Tiptoe through the Tulips in Silvan

Yesterday I took the kiddies to check out the Kids Week fun at Tesselaar Tulip Festival.

Let me just say, visiting a flower farm is not normally my idea of an exciting day out so it was an unexpected surprise that I enjoyed this one so much.

They’ve got all these awesome kids things happening over the school holidays, and best of all, it’s free for kids under 16 to get in! (Adults are $22, conc. $18)

Squishy trying out some Dutch style

Squishy trying out some Dutch style

There was shows running on the stage practically all day with lots of singing and dancing, a Despicable Me 2 show starring 2 dancing minions and an awesome and educational animal show from the Reptile man, and then we checked out their stall afterward and got to meet and pat some cool lizards and I got to hang out with this guy…I can’t remember what kind of python the guy said it was, but it was just gorgeous!

 

Hanging out with my scaly new friend

Hanging out with my scaly new friend

 

The face painting was amazing. Yes, the line was HUGE and we waited nearly an hour, but it was also right at the busiest time of the day, but they were only charging $10 a kid and the ladies were doing a really wonderful job, every single kid I saw looked amazing – lots of frozen themed ones, princesses, dogs, cats, super heroes, lions everything.

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Squishy wouldn't sit still long enough to get his face painted, so the lovely lady did this rainbow spider on his arm. He loved it!

Squishy wouldn’t sit still long enough to get his face painted, so the lady did this adorable rainbow spider on his arm. He loved it!

My "frozen" princess

My “frozen” princess

And now a smiling one :)

And now a smiling one 🙂

 

Squishy's spider, he was showing it off all day!

Squishy’s spider, he was showing it off all day!

The fairy garden was just adorable, and we even stumbled across a fairy taking a nap in a tree!

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Who’s that up there having a sleep?

The mobile animal farm was a huge hit with the kids, they loved meeting the gorgeous baby cow, lambs, bunnys, guinea pigs, geese, chickens, ducks, a goat kid and a cheeky little piglet.

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Getting cuddly with the lambs

Getting cuddly with the lambs

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Oink Oink

Alpacas

Alpacas

And lets not forget the reason for the festival… The tulips!

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They were gorgeous, I had no idea there were so many wonderful varieties and colours of tulips, it was like walking through a rainbow!

TF30

 

 

We’ll definitely be heading back again next year.IMG_0314

 

 

 

 

* This is not a sponsored post, just a review of a place I visited.  If you would like me to review something for you, sponsored for otherwise, please contact me via email at contact.thisisbeck@gmail.com  *

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3 year old tantrums and a book review

 

My 3 and a 1/2 year old is bright, funny, creative and very strong willed and independent.

I love and want to nurture these traits, but it can be difficult.

Especially when she just Does. Not. Want. To…{eat, get dressed, go to bed, stop hitting her brother… etc.}  and far too often ends up in with everyone yelling and crying. I’ve tried time outs, taking away toys, bribery, even smacking.

None of these feels right to me.

In search of some parenting tips, I paid a visit to my local library.

I grabbed 4 books that looked promising;

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Planning With Kids (Nicole Avery), Attached at the Heart (Barbara Nicholson and Lysa Parker), The Mummy Coach (Lorraine Thomas), and Buddhism for Mothers of Young Children – Becoming a Mindful Parent (Sarah Napthali)

This is what I thought of them:

Planning With Kids.

I didn’t even realise till about 1/4 way through, that I am already a follower of this lovely lady’s blog and FB page!

I really liked this book, lots of really useful, practical suggestions about getting organised to help avoid melt-downs and tantrums. I took lot of notes of ideas to try out, including getting meal times under control, setting yourself 15min “jobs” to do, looking for solutions instead of blaming, setting goals, finding ways to deal with morning and evening “peak-hour” to avoid tantrums.

(I think one of the reasons I liked this was that she seems like a normal real mum, you know, the kind that yells and loses her shit sometimes just like the rest of us. I get a bit suspicious of parenting advice from anyone who seems too perfect. )

{I’ll pop the link to the FB page here >>     https://www.facebook.com/PlanningWithKids?ref=ts&fref=ts

Attached at the Heart.

An interesting read about attachment parenting. I wouldn’t say that I’m completely won over by this style of parenting, but there are a lot of elements to it that I strongly agree with too. I would say this book would probably be more use to someone with a younger baby and looking for some gentler ideas to try, but I still found it interesting and informative. A good read for anyone who wants to know more about the concept of attachment parenting, and they back up their ideas with a lot of research.

