Friday, December 16, 2011

Making life that little bit smoother

Becoming a single mother ultimately meant I was doing the parenting for 2
Mentally is something I could handle but the physical side, meaning looking after them everyday
was going to be something I struggled with
With Master J having a developmental delay things were tough already, even with Mr S here
but at least I had an extra pair of hands
well most of the time but we will leave that blog post for my draft folder ;)

So how was I going to get through each day without completely losing the plot and ending up with a sparkly brand new white jacket and a padded cell to call my very own?

The answer for me was to be organised and prepared!
For some thats easier said then done
For me it comes quite naturally, I'm an organiser majoirty of the time
but trust me, just like most people I can get overwhelmed even when organsied!

So here a few things I do that help me get through each day that little bit more stress free
and of course they could be applied to all kinds of families!!

* Get pyjamas and nappys/jocks ready during the day
I try and do this one early in the morning and pop them into our
Pj Station
As both the boys bath together and get out together I find this helps in the fact im not searching for a matchin pjg top and bottom at the same time as I have 2 slippery towel wearing monsters running around ;)
* Lay out clothes the night before
I always try and have the boys clothes, nappys/jocks, socks and shoes all ready to go for after breakfast
I check the weather the night before and then collect the clothes they need just before I tuck them into bed

* Pack daycare bags, nappy bags and handbags the night before
This is another sanity saver for me it saves rushing around in the morning trying to pack bags and not forget anything
Obviously don't pack bottles of milk or anything you want kept cold but there's no reason you cant have all that waiting in the fridge with a post it note stuck to the bags reminding you to pack it.

* Lay out breakfast dishes
This is another one that works well being done the night before
Just getting bowls, plates and spoons out ready can save some time and create less chaos, especially if you know you are going to be strapped for time.

* Meal Plan
I orginally started meal planning to save money and to avoid that 4pm~ish question
"what should we have for dinner tonight"
These days its also to help work arond the boys mainly their daycare days which are also the days I work and to try and build my freezer meals.
Through meal planning I know what we will be having during the week and on our busiest days I can prep the night before to make that night alot smoother.
Using my slow cooker is also a godsend! and there is always lots of leftovers to freeze.

* Start dinner preparation/cooking early
I find that about 3 o'clock is when it suits myself and the boys for me to begin getting dinner ready
It could simply mean cutting vegies ready or cooking a pie filling so it has time to cool.
It just means by 4/4:30ish I'm ready to start cooking for dinner to be served at 5pm
and by starting this early it allows time for distraction!
ie an upset toddler or toilet needing 3yo
which means I;ve still got plenty of time to get dinner sorted
and I dont end up stressed and frazzled at 5pm.

* Try and do at least 1 load of washing every day
This is another one that works quite well for me and the boys, for some reason I seem to have 1 decent sized load for 3 or 4 days straight and then I'm able to rest for 2 days or so while it builds up again
So doing one load a day helps lighten the work load and helps it dry quicker too!
As for the folding? well lets not go there ;)\

* Tidy & clean at night
Having kids running around all day and trying to clean is like trying to shovel snow in a blizzard
So even though I'll potter around the house during the day doing small bits and pieces I find if I do the bulk of my cleaning once the boys are in bed I can knock it over quite quickly.
The best thing i find it to not sit down especially if I'm feeling motivated.

As you can see alot of these are done of a night time or afternoon and for me it works.
I still get time to put my feet up at the end of the day too because without little hands trying to help it gets done quicker.
For you it might work better early in the morning ither way all of these are dependent on you, your family and your situation, because I am by no means a parenting/housewife expert.
All these ideas are as you would say
"tried and tested"
and work for me.
All you can do is try things and see if they work for you.

Do you have any helpful time or stress cutting stratergies you use?

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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Meal Planning Wedneday!

When I made my come back
I mentioned that my meal planning day had changed.
It is now on wednesdays mainly due to the fact I work most wednesdays and that Master J developed this new love for grocery shopping!
So our shopping day is now thursday and when our meal planning week starts

Now grocery shopping might not be a fantastic child hood memory for most
but for me It was something I looked forward to when I was on school holidays.
Mum would take my brother and I shopping and we would be treated to a packet of chips and a drink
all while helping take things off the shelves.
So even thought I was stressed to take both of them to begin with we seem to have a routine down pat
we find a park and grab a twin toddler trolley so they can both sit in the front of the trolley then we head to baker delight for cheesymite scolls.
First on the list is fruit and veg I dont tend to spend to mch time in there so I hold off on giving them their snack and drink until we reach Coles.
Then thats where I do the rest of our shopping and everytime we pass the deli J asks for
"miley fitz" aka smiley fritz.. even if he has a mouthful of scroll!
Every week we do the same thing and I hope I am building this great little child hood memory for both of them and eventually get them interested in cooking more once they are a bit older.

