Category Archives: Mummies reviews

What’s new from NERF? 

My son Hudson has always wanted NERF guns. Since he is only 4, I wasn’t sure he could be trusted to not shoot his little sister, me or the dog. 

We were both extremely happy to discover the new NERF NITRO range of launchable vehicles. These little foam stunt vehicles can be shot out of the launcher onto ramps and smash through barrells. You can buy different sets, cars and customise as you please. 

My favourite part is that the launcher can only be used when pressed on the ground (or solid surface) this prevents any little people from using launching them unexpectedly while walking around. 

The cars are soft and perfect for indoor play. We have spent many afternoons setting up stunt tracks and jumps. Both Hudson and Scarlett love them, and they are fantastic entertainment in this winter weather when no one can play outside. 

Check them out…….The NERF NITRO range is reasonably priced with car refills starting from $9.99 and packs starting from$19.99. You can pick them up from all good toy stores (also Kmart, Toys R’ Us, Myer, Toy World and Big W)

Hudson playing with his NERF Longshot Smash from Hasbro. 

Rachelle xx 

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Hypoxi does it work?  Let me tell you….

I have been going to Hypoxi 2-3 times each week for 3 months now. 

Before I share my final results I want to go back to my 1st Hypoxi session. I felt nervous and quite skeptical. How on earth is laying in a suit that feels like bubble wrap popping all over my body and cycling (not too fast) going to help change my body?  Was this a cult? Is this some sort of pyramid scheme? Are these ladies brainwashing me? I had been told my whole life you cannot spot reduce fat or lose weight in specific areas. 

Anyway, I wanted to give it a go.  Everyone kept telling me ‘you’re not big, why would you go there’.  The truth is, I wanted to see if it works, I wanted to be able to give a true account and go by my own experience. Hypoxi approched me to try it out for 3 months, I was told I could be skeptical and share my true feelings. I now completely understand why I was never given any points to mention, they really let the results speak for themselves. 

I have been going to the Wantirna studio, it’s super busy there, but I was always in and out pretty quick. The girls at the studio made me feel very welcome and are really lovely. I’m actually going to miss seeing them and chatting each week (especially Bianca and Belinda, I saw them the most).  I think this is important as if you’re going to go somewhere a few times a week you want the staff to be welcoming and friendly. 

I am 165cm tall and normally weigh between 52 and 56kg (depending on the time of the month, if I am super hungry or bloaty). I had lost all of my pregnancy weight but still felt I could tone up a little and work on my skin elasticity. Hypoxi helped with this. I wasn’t expecting to see huge amounts of cm’s coming off as I’m not a big person. Even in my 1st session I was advised that I may not see huge losses.  I still was curious to see how it would affect my body. 

As I mentioned I went 2-3 times a week and immediately noticed my legs looking a little more toned, not bulky. Just toned.  I also noticed everything was less wiggly puffy and jiggly (#winning).  Most of all I enjoyed the time out. I could relax, watch trashy tv or do a spot of online shopping without distraction or any little people climbing on me. All while working out.

Fast forward 3 months and I have had my final measurements and lost 21.5 cms off my lower body……hooo rah.  My skin feels tighter,  everything is more toned and less, wobbly.  My clothes fit better and this is all without changing my diet. 

If you’re thinking of trying Hypoxi, have some excess baby weight to shift or would like to tone up. Do it, they offer a free no commitment trial so you can try before you sign up. I can definitely say it’s worth a shot.  I was skeptical too and now I think I want to sign up for some more sessions. 

Rachelle xx

Feeling trim and toned since Hypoxi

The studio

Workout while Keeping up with the Kardashians or catching up on emails. 

This is the suit that feels like bubble wrap. It’s actually relaxing and some women fall asleep. 

Lay down machine 

Stand up machine 

Stats 

Lay down machines and magazines to keep you occupied

Looking for childcare?

When it came time for me to return to work, I toured a lot of childcare centres. To be honest I didn’t fall in love with any of them. Staff were always lovely but the centres were often quite old and run down.

Now there is a new wave of childcare centres on the scene and they are amazing. Hudson, Scarlett and I recently had a wonderful time checking out the Guardian Early Learning Group centre at 101 Collins Street Melbourne. There are 38 of these centres in Victoria and many more Australia wide, if you are considering childcare it’s definitely worth checking them out.