The Mummy Coach.

I really did not like this one, in fact certain parts of it really pissed me off. (If it wasn’t a library book,  I probably would have chucked it out a window!)

I found a lot of the “advice” to be quite patronising, for example: “Believe in yourself!” “Visualise a calming colour and count to ten” (when your child is having a tantrum) “Draw a love-heart and write your child’s name inside it and stick it on the fridge” (????) “Make sure you get plenty of me-time, book yourself massage”

I’m sorry, but this chick is living in fairy-land. I can find all the airy-fairy, affirming quotes I could possibly ever need on Pinterest, visualising a calming colour is definitely not going to help me when Scout is having a tantrum and pushes her brother over, splitting his lip on the floor and I have two, hysterically screaming little banshees to deal with. Vodka and a time out, maybe, but visualising? Not so much. And if I had the time to have “me-time” and get a massage… then I wouldn’t be stressed enough to be consulting your book for advice now, would I?

Ok, rant over.

Buddhism for Mothers of  Young Children.

I’ve noticed a heap of blogs and parenting sites lately talking about mindful parenting, so I was curious to find out a bit more about it. I really enjoyed this book, in fact I immediately jumped on Amazon to order this book and her previous one, Buddhism for Mothers. I found so many ideas that resonated really strongly with me, I’ve covered the book in a confetti of post-it notes of things I want to come back to read again. The main theme that comes through really strongly for me is wanting to really “be present” for my babies, right now, and that means having to let go of my worrying about the past and the future and just take each moment as it comes and do the best I can.

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So, there you go, my little book review.

If there’s any books you’d like to suggest for me to check out, parenting or otherwise, let me know in the comments section here or on the FB page.

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A word to live by…

A few gorgeous bloggers I follow have set themselves a “word” for the year.

I think this is an awesome idea, but I had to think about it for a while to settle on what I want to focus on.

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There are so many things I need to let go of in my life and this is going to be the year to do it.

Let go… of expectations.

Let go… of the past.

Let go… of stress.

Let go… of clutter.

Let go… of self-doubt.

Let go… of anxiety.

Let go… of anything I no longer need around me.

Let go.. of anything that holds me back.

Let go… and be true to myself.

Let go… and follow my heart.

Let go… and enjoy the ride.

Let go… and embrace life.

Let go… and live in the moment.

Let go… and be happy.

 

As I work on letting go in different areas of my life, I’ll keep you updated on how it’s going.

Feel free to leave a comment about what you’d like to let go of this year, or if you have any tips for me 🙂

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365 Days.

 

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A year can feel like a long time, but really, they tend to just sneak past when we’re not paying attention.

365 mornings. Getting up, scrambling to make coffee and kids breakfasts, find socks and lost toys. Looking at my ever growing to-do list and knowing I’m not going to have anywhere near enough time to do everything I need to do.

365 evenings. Dinners to be made, stories to read, rushing around, trying to get pyjamas on and teeth brushed. Trying to get everything done and everyone to bed so Kane and I can actually get to spend a bit of time together. Too many evenings where we are both too tired to even talk, one or both of us falling asleep on the couch unable to stay awake even to the end of a t.v. show.

The days blur into each other.

Sure, there are some highlights, great some moments that stand out, but seriously if you asked me what I’ve been doing for the last year, I would struggle to think of an answer that doesn’t include changing nappies, doing dishes and being tired.

Now don’t get me wrong.

I’m not complaining. I want to be a stay-at-home mum, I knew there would be a lot of cleaning and nappies involved.

What I am saying, is that there has to be a better way.

Less stress. Less yelling. Less rushing.

I am not a “routine” kind of person. My home could be, at best, described as organised chaos. But I am starting to realise that I am going to have to set some kind of routines to get things running more smoothly around here.

I want the next 365 mornings to not include tears and yelling. I want to start my day feeling positive instead of exhausted. I want bedtimes to have stories and cuddles, not arguments and tears.

I haven’t worked out exactly how I’m going to do all these things, but I’ll get there. One day.

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Doing what you’ve gotta do, to get where you want to get.

Hiya peeps.

A few people have asked me how we can possibly afford to build a house when we both haven’t worked at proper jobs for 3 years.

The answer is simple, really.

Sacrifice.

Sacrificing lifestyle now for a better lifestyle in the future.
Sacrificing comfort now for getting into the new house sooner.