Anyways back to the point of the post... The meal plan!
The Organised Housewife

Thursday - Gnocchi Bake from the 4 Ingredients Kids book

Friday - Pastie pie from the freezer or homemade Chicken schnitzel and potato salad

Saturday - just me Moroccan Chicken Risotto

Sunday - Porcupines
the boys have a christmas lunch so they'll have something light like toastie toasties

Monday - Leftover Porcupines for the boys
and Rice a Riso for me after work

Tuesday - Cunchy chicken fingers, pasta salad and roast potatos

Wednesday - Nachos with guacamole, cheese and sour cream

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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Piquing My Pinterest ~ The to-do list edition

Its sunday which means its time for

Tina Gray {dot} Me
This week I'm sharing pins off my

I love this idea of using a shadow box to preseerve some of the boys special things from when they were just tiny babies
I've priced the shadow boxes at IKEA just need to get them and then pick what I want displayed

Pillow cases sewen together and then just insert pillows
I have everything I need I really just have to pull the sewing machine out and do it

A simple fun clock from
This is something I need to do for Master J to help him know when lunch and dinner etc is and when his dad will come over

An old pair of jeans and material insert
I had one of these a few years ago that was made for me by a friend and I have wanted another for so long
I have the jeans and the material, I'll add this to the sewing pile for when I finally pull the machine out ;)

Cute button magnets
A simple easy craft and who dosen't love buttons or need more magnets!

Changeable photo frame!
Spray paint a photo frame and clip add scrapbooking paper, hot glue clip and add photo
easy to change whenever you want to change the photo
Fun and can be made to match any decor if you can find scrapbooking paper to match

Now all I need to do is find the time and motivation and make this list a reality
lucky for me I have the
held by Blossom heart and Mummy to Five
To get me more motivated

What have you been pinning lately?
Dont forget to link up with Tina and share your pins.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Love is in the air

and it makes me smile... alot
I havn't felt this happy in a long time

Amongst the bad days I am given yet another reason to smile

The beginning is always the most exciting...

The butterflies I feel when I'm about to see him
The anticipation of waiting to hear from him
The smiles when he says something sweet
The tingle when I'm kissed or cuddled
The fun in planning the next date or the next time I will see him
The excitement of it being fresh and new

We have so much in common yet are so different
and it seems to work perfectly
It's very early days and things have leaped forward to where we are now
but it feels so right
What society thinks is "appropriate" seems to not matter
He talks in whens not ifs
We are both on the same page
We have both been upfront and its worked

He makes me feel safe
Makes me feel beautiful and confident
I can talk to him about my insecurities about us
Insecurities that aren't there but have come about because of my past
and he understands, he dosen't run!
Thats HUGE! he helps me so much already.

One day we will meet each others children
but for now its about building us and having fun.

We have huge hurdles to cross in the near future
one we have already jumped together and come out the otherside relatively unscathed
But if we can get through them still in one piece
It was meant to be.

The days ahead look fun and bright
full of laughter, love and smiles...

So many smiles.

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Sunday, December 4, 2011

Piquing My Pinterest ~

Im linking up with
for her Pinterest Linky
Tina Gray {dot} Me
formally known as "Ooh! that's"

This week I'm sharing from my

homemade laundry powder from

All natural homemade cleaners from

Natural Candle no wax or wick needed from

A natural safe ant repellent from

Extraodinary uses for ordinary things from

You can follow me on Pinterest *here*
or if you would like and invite just comment your e-mail address in the comment section or e-mail me at

dont forget to link with me Piquing My Pinterest

What are some of your favourite "green" ideas you use around the home?

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Friday, December 2, 2011

A new Christmas

It's no secret to most that I LOVE Christmas!
Always have always will
I always try and go a little OTT
although with Pinterest and lots more blogging I can see I need to lift my game a little ;)
some of these girls are even more Christmasy then me
which I didn't think was possible hehe
Christmas is just such a magical time of the year.

This year however took on a whole new level of excitement a whole new level of magic
With it now just being me and the boys
I thought Christmas 2011 was the chance to start a new,
create new memories and new traditions

So this year I brought a new tree and new decorations in new colours
The tree and theme
red, green & silver theme

our tree

Christmas Craft & Decorations
I have also created homemade decorations thanks to Pinterest

christmas wreath and christmas candles

We are also going to bake cupcakes with Christmas toppers
Do some Christmas colouring in, Christmas painting on canvas and I re-pinned a really cute Christmas Printable that I think master J will LOVE

All my presents will be wrapped in brown paper with ribbon to match our theme and christmas tag, just for something a little different.

Our actual presents that are under the tree this year
Our New Traditons
I was hoping to get a an Elf on the Shelf but ran out of time
BUT the gorgeous Lisa of Life as we know it - Blog came to my resuce and had a spare "similar" type elf that Is on his way to out little home
I can't wait to get him I think we'll start off small this year as the boys may be a bit young but its goiung to be a fabulous new tradition as they get older!
I'm also taking inspiration from the Elf on the Shelf Breakfast

and doing a North Pole breakfast for the boys

I'm going to take them to the Old Noarlunga light set up and I thought a cool new tradition would be to make some Christmas Pizza and have a Christmasy kind of dinner too

Christmas pizza

I was going to do Christmas cards with a family photo of us 3 but because my photographer is my little cousin and she is busy at school and sport I have decided to just do a Christmas photo shoot.

