Saturday, June 29, 2013

Poem to a Newborn

Poem to a Newborn

A little person so gentle and new
So very loved, through and through

Tiny little fingers and tiny little toes
Fluffy fluffy hair and a gorgeous button nose

Swaddled up tight against the chill air
I love you so much I will keep you close and near

Such a perfect face, even your eyelashes and brows
I know my life is changed forever now

The moment you were born you stole my heart
My life is starting anew, a brand new start

When you are tired or hungry and cry
A pain in my chest starts, I won't lie

I watch you for hours, the time passes so fast
I want these moments to last and last

Nothing prepares you for these feelings as a Mum
And who cares that I now have a chubby tum

You are amazing, a gift heaven-sent
Thank you, thank you, my baby who was meant. 

© Your Cheeky Monkey 2013

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Review: Bellamy's Organic

Ahhhh, feeding a toddler.  I had forgotten how challenging that can be!!  Especially when you have one that is very fussy or particular about what or how they eat.  For example, my 15 month old will not eat pureed baby food.  Which has come as a bit of a shock, because both my boys loved their puree's and ate them with glee.  Not so little miss, she will only eat food she can pick up and eat herself.  She will also only have the pouches of fruit by sucking directly from them... why??  Because that is what she has seen her 6 and 7 year old brothers do! One of the disadvantages to having a big age gap between your children ;)

On the other hand, I am also a Mum who wants to give my daughter the best start in life by giving her the best foods I can possibly afford.  Hence my decision months ago to use Bellamy's Organic Formula rather than one of the mainstream brands.  We have loved Bellamy's Formula and have recommended it to other Mums and Dads for their Bubs when ready to love on from Breastfeeding.  I'm just sorry it wasn't available when my sons were babies!

Bellamy's Organic also offers a really fantastic range of baby and toddler foods.  The snap-dried fruits are a favorite for all my kids (ok, I'll admit I like them too), a packet really doesn't last very long at all!  The fruit snacks are a perfect toddler food, with the added benefit that you know your child is getting the fibre and nutrients they need.

One Bellamy's product I hadn't tried before was the organic pasta.  It is now, however, my daughter's absolute favorite dinner!!  I love it because it is filled with vegetables, she loves it because it tastes so good and it's so easy to pick up and eat.  As mentioned above, she likes to feed herself with finger food and I do get stuck for ideas on what to give her for dinner, so the Bellamy's Organic Macaroni is a perfect solution.  I just add some chopped cheese, left-over meat, egg, peas, etc for a wholesome nourishing meal for her.  The Vegie Pasta Alphabets are perfect to add to Minestrone Soup or other soups or stews for the whole family that require a small pasta to be added.

The organic fruit squeezie pouches are just so handy to have on hand for a quick meal or if you are going out just pop one in your nappy bag.  One of the features I love is the large choke safe cap.  As we all know, babies put things in their mouths and I hate those tiny little caps that are SO dangerous to little ones.  Plus, being a Bellamy's product, you know they are certified organic and beautifully nutritious for your child.

Bellamy's Organic is also an Australian company, with their products widely available in supermarkets and chemists.  Their products are 100% certified organic, 100% Australian made, they have no GM ingredients, no ingredients from China, and no added colours, additives or preservatives.  I find their prices very compatible with other brands (so keeping their food affordable for all families).  I really can't see any downside of supporting such a wonderful Australian company with such fantastic products for your babies and toddlers.

Disclaimer: I was sent a package of Bellamy's Organic Goodies for my little one to try.  No payment was received for this post and any opinions expressed are my own.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Digital Parents June Blog Carnival

A huge thank you to everyone who submitted their favorite blog posts from May for this months Digital Parents Blog Carnival.  I am a bit overwhelmed writing this right now, because I have about 40 emails (without counting) to go through and write up for the carnival!

So please take a few minutes to peruse the links below and click through to some of these great posts from May.

