better with my family. I pay attention to how my children are feeling towards me and my blog. If they feel I am spending too much time on it I cut back. I post less often and I drop the extra time of replying to comments. I love to reply to comments but if my children need me then it becomes my priority to reply to my children when they need me instead. I also try to keep a bunch of blog posts in reserve so that if I want to take a couple of weeks off to focus more on my family I can. This way my blog will keep running as I schedule those blog posts in and it becomes kind of like taking a blog holiday but nobody knows you are taking one!

I really appreciate that my readers know that my family comes first for me. They understand that I am not good at replying back some days, that I do appreciate every comment and that I love to write and to share my thoughts and ideas. Letting your readers know what your priorities are really helps you manage your blog and time as well. Then there is less pressure and expectation upon you as a blogger.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

A family that plays Lego together stays together

We have been on the receiving end of a great family gift lately. Grandma sent our family a whole pile of Matt's Lego from when he was a boy. Complete with a folder full of instructions on how to make certain buildings and other Lego creations. It is still in great condition and my cherubs have been spending a great deal of time playing with it.


It is so wonderful as a mother to see your children sitting on the floor, playing together, working together on building and using their heads and hands to be creative. We have added this massive collection of Lego to our already large collection and as a family we are in lego heaven!


The kids decided to work together on constructing a large Lego castle. Multi-coloured of course! They sat in circles around the castle, chatted and pieced together a wonderful creation. Above is Harmony holding it part way through.


The finished product was simple and colourful. It was wonderful for me as a mother to see them working together, being protective over it and encouraging each other to keep going until it was all finished. Very happy that we are a Lego family and that my cherubs enjoy playing with Lego and each other.

Friday, March 23, 2012

What do you need to thrive as a mother?

I have been processing a lot of thoughts since attending not one, but two conferences over the past two weeks on motherhood. It was a special treat for me to have that time to think about my family and to be involved with helping to organise, along with my lovely friend Felicity, to bring April and Saren from the Power of Mom's out here to Australia. There was a lot of work involved, a lot of excitement involved and even some tears involved to make it happen. Felicity worked so hard behind the scenes to organise it all and I so appreciate all the effort she put in. Love her!

{Felicity and I}

I really enjoyed being able to participate on the different panel discussions (along with several other inspiring women) and to share what we do in our Seven Cherubs home and to share some of the lessons I have learned along the way on my mothering journey. I was uplifted by what the other women had to share and loved it when we shared similar experiences but with our own individual application. Like how we thrive as mothers but each in our own different way. 

 {Me, Corrie and Lisa}

{Me, Vanessa and Nadene}

The women attending the conference we intelligent, motivated, friendly, funny and inspiring women. It made my heart sing to hear them passionately talk about the role they play in their homes and the great love they have for their children. We did a lot of talking, a lot of eating and a lot of laughing. 

{Gold Coast conference}

{Sydney conference}

The food was presented so beautifully and tasted divine! It was fresh, healthy and just what a bunch of enthusiastic mothers needed to keep them chatting and sharing and laughing about life with cherubs. Check out my friend Luana who did the catering for us at Umbrella Events Brisbane





As women we did a lot of heart to heart talking and connecting. We shared the desires of our mother hearts and encouraged each other to be better. We talked about how even though we have children, we are still a person, we still need to take care of ourselves and how important it is to allow ourselves to thrive. We discussed ways to follow our passions, simple ideas on how to make ourselves a priority in our home and to still be there for our children. We talked about how it is worth the effort as a mother who thrives helps a whole family to thrive.




Whilst attending each conference I found my mind was constantly thinking of was to improve the routine in our home and also about what I personally really need as a mother. I seriously pondered and asked myself, what do I really need to thrive as a mother? April asked the question during the conference and it was one of those questions that kept replaying in my mind the whole weekend. As I talked and chatted with the different women attending I started to get ideas about how they were feeling a mother and in turn how I was feeling in my own mothering role. 


I was reminded that often I really don't need that much to happen to thrive as a mother. All I need to thrive as a mother are simple establish systems in my home to help bring order and happiness. All I personally need is some time each day to make sure they are running properly and some time out for myself. I find I either need to read, run, write or listen to music. I also know I need some social time with other women. I love chatting and connecting with other mothers. I love to talk about what works in their homes and to see their eyes light up when they talk about their cherubs.

