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Tuesday, 27 October 2015

#MUMLIFE TUESDAYS - Childcare was the best thing I did for my child

I want to get more into my blogging but more on a personal level again rather than all these featured review type posts, so in saying that I bring #mumlife Tuesday's where I'll bring it back down. 

Today's piece... 

'CHILDCARE WAS THE BEST THING I DID FOR MY CHILD'



And honestly it has been. I was super skeptical about putting my child into day care after all these worst case scenarios you put through your head from news headlines. I still freak myself out about it all the time when I see bad things pop up online via social media or broadcasting etc 
I started working in childcare when I was about 15 years old as I love kids then at about 19 years old I stopped as I wanted to have a break and go do something else career wise, my perception changed as I grew to know what we as Childcare Educators do. They are not just your babysitters to look after your child whilst you go to work or take some time out, those Childcare Educators that look after your child on a regular basis are helping your child to learn through many ways. 
The Childcare Educators are creating experiences to help their skills, grow their minds, help with speech and so much more. 

I started putting Niah into long daycare when I started applying for jobs and thought I would have some time to ease back into things whilst having a few hours here and there with Niah in care but given that Niah already had been to short term care at the gym with me for about 1.5hours a few times a week the transition into long daycare was very simple, more so on Niah then me. 
I found a job pretty quickly after applying and before I knew it Niah was in daycare two or three days a week. 

I hoped that Niah would develop good eating habits and explore new food rather than be a little fussy eater at home. This worked yes - for daycare ONLY. I am told that Niah is a fantastic eater at daycare with eating majority of the food severed to her but unfortunately that is not the case when she gets home. Hopefully that stage will go though but for now I am fine with knowing she does well at daycare at least. 

The amount of talking and words Niah has now is phenomenal. They're in the prime age for making sentences and having conversations with a lot more understanding of what we are saying with them. 
Niah had base words before she went to daycare but daycare has really expanded her speech and vocabulary. A lot of babble comes out now... obviously Niah knows what she is saying but it's the case of just smiling and agreeing half the time with Niah not really understanding what she is saying except for what you conclude to with the key words that you did pick up from the chat. 

We carried on being friends and catching up with the Mums/Bubs from our local Mum and Bubs group when we all met with the kids at a few weeks old and to this day Niah has a gorgeous little best friend in which she has known since the early days. They attend the daycare together along with another little boy which was in the group and they get to see each other on a regular basis and play with one another as well as having meet other children to become friends with as well. 


Do you have children in childcare? How did your transition go with starting them in childcare?
Are you considering childcare? I would love to continue the chat with you below via comments, so leave me a comment xx

Monday, 26 October 2015

I stayed at the best hotel in Sydney... Swissotel REVIEW


My Sydney trip that I recently had was the best EVER, the people I was surrounded with, the reasons why I went up there and to top it all the hotel that I was kindly provided a complimentary stay with.

Swissotel Sydney is hands down the most beautiful hotel I have ever laid eyes on.
Everything about it just left you saying wow or smiling at.

The Swissotel Sydney, a 369 luxury room five start hotel is located on Market Place in the CBD heart of Sydney, with everything at your doorstop. Short walk to all those Sydney attractions like the Harbour Bridge, Opera House as well as being right at the corner hub of Pitt Street with all the cafes, shops and restaurants you could need.

Located on the ground floor is the concierge who can arrange valet parking for you for $60 a day. No worries about where to find parking in the busy city, just stop right at the doors of Swissotel and they will take care of it for you. For myself as a 'tourist' in the city it was very beneficial and not to mention if you have many bags, you are not lugging them around with you whilst you make your way to the hotel.

The concierge will collect your keys and bring his trolley to take your luggage, a flick not even lifted and the relaxation is already kicking in.
Take a short trip on the lift up to level 8 where you will be at the 'ground' floor of the hotel's reception and lobby that has some conference room space, lounge and bar/coffee area - Crossroads Bar with a restaurant - JPB also located on the same floor.

Upon checking in we were meet by the Assistant Manager on duty who offered to take us to our room with a tour on the way, this was phenomenal. We kindly accepted the tour as we wanted to be able to see everything that the Swissotel offered.

The scents of this stunning aroma fills the hotel floors in which the Assistant Manager advised us that the cooling is fragranced to let of the scent of feeling at home, definitely felt like a place I would want to call home.