The centre we went to is located at 101 Collins Street, right in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. perfect for working parents.  I was expecting a small centre with not a lot of light and no outdoor areas. However, the centre is huge (it spans over two levels), really bright and there are two large indoor/outdoor areas for the kids to play.

In addition to the indoor outdoor areas I learnt about the amazing ways they get the children out and about. There is a special 8 seater stroller that is used for trips to the park, art gallieries and walks around the CBD. They have super cute little rain suits so the kids can really enjoy their time out and not even Melbourne weather will stop them.

Scarlett’s highlight was meeting the pet fish and the kids even got to hold the pet bird that lives at the centre.

Hudson loved the indoor/outdoor area and even made a friend while he was playing outside.

I loved the open plan feel, light bright presentation of the centre. However, my absolute highlight was the open kitchen area. Children can sit and watch the chef prepare their nutritional meals and everyone is welcome at the centre for breakfast. This would definitely help with time management in the mornings as mum, dad and any siblings are welcome to eat with the little ones.  Parents only have to worry about getting dressed and hopping on the train or in the car. A nutritional breakfast is waiting at childcare (including coffee).  I often drop the kids off in a frenzy and end up eating something in the car or skipping breakfast all together.

There is an open door policy and parents are welcome to visit their children at anytime (perfect for breastfeeding mummas), the director told me some parents take their kids out to lunch. I would love to be able to have lunch dates with Hudson and Scarlett on work days. or simply pop in and say hello, I think they would love it and I would have way less mummy guilt about having to leave them while I work.

There is a fully funded kinder program and the fees are really reasonable. If you would like more information feel free to contact one of the Guardian centres or check out their website 

Rachelle xx

 

 

 

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The perfect Bluetooth speaker is here….

My kids love music and watching movies on our tablets and phones. I have been on the hunt for a decent Bluetooth speaker for awhile now, after purchasing one that was terrible quality, with no battery life that eventually broke after just a couple of uses I discovered the Mini LifeJacket III  from Altec Lansing.

This little speaker is fantastic and so durable (very important with little sticky hands around). We have used it a lot;  out on our deck, at the park, the lake and when we have gone on picnics.  The 16 hour battery life is fantastic and it will hold up against the elements. The Mini LifeJacket III is even buoyant so if you are doing a spot of fishing  or hanging out at the kiddie pool and it gets dropped in the water it will float.   The sound quality is really good and if your phone rings the speaker will still work so you don’t miss any calls.

You can pick up one of these beauties at Ananconda,  The Good Guys or Target.

Check us out having a picnic at the Redwood Forest in Warburton (Melbourne, AU). We took our Mini LifeJacket III with us and had some tunes pumping while we relaxed in the forest. Such great place to visit with kids, have a walk and a picnic. Perfect!!! 

Rachelle xx

 

 

 

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Quick getaway for the family 

After a busy year we wanted to get away for a night with the kids so they could enjoy Christmas in the city. We took the opportunity to stay at Holiday Inn (Flinders Street). 

This let us experience all the Christmas action that Melbourne had to offer, we had a small break and we didn’t have to deal with screaming tired kids on the drive home in the car. Holiday Inn is so close to everything that as soon as Scarlett rubbed her eyes and Hudson complained of being tired we were back in our room within 10 mintues. 

We went to Crown Casino, walked up to Bourke Street and caught a tram to Docklands (it’s in the free tram zone). Kids stay and eat for free so that is a real bonus. Plus, when we arrived ay our room there were little entertainment packs for the kids that included colouring books, stickers, crayons and brochures. These were a fantastic distraction at dinner.  The staff were really accomodating and our room was made up with a porta cot and trundle bed. 

We stayed in a suite so once the kids went to sleep my husband and I ordered room service (including delicious cocktails) and watched a movie. 

I was never sure about just going to the city for a night or two with kids but we all really enjoyed it.  All the family rooms on level four have been renovated and look amazing. It’s  the second time we have stayed at Holiday Inn and if you’re looking for somewhere family friendly and close to everything give them a call. Hudson and Scarlett are already asking to go back. 

Perfect for a school holiday getaway.

Rachelle xx 

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el8te Skincare Q&A

I recently had the opportunity to try the el8te skin care range. el8te is a luxurious natural skincare brand that offers a high quality product at an affordable price.

