Thursday, November 30, 2017

Top 20 Christmas Presents for Hard To Buy For People

Do you have someone in your life who is hard to buy for? I do. I am married to him.

He's in to lots of things; tech, cycling, maps (duh), martial arts, gaming, and more... but in a way that he would want something VERY specific and I would likely buy the wrong thing. So I can never surprise him with something within those categories.

I've put together a list of awesome Christmas presents for the Hard To Buy For Person in your life:

1. Tile Sport
Do you know someone who loses everything? The Tile is such a cool little device that will play a little tune when you tell it to with an app on your phone. I was lucky enough to be gifted one and it really is very cool. I love that you can also find your phone with it if you press the tile - it makes your phone ring even if it is on silent!


2. Indoor Skydiving
I've done this (read about it here) and it is A-MA-ZING. Perfect for those who are not quite adrenaline junkies, but up for a bit of an adventure. It is much cheaper than proper skydiving, and you can be young or old. Everything is provided including training, flight suits and helmets.

3. Cooking Class
Depending on who it is, this could be an insult, so just be careful! MG loves to cook and is very good at it, so when I gave him a voucher for this he was very excited. There are lots of different cuisines to choose from, and they hold kids classes too.


4. Exploding Kittens Card Game
No kittens were harmed in the making of this card game. Are you buying for someone who likes The Oatmeal and has a crazy sense of humour? Exploding Kittens ticks those boxes. Play the Cheetah Bum card or the Thousand Year Old Back Hair card, and try not to explode.

5. End Poverty
I've always loved giving Oxfam cards for Christmas because it's not just a card, it's a donation that goes towards helping fight poverty. They do good for the world and they are hilarious. Win Win.


6. Awesome Lunchbox
If you follow me on Instagram (and why wouldn't you?) you'll know I love a good lunchbox. Adults need lunchboxes too, y'all, and I can totally recommend the Yumbox Tapas from Little Bento World. It's big enough for a full sized lunch and some snacks for your day. Don't let the kids have all the fun.

7. Float 
Perfect for stressed out peeps, a float in an isolation tank with warm water, piped music and low lights could be just what they need. I've floated twice and found it very bizarre but amazing at the same time. You cannot sink because of the magnesium salts, so it requires no effort and you feel weightless.

8. Beard Bib
Now this is a sneaky "for him" present that will also help whoever is in charge of cleaning the bathroom. This ace beard bib hangs on the mirror and secures around the neck, catching all the little beardy trimmings. I am pro beard, but anti beardy trimmings all over the bloody sink. This thing rocks.



9. Ugly Christmas Rashie
These things are awesome! I have always been a bit jealous of the Ugly Christmas Sweaters in the cold climates, so I was chuffed when these rashies came out. There are two designs this year and again, proceeds go to the Cancer Council.



10. Food Safari
The Leederville Food Safari is the ultimate in progressive dinners. It's a three course tour de force of the suburb's most exclusive eateries and restaurants. What makes it so cool? You travel by rickshaw between venues. Hot nights with the cool breeze in your hair as someone other than you pedals along. Delicious and

11. Coravin Screw Cap Attachment
If you know someone who drinks fancy pants wine and already has a Coravin Wine System, you could get the screw cap attachment for them so they can be just as fancy with screw cap wine as they are with corked wine. Or if you are willing to spend a shed load of money you could get the original system for them. It means you can drink one class at a time and the rest won't go yuck. But I kinda don't understand this one glass at a time bizzo.

12. Sweary Stuff
I am a lady who says fuck a lot. So is Cate Bolt. She's the first to tell you her stuff isn't art, it's "sarcasm draped in fabric". Her stuff is great and everything goes to her orphanage where she saves girls from sex trafficking and slavery. So if you know someone with a big heart who likes to say fuck a lot, this is your perfect online shop.


13. Map of the Stars
I don't mean a tourist map showing you where the celebrities live, I mean a map of the night sky on a particular date and time. You could have your wedding, the day they were born, or any other significant date for them, and voila, an image of what the sky looked like that night. Perfect for astronomy nerds.

14. A night at Crown Towers
This is great for anyone you are willing to spend the night with because of course you want them to take you! It could work for some awesome child free time for a couple, or a girls night out. The complex is huge and there is always something on, or you could hang by the pool and order cocktails.

