Hi ho, Hi ho, It's back to the gym I go....

Day one back in the gym!

Walking in those big doors I swear the receptionist was whispering about me.. "Ooo where has she been?" Paranoid much? But in all seriousness, I felt like I had to justify why I had been so lazy for so long. I had this big spiel ready. When I decided to calm down and rationalized that no one actually knows me and would have noticed that I hadn't been there in a while... I realised that it was me I was trying to justify it to. Anyways, pre-season is nearly over and I have to kick start this body back into some regular exercise before we hit day 1 of 12WBT... or I may just pass out in the middle of the gym which would be a ridiculous look.

So lets just list the excuses as to why I have not gone to the gym since the second week of December.


I had a cold... I decided a one week rest would be sufficient for that one.
I then had gastro the following week. TRUE STORY! Def needed a one week rest for that one.
Then we had Christmas. Its against my religion to go to the gym over Christmas.
It was then time to head of to my parents for some time away down the beach
Then throw in some day trips.
Add a buffer of a week or two for babes not sleeping and getting back into routine.
We are now here. The last day of January and I am BACK!

Excuses are done with. Its time to stop whinging and JFDI (Just.EffingDo.It) as I'm told these days.

Oh but I need to whinge some more.... It hurt today! It really did. The whole time it felt like torture! This is really upsetting because December last year, I was hitting that gym 5 days a week and absolutely loving every second of it. Some days I wanted to go twice! Isn't that sickening! Its amazing how quick you lose your fitness. Keep your fingers and toes crossed for me that it comes back just as quick as I lost it.

Wonder how I will walk in the morning ;) Now that will be a sight.


His a big boy now!

Ace had a hair cut today.
I am ridiculously attached to his hair. Its like his signature!
I hovered over to make sure my mum didn't cut to much. Scared that he wouldn't look like my baby boy anymore.
She did good. He looks handsome... like a big boy. He was impressed with it too!

Shocked.... "I look goooood mumma..."

The finished product! Handsome big boy now!


A big step for Boo.

Boo's toilet training adventure has been a reasonably easy one for all involved. When she turned 2, I knew the time would be approaching... the health nurse was saying that it really is up to the child and it can be anywhere from 2 to 3 years old and onwards. I promised both Boo and myself that I was not going to be stressed about it, we will just take it as it comes and see how we go. Not long after her birthday I thought I would give her a go at it and see where it took us. I planned three days for us to be home... we tried it and I came to the conclusion half way through day two that she was no where near ready so we put that nappy back on and left it at that.

After Christmas, Dad'n was still home on holidays so I thought it might be a good opportunity to give it another go and see if we were any closer to being ready. Well, didn't we get a surprise. Boo was definitely ready. I think we had one accident the whole time and by the end of the first week she was taking her self to the potty.

She has been very against the toilet though, and since she was so happy with the potty I was completely okay with that, figuring she will show interest in it when she is ready.

Today, my SIL brought over a toilet chair thingo with a step that goes over the toilet. I thought I would put it on there and maybe show and tell her about it one day soon... *puts it on the to do list*

This afternoon, I heard a yelling from the toilet... "mum mum mum", I walked into find Boo sitting on it doing her business! All afternoon she has been to the big girls toilet. "Like mumma". So proud of her. A big step for Boo!
Next toilet training step will be when we are out. Eeeek public toilets... even I hold on so I don't have to go in them!


This week in review (week.two) Captured.

Best Friends Forever

One half of the Woofies...

Sneaking some trampoline fun in while Boo was in bed!

Playdough Day in the toy room!

Bless them <3

Boo's first fishing rod:

A bed time lullaby...

Do you have a bed time lullaby at your house?

Every night after Boo gets tucked in bed for the night by both Mumma & Dad'n, we have to read / sing "Hoot's Lullaby". Yes, we had just heard it on ABC2 5 minutes earlier, but then she likes the limited edition version... with the added bonus of the special Mumma harmonies ;)

"What a day its been, what a magic day!
Shhh, can you hear the moon is on its way?
It's time for all the stars, That sparkle in your eye,
To fly to the night, And light up the sky.
What a day it's been, Laughing with our friends,
Now that the sun has sunk into its bed.
It's time for Hoot to go, And what over your at night,
Fill your head with sweet dreams, Under soft moonlight.
And soon the smiling sun, Will rise again,
And light the way, To a bright new day.
See you in the morning! HOOT HOOT!