{April, Felicity, Me and Saren}
{I think Felicity and I just need a perm and we have the Aussie Power of Mum's team covered!}

So often as mothers we forget about ourselves. We arrive at a stage where we end up lost, forgetting who we really are. I was reminded that it really is possible to be a mother and to still follow your passions. It is possible to be a happy mother who is thriving and growing and loving life. Often all it takes is some planning and the desire to make it happen. I had an absolute blast over the two conferences. I made new friends, I talked too much, I laughed, I ate too much, I felt inspired and I loved every moment of it. I even got to hold several gorgeous new babies and wished I had another new cherub in our home. I came home with a head full of ideas, a new desire to be a better mother and a burning desire to follow my passions and to thrive.

Do you think about what you need as a mother?
What do you need to thrive as a mother?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

dangers of suppressing depression

A keeping it real blog post.

I have spent a great deal of my life suppressing depressing feelings and memories.
Pushing them to the back of my mind and hoping that by doing so they would disappear.

The only way I found I could surivive was to treat my mind like a filing cabinet. I would file away experiences that hurt under different topics, boys - file, family - file, friends - file, until one day my filing cabinet became full, too overcrowded and overloaded with 'paperwork' to fit in any more.

I was in trouble. Big trouble.
I now had to face my stored up feelings and to deal with them one piece of paper at a time.

Often I think we believe that by storing it away or by blocking our hurt or pain we are helping ourselves or doing ourselves a favour. When in actual fact we are making life worse for ourselves by not dealing with issues or experiences in a healthy way.

Imagine my friend file, with piece of paper after piece of paper piling up on top of each other in my mind of hurt feelings that I had not dealt with. In the process of trying to help myself I actually ended up intensifying and highlighting the hurt by creating such a large file.

I became more sensitive, more protective and more intense in trying not to add to this file that by my own behaviour I actually ended up adding to it faster than I normally would have. In the end I even started to avoid friendships so then I would not have to deal with being hurt and taking the risk of adding to my pile.

It became a habit and in a way limited my ability to form healthy relationships.

Life is about being hurt and facing challenges and it is also about feelings, good and bad. I still have a long way to go in cleaning out my filing cabinet but the good news is I am working on it. I am decluttering, I am bringing up old paperwork and feeling, really feeling and opening my heart to new experiences.

If I get hurt along my life journey, I cry, I talk about it and I move on.
I have wasted too much of my life carrying unnecessary hurts and pains and burdens.

None of it made me happy, none of it was worth it and none of it lead me to a healthier life.

I have personally found that suppressing my depressing feelings is dangerous. That it leads to feeling worse about yourself and not better. There is freedom in letting yourself feel. Sure it hurts, it is hard to deal with and it takes time to get over it sometimes, but you are in control of how you respond to experiences and situations. That is real freedom. That is liberating!

********

{Just to be clear in this post - when I am talking about feeling depressed, I am talking about it being a stage in life when we feel sad or low as your life is not heading in the way you want it to be or you feel as if you are not living the life you want to be living. I am not talking about clinical depression.}

Monday, March 19, 2012

Mercy River Higher CD Giveaway

MERCY RIVER are a trendy mum-tri who have just released their third album, Higher. To celebrate this, the girls (Brooke, Whitney, and Soni) are taking a tour, a blog tour! I am very excited to be involved and to have them on my blog. They are young, creative women who juggle tasks and wear many different hats. With thirteen kids between them, they have full plates but still find time to live their dream as recording artists and inspirational speakers. They are so my kind of women! Below is a guest post from Soni about motherhood {who has five children} and I am also pleased to be able to give away a copy the new album, Higher here on my Seven Cherubs blog. 

There's Hope For Me Yet! Learning from Great Mothers 
By: Soni Muller of Mercy River 

I love being a mom, I really do. But I’ll admit there are many days I feel like a horrible mother. For example, last summer we had a big Mercy River performance. One of my MR "jobs" is to keep all of our sound equipment at my house and take it to each performance.  When I went out to get it that day, one of our microphones was missing!  I just knew one of my kids had taken it out and played with it somewhere in the yard and left it in the sprinklers overnight.  So I started questioning my kids, and of course, everyone denied ever seeing it. We frantically searched the house and the yard, and eventually I was upset and yelling at my kids--offering a $100 reward to see if one of them “happened” to find it with the bait of cash...but nope. In the middle of me barking at my children my 6 year old Ruby tilted her head to one side and, with a puzzled look, said to me, “Mommy do you like being a mom?”   

