3 Mar 2015

February In Review

31 Jan: I know it was in January but it missed last month's review. Last month was my sister's birthday. We celebrated it by having lunch at one of our favourite restaurants, Fratelli Fresh at Alexandria. I don't crave Italian food very often, so when I have it I hate to be disappointed. Fratelli delivers every time, the food is always fresh and delicious. They're also pretty generous with their servings. Usually when doing a banquet menu the restaurant provides enough food so each person attending gets a piece, but at Fratelli they give so much that you can have second or third portions. 

4 Feb: I returned back to casual work. 

7 Feb: Went to Wet'n'Wild in Sydney. We went for a friend's 31st birthday. It was a fun day for the kids and an experience for us adults. I haven't been to a theme park in ... years, well not since I became a mother. It sure is a different experience now. You become the designated bag minder and you become familiar with where all the toilets are in the park because those are the only queues you join. It was still a lot of fun and fortunately for us it was a little overcast (but humid) so the park wasn't as packed as people have described it to be. 

14 Feb: Valentines Day is celebrated differently once you have children. We headed into town and tried Neil Perry's Burger Project. It has gotten mixed reviews since it opened, even Ian and I disagreed on opinions. I personally loved it. It's now one of my favourite spots for a burger in Sydney. I rate it higher than Tuckshop but not as good as Mary's ... just saying. 

27 Feb: The 2015 CrossFit Opens started. The Opens is the first step in competing in the CrossFit games. Every week for 5 weeks a workout is specified, and you have 96 hours to complete the workout and submit your score online. The first week's workout wasn't too bad, however I am doing the scaled option, which gives people who can't do all the moves an alternative movement option, and or a lighter weight to complete the workout in. 

28 Feb: My sister in law's baby shower. The theme was Diner en Blanc or All White. It was a great day feasting and sharing with some amazing and hilarious women. I will share more information and photos in a future post. 

Linking up with Jess

24 Feb 2015

Me. Right Now

I recently caught up with a friend whom I hadn't seen in awhile. As we updated each other with what was going on in our current life, she told me she was surprised how much she didn't know, considering she was a regular reader of my blog.

It got me thinking ... I share things on here about me right? ... Of course I keep some stuff offline, but I'm a happy little sharer most of the time. 

So I thought I'd share what's been going on with me lately.

I'm working. Yep, I'm back at work. Just a contract role, three days a week. I know, I said previously I had no intentions of returning back to work, but the opportunity presented itself organically, and I took it. A friend needed some help with his business doing stuff I use to do, and I was more than happy to help out.

My sister in law is due to have her first baby in March and I've volunteered .. or demanded, I throw her a baby shower. I am a bit of a party planning nazi so I've been going crazy with ideas, which results in late night researching, bossing people around and over committing myself. The theme: Diner En Banc. If you're keen to see some of the ideas you can check out the Pinterest board I created for the shower. Of course I'll share photos of the day at a later post.

I've registered for the 2015 CrossFit Games Open. The Opens is the first step to competing in the CrossFit Games. Every week for 5 weeks a workout is released, and you have 4 days to complete the workout. You are judged by another person to ensure you complete the workout correctly, so you can either complete the workout at a box (CrossFit gym) or you can record yourself and upload it online, and another registered athlete can judge your video. So all athletes who want to make it to the Games in July, will be doing the same workout as I'll be doing .... but I'll be doing the scaled version. I'm slightly .... apprehensive because I'm still so ... new to the sport, weak, need to improve on certain techniques. But I know it's all mental ... I just need to stop doubting myself and trusting my body.

Our first overseas family holiday with Kai is a little over two months away. Not only do I need to sort out his passport and other medical stuff I need for the boys, but also the trip itself. We're actually travelling with a bunch of friends and family so it's all very exciting, but I'm one of those people who likes to have a list of things to do when travelling abroad. I've dropped the ball a little this upcoming trip. I usually have a spreadsheet with a referencing map by now. I'm sure once my plate clears a little I'll be annoying my friends with suggestions. I can't wait!

I'm tired. I have a new found respect for full time working mums, you ladies must be even more exhausted. Yes I worked after I had Eli, but it's another level when there's more than one child. So much more planning and organising involved, as well as opportunities for everything to come undone. It has been a few weeks since I started working though, and we're all slowly adjusting to our new routines. 

So that's me right now.

Linking up with Jess

17 Feb 2015

Minnie Mouse Theme Birthday Party

Minnie Mouse was the theme for Baby A's 1st birthday party. The theme came about because she was gifted a Minnie Mouse toy and it seems to be one of her favourites.

Miss A's parents also decided on the Minnie Mouse theme because they drew similarities to the character. Miss A loved the colour red, shoes, cheeky and a pocket rocket.