15. Merry Movies
If you hadn't guessed by now, I am a fan of giving experiences as gifts. But that doesn't mean you have to spend a fortune. These themed Merry Movies gift cards from Event Cinemas start at $25. Super cute designs including Coco (OMG death positivity in Pixar form!), The Last Jedi, plus the ones you see below.


16. Golf Lessons
From beginners through to advanced, if you have a Golf obsessed person in your life send them to lessons. Whether they have only ever played mini golf or they are wanna be pros, everyone can learn something from professional lessons.

17. Tea for Two
Know a tea lover? Then head to T2 and you are sure to find the perfect gift. I adore the Tea for Two set because it's nice to share tea out of a beautiful pot and gorgeous cups. Whether it is plain ol' tea or something more fancy and hipster, you'll find it there.



18. Dinner and Drinks
Head to the brand new Whitfords Brewing Company for alfresco dining and a wide range of national and international beers. With regular specials, food events and fun entertainment going on in the complex, there is something for everyone - even the kids if you have to bring them.

19. Amazing Skin
Is your Hard To Buy For person is a skin care junkie? Or are they always complaining about something to do with their skin? For the right person, a gift voucher to Skin Resus would be brilliant. I had IPL photorejuvenation and wrinkle relaxers (click the link for my before and after videos). Full disclosure: I loved it so much I work there now!

20. Gifts for Peace
Buy food for a refugee family. Education for a refugee. Safe midwifery kits. Train a teacher. Support a refugee with a disability. Restore a well. There are so many things to choose from, you will find one that will resonate with who you are thinking of. And you will make a difference!


Are you hard to buy for?

Friday, November 24, 2017

Run for their lives

NOT SPONSORED
I only run in very specific circumstances:

1) the zombie apocolypse

2) for charity (and even then I'll take the walk option if it's available)

The Sunshine Beach Run is a fabulous event, and the seventh annual run (with optional walk or shuffle for people like me!) is coming up on Sunday February 18th to raise money for Red Nose and save little lives.

SUNSHINE BEACH RUN 2017 from Sunshine Beach Run on Vimeo.

Nine children die unexpectedly every day in Australia. Red Nose (formally SIDS and Kids of the Red Nose Day campaign fame) started as a grass roots group helping bereaved parents who had lost a child and has developed in to the advocacy and research phenomenon it is today. They work tirelessly to educate on safe sleeping practices and research in to the possible causes behind sudden infant death syndrome.

Joining in and raising money will help save little lives. So far they've raised $920,000 - let's help them break the $1million mark in 2018!

The burly blokes from the West Coast Eagles will be there for a celebrity sprint, then you can run or walk your preferred distance - 1km, 3kms, or 5kms. If West Coast aren't your team, you could always try to beat the Eagles players in attendance to prove a point.

You can dedicate your run to an angel babe if you wish, and place their name on wings available on the day. Or you can just run for research and support of bereaved families, knowing how much of a difference your contribution will make.


There are prizes for the biggest fundraisers, the biggest corporate teams, school teams and family teams, plus of course the place winners.

Event registration is open now, and if you want an extra 10% off your entry fees, use the codeword GLOW at the checkout. Combine it with earlybird pricing to save more. You can register here sunshinebeachrun.com.au/register/

Friday, November 3, 2017

Tattoo Roulette


So I got a new tattoo. No big secret, I showed y'all two weeks ago when it happened.

But what you don't know is the slightly strange story behind it.

Tricks and I headed to the West Coast Lowdown, Perth's Kustom Kulture Festival where everything s spelled with a K, much like that Kooky Kardashian Klan.

We're talking hot rods, low rider hop kings (the cars that jump up and down), Miss West Coast Lowdown and a stack of gorgeous pinups, a half pipe for anyone who decided to BYO skateboard, custom builds, and a stack of tattoo artists all under one roof. It was fabulous.

Tricks spent most of the time staring, slack jawed at the highly polished hot rods, no doubt imagining himself behind the wheel.

"Mum, you love tattoos, you should get one." he said.

"You're an enabler" I replied.

We went through Tattoo Alley countless times, the buzz of the machines kept drawing me over.