I was humbled. First, because my own daughter thought I didn't like being a mom, and second, because a few minutes later we found the microphone. It had just slipped down behind all the other equipment.   

I find myself sometimes thinking that I will never be the kind of mom I want to be, because I have too many weaknesses.  But I have been doing better lately because of a discovery I made. I discovered that if want to be a great mother, I need to surround myself with FRIENDS who are great mothers.  

So much of what I learn comes from watching and learning from friends who are examples of being good mothers. I watch how they react to a certain situation and I think, "If they can do it, so can I." These mothers in my life have no idea that I “watch” them, but I do. I notice the good things they do that I want to incorporate into my mothering.   

I've learned a lot from my Mercy River ‘sisters’ Brooke and Whitney--they are my best friends and we spend a lot of time together.  They are great examples of putting family first.  For example--I'm not a very "cutesy" mom. I have a hard time making holidays or birthdays fancy or thinking of creative little things that my kids will love. But…when it was 11-11-11, Whit told me she was going to make that a fun little day by waking up and giving her kids each 11 hugs in celebration.  I said that I thought that was a cute idea and wanted to do it, so early that morning I got a text from Whit reminding me to give my kids 11 hugs.  That's just a small thing that a good friend did to help me improve one of my "mother-weaknesses." By following a friend's example, I made my kids' day by doing something they loved and showing them I loved them. 

Brooke will sometimes tell me how she gets tired playing cars and trucks and My Little Pony with her kids. She told me one time that she feels guilty for not loving to play those--and I thought to myself, "I never get tired of playing those things because...I never play them." Oops!  So whenever I hear her say that, I remind myself that I need to be more like her and PLAY with my kids.  

Honestly all of my “good mothering skills” have come from watching good friends who are great mothers. It doesn't depress me to see the strength of other mothers- it motivates me! I am enlightened and encouraged by their examples...remembering I am a work in progress. This can obviously apply to mothers of kids of all ages.  So what have I learned? That there's hope for me yet! If YOU want to be a better mom, surround yourself with great ones!

{Soni from Mercy River}

I was lucky enough to receive a copy of the new Mercy River CD, Higher and have been enjoying listening to it whilst I do my blog writing. I love the blending of their voices and find the songs inspiring and uplifting. One of my favourite songs from the album is 'Beautiful Life' and I have attached the new music clip below for you to listen to and enjoy.


To celebrate the release of the new Mercy River album I have one copy of the 'Higher' CD to giveaway on my blog. 

Here are the guidelines for the giveaway:

1. Add yourself as a follower on my blog (if you are not already) 
2. Open to Australian and American residents only 
3. Entries close Monday April 2nd at 5pm 
4. Winner chosen by the awesome random number generator 
5. Leave a comment below and tell me:

What lifts you 'higher' in your life?

You can also connect with Mercy River on facebook and twitter.

Giveaway now closed.
Congrats to Kimberly from The Brown Eyes Have It.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

the wondering list


See this cute cherub above. She is bit of a chatterbox.
During my day she constantly bombards me with thoughts, ideas and questions.

I also have several other children who love to ask great questions. You know the type of questions that make you stop and really think. Often when they ask me these questions I am too busy and really do not have the time to answer them right away. Most of the time I find I do not know the answer or the best way to explain it as well. 

One of the great ideas I heard at the Power of Moms conference was a simple way to help your cherubs who are very inquisitive and often ask a lot of questions. Saren shared the idea of creating a wondering list. To find a place in your home such as a blackboard, the fridge or any free space to create a place to write up these questions.

So when your cherub asks a question that you do not have the time to answer or do not even know the answer for, you add it to the wondering list. Once it is added to the list you can then work your way through answering the questions when you have a free moment. As a family you can look up the answer on the internet, get a book from the library about it and even talk about the answer over dinner. 