Founded by Gen Reid, Jenny Price and Sally Glover, el8te can be used by all ages and skin types. It’s Australian made and free from any nasty chemicals. Making it ideal for sensitive skin. I had a chance to ask the founders of el8te some questions.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions about your amazing product range, tell me a little bit about why this came about and what the inspiration for the brand is

We really wanted to create a skincare brand that was truly and genuinely free of nasty chemicals and which incorporated goat milk. Goat milk has incredible healing benefit and is therefore perfect for sensitive skin which is so prevalent these days.

What sets el8te products apart from the rest? 

Most goat milk ranges use processed and powdered goat milk whereas el8te uses only fresh Australian goat milk. Lots of goat milk product on the market is pitched at a supermarket level but we really wanted to open up this space and develop an attractive and elevated brand that could be used by the whole family.

I have young children, some products I have used in the past have caused rashes and dry out their sensitive skin. Tell me a little bit about your Goat’s milk baby range? 

Our babies are so precious and it’s distressing to see the ingredients in some products pitched at babies. We use no nasty chemicals or artificial fragrances so our goat milk range is super safe for gentle and sensitive skin. Our baby range is not only safe for baby’s skin but it has real healing benefits for rashes and irritation that they can be so susceptible to.  

Where do you source the ingredients for the el8te skin care range? 

All the ingredients used are sourced in Australia.

I see you use activated charcoal in some of your products. What are the benefits of this? 

Activated charcoal has been used for millennium– it absorbs deep into the pores to draw out dirt & oil making it perfect for blemished and acne prone skin. Our hand and body wash is scented with pure spearmint oil and it’s one of my favourite products in the el8te range.

Where can I buy el8te? 

You can buy el8te online at www.el8teaustralia.com

What a delightful gift for any new bub (or mum).
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Thank you

Rachelle xx

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Going out? Stay organised.

Now Hudson is three and Scarlett is one, I’m at the point where a huge nappy bag isn’t required for every time I leave the house. Also, after having my babies just over 2 years apart I’m sick of carrying my nappy bag and want to use a normal handbag.

My husband recently bought me a beautiful handbag and I dont want it constantly full of nappies and snacks. I have been known to throw a couple of snacks and some nappies in the bottom of the pram, the problem with this is they sometimes stay there and finding a rotten banana or going to change a nappy only to discover it’s two sizes too small isn’t much help.

Recently I discovered Bellhop bags.  They keep everything organised and alow you to take what you need for a day out. 

* Each bag has a tab at the top to label, so you can see at a glance what each file contains.

* They come with pre-printed stickers for the tab, or you can write your own.

* Each bag has a durable mesh which allows you to see the contents and is easy to clean.

* There is a handy clip that easily attaches to your pram. Perfect for umbrella strollers that have no storage baskets underneath. I have also attached mine to a trolley when out shopping.

*You can easily unclip whatever files you don’t need so you don’t carry unnecessary items around.
 
* Bellhop bags are available in grey canvas with a red mesh, or in grey canvas with a blue mesh.

Bellhop bags help me to stay organised, allow me to change bags and I can pack for the days out without worrying about what handbag I am taking. I found that I can pop some money/phone in them and dont even need to take a bag. I have so many options as I can use some of my smaller handbags and clutches that I have had tucked away in the wardrobe for a few years. 

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Rachelle xx

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Let me explain – Sleeping bag? Tog?

The one thing I remember learning at the baby classes was how to swaddle a newborn. They give you a doll and you wrap it up like a little springroll. Cute and easy yes?? Well until you need to apply it to a mini houdini who wriggles around and escapes every 5 minutes.

Both Hudson and Scarlett enjoyed being swaddled but they also loved to wave their arms in the air like they just don’t care.  I would be woken up multiple times a night by a baby that had escaped. Even newborns move their arms around a lot and often scratch themselves in their sleep, I always found it easier to keep their little arms wrapped up tight. There is also the added struggle of finding large, quality muslin wraps, most shrink after the first wash and your left with nothing more than an expensive burp cloth.

I was given an ErgoCocoon just after Hudson was born and decided to try it out. His arms stayed inside and he slept so much better. I haven’t looked back, there was no chance of me bothering with swaddling again.  

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As Hudson grew out of the cocoon,  I discovered the whole world of baby/child sleeping bags. What on earth is a TOG? What sort do I need and why do they seem to cost so much? Are there benefits?

Let me break it down for you.