Taking the lifts once again we stopped off first at level 9 which has meeting rooms, computer and office use as well as a Executive Club Lounge area that overlooks the Crossroads Bar on the level below and can be utilized by those who stay within certain rooms; Signature Skyline or Executive room.
Inside the Executive Club Lounge you are provided with a full buffet breakfast from 6am till 10:30am, high tea from midday and pre-dinner drinks and canapes from 5pm till 7:30pm. Outside and during these hours up until 10:30pm you can come in and relax in the lounge, taking care of business with comfy chair and table areas. Tea and coffee as well as chilled soft drink and waters is provided complimentary as well as fresh fruit from the basket.


The Assistant Manager then took us up another level to level 10 where this was the real serenity and lifestyle place to be area with spa rooms, gym, outdoor heated pool and jacuzzi.


It was then time to head to our room, located on the top floor level 25 was our room. As soon as the elevator doors opened the mind was already blown, the marble stone on the feature parts of walls, the blue and gold carpet with a modern design. We opened the doors to our room to this beautiful and spacious room that just made you sigh was how comfortable you know you would be.
The Assistant Manager showed us the mini bar and coffee station located within the room and left with advising us if there was anything they can assist with to give them a call.


The beds were really something. It was a long day for us and as soon as I got the chance I had to lay down to see if the bed was just as comfy as it looked... It was even more comfier than it looked. I couldn't wait to get into bed that night as I knew I would be sleeping like a baby.
A bed that was complete with a pillow menu to satisfy your resting time. Should you wish to change the pillows provided to something of more satisfaction you can call reception to have this arranged.


A bowl of fruit, some Swiss water and a plate of delectable desserts greeted us with a handwritten note from the Marketing Manager herself. A beautiful gesture and something that I thought was really put the cherry on the cake.


The next thing we did is headed for that Executive Club Lounge as this was post our Bloggers United AU Sydney event we wanted to ensure we noted down all the good things and suggestions/ideas we had flowing through our heads. We spent easily an hour or so just brainstorming and going over how well our day was going in complete.


We were completely drained after a good session working that it was time to unwind and we headed down to the lobby floor when you can have some casual drinks or share a meal at the Crossroads Bar, a hard stiff drink was what us ladies did whilst sitting in the gorgeous little pods opposite the reception desks.


After having a drink together, sharing memories and laughs it was time to retire to our room for a good earned nights sleep in those immaculate beds were we eyeing off since we arrived to our room.


Jasmine took the luxury time of soaking in the rooms bath whilst I myself hit the sack straight away and felt like I could sleep forever in the comfort of the Swissotel beds.


In the morning, as per any morning I am super hungry for breakfast so I can start my day.
I got dressed, did my makeup in the bathroom with the super helpful pull out circular mirror which is attached to the bathroom wall so you can really see your face and headed down to the Executive Club Lounge for a buffet breakfast.


The breakfast put on by the Swissotel definitely tops any other place I have been before.
A gourmet range of hot breakfast delights of sausages, baked beans, scrambled and poached eggs, soups, steamed vegetables and several kinds of breakfast including banana bread and some pastries as well as having a full range of teas, juices, coffee. You would then look to the other side of the kitchen benches and have an array of fresh fruit, mixed bircher muesli's, yogurts and cereals. I highly doubt there would be someone who couldn't find something that would be of desire within that delicious mouth watering range.

I do believe I was one of the first in the lounge ready for breakfast as I wanted to start my day early and adventure around town which was super easy to get to as Swissotel is right in the heart of the CBD and conveniently located right next door to the Westfield Shopping Centre.

I took the morning to explore the hotel once again and see everything from a lighter day set. I was so upset that I didn't pack bathers for the jacuzzi or pool and also being that I sent my sister home with my runners the night before so I couldn't use the gym facilities.

After adventuring around and exploring the hotel some more I met with the beautiful Marketing Manager of the Swissotel over coffee and was able to learn more about herself and tell her myself how impressed I was with the hotel and how stunning it was.
I was super keen to see a 'Kids Room' all set up as I had done some research about the hotel before my stay and saw they offered 'Kids Rooms' in which they deck out a room filled with children novelties from the bed sheets to toys in the room. Unfortunately there was not one set up at the time as these are only done up by requested only, in that case... I know where I will be visiting when I head back to Sydney with the family.

Swissotel is a hotel I would highly recommend with several different price points on rooms that will not disappoint and be the luxurious RnR stay you need.