Miss A's party was held at Paddington Gates Playground, one of the beautiful spots at Centennial Park. Her parents also set up play areas for all of Miss A's friends to explore and play in.  

Her parents had organised a little picnic with an array of sandwiches, pastries, sweets and of course cake. Her cake was a beautiful and yummy three tier cake, comprising of choc ganache, marble, red velvet flavours.  

Miss A's day wouldn't have been a success without the many hands that helped on the day. 

Party details and vendors:

Minnie Cake and cookies: Sweet Designs
Sansrival macarons: NW Food Cakes and Catering
Food: Bourke St Bakery, palabok and lumpiang shanghai (traditional Filipino food)
Balloons: Party Warehouse
Candy cart: Livi's Candy Cart
Photographer: Corral Photography 

If you would like to share and submit a past party you've hosted get in contact! Email me on gen.y.mum@gmail.com would love to feature your event on here! 

13 Feb 2015

Life with the 17 Month Old & 3.5 Year Old

It's already February?! ... its pretty much middle of February, which means Valentine's Day. Then Easter is around the corner, then our family holiday, Eli's birthday, another family holiday, Kai's birthday, Ian and I's birthdays, then its Christmas and then 2015 is over.

And of course we fill those key events with other celebrations that we don't factor in the year, like other children's parties, christenings, baby showers and weddings too. Don't get me wrong I love celebrating and I look forward to key milestones and events, it just feels like the year flies, which mean I'm getting older, and so are the boys. 

They're both so ... different again. Different from how they were a few months ago. 

Eli is more defiant than before. When he doesn't get his way he crosses his arms and pulls a big frowny face at us; or points his finger and does a raspberry sound; or yells "No! I don't want to!" I had that out of control, crying, screaming child at the doctor's waiting room the other day. All because I told him to share the toys with the other kids. I felt every eye on me as I controlled the urge to lose it myself cause I was so embarrassed. Its behaviour I didn't expect to be dealing with at three years of age.

It's such a challenging period. It's challenging cause you're trying to balance giving your child freedom to be themselves but also trying to teach them discipline and self control.  

To Eli's credit he's so helpful. I can give him instructions and he'll do it. He wants to help with the laundry, the cooking prep, bringing in the groceries .... and as long as he wants to help I let him. He wants to do things for himself too, like get himself dressed, choose what shoes he wants to wear with his outfit and make his own cereal.

He's definitely growing into his loud but sweet personality. He knows how and what to say to work us all. He'll call various family members and ask to sleep over or ask them to come visit him. He'll say the sweetest "Pleeighs!!" so you'll give him another cookie. He'll say "I'm sorry mum" when he knows he's done something wrong to get out of further trouble. He'll say "Thank you for taking me to ... " whenever it was you took him to. He narrates life and I love hearing it. 

Kai is walking. If you don't already follow me on Facies, (then you should) I posted a few weeks ago he finally started walking. We knew for a while he was getting close. He was standing against surfaces but was too scared to let go. But when we were in Queensland a few weeks back he finally had the confidence to start standing on his own and then taking a few steps.

Kai is still so clingy to me. He still just wants me to hold him, and if I don't he'll scream and cry until I give in. There could be other people in the room willing to hold him instead, but he always wants mummy. Its hard to do anything when he's awake. 

Kai still has a great appetite. He eats so much. He hears the fridge open and he gravitates towards it. He sees you bite or drink something and he'll open his mouth and say "Aaaahhh!!" As in he wants a bite, and he'll eat Eli's share after he's finished his. He loves to feed himself, actually anything he finds he puts straight in his mouth, even bark isn't safe around Kai ... he's such a little piglet. 

The boys are now sharing a room. We've purchased a new bed to accommodate them both and surprisingly the transition has been .. easy. At first Kai couldn't fall asleep as quickly as he could in his cot cause he had so many distractions, plus he's more mobile. We had to stay in the room to calm him down as he would get hysterical when we did leave. But by the third day he figured it out, and we could follow the same routine we had when he was in his cot. Eli has been a good kuya, keeping quiet when Kai has fallen asleep before him. We're no longer hearing Eli unsettled in his room for an hour before he falls asleep, it seems he's falling asleep faster now that Kai is in there with him.

They're playing together more. Kai has always shown an interest in Eli, but now Eli wants to involve Kai ... about 40% of the time. The only problem is Eli wants to play a certain way or wants Kai to do something specific, and of course Kai doesn't understand this yet so he does his own thing. So Eli gets frustrated that Kai isn't following his orders.

They grow up so quickly and they surprise me with their always changing personalities, or even the stuff they do or say. 

7 Feb 2015

TMNT Party

What is TMNT? .... Well if you grew up in the 90's like I did you would instantly know what it stands for, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!!