This is our bed time lullaby, we think it fits the job perfectly. Better start teaching Ace the words too! <3


What was or is on your BBQ tonight?

Delightfully Tacky Lil Sqirts asked the question this afternoon on twitter "what will be on your BBQ tonight?" after posting a photo of what looked to be some scrummy satays. So... on the menu tonight at The Bower Birds Nest is:

Chargrilled chilli Calamari
Thanks to Dad'n heading out fishing early this morning, we are going to be enjoying the catch of the day... calamari, as fresh as it gets! It has been marinated in chilli, garlic, ginger, soy, lemon juice, lemon zest, fish sauce and olive oil. It will be seared for seconds and then demolished by ME! This is one of my favourite recipes.

Nothing fancy but absolutely delish, eggplant sliced into 1/2cm slices, lightly salted and grilled on the BBQ

Cubed potato with onion
Potato's that were chopped into 1cm by 1cm cubes, half cooked in the microwave, mixed with some diced onion and finished off on the BBQ.

Straight up cut in half, on the BBQ. Love!

All served with a garden salad. Yummmmm.

So this is our version of an Australia Day BBQ... Some may say not very authentic, but to us it is!
What was or is on your BBQ tonight?


Sibling love... not a smidge of rivalry in sight.

Today I am thankful for being able to sit back and admire the way that my babes are interacting as they are growing up together.

Seriously! It has been melting my soul with love watching some of their " quiet moments".

Yesterday, there was a moment that Dad'n and I were fortunate enough to both witness that left us both speechless. It was a moment that you dream you will see when you find out you are expecting a sibling for your only child. What happened you ask?

Well... Dad'n and I were in the kitchen (which has a direct view over the lounge room) and Ace was kicking around on the floor. Boo was also in the lounge, fiddling with a new bubble blower machine that she had received only minutes earlier as a "sap-wise" which is Boo lingo for surprise. Ace started crying, as he does, and before I could walk around from the kitchen I was stopped in my tracks by Boo racing to Ace's aid. She started rubbing him on the back saying "sokay Ace... sokay", translation : its okay Ace, its okay ;) While she was rubbing his back she was trying to give him her brand new bubble blower that she had only JUST got, just to make her baby brother happy.

When you are expecting with a smaller age gap (21months) and your first child is still so heavily reliant on you for their needs, its sometimes a little worrying thinking of how your child will react to the new addition. Maybe there will be jealousy or maybe they will become possessive over their things... or people. Yes, there are days that Boo wants me to put Ace down just so she can have a cuddle and that is completely natural. I find it relatively is easy to balance myself between them both. But when you have moment's like the one mentioned above... I think their sibling relationship is off to a great start.

So what am I thankful for? I am thankful for sibling love... and not a smidge of rivalry in sight. (YET) HeHeHe. Maybe I can update this post in the years to come ;)

Linking up today with Thankful Thursday at KateSaysStuff.


Spinach, Bacon & Parmesan Quiche.

Since it's been really hot here the past few days, I thought I would make Dad'n something different to take for lunches, as sandwiches don't hold up the best in this weather. At the time, I had juch finished talking with a friend about easy meal idea's... so this one was on the top of my head when I walked into the kitchen!

I made my pastry and filling in the thermomix but as per most of my recipes you can take the ingredients and methods and just do them the way you normally would.


200g of plain flour
100b butter (chilled and cut into pieces)
Pinch of salt
50g of chilled water


1 onion
100g of bacon
100g of baby spinach
4 eggs
3/4 cup of cream
1/2 cup of milk
1/3 cup of parmesan cheese
salt & pepper to taste

Thermomix instructions for pastry:

1. Put flour, butter and salt in the TM bowl & mix for 10 seconds on speed 6
2. Set dial to closed lid, add water & knead for 15 second on interval speed to form the dough
* Add a little more water if you need to make it bind a little more
3. Empty out your mixture on a floured board and knead a little bring it all together
4. Put your dough in a bowl and into the fridge for 15 minutes

5. Roll it out and its ready to go! About 3 minutes to put together then just the resting time.
6. Time to line your greased quiche dish and fix your edges.

