Friday, December 31, 2010

Cosima Skincare Review + GIVEAWAY

The past week or so I have had the privilege of trying out two beautiful natural skincare products from Cosima Skincare.  Cosima is a new brand on the market founded by Angela Tyler, which has been developed from many years of research prompted by noticing that many 'natural' brands contained only 1 or 2 natural ingredients in a mix of other chemicals.  Cosima is 100% Australian owned and made, and guarantees to fight the visible signs of aging (and other skin related problems) using the highest quality natural, organic ingredients packed with active compounds with no fillers or other synthetic chemicals.  Which all sounds very exciting and completely suits my personal and business philosophy.

The first product I have been trying out is the Gentle Foaming Cleanser - This is a lovely light foaming cleanser that is surprisingly effective.  Gentle enough to use morning and night without irritation, yet removed my light make-up cover without trouble.  I love that this cleanser contains papaya as a gentle exfoliant and you can feel the light tingle when its on your skin.  The smell is also divine, sweet and natural (honeysuckle essential oil is listed on the ingredients list).  Big thumbs up on this product for me.
I also have been using the Flawless Eye Cream - this is described as a luxurious eye cream containing Myoxinol ("Nature's Botox") to help achieve flawless eyes without injections.  The first thing I really liked about this product was the airless pump packaging.  You might think this is a silly comment, but I'm quite averse to having to stick my fingers in skincare products and contaminating them every time you use them.  This eye cream is a lovely almost gel-like product that you only need a tiny amount of (I actually have to be careful not to pump out too much as I found a full pump was about twice what you need and just a waste).  Verdict - lovely and soothing, great to use either morning or night, leaves my eyes looking fresh and hydrated, and smells delicious.  Another thumbs up for the eye cream too.

The lovely Angela from Cosima Skincare is also going to send one of my readers a Gentle Foaming Cleanser (RRP $22.50) and a Flawless Eye Cream (RRP $69.00) to try out!  I'm sure whoever wins will love these products just as much as I do.

To enter (required):
Have a look at the Cosima Skincare website, and then comment here with what other product you like the look of and why (not the ones mentioned in this review).

You can also leave a separate comment for each of the following for further entries:
1. Follow this blog on Google Friend Connect
2. Join the Your Cheeky Monkey facebook page
3. Join the Cosima Skincare facebook page
4. Tweet this giveaway =
Cosima Skincare Giveaway at @YrCheekyMonkey

Conditions (please read):
Australian Entries only ~ Be sure to leave your email address in your comment if your profile is private, if I draw you as a winner but have no way of contacting you I will re-draw the prize ~ Winner drawn randomly and contacted by email ~ Giveaway closes in one week's time on Friday 7th January at 8pm (Qld time) ~ If winner does not claim prize within 7 days another winner will be selected ~ Prize will be sent directly to winner from Cosima.

Monday, December 27, 2010

My Top Reading List of All Time

A recent tidy-up in our household got me putting aside all my favorite books to re-read over the Summer, so I thought I would share my top reading list of all time with you.
  • The Earth's Children Series by Jean M. Auel.  Of course beginning with "Clan of the Cave Bear" (1984), there is currently 5 books in the series.  The sixth and final book "The Land of Painted Caves" is due out in March 2011, which is very exciting if you have, like me, followed each book as it has been released over the past 27 years.
  • The Harry Potter Series.  I love reading these, and feel distinctly sad there is no more in the series to look forward to.
  • Each and every book by Barbara Erskine.  I own them all and quite regularly go back and read one or another of them.  The latest is "Time's Legacy" and is a must read if you haven't already.
  • The 'Temperance Brennan' series by Kathy Reichs.  Each year I also buy the new novel in this series.
  • The 'China Bayles' series by Susan Wittig Albert.  This series began in 1992 with 'Thyme of Death' and I have avidly awaited the next herbal mystery each year.  Although I don't own these books (they are from the USA and you can't very often find them in bookstores here) I am always getting them from the library to re-read. 
  • 'The Sunbird' by Wilbur Smith.  I think this is my favorite Wilbur Smith novel ever.  This was first published in 1972, my copy was printed in 1978 and is looking very fragile from all the readings over the years.  I think I love this because (like most Barbara Erskine novels) the story comprises 2 tales linked over time.
Well they are some of my favorite reads of all time, feel free to share yours with me here on this post.  I'd love to discover some amazing new books!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Aden + Anais Review & GIVEAWAY

If you have a new baby, swaddling is one of the most vital things you can do to make Bub feel happy and secure and to help her sleep better.  It stops the reflex motion from waking them up during sleep, and it mimics how they felt in the womb.