I love that it is a simple way to let your children know that what they have to say is important, that you want to help them find the answers and that it is a wonderful opportunity as a family to increase in learning.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

tough love: 'mummy, I feel lonely'

My Sam is a sweet boy. He is also a twin.
I showed some tough love when he had his first experience with loneliness.

I was busy rushing around the house, keeping the homework humming and putting away clothes when I rushed passed the boys room to see Sam sitting on his bed looking very upset. I stopped what I was doing and went over to have a chat to him. I sat down on the bed and asked him what was wrong. 

He replied, 'Mummy, I feel lonely'.

My first reaction was to cuddle him, to protect, to heal his heart and to take away this hurt he was feeling. Then I realised that this is probably the first time he has ever felt lonely. Growing up as a twin, in a house full of seven cherubs is not a lonely life to live. It is busy and there is always someone around to play with.

I asked him why he was feeling lonely and he shared that there was nobody for him to play with at that moment. Everyone else was busy and happy with what they were doing and he felt totally left out.

I thought about how growing up in a large family he might not often have this feeling in life. It is an important feeling to be comfortable with and I decided I did not want him to be feeling what loneliness was like for the first time at the age of 19 or 20. I wanted him to have moments or glimpses of it while he was young. So he could be comfortable spending time with himself and learn to be happy having time alone.

So I hugged him, kissed him, told him he is loved and left him alone. To feel.

I walked away, with a tender heart, knowing that sometimes I need to step back and to let my cherubs learn and feel things for themselves. It was hard, it hurt me a little and I am sure it hurt Sam but I knew it was the best thing for Sam at that moment. 

A little moment of tough love that I hope will help him in the future.

How do you cope with tough love?
Are you a softie with your cherubs or do you find it easy to take a step back?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Seven Cherubs Giveaway

Today I am finishing up some giveaways that I have been looking forward to sharing with you.
We have giveaways from Jack N' Jill Natural Toothpaste, Method Cleaning and Alchemy Cordials.
I have added the rafflecopter entry form after each separate giveaway to make it easier to enter.
You are most welcome to enter all three if you like.
Have fun!



We have a problem with teeth cleaning in our house. My cherubs love to clean their teeth but they do not like the mint taste of toothpaste. It is too harsh a flavour for their mouth. We have tried several other brands and varieties of toothpaste but none of them have made my cherubs smile like Jack N' Jill Toothpaste. They wanted to eat it straight from the tube! I gave them all a small taste of the toothpaste and was met with a very enthusiastic response. Several children even ran off to clean their teeth right away!

As a family we were sent the Organic Banana and Organic Raspberry flavour to try. I even tasted it myself and it really does taste nice when you are cleaning your teeth. Flavour is only one awesome part of this wonderful company, they pride themselves on creating products that have all natural ingredients and are hypoallergenic. The Jack N' Jill natural toothpaste range contains Xylitol to fight tooth decay,  Organic Calendula to soothe gums and is also fluoride free, sugar free, colour free, SLS free and has no preservatives. 

All packaging is bright and fun for kids and they even have created an ergonomic handle made from 100% Corn Starch for the toothbrushes they sell. You can view the product range HERE.

I have to giveaway: 
2 x 50g Tubes of Natural Toothpaste and 1 x Bio Toothbrush

You can also find Jack N' Jill:

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Oral-B Triumph 5000 Review and Giveaway

Giveaway Closed!
Congrats to Yvette from Delightfully Tacky Little Squirts!

Oral-B Triumph 5000 Review and Giveaway

Last year I attended a blog event and was introduced to this very smart and sophisticated toothbrush.

This toothbrush is Oral-B's most happiest and technologically advanced toothbrush. As someone who loves to have clean teeth and loves that clean brush feel, I was very excited to review this product. Matt and I actually share this toothbrush and we both absolutely LOVE IT! So clever, so fun and such a great clean teeth feel after using it. The Triumph gives you that dentist clean feel in between dentist visits and is designed to cater to all teeth types.

After looking at the image above I know you are dying to know what extraordinary features this toothbrush contains. 
So here they are:

* It has a separate wireless SmartGuide™display (in the image above with smiling face) that helps give you 'while-you-brush' feedback and to promote optimised brushing performance.

