{Bachelor AU} Recap with shite drawings. Episode One.

So bachie 5.0 kicked off this week and here is the world’s shittest replay.

So, we meet Matty J – you might remember him from that time he had his heart stamped on before the nation last year in Georgia Love’s bachelorette show. Not to be dramatic but it was quite possibly the most dramatic moment in Australian TV since the time that Maggie died on Blue Heelers.

Matty J is like a churros hot on the outside, lovely and delicious on the inside.

He likes long walks. Spending time with his nephew. Generally being awesome at life.

BACH EP1 (1)

In quick succession we meet this year’s desperate potential suitors.

One chick says looking at him makes her “ovaries tingle”. MattyJ looks absolute thrilled to hear that :/

Natalie – the former lesbian advises Matty J that he turned her straight again after she spent six months stalking him on Instagram.  Hot churros man looks overwhelmed. #NotAStalkerAtAll

Michelle the police officer lady arrives in a squad car – lights and all. Matty shits himself and remembers that time he peed in a bush and was arrested. She threw him around a bit. He liked it.

Cobie arrives in silence and makes churros man suck down a bunch of toxic helium gas so they sound strangely like drugged mice. He seems to think she is funny.

One chick with an entirely difficult to spell name comes in with some rhythmic gymnast moves that both confuse and clearly excite MattyJ with her infinite flexibility.

Then Leah arrives half starkers and declares she wants to show him her secret garden.

At the cocktail party all the girls are getting along famously more interested in pissing on each other, like puppies marking their territory before an intruder comes in. Intruder is a strong term, like they have all only been there for 37 seconds by this time. Elora is a fire twirler who is not only smokin’ hot personal trainer but comes from Hawaii and is so settled here she even brought her dog #HopeSheToldImmigration

Once intruder alert dies down, Elizabeth throws shade at Jennifer by saying “Yo babez your dress is putrid”. Jennifer cries. No one really cares.

Osher comes in like a perfectly styled Ken doll and announces the inclusion of a secret garden this year. Leah confirms she wants hot churros to see her secret garden.

Not long afterward Natalie gets 47 hundred thousand glasses of champers in her well toned guts and acts worse than a first-year kid at o-week. She farts publicly and runs around generally causing outrage and judgement.

Then it’s time for the rose ceremony. He kicks out Miss Personality and Monica (we don’t really know who Monica is, but obvs there was zero interest from MattyJ).

THE GOOD: we like Michelle and Lisa, they appear to be the frontrunners

THE BAD: Leah who is basically nakid and Natalie who may need a referral to AA.

Until next time – may the rose be forever in your favour.

 

{The Birthday List} What I have learnt this year

So every year some time around my birthday I complete a list of all the things I have learnt in the last 12 months. It’s far from a comprehensive list (one would hope I learn more than 30-something things a year) but I really enjoy reminding myself how far I have come and what I have come to realise about those around me, my life and more importantly myself.

So here we go the 2017 edit:

