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Living the dream

Why is it that fly in day never goes as I envisioned it . I dream about looking my very best and waiting inside the doors with our gorgeous girls as my husband walks through the airport entry doors but the reality is chaos.
Its fly in day and after 2 long weeks of hubby working  away I think I have it all sorted and that morning as I leave for work I feel that sense of ease that all will go well with our airport pickup today .
I try not to be distracted in the afternoon meeting at work and find myself checking the time on my fitbit at regular intervals. My phone screen lights up even though its on silent and the snapchat icon comes up , I  turn the screen off and smile to myself at the thought of finally having hubby home . Reality snaps me back quickly and I am involved in the discussion happening . As the meeting winds up I check my phone and see the message that the plane is coming in earlier .
I have one errand to run so after grabbing my second youngest girl I run in and collect what I need . As we rush to daycare to collect miss moo I call our son Mr Wings who works at the airport and hear him say the words that dash my daydreams ‘ The plane is just landing ‘.
I try to contain my tears and hold it together but a flood of emotions comes over me and tears roll down my cheeks as I continue driving to the airport while our girls excitedly giggle in the car. As we reach the airport I pull over in the pickup zone and seeing that he is not outside the girls run in to great their Dad.
As I try to gather my emotions I realise that it all doesnt matter , late , in my trackies or however I make it to Fly- in day . We made it through another two weeks. I look up and my tears change to those of happiness as I see him walk towards the car holding Miss Moo and laughing with our children walking either side of him.
He gets in the car and says ” Hi babe Im home” .
Jules x
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Dear Bully

Bullies only have power over you if you let them but as a child you are still building resilience. Words can cut like a knife and one simple sign of being weak can lead to others joining the bullies pack.

As a parent it broke my heart whenever my kids were bullied or if they ever watched other people being bullied.

Throughout my high school years I was a long term victim of bullying and it resulted in me often wagging school just to avoid the bullies.
Years later I have the confidence that I lacked in my younger years but a few friends along the way sadly lost their fight to calm the voices that had implanted themselves in their daily thoughts and they ended their lives.

So I am here sharing my letter to you dear bully

Dear bully,

You crave attention because without it you feel ordinary. There are some things that you do not know ;
It is hard work keeping an army of followers and many of your followers are with you through fear , fear that they to will be on the recieving end if they dont join you.
The person you are bullying may already be a victim of emotional abuse at home or a sufferer of anxiety . Your words may just be the last thing they can handle or the one thing that tips them over the edge.
You can change things today before everyone discovers ‘ That quite possibly you are harbouring a secret that has made you retaliate or you are a very lonely person because as a bully you can trust no one or show no vunerability.

One day you will be someones boss , partner , parent , Aunt or Uncle. Will you continue your bullying into your adult life and how will you feel if your child or niece or nephew are bullied ?

Sincerely Not a victim anymore

If you suspect that your child is being bullied at school or as a young adult then some great tips can be found here :

http://www.bullyingnoway.gov.au/

https://www.humanrights.gov.au/workplace-bullying-violence-harassment-and-bullying-fact-sheet
Jules x

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How to style a kimono in Autumn

I know that I always seem to talk about the power of layers when it comes to style choices but I really am passionate about layering using staple wardrobe pieces.

Lightweight kimonos make a great addition to your staple pieces and can be styled in a wide variety of ways .

The even better part is that they are easy to pack when travelling and don’t take up as much space as a jacket .

This week I have included my Riviera jacket in sail away from My Boutique curves (kindly gifted ) in my outfits.

Here are three ways that I have worn my kimono style Jacket :

 

IMG_20160501_160822With Jeans and a print clash tshirt – long sleeve tshirt is from Millers

IMG_20160503_203115With Yellow forever 21plus dress.

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With Millers ponte pants and a black tank top.

You can purchase the My Riviera Jacket here.

Remember to be brave and add some colour to your wardrobe this autumn.

 

Jules x

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Daydreaming

Getting away from it all including technology can be bliss. No technology and time to sit and relax , laugh and not be clock watching .

Over the years camping has been our affordable escape especially with kids . Camping Mr T + T style meant open fires , no toilets and waking up to the sound of wild goats on one occasion.

We progressed as the kids got older and stayed in places where there were toilets and showers but for me some of the best trips have been where there has been no phone signal .

Now we only have two kids at home I am dreaming of an island holiday where relaxation is the theme .

Europe has been luring me ever since I can remember but I know its a while away . So for now im aiming for the island holiday .