* It has 5 Customized Brushing Modes: Daily Clean, Sensitive, Polish, Massage, Deep Clean 

* It removes up to 2X more plaque than a regular manual toothbrush 

* Deep Clean mode removes up to 99.7% of plaque from hard-to-reach areas

* It is gentle on teeth and gums 

* Pressure control feature to ensure the right degree of pressure is applied. This helps protect your gums from excessive brushing and makes your toothbrush easy to operate.

* This toothbrush uses the most advanced 3D technology from Oral B which both pulsates, oscillates and rotates to break up plaque and sweep it away. 

* It has Indicator® Bristles: which tell you when to replace your brush head, normally every 3 months, and when bristles are faded half-way 

* Includes 3 interchangeable heads – Floss Action, Pro Bright, Sensitive Satisfaction 

* Provides 40,000 pulsations and 8,800 oscillations per minute 

One of my favourite reasons for loving this toothbrush is the SmartGuide™display. Each morning when I start up my toothbrush the happy face on the display starts up as well. It clearly shows me how long I have been cleaning my teeth for and encourages me to go the full distance of cleaning my teeth for 2 minutes. This is a wonderful motivator for children and for adults. I have included an image below of the steps the display will go through when cleaning your teeth:


The SmartGuide™encourages you to brush thoroughly, gently and for the dentist-recommended two minutes. I of course aim to get the smiling face at the end of my teeth brushing session and find it a great way to start your day and to end your night. I have noticed a difference in my teeth since using this toothbrush, they feel cleaner and look better. I am also more committed to cleaning them since owning a Oral-B Triumph. Now that I have shared a little about this wonderful toothbrush let me share with you what I have available to giveaway to a Seven Cherubs reader today. The total prize pack below:

Included in the prize pack is:
1 x Oral-B Triumph 5000 Toothbrush
1 x wireless SmartGuide™display
3 x Brush Heads 
Travel Case 
Portable SmartPlug Charger 
Charging Station with Brush Head Storage

Total pack worth: $199.99

Here are the guidelines to enter:

1. Add yourself as a follower on my blog (if you are not already)
2. Open to Australian residents only
3. Entries close Wednesday 27th March 5pm
4. Winner chosen by the awesome random number generator
5. Leave a comment below and tell me:

How will the Oral-B Triumph 5000 give you a more confident smile?

By the way, the Back is Back!
Check out Rob the Dentist on facebook HERE!!

{Please make sure you have your address linked to your commenting profile or 
leave your address with your comment. I need to be able to contact you if you win}

{If you are visiting from lottos leaving a comment is not enough. 
You need to add yourself as a follower on my blog}

easy ideas display kids craft art projects


This year I am on my last year of displaying kids kindy craft art projects.
You know like the one cleverly, crafted and created above.

I have a love/hate relationship with these projects.
Love that my kids were creative, hate trying to fit them into my home!

I have seen my fair share of awesome (sometimes hard to love) craft projects come into my home. 
I have also used many different techniques to display them so my cherubs feel special.

Here are my tops ideas for displaying kids craft art projects:

1. The good old fridge. I don't know of any child who does not love their art work on the fridge. Super easy and seen everyday by everyone in the family.

2. Pin up board. This can be placed anywhere around the house. In the kids bedroom, play room or any family room so that it can be seen and appreciated by everyone.

3. Hang them on wire with pegs to display in rows on a wall in your home. If you have a large family or very creative children this is a great idea to create a dedicated space for displaying the kids art work.

4. A clothes airer. Just like they use in kindergartens. Bring the kindy home by displaying it outside under a veranda or in another room. Great as it can easily be folded away at anytime and also be used for the washing! Double role!

5. Display them in frames. Putting your cherubs art work up on a wall in a frame around the home helps them feel special and highlights the great work that they have done.

6. Open display scrapbook on the kitchen table. A way to keep artwork finger safe under protective sleeves and it can be referred to as the child's special art book that can be talked about during dinner.

7. One of my favourite things we have done is to lay down art work all over our kitchen table and to then cover with a clear plastic table covering so that it is see through and protected. Makes a fun table decoration and the kids can look at whenever they are sitting at the table. Great way for extended family or friends visiting to also see what art work has been created without it being destroyed.

8. For larger craft or art projects I sit them on our bookshelf or even on a hall table to be displayed and looked at. This way they are in sight of my cherubs until the time comes that they need to be disposed of for the next craft or art project because we can only have one craft project per child on display you know!