  1. You will get a chocolate Labrador puppy who you love madly and will make your every day brighter, but she will eat your shoes.
  2. You will recover from postnatal depression but you will never be the same. Something has intrinsically changed in you forever.
  3. You will be paid actual money for writing. Some might even call you a freelance writer.buganni
  4. Your husband is a solid 10 and continues to make you a better version of yourself.
  5. She who forgets to add baking powder ends up not rising to the occasion.
  6. Your little sister will get married and it will go swimmingly – dolphins and all!
  7. The world will seem quite dark some days but your children will remind you of the sunshine.
  8. Despite the fact you have two children who sleep really well your third will not.
  9. No matter how many times you try, you still hate eggplant.
  10. You will finally convince the hubs that a Kitchenaid and a Thermomix are two very different appliances and you need both.
  11. You learn that you can’t keep expecting different reactions from the same people. Some people are just sucky.
  12. Dumplings are always a good option.
  13. Pelvic floor exercises are no longer an optional way to spend time, they are an essential element to everyday.
  14. You will go on your first cruise, get weird seasickness but love every moment and realise how important girl weekends away are.bugshayne
  15. Hangovers and children are the worst combination.
  16. You cannot please everyone.
  17. Your toddler will use sleep withdrawal as a torture method. You. Will. Survive.
  18. You will basically break your toe while walking up the aisle at your sister’s wedding. I warn you not to look to your other sisters for emotional support, they only offer laughter and sarcasm. Bennett_0509
  19. Even though you thought you had reached premium procrastination levels before, this year you will achieve a whole new skillset. Enter Youtube cute goat videos.
  20. You join the gym and actually like it. Then you get pregnant and nearly pee all the time so stop going. Just promise yourself that you will join the gym after the new baby.
  21. The kids will eat basically anything in a wrap. Keep wraps in high supply.
  22. Pregnancy is tiring. You already knew that, but this time especially.
  23. You will continue to have friends who are closer than blood ever was.
  24. Macaroni & cheese is an entire meal for three children under six.
  25. Letting go isn’t a thing you do once, it is often an action that has to happen over and over again. bugshayne2
  26. Listen to podcasts. They teach you stuff about things.
  27. Despite all the nay-sayers you do wear all seven pairs of your sunglasses on a fairly acceptable rotation system.
  28. As frustrating as studying law is, you are so much closer than this time last year.
  29. Not everything has to be perfect all of the time.
  30. You will still hide in the laundry from your children some days.
  31. Don’t say maybe when you actually want to say no. You’re only hurting yourself.
  32. The heartbreak from missing loved ones never goes away, but it does eventually change to a dull ache.
  33. Some people just let you down but you can’t fix them.
  34. Good coffee matters.
  35. People in power are not always good but the good people don’t always seek the power.
  36. For the second year in a row you will not need any moles removed. Just remember though, you are basically one big mole so don’t get too comfortable.
  37. You are enough.bugcruise

{The Nest Writes} Why I let my daughter watch the news

The world has been quite senseless lately and as an adult I have days where I really am struggling to understand the whys. Having said that, I still find myself aching to know what is happening around the world and who it is affecting.

I have heard that a lot of people are stopping their children from being exposed to the news. That people are blanket banning news from their homes and in particular the eyes and ears of their children.

I am the opposite, don’t get me wrong I don’t sit on the lounge with my six year old and make her watch the graphic London footage, but it is on in the background. Her father and I continue to have conversations about events like those that are shaping our world.

My daughter understands that sometimes bad things happen to good people and that you can’t live your life in fear. She recognises that there are extreme people who don’t represent all people and they choose to do nasty things.

Just last night I had a discussion with her about different faiths and how you can’t simply categorise all people into the same basket. The conversation started because she had heard the term “All Muslims are terrorists”.

We spoke about how the Islamic faith is actually one of the most peaceful religions in the world, but that some people choose to interpret it entirely differently. Much like how some people can choose to read the Catholic bible differently to most.

A six year old has blind faith and she doesn’t see a reason to discriminate or judge others and that is the exact reason why I think it is important for her to see what is happening in the world. I don’t want her to hear parts of news, jokes or judgments from small minded people and think that’s how we should all feel.

I have zero psychological qualifications and to be honest am probably breaking some cardinal rule that I am not aware of but if I engulf her with protection now and ban all news reporting and coverage then how does she build her own impression of the world? airport copy

There are some really horrible things that happen in the world but I can’t change those things. What I can do instead, is to start a conversation with her.

We heard on the news a few weeks ago about a baby that had been abandoned by his mother, so that started a brief conversation about mental health and depression and the importance of watching those around us for signs.

We saw another story about a 13 year old who had reportedly been approached on the way to school by a strange man. So this time we were able to discuss the importance of stranger danger and being aware of our surroundings.

On the news we saw Prince Harry and his involvement in the Invictus Games. So that started a conversation about wounded war veterans and the support they might need when they return home.

We watched an article about childhood obesity rising in Australia so we were able to discuss ‘sometimes foods’ and the importance of exercise.

My greatest fear is that if I protect her too strongly one day she will realise what a lie she has been told. I think it is really important not to raise a naïve little person who does not see the difference between good and evil, and as unfortunate as what it is, if she doesn’t also see bad she won’t be able to appreciate the endless good that also exists.

I want my children to ask questions, I need them to want to justify things that are completely unjustifiable. The reason for this is so they can understand just how unfair the world can be. I don’t want her to grow up believing that everything will go her way because sometimes life doesn’t discriminate the goodies from the baddies but regardless you still have to stay a goodie.

I truly believe that anything that starts a conversation is good, she needs to feel free to approach me about things she hears or how it affects the world around her. Turning off the news only shelters them for a little while and isn’t it better to let them learn coping skills instead?