I used to think that people were crazy heading to holiday destinations to lie by the pool , be pampered , go to theme parks and eat nice food until I had kids and combined a busy life of work and being a Fifo wife .
Now im just a little excited about a tropical island holiday . Will someone please hand me my welcome cocktail and what time can I book in for that massage ?
Jules x
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Why I’m spoiling my kids

I will never forget the day a total stranger told me that I was spoiling my child and would regret it later. At the time I had no comeback line. I was a first time Mum and on the early road to discovering my parenting style .

Now I know that I am happy to be the parent who spoils my children. Im not talking about raising self indulged , what I want I get brats . Im spoiling my kids with love , my time ( well as much as I can while still sleeping for some of the night ) and reassurance that if today wasn’t so great that tomorrow is a fresh start.

I admit it ; I still pick up and cuddle /carry my 3 year old when she is tired or wants a hug and my heart may have just broke a bit the other day when I was walking through the shops and a toddler was crying with his arms up and his parents told him he was too big and needed to walk.

My stint as the hovering helicopter parent was brief and more than likely due to the fact our second eldest child liked to jump out of trees from the second highest branch while shouting  ‘ Catch me ‘ , at the age of 2. I realised that I might not survive the next week if I didnt know when to stand back a bit.

I could never make it past the stand back but be ready with the firetruck and parachute if you need it parent but after nearly 24 years of parenting Im happy with this method and it seems to be working out okay .

To the stranger in the shop 23 years ago who said my child would be spoilt if I picked her up when she cried the first time I say ; Thanks for you input but most of my kids have grown into well adjusted adults and the other one is doing well because if this means kids are spoilt then I hope it catches on and parents spoil their children.
Jules x
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Daydream – Our Millers photo shoot

In March , I had a very big , exciting day where I flew to Sydney with my youngest two daughters . A photo shoot for Millers.

Today , I’m thrilled to be able to share some of those images with you !

When the wonderful team from Millers asked if we would like to be part of their 2016 Mother’s Day campaign , it was a big yes because I have been purchasing pieces from Millers for years . Plus I am very excited about being part of the seeing me project .

My worries about jet lag , Timezone differences and affects on Miss Moo 3 and Catriarna 18 were dispelled within the first 2 minutes of us arriving at the shoot location which was breathtaking .

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Left : Embellished neck midi dress . Right : sleeveless lace dress

The girls and I were pampered and styled by the wonderful Paul Beddgood and his team , who worked his wonderful magic to erase any signs of jetlag . 

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Left : check stitch cardigan , top :  long sleeve layering basic  Right : Bundy check shirt & full length jeggings

The photo shoot was very relaxed and fun and many laughs were had throughout the day which made leaving at the end of the day to catch our flight home very hard .

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I look forward to featuring more of the beautiful Millers Autumn / Winter collection here , on Instagram and as a guest writer on the Millers blog and hope you will join me . All items worn other than Miss Moo’s can be purchased online at Millers .

Jules X

Note : Images are property of Millers

 

 

 

 

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Bunchems – encourage imagination

Brought to you by Nuffnang and Bunchems

I have to admit , that as a consumer when it comes to toys I am a big critic. Flashing lights , electronically activated movement or anything where no interaction other than watching is required wont win me over.

So when I was given the opportunity to review Bunchems they ticked one of my priority boxes ; Bunchems are designed to encourage children to use their imagination ✔. Bunchems are recommended for children 4 years and over but our 3 year old had a great time with us exploring , creating and engaging with them.

What are Bunchems

“Combining construction with craft”. Bunchems are furry “burr” like plastic spheres that magically stick together to build and create. Here is the part grown-ups will love ; No glue is required and Bunchems can be used over and over to create flowers , cars or many other creations.

Here’s What we discovered about Bunchems

  • They are easily manipulated
  • The colours are bright ( great for identifying , sorting and colour pattern activities )
  • The extra pieces – sunglasses, hats etc. provide opportunity for conversations and speech
  • There are loads of things to build with them and they provide children with sensory opportunities.
  • They can be packed away easily ( just scrunch them in a ball)

Take a look at the fun we had 

Do you know someone who would like Bunchems and what would they create ?

Note : It is important you supervise play around little ones as the Bunchems can get caught in loose fabric or hair if the kiddies are left to their own devices. They are great for parent and child play, which is great because they are a lot of fun to play with (even for adults)! If they do get tangled you can easily remove them, there is a tutorial for this

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So what you’re crap at some things

Growing up, I always felt that I needed to be the best at something in order to make my mark on the world. Now I know owning what I’m crap at helps me focus on the stuff I’m good at.