Features of the Swissotel to keep in mind:

  • JPB - The Swissotel's resident restaurant 
  • Crossroads Bar - The Swissotel's resident bar/lounge area
  • Complimentary wifi/internet access - printer on hand as well as computers for use
  • Wellness facilities - jacuzzi, heated pool, spas and gym
  • Valet parking
  • Executive Club Lounge - if staying within certain rooms.
  • CBD location with everything in walking distance.
  • 5 star luxury hotel

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Swissotel Sydney, I received a complimentary one nights stay at the above mentioned hotel in exchange for its promotion here. I received no payment for this review and all opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.

Friday, 16 October 2015

Silvers Circus visits New Gisborne - REVIEW




The excitement of seeing Silvers Circus and New Gisborne together in the one sentence come across my inbox was just too much to handle.
Gisborne doesn’t get anything like this at all, attractions never really take place apart from a yearly Christmas festival.

It blew my mind to know that the family behind Silvers Circus were locals from my hometown. It’s funny that we used to see all the circus caravans and such in a paddock in Gisborne but it never clicked that it would be the Silvers Circus.


Arriving to the location of where Silvers Circus are set up for the week whilst performing in their hometown you are greeted with the Macedon Ranges hills in the distance, a view that’s magical, exciting and breathtaking all in one.

There was something for me that took over and I really felt so happy for the Silvers Circus team to be performing at home for not only them but for me.


As you walk up to purchase or collect tickets you are then greeted with the little sideshows of the balls through the clowns mouth game, a novelty showbag or food stalls giving you all those treats that go with the Circus of hotdogs, popcorn,  hot jam donuts, choc tops or snow cones. In this instance they also had a smaller blow up bouncy castle.
I have said this before but Silvers Circus are so well priced when it comes to purchasing light up sticks, at $8 thats a bargain in comparison to other places. 

The whistle blows and everyone gets seated for the show. I have seen Silvers Circus many times before and it never gets old, I could watch it over and over. They’re magnificent at what they do and with minimal if not, no mistakes at all.


Silvers Circus had a new performer in the mix this time around that I haven’t seen before which saw Klara (as pictured above) foot juggling even with balls of fire at one stage.

The energy that’s displayed and given to the audience from each performer is always something to really commend each of them on. I never walk away thinking that they are just doing it as a job, they do it because they enjoy it.


Each performer takes a part in helping behind the scenes prepping each others stage for their piece as well as taking part in the sideshow attractions and food stalls. Customer service is phenomenal with a smile, kinds words and going the extra mile. Niah was a little shy in wanting to go on the bouncy castle and the male attendant was more then happy to take his shoes off and help aid her into going on the bouncy castle which I just thought was fantastic.

Silvers Circus will be in New Gisborne at the mini train area in Webb Crescent until Sunday 18th October, 2015.

A high recommendation to see if you are in the area, or keep posted for your local areas.


www.silverscircus.com.au

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Silvers Circus. I received a complimentary family pass to the Silvers Circus in exchange for its promotion here. I received no payment for this review and all opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.

Thursday, 15 October 2015

Illooms LED balloons REVIEW


Not long ago it was my darling Niah's second birthday. Feels like just yesterday I was kidless, life really does go so fast and your babies don't stay babies for very long.

I was recently introduced to a brand called Illooms LED balloons who specialise is having light up balloons, not just the regular coloured balloons but balloons that can really bring a party or special occasion to life. Balloons that can fit right in with the party and age of kids. Celebrate with Illooms with their super size aliens, marble galaxy looking balloons, happy faces and message balloons.



Each pack of light up balloons contains x4 except for the Aliens and Gnomes which have x3. Each balloon will give you over 15 hours of light. We had one of the first original balloons we started with go for two (2) whole days.

The LED lights work by yourself activating the light via the pull tab from the inside of the balloon. Once you have pulled that tab out of the balloon the light will immediately come on and light up inside of the balloon.
When you use the character novelty balloons they are the ones that really create that 'WOW' factor. I did find that the marble multicoloured balloons didn't light up as much in comparison to the other balloons which I think is possibly due to the fact they are a bit thicker of a make.



The Aliens and Gnomes were by far Niah's favourite due to the larger size and that Niah could carry them round like newfound friends. The Gnomes also flash as well which is a real grabber for the kids. 
As you can imagine at night time when it gets darker or in a shut off light room the balloons will start to illuminate the room with light and can almost act as a night light.

I really liked the marble balloons as they were really appealing to the eye but as I said above they weren't as strong lighted as the others.



Illooms LED balloons vary in cost pricing between $6.99 to $9.99.