We also went to the Christmas pageant for the 1st time this year which will now be an on going tradition

Our Old Traditions
We have a few traditions that will stay like
Opening one present and watching the Polar express on Christmas eve
Last year we created the boys hand and footprint decoration for the tree which I'll do again this year
And of course a photo with Santa
I will also be reading them my most favourite Christmas book the week into Christmas just as my mum use to do with my brother and I

I think I just saw Santa
I will also be posting the pages of the book on my Facebook page so you can all read along with us!
We like to leave the tree lights on over night ahang the Santa key outside Santa can find the house and get inside ;)
The boys will also leave out some cookies and milk for Santa and carrotts and water for the reindeer

As you can see we are fully into the Christmas spirit in the house and I am LOVING it!
Master J is defiantly at the age where he understands it so much more and I love seeing that and Lil C just gets excitied because we both are hehe
I can't wait for next year when they'll both be right in to it

What kind of traditons do you have in your family?
Are you starting any new ones this year?

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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Friendship & My Turning Point

About a month ago I reached a point where I felt a change in myself.

For weeks I had been struggling to find my happy place again
It was affecting everything but more then anything It was affecting how I was with my kids.
I wanted to get back to being the mum I aim to be but I was struggling
How could I be that mum when I wasn't happy in myself.

Alot of friends turned their backs on me after the seperation
and that made things even worse.
All I kept asking myself was how could they not understand that I wasn't the person I was a few weeks before it happened.

Amongst the pain, confusion and tears 2 ladies stood by me
Never not understanding
Never trying to make me feel anything then what I needed to feel
Never trying to push me into being "better"

Lauren and Em

my angels
The 2 girls who waitied and watched but never walked away as I went through the motions
Who listened to me bitch and moan
Watched me make mistakes but never judged
Who gave me endless amounts of compassion and advice
Who were always just a text message away no matter the time of day or night.

These girls mean the world to me
they both live interstate and both have their own hectic lives
I've only met Lauren once and Never met Em
but you wouldn't know it
Our friendship is amazing and special
and I would be lost without them

If it wasn't for these 2 girls
I wouldn't have reached my turning point when I did
I would still be an emotional mess.

How many of you use the phrase
"tomorrow is a new day"

Now how many of you say it and actually mean it?

I know I use to say it all the time but never actually meant it
yeah tomorrow was a new day but not in the way where yesterdays problems were actually that, yesterdays problems

Until a month ago
Until the support and love from my angels actually came into play

I said that phrase one more time
"tomorrow is a new day"
and I actually meant it
I felt it inside me
I truly believed that tomorrow was my chance to wak eup and start a fresh
Tomorrow was for the taking
Tomorrow could be whatever I wanted to make it without that days issues affecting it.

From that day on things felt differnt
I felt happy and confident
The biggest thing was..
I knew I was finally back on track.

Of course days are still going to be hard, thats just life
I've had 2 of those days already this week
But you know what?
Tomorrow is a new day

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pinterest Make me Challenge

Tuesday is

With the lovely ladies from

This weeks "make me" project is another Christmas craft

I pinned this picture awhile ago onto my Christmas Board and decided it was going to be one of my Christmas crafts.

All you need is "mason jars" or any type of preserving jars
epsom salts and candles

Just pour some epsom salts into a jar and then wiggle in your candle
I finished mine off with a little bit of ribbon around the top of the jar
and there you have simple yet gorgeous Christmas candles

Have you made anything from your Pinterest boards lately?

Dont forget to link up over at Coffee Drinking Mummy to Five if you have

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Sunday, November 27, 2011

Ooh! That's ~ The Love edition

Some of you may or may not have noticed about Instagram, Twitter and My personal FB page
that there has been some new love in my life ;)
and thats all I shall say on the matter untill the time is right!

So for this weeks 
Tina Gray {dot} Me
I thought I'd share some pins from my

that was us this week

the simple things in the momment mean the most

Love maths - so cute!

Dr Sesuss was a clever clever man

no guy is perfect, but there is always a guy thats perfect for you
once you've found him... dont ever let him go!

What have you been Pinning this week?

You can follow me on Pinterest *here*

If you would like an invite you can e-mail me at
or leave your e-mail address in the comments section below

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Saturday, November 26, 2011

Mummys Christmas Wish List

Dear Santa,
Jodie over at Muddled Up Mumma tagged in me in a Christmas Wish list post
Isn't she awesome?!
So here is my list...

I think this one is pretty self explanatory yes?

a new car would be amazing too
I think a black Chrysler 300c with big, shiny, blingy wheels would do just fine ;)

And seeing as I've lost weight a new wardrobe would be muchily appreciated so I actually have some more clothes that fit

A pedicure.. nice and simple

and lastly some more sleep would go down a treat!

I think if you double check your naughty and nice list Santa you'll find me on the nice one...
Just saying

Sincerely, Tara

and now
Miss Amba ~ Team Mummy
Miss Shar ~ Mum on the Run
You girls need FB fan pages ;) hehe
Miss Dorothy ~ Singular Insanity

Its your turn to write your letter to Santa and tell him what you would like for Christmas

What's on your Christmas Wish List this year?