Siem Reap trip report from Bron at Big brother, little sister and the baby Blog
We just spent a month travelling in Cambodia as a family of five including my son who uses a wheelchair. This is about our time in Siem Reap.

Say a little prayer from Kate at My Dear Angel Blog 
A reflection on what my birthday means each year. (It has been suggested that I include a 'may induce tears' warning.) 
Connect with Kate on Twitter

The importance of self-replenishment from Michaela at Not another slippery dip
This post explores the need for every mother to prioritise her own needs and self-replenish. 
Connect with Michaela on Twitter and Facebook

Seat Belt Cover Tutorial from Tonya at The Crafty Mummy Blog 
Sew a padded cover for a car seat belt with this tutorial - great for kids! 
Connect with Tonya on Twitter and Facebook

Dinner with Pantry Basics from Alison at The Thrifty Issue Blog
The Thrifty Issue have the List of all Lists … Dinner with Pantry Basics. These recipes are simple and can be easily adjusted according to what you currently have at home.
Connect with Alison on Facebook

Why I gave up the Bubbles from Lisa at Two Point Five Kids Blog
The story of why I decided to stop enjoying my beloved champagne and wine in the evening – a must read for every woman who loves her drink
Connect with Lisa on Facebook

One from Danielle at Keeping Up With The Holsbys
A post for my daughter on the eve of her first birthday. She's too little to read a card, and by the time she can I'll have lost it. I hope one day she'll read this. 
Connect with Danielle on Facebook

Ichthyosis Awareness Month: My story from Carly at Carly Findlay
The final post in my Ichthyosis Awareness Month blog project - on why I tell my story about living with a visible facial difference.
Connect with Carly on Twitter and Facebook

The rise of helicopter parenting - overparenting today from Tara at MUMmedia Blog
 I look at the reasons behind why we helicopter parent and how this impacts our children. 
Connect with Tara on Twitter and Facebook

Estimating child care fees from Salwa at Salz Dummy Spit Blog 
How you can estimate your child care fees after CCB and CCR by using this online calculator through Centrelink. 
Connect with Salwa on Twitter and Facebook

It's ok to be a little nervous. A master class in blogging a cocktail party from Robyn at Mrs D Plus 3
I attended the first ever Kidspot blogging Master class and it was my first ever blogging event. 
Connect with Robyn on Twitter and Facebook

10 Top Tips To Help Stop Your Children From Becoming Overweight from Nikki at Wonderfully Women Blog 
Childhood obesity is a growing epidemic in the Western World, and these simple tips are easy to implament and can help establish good habits at a young age. 
Connect with Nikki on Twitter and Facebook

So Near & Yet So Far from Brenda at Mumabulous 
My disappointment in not being able to see Chris Isaak in concert despite being in Thredbo on the very same day he was playing. 
Connect with Brenda on Twitter and Facebook

Diggers and pins from Tara at Gluten Free Hart Blog
A moment of venting of the tantrum variety but 100% gluten free
Connect with Tara on Twitter and Facebook

Are You Monitoring Your Preschooler's Hand and Finger Skills? from Rhonda at Silly Mummy Blog Great hands and fingers skills allow a child to take care of themself such as tie shoelaces as well as influence other abilities such as writing. 
Connect with Rhonda on Twitter and Facebook

Where is He? from Melissa at Two Little Humans and Me Blog
Answering questions of faith to a six year old little human!
Connect with Melissa on Twitter and Facebook

The One Thing I Wish I Knew About from Clare at Checks and Spots Blog
Discover what Natalie Bloom (Bloom Cosmetics), Pip Lincolne (Meet Me at Mikes), Chantelle Ellem (Fat Mum Slim) plus 13 other mums wish they’d known before they became a mama. 
Connect with Clare on Twitter and Facebook

Create your own baby closet dividers from Kellie at The Mummy Diaries Blog
Super cheap and super cute baby closet dividers