I would love to hear your opinions, maybe I am completely off-field but in a world that is changing and evolving ever so quickly it’s nice to have an open discussion already on foot about all types of topics with the youngest minds around us.

 

{Girl Crush Tuesday} Captured by Aimee

We have some pretty hard girl crushes. These are the types of ladies that stamp their style on the world. They are the type of people that will always be remembered and little girls grow up wanting to be. They are women of substance. Women that make the world a better place. Happy Girl Crush Tuesday everybody.line4

Today we are hearting hard on the gorgeous Aimee Cook from Aimee Cook Photography.

Aimee Cook is a local lady who loves capturing the important moments and sharing them for everyone to see. Aimee is a baby, family and wedding photographer based in Bathurst. She is creative, talented and above all, completely lovely.

One of the most wonderful things about Aimee is that she started the Beautiful-You campaign. This is a program that allows parents of children with special needs to obtain photographs of their little superheros at no cost. Aimee offers a safe environment for these children to flourish which in turn allows Aimee to capture the perfect moments of childhood without a judgmental stare. What I love most about the Beautiful-You project is that it provides a place for children to be children while mum and dad are gifted with special memories for always.

Aimee loves being involved in the local community and regularly donates her time and skillset wherever she can.

Thanks Aimee for showing all little girls that through hard work and a kind heart you really can make the world around you a better place.

aimee

{Girl Crush Tuesday} Smith & Jones

We have some pretty hard girl crushes. These are the types of ladies that stamp their style on the world. They are the type of people that will always be remembered and little girls grow up wanting to be. They are women of substance. Women that make the world a better place. Happy Girl Crush Tuesday everybody.line4

Today is filled with double the love as we salute the beautiful due Smith & Jones.

Smith & Jones are a whimsical duo who play music that doesn’t quite fit the mould but perfectly creates a blend of country, folk and jazz.

Sophie Jones and Abby Smith knew their friendship was gold once they met at record shop and bonded over a love of classic country and blues. Blending a fantastic attitude and undeniable talent the duo created Smith & Jones and have been since performing at numerous venues all over the state.

Their unstoppable talent has led them to being nominated as Young Australian’s of the Year in 2015 and more recently had the duo at number One on Country Music Radio!

When you watch Smith & Jones perform you are transferred to a magical place of harmony and soul. Their music is powerful and beautiful and really shows how brilliant Australian musical talent can be.

Thank you Smith & Jones for showing our little girls that dreams really can come true and we really can be rock stars.

smith & jones

{Raising Little People} Bringing confidence back mama…

Effective Ways to Improve Self-Confidence for Mums

When people say that having a baby is a life-changing experience, they are most certainly telling the truth. It’s a miraculous thing that turns your whole world upside down – and for the most part, in a good way.

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However, women are rarely candid when it comes to the downsides of motherhood, mostly for the fear of sounding like a ‘bad mum’. It’s not all peaches; there are amazing moments, but there are also gruelling, exhausting and frustrating ones, and it is time the stigma is broken and we tell it like it is. While I love being a mum, and there isn’t a job in the world I would rather do, I have to admit that, after the pregnancy my self-confidence, especially the part connected with body image, took a bullet. The hormonal changes, the extra pounds, lack of sleep, lack of quality time for yourself and your partner take a huge toll on you. The wake-up call came, and I answered; I realised, that, if I want to be a good mum I need to be a happy one, and that entailed taking back my sense of womanhood and femininity. I decided to become all mum action instead of all mum talk and self-pity.

I truly hope that my journey of self-rediscovery will be at least of some help to all the mums out there dealing with the same issues, and I will be happy knowing I was of help to at least one of these amazing super-women.

It takes a village…

…or at least a great partner and a little help from friends and family. New mums tend to take on a lot all by themselves. This is a huge mistake. Asking for help does not make you a bad or inadequate mum; you are only human after all. Learn to delegate and not micro-manage. Let your spouse or partner take their share of chores and responsibility. When you take care of your baby together, it doesn’t only serve to take the part of the burden off of you, but it’s also a bonding experience for you and your hubby. Don’t shy away from asking your family to pitch in. One of my life-savers was enrolling my baby girl in a great early childhood service Little Learning School; not only did I know my precious little one was in good hands, playing and learning along the way, but it also gave me the extra time to pamper and regain my sense of self, both as a woman and a wife.

