Wednesday, October 31, 2012

{Breast Cancer Awareness Night : Pt 2}

At the planning meeting, we tried to think of a gift to bless every woman that came. Something, cute, pink and girly. Someone showed a picture of some 'bra cookies' they had seen on the Internet. I had seen a few variations of these before and thought I'd give it a go making them. They were totally adorable and fitted the 'brief' (hahaha boom tish). These would actually be totally cute for a bridal shower also!

I have never done anything like this before (especially in such quantities) so here is how I made them:
*Find a cookie recipe and make dough as per instructions. I chose a gingerbread cookie recipe {loved this one}.
*Roll out dough, cut out heart shapes with your cutter. Before you slide it on to the baking tray, cut off the tip of the heart. It will help with the end design.
*Bake and cool.

{Breast Cancer Awareness Night: Pt 1}

Last night, my church hosted a fundraiser for The National Breast Cancer Foundation. It was a great girly night. Pink was everywhere, as well as an incredible spread of treats!

We had a wonderful local Dr who explained to us the stats and symptoms of breast cancer and how to be aware of changes. Her main advice was not too check too often as to cause anxiety. Know your body and check as each new season changes. Here she is demonstrating the 'breast dance':

Monday, October 22, 2012

{Some Bathroom Art}

I have been trying hard lately to put into action some of my pins on Pinterest. I loved this idea that added some colour to the kids bathroom and very cheaply. I printed them off at home and used some frames I got from the local salvos store and had painted white. I love the touch it adds to the room.

Lauren x

Friday, October 19, 2012

{Girl Stuff - Sshhhh!!!}

Recently I had a conversation with some friends about October 'pink month'. This conversation then turned into a chat on general women's health.

Amidst this discussion the P word was uttered and it had me shaking in my boots. That's right - PAP SMEAR!!
I know I've had two kids and you can cue the music and call me a diva, but I just can't get over the 'ickyness' of them!
I felt totally challenged after this conversation and came away trying to remember when my last one was! The fact that I had to work hard to remember was sign enough. I have the best of intentions and always think 'I'll do that soon'. Many 'soons' ended up turning into years!
In the end, I figured I'd bite the bullet and just do it! So, yesterday I sat full of dread in the waiting room, wanting to avoid what was ahead. But the way I figure is I'd prefer to be dreading the procedure than the treatment right?!
So, on this sunny October Saturday morning, consider this your public service announcement. If its been a while since your last Pap smear, get over the ickyness, call your GP and book your cute little toosh in to get it done! Sometimes it's better to be safe than sorry!

Lauren x

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

{Dark Chocolate Bites}

I do have a slight sweet tooth. I find I often crave something at about 3:00 or after dinner when watching tv.
These are a great healthy and easy way way to curb the sweet cravings.

- Dark chocolate
- An assortment of dried fruits & nuts as per taste and / or what's on hand. I used shredded coconut, dried cranberries, pecans and almonds.

1. Melt chocolate in a double boiler.
2. Spoon onto baking paper in bite sized pieces.
3. Sprinkle nuts and fruit on top and pop in the fridge.
VOILA! Told you it was easy ;)

These are so delicious! You could use milk chocolate but its healthier with dark. 

Q: Do you have a sweet tooth? Whats your greatest weakness?

Lauren x

Monday, October 15, 2012

{Childhood Jobs & 'Pocket Money'}

The idea of money, the value of it, the maths behind it and the ability to obtain it has been a big conversation in our house for months now. Mr 6 is paying attention to this A LOT! We started by letting him have a turn at {Coin Land} which is a PC game created by the Commonwealth Bank and it introduced some good concepts and taught him some good lessons. However, we found he was finding 'his own pocket money' from loose change around the house. We both believe that teaching our children about money and how to look after it well is very important in life. {Here} is a great tool that helps you understand how to break this down into age appropriate levels. We weren't convinced pocket money was something we wanted to launch into and so it took research, talking and thinking.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

{Oat & Quinoa Muesli}

Well, summer weather has hit (most of the time in Sydney) and one of my favourite breakfasts this time of the year is homemade muesli with yoghurt and fresh fruit.
I started making my own muesli this time last year and its so easy and delicious!

This one has a base of Oat and Quinoa (pronounced 'keen-waa') which is very good for you. Read more about it {here} I just got a roasting tray filled it with a few cups of Rolled oats, a cup of organic white quinoa flakes (available in health food isle of supermarket).
This is your base, then you can add other seeds, nuts and dried fruit you like and have on hand. I love this kind of food prep that you can adjust to tastes/ what's in the fridge.
I added the following but you can choose whatever you like...
- sunflower seeds
- sesame seeds
- chia seeds
- flax seeds
- currants
- sultanas
- shredded coconuts
- dried apricot
- dried cranberries
- dried apple
- dried paw-paw
- slithered almonds
- sprinkle of cinnamon
- stir through about 1/4 (more if you like) cup of honey thats heated up in microwave so it's thinner and easier to mix.
Put tray into the oven when it's on for dinner for about 10 minutes, stir and then leave for another 5 mins.

My sister in law is starting her HSC exams this week. So I bottled a jar of this as a 'brain power breakky gift'. You could also give it to someone moving house, who is sick or just had a baby. I'm sure a healthy breakfast meal would be appreciated when going through something like this.
Are you a muesli eater? What's your favourite breakfast choice?

Lauren x

Thursday, October 11, 2012

{Family Game Night}

Well, a few weeks ago we decided to introduce games to our Sunday night dinner. It started with a game we already had which is a family favourite. Here are some of the games we have played that we love. Are you a game player? Even if you don't think you are, you might be's actually a WHOLE lotta fun!!!