▫A Tog rating is a way of measuring of the warmth of a baby sleeping bag or swaddle. The lower the tog rating the lighter the bag so a 0.5 sleeping bag would be for summer and 2.5 would be for winter.  ErgoPouch have a really snappy little nursery temperature chart   and what to wear guide to help you out.

▫ As for what sort of sleeping bag to get. I always choose cotton, it’s a natural fibre and helps keep your baby comfortable so they’re not waking up all sweaty from polyester sleeping bags or blankets.

▫Why do sleeping bags cost so much? Let me tell you, I believe sleeping bags are worth every penny. It’s a great investment (and a great present for any expecting parent). I used a lot of Hudson’s old ones for Scarlett and have even passed them onto friends. A good quality sleeping bag will wash well and last the distance. If you have a couple of different ones there is no need for extra blankets.

▫What are the benefits?  I have found the benefits for my children (and me) are better sleep, plus piece of mind knowing that there are no loose wraps in the cot or bassinet for my baby to get tangled in.  Scarlett had hip dyplasia, I was warned against using wraps as people often wrap too tight around the hips and holds them in the wrong position. Sleeping bags were great for Scarlett as I didn’t have to worry about her hips.  Finally having a cotton swaddle or sleeping bag may assist bubs with sensitive skin.

I hope this clarifies the whole tog/sleeping bag area for new mums and mums to be. ergoPouch have everything you need (up to 6 years old) and a beautiful range of patterns to suit. It really does make life easier.

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Rachelle xx

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Stuck for ideas this Christmas?

If you’re looking for something a little extra with a personal touch this Christmas check out Stuck on You. They have some really cute products. Their Christmas range has everything – Santa sacks, personalised pillows, books and tree ornaments. These are  all great gift ideas, especially for a newborn who is having their first Christmas. What a great little keepsake. Hudson adored his personalised letter from Santa that was waiting for him in the letterbox after childcare. 

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All the labels for my kids childcare clothes, bags and shoes are from Stuck on You they have great value bundles and the labels are great quality.  After losing a couple of hats at childcare I also purchased hats with names on them so they don’t get caught up in crazy childcare life and lost. Definitely easier and cuter than buying spare hats all the time and writing names all over them.
There are drink bottles, lunch boxes, clothing, puzzles and bags. All of which can be personalised. Little kids love seeing their own name on everything so this is the place to go for gifts with a personal touch. Postage is super quick and the website is really easy to navigate (even Nanna could handle this one). There’s still time to get that little something extra for Christmas.

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Rachelle xx

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Teething tips for tired mummas

As mothers teething is something we all go through. It’s awful to see your little one in pain and feel that there is nothing you can do to help. Some babies are great and just wake up with new chompers without even a whimper. Unfortunately, I knew every single tooth that broke through with my son. The first teeth, molars and eye teeth really gave him a rough time.

While we have all heard of using Panadol, Nurofen and Bongela. I thought I would share some other products and techniques I have found useful to ease the pain of teething.

CORAMS TEETHING GEL:
All natural and made with cloves. This is great as it does ease discomfort and unlike Bongela can be used at the same time as Nurofen. You can find this one at most chemists.

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NATURAL RUBBER TEETHERS:
There are so many different teething toys to choose from. It’s easy to get confused and just grab anything. I like natural products and to support small Australian businesses. Recently I discovered The Bub. All natural teething and lactation products made for mums and bubs in Australia.  They have really cute designs and colours and are a real hit with my little girl. All these products are dishwasher safe and you can even pop them into the freezer for extra relief from sore swollen gums.

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FROZEN TREATS:
Icy poles can often be a bit much for little bubs so I freeze drops of fruit puree and yoghurt on baking paper. They are a great little treat for when your baby is teething (my son still loves them and he has all his teeth).  Of course make sure you supervise as you normally would to ensure no one is choking on their icy treat.

MESH BAGS:
Mesh feeding bags are great as it allows your little one to eat by themselves without and they can easily suck or chew on frozen berries and icy treats. The bag does need to be washed thoroughly but I have seen these at Kmart for $2 so they’re certainly not going to break the bank if you have to buy two.

FROZEN FLANNEL:
Never underestimate the dear old face washer. I was given so many of these when I was pregnant and they have come in handy. Wet one and pop it in the freezer so your little one can chew on it and relieve teething pain. They are also good on hot days.

If all else fails lots of cuddles and distraction techniques until those pearly whites pop through.

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Rachelle xx

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