Not everyone is judging you from Emily at You learn something new every day 
As parents, sometimes we hear criticism and judgement where none exists. 
Connect with Emily on Twitter and Facebook

Why I'm still a rookie parent from Erin at The Mums Group 
The post is about what happens when you get cocky and attempt a solo trip to Ikea, with two kids under the age of 3!
Connect with Erin on Twitter and Facebook

Oh paddle board, full of grace from Alison at Talking Frankly Blog
How I try paddleboarding and am Jennifer Aniston's twin. Really.
Connect with Alison on Twitter and Facebook

Kids Skinny Jeans - Best and Less from Jennifer at Less than a pineapple Blog 
I feature my favourite fashion items that cost less than $50. This post is about the best value kids skinny jeans I've found, costing $12 each. 
Connect with Jennifer on Facebook

A gift for me from Renee at Mummy, Wife, Me
A tale of how I said goodbye to Melrose and hello to me. 
Connect with Renee on Facebook

Why you should always wash new clothes from Jo at Down to Earth Mother
My most popular post of all time was about the sneaky chemicals smothered on new clothing and why you should always wash them first. 
Connect with Jo on Facebook

Get Dad to Do It! from Jennifer at Work Women Want
Why are there so few dads at the school gate doing pick ups? And what can we do person by person to change this? 
Connect with Jennifer on Twitter

Choosing between husband and child from Lydia at Where the Wild Things Were 
Is it wrong to place your childrens needs before your partners? If it isn't wrong, why are there feelings of guilt when you do? 
Connect with Lydia on Twitter and Facebook

Child Friendly Holiday Accommodation from Linda at Mums on the Go
I travel a lot with my kids. Here are some of the key things I look for when selecting our family friendly accommodation to ensure we have the best possible experience. 
Connect with Linda on Twitter and Facebook

A birthday party for a 4 year old! The Malteser Chocolate Cake + Tissue Pom Pom Balls + Party Games from Lisa at TOMFO - Tomorrow's Family Organiser
Great ideas for a birthday party. The cake, the decorations and games for a 4 year old party. Simple to make with a little bit of organising.
Connect with Lisa on Facebook

30 lessons from 30 years from Tahlia at The Parenting Files
I just turned 30. The next chapter awaits. Here are my 30 lessons in 30 years. What lessons have you learnt? 
Connect with Tahlia on Twitter and Facebook

Five things we don’t want this mother’s day from Wendy at Vegie Smugglers
A warning post for dads, explaining to them exactly what it is, and what it isn't that we want on mother's day. 
Connect with Wendy on Twitter and Facebook

One small step for baby! from Kate at Happy Ella After
Every parent waits with bated breath for one precious milestone - walking! Ella's Dad and I were so worried that she would take these precious steps whilst we were at work. Lucky for us, one Sunday…she decided to take them at home! 
Connect with Kate on Twitter and Facebook

Welcome home from Vicki at Vegemitevix
This post written to celebrate my Englishman's move to NZ to be with us, and our reunion after five months' apart. Yup, a soppy love-story post.
Connect with Vicki on Twitter and Facebook

3 Developmental Stages to Avoid Travel with Babies and Toddlers from Sally-Ann at Toddlers on Tour 
Avoid family travel during 3 developmental milestone stages: Immunisation, Introducing Solids and Toilet Training. We'll tell you why.
Connect with Sally-Ann on Twitter and Facebook

The Day I Met a Talking Pig from Robo at Robomum
A post about standing up for the underdog and speaking the truth, even if your voice shakes. 
Connect with Robo on Twitter and Facebook

When your baby won't stop crying from Louisa Claire at Louisa Claire 
Do you need to hear this? When your baby cries and cries, and you don’t know how to help her, you are not doing anything wrong. Your baby does love you and need you. You can get through this. 
Connect with Louisa Claire on Twitter and Facebook

Attention World : I EXERCISED from Georgia at Parental Parody 
Just a little casual bragging to alert everyone to the fact that I exercised. And then suffered for many days.
Connect with Georgia on Twitter and Facebook