Something like Illooms LED balloons would be great for hanging from the roof during those night time affair parties, having them with the kids come Christmas eve when we have those street parties and go Christmas light hunting.

Find out more here: Illooms LED Balloons

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Illooms LED Balloons and Nuffnang, I received a range of Illooms LED balloon products as above mentioned above in exchange for its promotion here. I received no payment for this review and all opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Join in World Record attempt of largest fit ball class with Fitness & Health Expo and Michelle Bridges


Bondi is going BIG!
Fitness & Health Expo and Michelle Bridges to attempt
Guinness World Record for largest fit ball class.

On the morning of Friday October 16, the Fitness & Health Expo is calling on Sydney-siders to bounce out of bed and down to Bondi Beach to be part of an official Guinness World Record for the largest fit ball class led by fitness guru Michelle Bridges.

In spectacular fashion, to officially launch to 2015 Sydney Fitness & Health Expo, the record will be challenged with a line of class participants stretching almost half a kilometer around the northern end of Bondi Beach.

The current record of 353 participants took place in Time Square in New York in April last year but Bondi will hopefully be the location for a new record when the half-hour class kicks off at 8.30am.

Hundred of balls will be inflated on the morning and 20 instructors from the Australian Institute of Fitness will help lead the giant class.

Come and have a ball, make history and enjoy a fun workout overlooking beautiful Bondi Beach - you must be over 18 and pre-register to take part as there are only limited spaces!

You will be provided with a Michelle Bridges One Active fit ball on the day and it’s yours to keep. Secure your spot and your fit ball by pre-registering here.

“There’s really no better way to start your morning – exercise, sea air and a chance to be part of something huge! So get a group together and let’s set a new record, Sydney style, and have a lot of fun and burn a tonne of calories along the way.” Michelle Bridges.

Event details
Date: Friday October 16
Sign-in on the day: 6.30am (must have pre-registered)
Sign-in closes: 8am (must arrive and sign in before 8am or you won’t be able to take part)
Class: 8.30-9am
Location: Bondi Beach Promenade (northern end), Queen Elizabeth Dr, Bondi Beach

Other fitness celebrities and athletes will also join in on the day, including multi-Guinness World Record holder Marcus Bondi.

Prizes will be given away throughout the morning for those who register between 6.30 and 7am including five days worth of home delivered lunches and dinners from Fit & Fresh (valued at $150) and a Garmin Forerunner 25 watch (valued at $219).

Garmin are the official timekeepers for this World Record attempt.


The Fitness & Health Expo will be held October 16-18 at the Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park. It’s open from 11am – 4pm on the Friday and 10am – 5pm on Saturday and Sunday. For more information and updates on the record attempt visit www.fitnessexpo.com.au and follow Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Silvers Circus is coming to NEW GISBORNE! + GIVEAWAY



ROLL UP ROLL UP 

Silvers Circus is heading to NEW GISBORNE!
My hometown of where I grew up is finally getting something big and amazing out there. 

New Gisborne – Stream Park Oval, Webb Cresent 14th – 18th October 

INCLUDING A BREATHTAKING NEW ACT - ‘ANTIPODIST’ - THE FOOT JUGGLER -  THAT WILL HAVE YOU ON THE EDGE OF YOUR SEAT AS SHE JUGGLES BALLS OF FIRE! 

Silvers Circus is a household name in Australia and after nearly three decades on the road maintains all the sparkle, glamour and death defying acts expected of Australia’s premier circus. Silvers Circus continues to provide jaw dropping entertainment for the whole family with new locations just announced.


Established in 1976, Silvers Circus provides world class family entertainment and fun. With extraordinary artists continually arriving from all parts of the world, Silvers are proud of the ever changing program they are able to present.

Silvers have introduced a new act to the show this year, Antipodist which means foot juggling. Klara J not only juggles footballs, and manages to shoot a ball into a hoop she juggles fireballs, an idea developed and only performed by Klara J in this country.

The 2 hour action show, featuring Ringmaster and Master of Illusions, Simon Tait will also include:

· Wheel of Steel. Two young men with nerves of Steel, Dominik Gasser and Ramon Kathriner, run, jump, skip and flip through a routine of sheer physical ordacity, just as the apparatus they challenge defies description. Its wheels osolate and revolve from group level to dizzying heights. This spectacle will leave you chewing your nails and squirming in your seats! The Wheel of Steel…. (for strong constitutions only!!)