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It’s no secret that we’ll be completely broke by the time this house is finished.

We’ve had to scrimp and save, take little bits of work here or there, lucky Kane’s had a few jobs along the way (he’s self employed), I’ve done market stalls and the occasional hair do from home… it definitely hasn’t been easy but I also think we’re pretty lucky to be able to do it this way.

One thing we’ve had to do is give up on “luxuries” to get to our end goal faster.
Not getting my hair or nails done, checking out sales and op shops for clothes, (lucky we both really like vintage stuff!) not buying the little things you tend to grab without really thinking about it; a take away coffee, a magazine or newspaper, always taking water bottles out with us (good for you, good for the environment, and you save money not buying soft drinks)

And it’s kind of impossible to have much of a social life with 2 kids, 2 dogs and trying to save money, and entertaining at the shed can be a bit hard. It’s ok in summer when the weather’s nice, but as soon as it gets cold – forget it!

A really hard one for both of us has been music.
We both have ridiculous cd collections and really love going to see live music, but hey – that’s what birthday and christmas presents are for, right?

And there’s absolutely no way we would be able to do it without help.

All kinds of help that have been absolute lifesavers, from something as simple as watching the kids for a couple of hours so I can help Kane do stuff on the building site, or some fresh veggies from someone’s garden to save us a couple of dollars on our grocery bill, or just a sympathetic ear to complain to when it all gets too hard. To huge things like helping to build stuff, chopping firewood ready for the winter, gifts and loans of cash to help us buy the next lots of building materials.

Doing this has really made me see how blessed we are with wonderful family and friends.

It does make me wonder sometimes though, when people say how they’ve can’t afford things…if you want to do something, if you really want it enough you’ll find a way. I would have said there was no way someone could do what we’re doing…but here we are!

What could you sacrifice to help achieve your dreams?

Till next time lovelies,
This is Beck xoxo

The post I almost didn’t write.

This is really fucking hard to write.

I’ve started and stopped so many times I’ve lost count. It’s time to stop thinking about it and let out the words that have been taking up space in my head for too long.

Every family has it’s quirks but mine has it’s own special kind of crazy.

When I was a kid my mum used to joke about how much therapy I was going to need because of her.

She doesn’t know that she was right.

 

I have trust issues.

I have honesty issues.

I have control issues.

Most of my issues stem from being completely manipulated and used by the person I should have been able to trust the most.

My Mother. 

I have spent a lot of years hurting, feeling angry, confused, helpless, lost, betrayed.

Blaming myself, wondering what I had done wrong.

And finally, at almost 32 years old, I have the answer.

I didn’t do anything wrong. I didn’t deserve to be manipulated, used, decieved and discarded depending on her mood. I was a kid, none of it was my fault.

 

So right here, right now, I’m letting it go.

I choose not to allow the damage she has caused to linger in my life for a single moment longer.

 

For so long I wished for a proper mother. Someone to care, to lean on, to share special moments with, someone who’s always on your side. Someone you can trust. 

I’ve finally realised that I’ve been missing something that I never actually had.

I choose to concentrate my time and thoughts with the little family Kane and I have built for ourselves.

Finally.

After 32 years.

I choose to be free.

Everything that matters to me. Right here.

Everything that matters to me. Right here.

Till next time lovelies,

{This is} Beck xoxo

A Very Buggy Birthday

Both our little munchkins have January birthdays so this year we decided to throw them a combined “Bugs in the Garden” birthday party.

I don’t usually do huge birthday parties for the kids, but after the year we’ve had, I really wanted to do something special to celebrate getting through it all.

Here are a few pics of the day:

Party Yumminess

Party Yumminess

 

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The birthday boy... already a hit with the ladies ;)

The birthday boy… already a hit with the ladies 😉

Sharing his cake with Mummy

Sharing his cake with Mummy

 

And of course, the cake ;)

And of course, the cake 😉

 

Of course I turned to Pinterest for inspiration, and got the ideas to make these:


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IMG_7503It was a hot and sunny day, plenty of cold drinks were had, the kids had a great water-fight (led by the biggest kid of them all, my darling Hubby)

I was absolutely thrilled to see ALL of the kids playing fantastically together, ages ranging from my itty-bitty 1 year old, to a couple of gorgeous boys who started high school this year. The big ones play so well with the little ones and they all get along wonderfully. It’s really lovely to see.

A fantastic day was had by all, and my little bugs had a very happy birthday.

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