This was the theme for Master L's 1st birthday party. So fittingly the party menu mostly consistent of pizza!! They hired a pizza caterer who set up a mobile wood fire outside the venue to make fresh pizza's. They made an array of entree, mains and dessert pizzas for guests, and Master L's family made a few side dishes like salads, pasta and fruit to compliment.

Master L's party was definitely a labour of love with family and extended family all pitching in to help make the day a success as it was. Master L's dad designed the invitations, dad's sister made the cake, balloon creator was a brother-in-law and his mum created his costume

Party and vendor details:
Venue: Balcombe Heights Estate
Catering: You Pizza
Cake: Cake and Pop Shop
Kids table and chair hire: Celebrating
Jumping Castle hire: VS Kids Australia
Foil balloons, table covers, giveaways: Big W (check to see whether your local Big W has a dedicated party shop department as not all do)
Hired banner stands, give away stickers and Pin the Mask game printed through Cast Graphics
Decorations, cutlery/crockery/cups mainly sourced from Celebrating
Drink dispensers, trays, serving utensils from a local home wear store called House 2 Home at Crows Nest

If you would like to share and submit a past party you've hosted get in contact! Email me on gen.y.mum@gmail.com would love to feature your event on here! 

Link up with Sonia

3 Feb 2015

January In Review

Wow the first month of the year flew, as it always does with the holidays and other annual celebrations that occurs this month. 

3 Jan: God-son L's 1st birthday party and the theme was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. There was wood fire pizza, sweets, games, a jumping castle and a guy who could create anything with balloons. The little details didn't go unnoticed, well I certainly appreciated it. I will be sharing those details on a separate post.

12 Jan: Headed up to Queensland for a couple of weeks. Love it up here, one day we'll have the courage to make the sea change. 

17 Jan: Published one of my proudest posts. 10 Things Only Bloggers Would Understand. I'm really liked this piece. The content was easy to write and readers (bloggers) must've related to the post cause I noticed additional activity across my other social media platforms. 

19 Jan: Drove up to Noose to meet up with another Sydney family also on holidays. What's to see and do at Noosa? Well there's the beach, a lake, lots of hotels, motels, resorts and high end hotel chains therefore lots of retailers too. There are restaurants, cafes, bars, tons of water activities to do, beautiful homes to admire and of course lots of tourists. It's still a great place to visit. 

24 Jan: Our 6 Year Wedding Anniversary. Ian surprised me by booking lunch at Jonah's at Palm Beach for us and the boys. Food was amazing, it's been ages since I've had fresh seafood .... it's been ages since we've eaten somewhere that fancy. The boys did well during lunch and to our surprise we weren't the only one's with kids there that day. 

30 Jan: I've decided to include a regular theme or category on my blog going forward, and that is sharing real people's parties. Why? ... why not I say? It stems from my love of organising parties and sharing information with people. Whenever I plan parties I go online for ideas, but found sometimes came stuck when sourcing vendors to implement those ideas. What I want to achieve with this new section of my blog is not only to inspire your next party, but also give you names and contacts to help you achieve it too. If you would like to submit a party you've previously hosted and would like to share it on here email me on gen.y.mum@gmail.com 

Feel free to follow me on Instagram: @genymum

Linking up with Jess

30 Jan 2015

Little Ray of Sunshine

Was the theme to Miss C's 1st Birthday, with key colours sunshine yellow, peachy pink and chocolate brown.

The theme came about because when Miss C was a newborn her parents would sing "Little Ray of Sunshine" by Axiom and would always seem to calm her down, even though their renditions were a little off-key. To her parents she was her their little ray of sunshine. 

For Miss C's first birthday party her family did almost everything themselves. After googling instructions on how to, her mum sewed her 50m bunting. It was back breaking work she admits. Charlotte's grandma made the balloon flowers and various photos of Miss C were framed and used as table centrepieces. They also bought hessian material to cover the picnic tables and Miss C's dad designed and painted the birthday backdrop, using a large piece of calico and poster paint in the birthday colours. 

Food was supplied by the help of family and friends. There was nibbles, salads, fried chicken, filipino noodles (pancit), various dessert and of course BBQ, taking advantage of the park's facilities.

Miss C's mum made the birthday cake. Neapolitan ice-cream was her inspiration, and baked three layers of chocolate, vanilla and strawberry. 

As party favours, Miss C's mum ordered from ebay plain brown boxes and attached personalised stickers they designed themselves. She stuffed the favours with homemade treats and chocolates. 
Party and vendor details:
Photo frame centre pieces: Ikea Tolsby Photo Frames 
Bunting and hessian fabric: Spotlight and Lincraft  
Photographer: Ariane Banaag  
Fingerprint guest book and ink pads: Bleu de Toi on Etsy 
Customised stickers for the giveaway boxes: Vistaprint 

If you would like to share and submit a past party you've hosted get in contact! Email me on gen.y.mum@gmail.com would love to feature your event on here!