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Get your body back on track

I’m going to be completely frank – I was not the least bit happy with my post-pregnancy appearance, and it didn’t matter how much my hubby told me I was beautiful, I just didn’t feel that way, and I think a lot of new mums can relate to this. I decided it was high time to stop wallowing and avoiding mirrors, and reclaim my body. With a pinch of good time-management and aforementioned help, I started by changing my dietary habits.

After some careful research, I found just the right foods that would allow me to eat healthy but that are also good for my baby as I was still breastfeeding. I turned to oats, yogurt, as well as salmon, plenty of greens, blueberries, and the wonderful matcha tea, to help me detox and give my metabolism a boost. In my determination to get my body back to at least close to what it used to be, aside from changing my diet I hit the gym, and I hit it hard. It felt amazing, and once I got my stride back, I couldn’t wait to go back. Not only did working out help with my weight, it also greatly helped me to regain my body-confidence and even my sex-drive. What a lot of people won’t tell you is that once the baby comes, the sex goes out the window, and you need to make a conscious effort to connect with your partner physically. Once I felt sexy, I was able to believe my husband when he told me I was. Of course, some new makeup and a great new hairdo didn’t hurt, and neither did a change of wardrobe. You might not be able to fit into your skinny jeans just yet, but there are so many mum-chic styles out there that will make you feel super sexy and stylish.

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You are more than parents

Once you have a baby you and your partner become parents, and at the beginning, parenting gets in the way of romance, which is completely natural. However, you should never let romance fizzle out of your life. Make the time to have a meaningful conversation with your partner. Leave the baby in good hands of family or professionals, and take your partner on a romantic date. Romance doesn’t just happen; you have to work on keeping the spark alive. Establish ground rules – no talking about nappies, bottles or any baby stuff – this is the time for you two to reconnect. Take it a step further, romance doesn’t have to entail only candlelight dinners. Remember the things the two of you used to love to do together. See a movie, go to a concert, take the day and spend it at the beach, ride bicycles, whatever you loved to do pre-baby, and go back to it. Couples who do things together – stay together.

Take the time to fall in love with your partner all over again, and remind them why they fell in love with you. It will not make only you happier – it will reflect on your child as well, as kids are very aware of their surroundings and can sense whether they are in a home that is filled with love.

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tracey clayton

{This is life} Radio Silence

So, the battery in my car died this week. I don’t know how it happened as I refuse to admit loudly to the hubs that he was correct in assuming that I left the lights on AGAIN.

So I am awaiting the installation of a new car battery in the next few days, it has been a frustrating experience, from making sure each time I park my car the nose is pointing in the right direction in case I need a jump start through to the petrol I am using by leaving my car running for fear of it dying again! The most infuriating problem however has been the fact that the auto security on my radio has kicked in and I need a code to restart it. So, because I told the hubs I knew EXACTLY where the car book was and refuse again to admit my failings in all things car-manual-organisation I have been living in silence. Radio silence. headphones

These are the things I have learnt in a week of radio silence.

I can hear fights before they happen.

This one surprised me. Seriously. All of a sudden because I am not distracted in co-song harmony with my gal pal Taylor Swift I can hear the nigglings of a fight between the natives before it even happens. An example was the one time I heard this “Nope, nope, nope. Tis mines piglet”. This was the undeniable rumbling of fisty-cuffs in the back seat. Due to my lack of audio interference I bounced my voice through the cabin and told the kid to return the piglet to the toddler. Problem solved even before it really began.

List it.

On my morning drive to work I have been making lists in my head of all the things and jobs and stuff that I have to get done. Due to the quiet inside the car I have had time to think about paying the phone bill, cancelling the kid’s doctor’s appointment and planning what we will have for dinner. It’s funny how the background radio sound cancels out the ability to think clearly about the mundane.

Grateful.

In the silence I have been compiling a list of things I am grateful for. The silence has given me the ability for mindfulness. Good health, a hard working and loving husband, kids that aren’t arseholes all of the time.

Pelvic time.

When I stop at the red lights or roundabouts I now have nothing better to do than my pelvic floor exercises. I mean 3.5 kids did exactly nothing good for that situation that I look for opportunities when I can.

Call.

I call all those people I haven’t had a chance to speak with lately. For some reason my radio won’t play music but will let me utilise the Bluetooth to call. So hello grandparents, long lost friends and doctor appointments. It’s totes multitasking.

So, while it may not be ideal it certainly has made me aware that sometimes radio silence is exactly what the doctor ordered.