In my lounge room I have two large frames I picked up cheap that I have filled with my cherubs art work. It really brightens my room and everyone comments on it when they come in our home. My cherubs love that we have highlighted the great work that they have done. I also have a cottage looking coat hanger that hangs in my lounge (to the left in this picture above) where I can hang and display art work. At the moment it is showing off an awesome creation of Matt that Sam and Eli made.

By the way the large craft project in the first picture above that Liberty is holding is sitting in our hallway near the umbrellas and shoes until I can sneak it into the bin. Cute project but a little large for my liking!

How do you display your kids craft art projects?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Maybelline, Pantene, Clairol beauty product reviews

Time to share my last product review blog post.
This one has a beauty product theme.

I also have a bunch of giveaways coming up and then onto my new blog plan.
This post is dedicated to Tracey Holland who loves these blog posts.

Here are some products I have been reviewing lately:


Maybelline New York Limited Fashion Edition 
Baby Lips

Don't you just love the bright packaging? Fun! I love a good lip balm and I especially love a Berry flavour lip balm. Takes me way back to my teenage years when I first started using one. This is of course an Adult version strength lip balm to help give you baby soft lips. It has built in sun block to help protect against sun, wind or cold weather. I love the hot pink, I love the subtle berry flavour and I love that I can still enjoy my teenage years with an adult spin. Fun product that looks cool in my handbag. Available in four flavours: Energizing Orange, Smoothing Cherry, Menthol and Anti-Oxident Berry. If you see it in the shops check it out.


Pantene Pro V Clinicare Split end fuser
Leave on treatment

I have been trying out the Clinicare single dose split end fuser that help's repair damaged split ends. It was co-designed by Pantene Pro-V Science with the salon expertise of Wella. To use this product you shampoo and condition your hair. Then apply the product to towel dried hair focusing on the mid to tips of your hair. Spreading it out evenly with your fingers. It can however also be used on dry hair. For severe split ends, use at every wash until you see a difference. I recieved a 10 pack of the split end fuser to try out and each tube has 5ml's in it which I found was plenty for my hair. I don't really have split ends on my hair so I really could not tell if it works to help them out but my hair did continue to stay healthy and soft when using it so at least it did not dry out my hair. From using it I think it would be a productive product but I always keep my hair short so I cannot really say that it works effectively on split ends. The result the product is said to give you is a smoothness and suppleness with a luxurious shine.  I found it did keep my hair soft and shiny so it that sense it does work.


For an all day lift even on weakened roots.

As you know I am a big fan of Pantene products and I was excited to try out the Nature Fusion Root Lift Mist. I have to say I am sure going to miss receiving beauty products with the change I am making with my blog! Anyway, this product contains a hair re-strengthening complex to help lift your hair roots. Great for those days when you don't want to shampoo your hair and are looking to have a day off from taking care of your hair. To use apply the mist directly to your hair roots where you are needing some extra volume and then continue to style your hair with a hairdryer lifting your hair from the roots. I found that my hair continues to stay soft, look clean and it did give me some slight volume. My hair is very, very flat and has little body so for someone who has thicker hair it might work a little better. As I have such flat hair I am happy with any product that gives me any extra lift! I don't know if I would continue to buy it but I found that it did work for me. But every Pantene product works well on my hair. 


101 - Natural Baby Blonde

Several months ago I attended an event where I made this fun hair commercial. Still laughing about it actually! Whilst attending this event I had my hair colour matched to a Nice 'n Easy hair colour product. I have to say that I have never tried doing a permanent hair colour before and was a little nervous about trying it. I even asked on my facebook page if anyone else has tried it to get some feedback. After receiving some great comments and positive feedback I decided to give it a go. I found the process totally easy. 3 simple steps and I was ready to have a new colour on my hair. I was impressed that Nice 'n Easy blends three tones together to achieve three signs of a natural hair colour: depth, highlights and shine. After colouring my hair I was totally shocked to discover that my hair actually feels healthier. Seriously. It feels softer and does have better colour and shine. Amazing! I am happy with the end result and love the colour blended throughout my hair. My blonde highlights have stayed blonde and I have a great natural look. I would try this product again for sure. What the colour looks like:


What beauty product have you tried lately that you love?