Bzzzzzz get a tattoo bzzzzz.

Bzzzzz you know bzzzzz you want to bzzzzzzz.

One place, Ink Remedy, was doing a chocolate wheel for their tattoos. There was 31 pieces of numbered flash, and for $100 you could spin the wheel and get whatever it landed on, tattooed on your skin.

Forever.

I thought it was a cool gimmick, but not something I'd be up for.

The flash was beautiful, it was all Sailor Jerry style, which I adore on other people but don't see on myself. The colour scheme just isn't me.

Chatting with the woman in charge, she said she couldn't spin up a tattoo either. I mentioned there was only one design on there that I could have on me, a swallow, because I had always wanted one. I'd even put a fake tattoo swallow on my foot years ago.

"I love the meaning, I love the look. But I dodn't like the colours."

"You could pick your own colours, it doesn't have to be like that" she said.

BZZZZZZ GET A TATTOO BZZZZZZZ!

"You know, if you spin up one you don't like you don't lose your money. You just have to pay full price for the tattoo you want." she said, no doubt sensing how much I was aching to have the needles on my skin again.

BZZZZZ GET A TATTOO BZZZZZZ!

"Ha! Well, I only want number 14. Tricks, spin me up a 14."

He gave the chocolate wheel a heave and I'm silently thinking WTF am I doing playing tattoo roulette?

Tricks, the lady in charge, some others who were standing near by and myself watched the wheel spin.

Ticker, ticker, ticket, tick, tick, tick... tick... tick... ... tick... ... ...tick... .... ... ... ...tick.

14.

There were hoots of laughter and another lady who also wanted to spin stared in amazement.

"I guess I'm getting a tattoo!"

So that's the story of how my 7yo spun up my tattoo design for me.

I'm sure there is a heap of people who will think that is weird, and you know what, I'm one of them.

I had the tattoo done there and then by Darcie, with people walking past to stop and look, and Tricky by my side playing games and taking photos.




Everyone has asked how much it hurt because it was on my foot, and to be honest, it didn't hurt as much as I thought it would. I had heard so many horror stories about foot tattoos so I had built it up in my head to be the most insane pain I'd ever felt, and compared to the terror in my head it was nothing. I did flinch once during the outline... and have a nice little wiggly line to show for it.

I am in love with it.

The colour is very me, and I'm so glad to have my favourite colour on me finally.

And yes, it does match my current hair colour!


Monday, October 16, 2017

She said she liked it better than Pirates of Penzance

This is a C2 post. Opinions are my own.
#C2 for full details please see my disclosure policy

Coming home from martial arts the other night, MapGuy asked if I'd had a good training session.

"I liked it better than Pirates of Penzance" I said. 

He looked at me blankly.

Turns out his aptitude for pop culture references is not as advanced as mine. Shame. 

But the Pretty Woman fans amongst us will know it was a sly way of saying I trained so hard I almost peed my pants.

Last week my friend and I we were talking about me flipping MG to the ground in a take down defence, and kicking butt and I said I was going to try my hardest because "I'm not wearing a sports bra and a liner for nothing!", adding "TENA should sponsor me!". We laughed the way only girlfriends who have both had gigantic babies can.

The last time MapGuy ever hugs me from behind! From standing to flat on the floor in 3 seconds.
So when this info from TENA arrived in my inbox, I thought perhaps my house was bugged, then had a giggle. I didn't PMSL, but if i had of, it would have been OK. 

I have the habit of oversharing. But what happens when I do it, is that most of the time, whoever I'm talking to will chime in with a "me too" story. And you guessed it, needing to wear a liner for sports is almost always a "me too" moment. Despite us all doing pelvic floor exercises, sometimes it still happens. Just look at all those Cross Fit wee photos. 

Most of my mum friends are a tad nervous when it comes to physical activity like jumping or lifting weights. For those who have no idea, and are lucky enough to have no issue, I'm not saying we wet our pants the way a kid does. We're talking droplets.

But those droplets can freak you out and, well, they just feel awful.

So I never go to training without a liner. Screw the stigma. 

Incontinence (yep, I used the real word) is more common than you think, affecting 1 in 3 women and 1
in 10 men within Australia.