First Game: Absolute Balderdash
Absolute Balderdash Board Game 
This game is hilarious.Think you're a good liar and think you can tell when someone else is? Then Absolute Balderdash is the game for you. Absolute Balderdash includes 5 different categories, words, people, initials, movies and dates to add some variety to the popular game Balderdash. 
You can probably pick it up at most stores that sell board games and I also found it online {here}.

Second Game: 5 Second Rule
5 Seconds Rule Board Game
5 Second Rule is a quick-thinking, fast-talking game from the clever people at University Games.
It should be easy to name 3 breeds of dog - but can you do it under the pressure of 5 seconds twisting down and with the other players staring, waiting for you to get flustered? 
You can buy it online {here}

Third Game: Sequence. 
Some amazing new friends introduced this one to us. I have bought sequence as a gift for someone since playing it and this may have sparked our idea for game night ;)
Venture Games Sequence Board Game

The Venture Games Sequence Game of strategy is an exciting game for children (7 +) and adults. Learn to block your opponents and remove their chips. The Sequence board game features fun, challenging and exciting strategies. 
You can buy it online {here}

Game 4: We have also bought this game but are yet to play, it looks good though, so can't wait!

What's your favourite game? Are you a scrabble, pictionary, billionaire, monopoly or risk fan? Share your favourites! Tell me here or comment on the {facebook page} so I can get ideas for new games. 

Lauren x

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

{The SORT OF 30 Minute Roast}

Well, I was chatting to my neighbor recently and she is a BIG reader. She was reading a vampire novel. Whilst I don't share her love for vampire fiction, we do share a love for food. In this book someone cooked a roast in a peculiar way. It entailed putting your oven on the hottest setting with your roast in it for 30 minutes. then, WITHOUT OPENING the oven, leave it inside to rest for 3 hours. 

My next door neighbor raved about how it actually worked. I was definitely intrigued to say the least. So, with baked beans and toast on hand in case it didn't turn out. Yes, I was skeptical. 

So I used a Santa Maria Beef Roast from Aldi. We have used this marinated beef before and have loved it. I also chopped up 3 potatoes and put it in the dish also.
I put it in at 1:45pm, turned oven off at 2:10 (had to leave for school pickup). Then I got out at 5:15 to reveal this. 

Pro's : 
* It was cooked perfectly (there wasn't any pink in it so it was probably considered medium/well). You could take it earlier if you like it less well done.
*Only 30 minutes of cooking time saves cost and makes it easy to have done on a busy school night.
 * The potatoes were also cooked well

* My tray was slightly liquidy in the bottom, this could be remedied by actually using a proper roasting tray  with a rack in the bottom.
*It was warm but not HOT, perhaps i could have taken it out a little earlier.
*It was VERY hard to not open the oven once its turned off. I gave into temptation and this may have affected the end temperature.

Lauren x

{Confessions of a Handbag Pt 2}

Sometime ago, I wrote about reclaiming my handbag. Part one {read here}was all about how I had made some zippered pouches to organise my handbag.

The first step was a cute kids fabric that contains my kids stuff that lives in my bag. Now that we are out of baby stages of life, it's mostly 'distraction items' as you can see in part 1 (link above).

Part 2:
I have one large pink bag. This is all MY stuff and I can also fit my phone & iPad in here and therefore can lift this ONE pouch out and change handbags at a moments notice and do so very easily.

The small one usually lives inside the larger bag, to make it easier.

The larger bag has a whole lot of stuff from Panadol, pens, band aids, a notepad, safety pins, usually my iPad, tic tacs etc...
The little red pouch at front centre holds all my shopping trolley tokens. I always keep a spare arm band in there for shopping trips to turn my phone into a toddler taming device :

The smaller bag is my girly bag. General essentials from my moxie tins, lip glosses, elastics, bobby pins, mirror and nail file.

Is your handbag organised? Or does it look like a shamozzled mess of randomness that could possibly produce a science experiment?
Mine was bordering on the latter before these's great knowing where everything is meant to be and being able to find stuff at a seconds notice.

Lauren x

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

{I love you because}

I have many things on my pinterest boards that are projects on my to - do list. This is one I can tick off my list. It is a sign I have put in between our vanity mirrors in the bathroom. I have seen a few style variations on this sign before. You can always create your own on and print it out. 
However, i loved the chevron pattern i found on this one {here} and it was a FREE printable. There are also different colour schemes available to choose from. Just mount the frame somewhere you both see it with a whiteboard marker (normal sharpies don't work without windex or elbow grease - hint hint)! 

I had all the things for this at home except for the whiteboard marker which set me back a whopping $3! Great value!

I love that this provides a cute opportunity to share things you love about your other half and It may even help you to look more intentionally for things if this doesn't come natural to you. I find that it's important to appreciate the small things in life - one day you will realise they were in fact the big things!

Lauren x

Monday, October 8, 2012

{Jewellery Storage}

One thing I have been after for a while in my master room is a full length mirror. It can be quite tricky hopping up on bathtubs and stools to get a full length view of an outfit. Don't look at me like that - I know we have all (hopefully) done that!
Another problem I have had is keeping my ever growing accessories collection under control. Necklaces get tangled, earrings lost, rings dropped. 

Not exactly earth shatteringly important problems on a global scale. I know. First world problems. But the following product solved both of them in one slimline, stylish and relatively affordable package. 

Introducing my newest addition to my room - the secret storage mirror. I know right! I got it from the shop that never closes and always threatens to - Homeart. It set me back $99, and so far has been worth every cent!

Lauren x


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