Watching the olympics inspired me to trial gymnastics (this lasted 2 whole lessons ). I tried many different activities when growing up, and just as my dream of becoming the next music legend faded with the fact that I couldn’t play a guitar, I discovered that I was good at other things.
As an adult I’ve come to the conclusion that there are some things I’m just going to be crap at and I’m okay with that – because I’ve discovered things that I am good at that have come in handy, and I’m still discovering more.

Heres what Im crap at –

Mowing the lawn

Don’t get me wrong I can mow with the best of them but I’m not as passionate about it as my neighbours, who could possibly give the better homes and gardens crew a run for their money. I don’t do straight lines well because I’m an outside the box person and I just want to get it over with. 

Making pinterest worthy kids birthday cakes

For years I used to make my kids birthday cakes that I spent hours decorating. I must say I was pretty impressed with my efforts and would easily rate them as at least two levels above the ones in social media that are headed NAILED IT. Now its all about time and sleep and I outsource my kids cakes. To the Mums that make theirs and are awesome at this; I have to say I admire your amazing intrinsicly iced Frozen themed birthday cake (do you have a business card?).

Long phone conversations

SMS is my favourite phone communication or ‘let’s catch up for lunch and laughs so you can tell me what you have been up to’.
I enjoy catching up with friends & family and I really am an awesome listener, but I don’t think I would make a good therapist. I’m not really that interested in your sister’s, friend’s, cousin’s wart.

For all those Mums who get their aunty to bake the cakes for the cake sale, we know you are secretly ace at other things that we don’t always see and we all need that person to organise events, lead the self defence class …….

Are there things you are Ace at but keep to yourself?

Generation Y : You’ve got this

“When I grow up I want to buy a 4 bedroom 2 bathroom house in a great suburb, work 2 jobs and never afford to go on holiday ever.”, said the five year old child never.
Owning a home or being in the mortgage club has continued its passing from generation to generation, but my concern is that we as parents may be setting our children up for failure in a world that is already full of pressure and competition to get a good education and gain employment while also experiencing a high percentage of anxiety to continue to follow the path before them.

I sat listening to my grandmother tell me the story of how they scrimped and saved every penny to buy their first home while eating porridge for dinner many times during my early years (please don’t get me wrong, this story and the many others that I was privilege to hear I will always cherish), but it was the reality of life as an adult that changed my view of what was truly important. The regrets of many that they wish they had travelled or spent more time with their loved ones. The possibilities that some may not have left enough space in their life to share their wonderful homes with.

Listening to and reading the many tales in the media of how devastating it is to Generation Y that they may possibly never own a home or be able to live life a comfortable life over the last few weeks may have just been like waving a red flag to me. If this is your dream then I say go for it but please lets stop telling the next generation that they will live a failed life if they don’t own a house.
The expectation that each generation should do better than the next has always been there, but by better do we mean they should own more material objects?

Generation Y; it is okay if you rent instead of buying and if you decide to buy a house that is great to. Generations before you survived the depression and many other financial downturns including the recession and moved forward. The decision is yours to make, do it with pride.

Getting your kids to fess up

They all stood there looking at us in a line, some with sad faces and others trying not to nervously laugh or show any fear. The writing was on the wall, only it was real writing in marker. As parents Mr T & T and I had a decision to make. Would we use the Divide and conquer approach in hope of a confession from our children?

As a parent, in the workplace or in other settings you may have witnessed the divide and conquer or punish and take down the culprit approach. It’s an old method that I sadly see used often still.

Does it work?
I’m pretty sure the person who was throwing spitballs in class or making noises behind the teacher’s back didn’t give a crap if everyone was kept in, and they still threw spitballs in the next class. After all they weren’t really caught and they were free to do it the next day.
Everyone else didn’t want to suffer the possible wrath of the culprit so kept their mouth shut and dobbing just isn’t cool.

A lot was learnt in our early years of parenting especially on that day of trying to discover who wrote on the wall. If the offender doesn’t care and is testing the boundaries then punishing everyone in hope of a confession will not make even the smallest ripple in their “I give a toss” river.

When you are tearing your hair out in frustration because you are parenting a repeated “let’s see who I can get in trouble or what I can get away with” offender, then it’s time to catch them out with your best detective work; gather your evidence and approach them directly. Pulling your child aside individually and giving them the chance to tell you first, before informing them that you know and making sure the punishment fits the crime (in this case it was cleaning the wall and a couple of extra ones). If they fess up then it is very important to let them know how pleased you are that they told the truth.

In a world of being political correct, trying not to hurt people’s feelings & egos and lawsuits
I hope our children will always know that it’s better to tell the truth – and if you mess up then try and fix it, move on and learn by it.

Jules x