Me and Issy and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day from Bec at Say Nothing Act Casual
A wry account of how my littlest girl (5 nearly 6) manages to push all my buttons simultaneously, every day. 
Connect with Bec on Twitter and Facebook

The post that was supposed to be on being a crier but turned into a ramble about Lovely's schooling from Rhianna at A Parenting Life 
Tears, fears and trying to encourage your child to have a love, or even a slight desire to learn are all part and parcel of being a mother. Not that it makes it easier to deal with. 
Connect with Rhianna on Twitter and Facebook

There Is No Such Thing As Ordinary Post from Kate at The Life and Times of an Ordinary Girl
After a life-changing couple of years which saw us sell our city home and take our three children across the ocean to a "third-world" island, this post is a reflection of the truths that have become apparent during the journey. 
Connect with Kate on Twitter and Facebook

Op Shop Finds: What's your favourite Little Golden Book? from Heather at This Mum Rocks
The Little Golden Books are a great counter balance for my 2 year old in this technology mad world. What's your favourite Little Golden Book? 
Connect with Heather on Facebook and Twitter

Pen Pals Post from Hayley at Middle Class Mama's 
This is the issues raised with conversing with people on the internet. Are they who they say they are? 
Connect with Hayley on Twitter and Facebook

Top Tips for Using a Slow Cooker from Monique at Your Cheeky Monkey
My top tips for using a slow cooker!
Connect with Monique on Twitter and Facebook

PHEW!!!!  And that is all the submissions for the June Digital Parents Blog Carnival.  A huge 41 in total!!!  I hope you enjoy reading through them, and thank you again to all the amazing bloggers who sent me their links!

Monique xx

Digital Parents Blog Carnival

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Review: AntiOx Chocolate and Snack Bars

I would like to begin this post by admitting I am a chocoholic.  I'm pretty sure I am addicted to it, and I know I would be about 10kg lighter if I didn't indulge so much!

So imagine my delight when approached to review the AntiOx Chocolate and Snack Bars!!  Yum yum, I never say no to chocolate.

However, once I received the parcel in the mail, I did some further reading about AntiOx Chocolate.  It is definitely not just any old chocolate.  Vitality Brands has traipsed the planet to bring you the best of ancient super fruits and grains: acai (pronounced ‘ah-sa-ee’) from Brazil, goji (go-jee) from the Himalayas, pomegranate from the Middle East, chia from Southern Mexico and Guatemala, and quinoa from across South America, to make products which are extremely high in anti-oxidants. They then incorporate these amazing food products into delicious sugar free 70% cocoa chocolate (which has high anti-oxidants itself).

There is scientific evidence of AntiOx Chocolates anti-oxidant levels.  The level is measured using Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC), which is an independent measure that rates the antioxidant value of all foods. As a guide, we need a daily ORAC intake of 3,500-5,000 units to stay healthy. AntiOx Snack Bars have an ORAC rating of 7,000, while AntiOx Chocolates have an ORAC value of 26,000 per 80g block. Combined with a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, AntiOx products can significantly boost your antioxidant intake.

The chocolate blocks are a solid block of rich dark sugar free chocolate, with the fruit bits within the chocolate.  Although sweetened with stevia, the chocolate is not very sweet, rather quite rich due to the dark chocolate.  It is delicious and certainly doesn't feel like you are eating a health food (unlike some of the other cardboard tasting healthy chocolate bars I have tried in the past!).

The Snack Bars are a wholegrain bar with the superfruits mentioned above, coated in sugar free dark chocolate.  These are really satisfying and very tasty.

I am pretty excited to now be able to satisfy my chocolate cravings, and not feel guilty about it!!  If you want to try them too, find them in the health food aisle of your local supermarket :-)

Disclaimer: I was sent a selection of AntiOx Chocolate to review.  No payment was received for this post and any opinions expressed are my own.