· The Globe of Death. The world famous Phoenix Riders speed around inside a 3-1/2 meter diameter metal globe on motorbikes, missing each other by mere millimetres.

· Hire Wire Act. It’s electrifying. Watch as the artist uses his talents to bravely step out into thin air on a silver wire thread high above the circus arena. 


· Hoola Hoops. Up to 80 hoola hoops at once are managed while a balancing act is taking place upon a mobile mirror ball all at the same time

· Clowns. Expect the unexpected. This act is guaranteed to tickle the funny bone

· The Roman Rings. A very unique act which is performed with extreme strength and elegance. Little girls will be amazed by the beauty and grown men in awe of the control and physicality.

· Illusionist.
Ringmaster Simon Tait has over 25 years’ experience in circus and will mesmerise the audience with his celebrated illusions and audience repour.

and with many more world class acts, Silvers Circus is guaranteed to tap into the nostalgia we all hold for a unique circus experience.

So Welcome to our world of spectacular family entertainment. There is no other circus like Silvers Circus. 


We have x5 family passes (2 adults, 2 children) valued at $120 each to GIVEAWAY! 

All you have to do is comment below saying 'I WANT TO GO TO THE CIRCUS'. 

Giveaway closes at 12pm noon on Tuesday 13th October and winners will be contacted by 5pm that night.

Please Note: You will need to make your own way to event, no transport is given and must be able to attend on any of the days that they are in town. 
This giveaway is also being run on NJT Blogger facebook page where you can double your chances of winning over there by commenting on the post.

For all show details visit – www.silverscircus.com.au

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Silvers Circus. I will be receiving tickets to the show above in exchange for its promotion here. I received no payment for this review and all opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Brand Focus: Little Bird REVIEW

Little Bird who range in Coles have a new scent/flavour to their pawpaw ointment. Coconut is the newest addition along with a moisturizing butter.

Once again apologies for the thumbnail that is showing for the video shot below... I'm still learning.

Mission Foods Red Quinoa and Chia Wraps REVIEW

Our household have always enjoyed having wraps as a meal for either lunch or dinner, it's the perfect meal for getting all those veggies in, a healthier alternative and is super quick and easy to dish up.

I've said it so many times now and I'll say it again... I'm a time poor person. I have a busy lifestyle that leaves me limited time to prepare and cook dinner before its time to retire to bed. Our household would have wraps as a meal at least two a week for dinner. Mixing it up with either having tacos, burritos, beef wraps or chicken wraps are just some of the options we have.

Recently we were sent a box of goodies from Mission Foods. We are well known to this brand as we purchase there wraps, tortillas, tortilla corn chips and taco stuff and stands quite often.
Something that we haven't tried from their range before was the Red Quinoa and Chia wraps (RRP $4.79), reason being not all of my household is into their superfood's like myself. I was sceptical on how they would go down with the household and to be flexible with them I just stuck to the normal.
Thank goodness Mission did get us to try out the Red Quinoa and Chia wraps as there has been not one complaint received from them at all. It really does go to show you can't mock it before you try it.


Mission launched the Red Quinoa and Chia wraps over a year ago now (September 2014) but have recently re-launched the wraps with new packaging. Bold and with all the important information stated on the front.
No artificial colors or flavours, source of fibre and super soft might I add. All packaged in the fantastic resealable bag to keep that freshness and softness for longer.
Each pack contains 8 wraps that are about the size of a kids sized plate, perfect sizing in my eyes as I did find that the normal wraps that have been around for awhile are just a little too big in sizing and is not necessary as you are taking the first few bites of just the wrap bread.



Red Quinoa & Chia are considered some of the best superfood's for their health benefits. It's those things that you normally can't get your kids to eat from the plate so let's get a little cheeky and hide it in their food.



Quinoa was known as the 'mother of all grains' by the Aztecs. Quinoa has the perfect balance of amino acid essentials for human nutrition. 
Chia seeds are known as an ancient Aztec grain that contain a little bit of everything, they contain omega-3 fats, calcium, dietary fibre and protein. 


We actually really enjoy the Red Quinoa & Chia wraps for taco use nights. Lean mince meat filled with fresh produce like featured above spinach leaves, carrot, capsicum, tomato, spring onion, avocado, light cheese, jalapeños etc. What goes into your tacos when its taco night at your house?


Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Mission Foods and Nuffnang, I received a range of Mission products and the above mentioned above in exchange for its promotion here. I received no payment for this review and all opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.
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