TENA has created infographics to help simplify it for us. Because everyone loves an infographic.

How to strengthen your pelvic floor

See the bit down the bottom? It's only tiny, but it says free samples are available. They'll send you out a pack with a couple different ones to try. Oh, and it's a plain envelope, by the way, so if you're not down with smashing the stigma just yet, that's cool, too! 

Friday, September 15, 2017

20 of the BEST School Holiday activities in Perth September/October 2017



I Love school holidays. See that capital L? That's how much I love them.

I get a LOT of comments on how fun our school holidays always seem to be, so I figured I would start sharing my top picks so you can hear about them when there is still spots available.

Don't get me wrong, my kids fight and send me batshit crazy just like everyone elses kids (please, tell me it's not just me), and there are moments when I can tell you exactly how many hours it is until the next term starts.

But for the most part I love them because there is so many cool things to do and a whole heap of them are free. Plus having an activity planned makes excellent bribe material. Or, um, so I've heard. *shifty eyes*

Every school holidays I plan us one activity a day. It works really well for us because then there is one structured thing and then the kids have loads of free time to just hang out at a park, or play LEGO, and fight with each other. Plus we're not above some serious couch time so we can watch Moana for the 786th time.

So here's my top 10 paid activities for us this September/October. Keep scrolling for my top 10 FREEBIES!

TOP 10 PAID ACTIVITIES

German Engineering Workshop (25 Sept    $30.00)
Your budding engineers will love this one. Using LEGO Technic pieces your kids will be in STEM heaven! Follow it up with some German food and you've got an awesome morning.

Awesome Arts Festival (30 Sept - 13 Oct prices vary)
Absolutely every age kid is covered by this brilliant festival. Tricky is heading to the Junk Shadow Puppet Workshop, and he and Bobbin will be seeing Kaleidoscope, a sensory-sensitive celebration of difference and a look through the eyes of Ethan, a boy with Austism. .  There are mud workshops, zombie makeup and film workshops, theatre performances, and dance sessions, plus a chance to meet some amazing performers, authors and illustrators.

Doughnut Decorating (26 - 30 Sept & 3 - 7 Oct  $5.95)
A fun, creative and extremely yummy activity at the Whitfords and Myaree stores. You get two original doughnuts and a heap of decorations to cover them with. I implement a "mum tax" of one bite per doughnut because DELISH!

Wild Movement Kids (25/27/29 Sept & 2/4/6 Oct   $15.00)
Children of all ages can run, balance, crawl, climb, carry, lift, and develop new movement skills while improving their risk assessment, team work and problem solving skills. All in an outdoor nature play area! We cannot wait for this one.

Dinosaur Discovery (20 Sept - 28 Jan 2018   -   3-15yo $15.00 adults $25.00)
If life size animatronic dinosaurs are your thing, then this is for you. Step inside a meterorite crater, use augmented reality to interact with dinosaurs and experience the digital dinosaur track. There is also a central play zone and a heap of dino based activities to enjoy.


Artist Workshops with Rainbow Palette (16 - 29 Sept    -    $40.00 - 80.00)
Got a creative kiddo? Rainbow Palette is the place for them. Run by a qualified art teacher, these amazing sessions have limited spaces to ensure everyone gets a lot of time and space to work. The art works being created change every holidays, this time you can choose from wind chimesplant pendantsbird feeders, planterslooming and even gorgeous Eric Carle inspired butterflies. Plus mum or dad can grab a coffee at Stacked Cafe while they wait.

iFly Indoor Skydiving (25 Sept - 8 Oct   $330.00)
Now this is a big one, but that price represents a whopping 25% saving off the usual $440 package! Up to five people ages 3 and up can experience flight! It is such an amazing experience, MapGuy and I thought it was fantastic and we both highly recommend it - check out the review I did here. Book the Family and Friends package using the code SUPER FAMILY to get the discount.

The Maze and Outback Splash (25 Sept - April 2018   -   4-15yo $16.00 adults $24.50)
This place is A-maze-ing. See what I did there? Navigate mazes made from tyres, plants, timber and string, and once you've mastered those try a round of mini golf, see the animals, jump on the huuuge jumping pillow, play giant games, and have fun on the playground. Because the weather is warming up Outback Splash will be open too! That means three stories of water playground with six slides will be open to cool you down. If you're feeling brave try the seven metre drop of The Plummet water slide... if you're in to more sedate things, Octopus Bay is for littlies and their carers.