After having had 2 babies myself, I know just how important swaddling is.  Baby wraps would have to be on my top 5 list of 'must-have' items for a newborn.  So this week I have been very happy to be able to have a close look at the gorgeous Aden + Anais Muslin Swaddles.

The Aden + Anais Swaddles have loads of great features and benefits:
  • They are 100% cotton muslin.  I live in a very warm climate and you can still wrap your baby if you use muslin as its so breathable.  Muslin is also lovely and soft on Bub's skin.
  • Large 120x120cm size.  One of my pet hates is those wraps that are about 75x100cm.  Too small!  With this nice big size you can keep wrapping your baby as they get older and not have to buy new swaddles.
  • Aden + Anais have a lovely range of cute prints, I received the Jungle Jam Swaddle pack and I just love them.
  • You can use these for lots of other uses too.  As a light blanket, use in the car or pram, for nursing in public, and the list goes on.

One lucky reader of my blog is going to be lucky enough to win their choice of a gender-neutral, girl or boy 4-pack of classic swaddles valued at $49.95!  Read on for how to enter.

To enter (required):
Leave a comment here on this post with your thoughts on swaddling.  You also need to follow Aden + Anais on their facebook page and twitter.

You can also leave a separate comment for each of the following for further entries:
1. Follow this blog publicly
2. Join the Your Cheeky Monkey facebook page
3. Tweet this giveaway =
@adenandanais Swaddle Giveaway at @YrCheekyMonkey

Conditions (please read):
Australian Entries only ~ Be sure to leave your email address in your comment if your profile is private, if I draw you as a winner but have no way of contacting you I will re-draw the prize ~ Winner drawn randomly and contacted by email ~ Giveaway closes in two week's time on Wednesday 5th January at 8pm (Qld time) ~ Prize will be sent directly to winner from Aden + Anais.

Friday, December 17, 2010

The things they don't warn you about

There's a lot others don't tell you before you become a parent.  An awful lot.  I don't know why - maybe people don't like to sound negative?  Or maybe they just think "hehe now someone else has to go through all these things".  Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining.  I know everyday that the good outweighs the bad.  But to be honest (and if you are a parent I'm sure you will agree) there are some things that absolutely drive you nuts!  For example:
  • The constant loud noise.  I can't speak for girls because I don't have any, but my boys (unless they are sleeping) pretty much never shut up for 2 seconds in a row.  And its all at the loudest pitch possible.
  • The mess.  Even when I tidy the house up on kindy days, as soon as they get home they leave a magical trail of toys and rubbish behind them.  Was I like this?  I'm not sure.  Maybe my Mum was just better at getting my sister and I to clean up.
  • The never ending eating.  I feel like a feeding machine most of the time.  Breakfast, snacks, lunch, snacks, dinner, pudding, milk.  And what worries me is in 10 years time how much they will be eating when they are teenagers.  My 5 year old eats 3 weet-bix for breakfast no worries and is hungry an hour later.  Oh well maybe its time to invest in shares in Coles.
  • The amazing ability kids have to repeat something a thousand times.  When your children are babies its SO exciting when they say 'Mum' for the first time.  Now on some days I sort of feel like running away when I hear it repeated a trillion times.  You know how it goes "Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum....."  I truly believe repetition is a form of torture.
But wouldn't life be boring if all was perfect?  I love my boys along with all their idiosyncrasies, and as easy as it is to have a whinge, all is good with the world xx

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Note to Authors and Writers

If you are an author of any sort of writing, whether it be books or simply articles like I write, here is a tip for you.  Occasionally google your name and see what comes up.

The other night I googled my name, and found one of my articles used by a well known Australian Organisation.  Which is fantastic, except they put my name after the article and didn't use the rest of my credit blurb. 

It's very disappointing, as they have used my writing for their content without wanting to give me full credit or link to my website.  I received an email back saying they are mindful of crediting the authors of the articles they use.  Yeah right.

And I guess the same goes in reverse too - if you are a business or organisation, if you use somebody's articles or writing please give them full credit.  Otherwise you eventually will be found out and your reputation will be damaged.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Picnic Pack Winner

Congratulations to nellbe, who I just drew as the winner of the Picnic Pack & Tea Tree Giveaway.

And a big thank you to everyone else who took the time to enter!