Happy Holidays! Things have been a little quiet on the blog because they have been a little crazy in real life. The last dying moments of 2017 threw us a few curve balls but we have emerged to fight another day. Blogging will continue in 2018, if a little sporadic to cope with school, daycare, work and our own small business. Here's to a new year, new possibilities and new opportunities.
Lulu peeked over my shoulder as I was making this and already wants everything in this kids Lush gift guide! I've said it before and I'll say it again, Lush has the best gifts for kids! Gifts that you never need to buy new storage for. Gifts that dissolve in the bath. Gifts that simply disappear after having too much fun. Gifts that make your cupboard smell AMAZING while hiding them from the kids.
This year we are loving:
- Snowman - always a favourite
- Luxury Lush Pud - packed with lavender this will calm the little ones down after a busy christmas day.
- Christmas Sweater - It's far too hot for an Aussie Christmas sweater so grab one of these instead.
- The Magic of Christmas - wave this wand to make all your christmas dreams come true. This one may promise more than it can deliver but worth a try.
- Snow Angel - After being angels all day, the kids can slip into a bath with one!
Christmas eve is always spent with Nick's Dad's family at his Uncle's house. His Aunt prepares a giant table for everyone - more than twenty at a long long table, with cold meats and delicious salads. Lulu is no longer the only child there and she loved playing all night with her cousins. In fact, she didn't want to leave, but we needed to head home to sprinkle food for the reindeer - a combination of oats and glitter that was sent home from pre-school - and put out cookies and orange juice for santa.
After waking every few hours with Zelda extremely unsettled, we found Sir Elton giving himself a bath in the bathroom window early Christmas morning. This is not so unusual and we didn't think much of it until after we opened the presents when we discovered he was still there and I could see a little blood. I'd let him outside at 5:30am and between 5:30 and 6:15 when Zelda woke, he'd gotten in a fight. Luckily Lulu had received a Doc McStuffins Pet Vet kit. She knew exactly what to do. 'Get your pet to the Vet'.
We arrived back at Nick's mum's close to 11am and settled in for a few more presents and the long awaited breakfast. Lunch ended up being a late afternoon delicious affair with us all not leaving the table until early evening. Great company and good food and an emergency vet trip. A Christmas well done.
How do you juggle Christmas with two (or more!) families to fit in? We tend to either alternate which family we spend Christmas with or have a second Christmas earlier in December. And if we have Christmas in Alice Springs we spend Christmas Eve with Nick's Dad's family. That way we are able to celebrate with everyone.
This year my parents came up to Alice Springs this past weekend to spend 'Christmas' with us. This was the first time that I had cooked a Christmas lunch and it turned out well, if I do say so myself. A turkey roll, roast potatoes and sweet potatoes, and a pomegranate mint parsley & sweet potato salad. Followed by chocolate Christmas pudding and vanilla bean custard. Here are a few photos from the day.
Photos by Nick Bitar
We all have so many things and aren't really in need of anything, so if you are looking for ways to give to those less fortunate this Christmas, here are a few ideas for giving back:
you can purchase a Christmas dinner for a family in need - note that you must live within a major city to be able to purchase this.
has a number of charitable gifts - purchase vaccinations or school bags or water.
Give something to a mum in need through
Place a toy under
- This is one of my favourite things to do with Lulu
to distribute this Christmas
Happy giving x
Wrapping Christmas presents is one of my absolute favourite things. Put on some christmas tunes, pour a glass of champagne and away you go. There is so many great ideas when it comes to Christmas wrapping. I tend to stick with brown paper and build from there. Today I'm sharing a few variations on the brown paper theme.
Brown paper cut out on
White and Brown Paper on
I had never thought of Lush as a place to get presets for little kids. Sure teenagers will love their products, but little kids had never crossed my mind, until... their catalogue appeared in our mailbox one day. I was looking though it on the couch and Lulu came up to see what I was doing. In that way that pre-schoolers do, she quickly snatched the catalogue from me and proceeded to point out all the things that she would like Santa to bring.
Lush is perfect as you don't end up with piles of broken plastic toys. Their products a useful and they don't hurt the environment. Plus they are perfect gifts for a travelling holiday as the kids can use them while you are away. It's win win.
Here are Lulu's picks from the Lush Christmas catalogue
Lulu's picks of the surprise gift ideas for kids from Lush include:
1. Snowman Fun - your kids can make this snowman. The snowman can then be used to make bubbles and clean your kid. It's a versatile snowman.
2. Fairy Dust Dusting Powder - Ok so I'm not exactly sure what this fairy dust does, however it does promise to keep you 'fresh for big adventures'. Anything fairy dust is fine by Lulu.
3. Peeping Santa Bubble Bar - The name says it all. Just crumble under running water for lots of bubbles.
4. Magic Wand Reusable Bubble Bar - Again, you can't go wrong with fairy stuff. Swirl it around the bath for magic bubbles then put it aside to use again.
Next time your stuck for a gift for a little kid, head to Lush!
*this post was not sponsored by Lush, I just wanted to share my magical discovery with you all!
A DIY Activity Advent Calendar is such a great idea & it cuts out the 'how long until... questions'. Lulu knows that when she opens the last bag, that will be the day we go on holidays - the reason why this calendar only counts down until the 14th. As we are getting ready to go on holidays and Lulu won't be getting many presents for Christmas, this years advent calendar was light on activities and heavy on toys. I don't think Lulu minded. I did include the essential 'buy a gift for a kid in need', 'go to your daycare Christmas party' and 'bake Christmas cookies with mum'.
This years DIY Activity Advent Calendar was a little more involved than last years, but still pretty easy. Should you want to make one next year, you'll need:
- white paper bags
- red & white string
- free printable tags from Simple as That
- hole punch
- Cut out the tags, decorate the bags, add the activity or toy, punch the hole & string it up.
Wa La!! A DIY Activity Advent Calendar.
Do your kids have an advent calendar?
When I was little I had a chocolate one from the shops that I loved. Lulu has started noticing them so it won't be long before she's begging for one of those instead of a DIY Advent Calendar. I'll enjoy it while it lasts!
Love the Coopers
There is nothing I love more than a Christmas movie, except a Christmas movie with Dianne Keaton. This movie not only has Dianne Keaton, but also many more actors that I love. It looks to be a fabulous, feel good movie.
This movie is shamelessly appealing to all lovers of Love Actually. I know I’m going to love it.
The Night Before
This is your classic bromance movie. I’m not sure if I’ll love it, but I do love most of the actors in it. plus there is a cameo from Mindy Kaling so I’ll give it a go.
Manyana Beach, NSW
we headed further south to Bendalong. I had booked us a cabin at the
way back in May and my parents had booked an unpowered site for their solar powered caravan.
We had never been there before but we wanted to spend a little more time with my parents & my mum loves the beach, as do I, so a caravan park holiday was perfect. The park had a splash park and large jumpy pillow, and there was a playground on the beach, so Lulu was unsure exactly what activity she should do first!
We spent our mornings driving to Milton for lovely coffee and breakfast and our afternoons at the beach. It was so restful and relaxing. It all feels a little like a dream now that we're back here at work. Till next time.... Links to our favourite spots below.
Beach ready with her running shoes
Photo by Lulu
Kangaroos came right up to the cabin - I couldn't help but think how lucky they were to live here
- Bendalong Point & Manyana
, Milton, Fish & Chips on the beach, Bendalong, the best chilli chorizo sausages you will ever taste from Ted's Quality Meat at Milton, the best sourdough baguettes from
- Milton had so many cute stores to look in, we were impressed with Milton, to say the least, can you tell?