Adventure World (23 Sept - April 2018   -   4-13yo $48.00 14+ $58.00)
The Adventure World season starts the day after school finishes. A Perth staple, this place has been going for years and is the place to go for rollercoasters, rides, swimming and slides. It's definitely on the expensive side, and so is the food, so if you're going, save up and take a picnic lunch with you.


Zookeeper 4 A Day (ongoing   -   $165.00)
We adore Peel Zoo. It is nothing like Perth Zoo (which we also love) and is much more focused on native animals and being able to get close. The Zookeeper for a day program is the shiz. You get to do all the behind the scenes stuff like feeding the animals - even the baby animals OMG. Included in the price is a tshirt, cap, lunch and a certificate that says how rad you are.



TOP 10 FREE ACTIVITIES

Ocean Keys Carnival (23/24 Sept)
Experience the magic of the circus with juggling, unicycle riding and circus skills workshops, stage shows, craft stations and game zones. Plus no carnival would be complete without a bouncy castle, face painting, balloon twisters and stilt walkers!

Mini Makers (26/27/29 Sept)
Stop motion animation using LEGO for 7-15 year olds. I may try to pass myself off as a 15 year old for this. I can't wait to see what gets created.

Awesome Arts Festival 2017 (30 Sept - 13 Oct)
The Cultural Centre will come alive with all things fun, educational, arty and silly. I have my eye on the Cardboard Challenge, the launch of Dame Lynley Dodd's latest Scarface Claw book (swoon!), Madame Lark with her musical saw, and the Pop Up Play space.


Spring in the City (multiple dates)
Check out all things scaly and slimy with Critters Up Close (17th Sept), the gigantic 12 metre walk in Giant Kaleidoscope (15 Sept - 13 Oct), the Kids Carnival (16/17 Sept & 21/22 Oct) will have rides, activities and games for kids of all ages, or set them loose with Laser Tag (16/17/23/24/30 Sept & 1 Oct).

WA Museum Discovery Zone (23 Sept - 8 Oct)
The Cabinet of Curiosity will let you experience the Nyoongar language and extraordinary objects, check out Bones! Bones! Bones! (three exclamation, it must be good) and learn about bones (surprise), and have a look at the Toy Box while you're there to see toys from all around the world.

Shrinky Dinks (2 - 8 Oct)
OMG remember these?! Shrinky Dinks were all the rage when I was at primary school and they're getting a 2017 twist with emoji shapes. Make a charm and turn it in to a keyring or necklace. While you're there check out the Muddle Maze and enter the competition to win a cool prize.

Hillarys Boat Harbour (any time)
This place is one of our regular haunts. Swim in the sheltered waters or run amok on the shaded playground right on the beach sand. There is always a free kids train running during the school holidays, and some days you'll find face painting and other pop up activities. No day is complete without an icecream and at last count there were five dedicated icecream shops! The Great Escape has closed down, but there is still a great day to be had.


Adventurescape Playground (any time)
Just 20 minutes from Mandurah is this insane farm themed playground. Climb over tractors and tyres then head up the windmill and down the slide. Swings galore, a 35 metre flying fox, plus water areas for wading and splashing so bring spare clothes. There are BBQ facilities and toilets, so you could spend hours there without breaking the budget.

Mini Roads and BMX Track (any time)
Shepherd's Bush Reserve in Kingsley is so freakin' cute with mini roads, stop signs, roundabouts, even parking and refueling stations, and is perfect for little ones on scooters, trikes, push-alongs, and small bikes. The bigger kids (or daredevils like Bobbin who has ruled this place since it opened) can get their kicks on the BMX track. There is also shaded seating, BBQs, and a playground. But be warned, there are no toilets!

Bunnings Kids Workshops (ongoing)
Bunnings always offers up free workshops every weekend, but they step it up on the holidays and most stores tend to have one activity per day. Tricks and Bobbin are signed up for planting and army tank making, but check your local for details. They tend to overbook these things, so be prepared for it to be chockas. Still lots of fun though!

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