Instructions for filling:

1. Peel onion & quater
2. Place in TM bowl and chop for 3 seconds on speed 7
3. Add bacon that has been chopped into pieces to the onion
4. Add a drizzle of olive oil

5. Saute the onion & bacon for 3 minutes on 100c on REVERSE speed 1
6. Add eggs (lightly wisked), milk, cream, parmasen cheese (grated)
7. Mix for 10 seconds on REVERSE speed 3
8. Add baby spinach leaves and mix for a further 20 seconds on REVERSE speed 3 until its all combined
9. Pour it all into your pastry lined quiche dish and its ready for the oven!

10. Bake for 30 minutes in a 200c oven

**** If I was making this to eat straight away or had more time, I would have blind baked the pastry for 10 minutes by covering it with baking paper and putting some rice in the bottom but 9 out of 10 times I dont have the time so pour the filling straight on to the raw pastry)****


The misconceptions of using cloth nappies.

This post all came to light when I was talking with a pregnant friend of yesterday. She was asking for some advise on how to prepare her cloth nappies for the arrival of her babe in a few months. As we were chatting she mentioned how sick and tired she was of peoples negative responses when she told them that she had planned on using cloth. Her favourite one being "good Luck with that one."

Back when I told people in passing conversation that I had ordered a handful of cloth nappies to try, I must say that I received a lot of negative responses as well. I got... "why on earth would you bother, I had to when my kids were babies but in these days, why wouldn't you just buy disposables?" Then there was the "Oh, the leaks, the nappy rashes, the soaking, the folding, the pinning, Steph your already to busy with the two kids." The later one being my favourite ;) To be fair though, there were some positive responses too, and lots of curious ones aswell, just not as many. I brushed all these unwarranted reviews off and happily and excitedly awaited the delivery of my first fluffy mail, and told my friend to do the same.

So I came to the conclusion that a lot of the negative responses were basically founded by the lack of knowledge of new age cloth, or what we know them today as "MCN's"... modern cloth nappies.

Now, I am absolutely no expert on MCN's. I am fairly new to them myself but I thought, why not write a post to show people exactly what is involved in using MCN's, so then they can form their optinion and response knowing exactly what they are talking about. This is only what I do, some people may do their's differently but here we go....

A step by step guide to how I use a MCN on Ace's bum!

1. I have a stash stored under my change table all ready for use.

2. Depending on what Ace will be doing, whether it be a quick change for an hour of playing on the floor or going down for a nap, I pick which nappy is appropriate from my stash. Some are more absorbent than others and some I use for different occasions, anyway moving on because types of MCN's is a wholeeee new post for another day!

3. The MCN gets put on in the same was a disposable does and is fastened by "snaps"or button like clips. Some are also fastened by valcro. See, not a pin in sight!

4. Clothes go on as per usual, and if your lucky enough for it to be warm... no clothes. Fluffy bums on show are too cute! Oh and definitly no sweaty plastic covers to go over the top, which I'm sure that's what my mother envisaged when I told her.

5. Ace get to do as he pleases until its time for a nappy change.

6. MCN comes off in the same way a disposable does.

7. Ace's bum gets wiped down. I use a bunch of cheap face washers that I bought specifically for the job. They are all one color so I know what they are for. For the moisture part, I wet them down with a spray bottle that is also kept on the change table which is a mixture of baby wash, baby oil and water. I started this as I found it was annoying making a trip to the bin just for the dirty wipes, it would be so much easier to chuck them in with the nappies.

8. Nappy gets tossed into a sealable nappy bin. Since Aces poo's are still liquid being a breastfed baby and not really eating much yet, i dont rinse the poo off, they go straight in the bucket. Other options for no. 2's when the 2's get bigger are flushable liners or a squirt attached to your toilet. So in your bucket is just your nappies. No water, no detergents.... Just dirty nappies.

9. Every second day I empty the bucket into the machine, unsnapping them as I go , program the machine for a pre-rinse, this takes care of the no. 2's and press start. After the pre rinse I add my detergent (an enzyme free MCN friendly type, I use Purity Sensitive) and u use less than half of the recommended amount and wait for that annoying beeeepe...beeeeep.

10. Hang them up to dry, then snap them back together and pop them back in their home under the change table!

So that's what I do. It looks a lot listed like that but it's only because I have detailed every step for those that may even be thinking of starting to use cloth.

Please know I'm not one of these people that believes disposables are the devil because I'm not like that at all. I still use them myself, depending what we are doing at the time and if they are convenient.

I hope if you were wondering what exactly MCN's are then you know have a better understanding and if someone tells you that they plan on using them, you can form your response knowing exactly what is involved.

The end.... If you made it this far ;)

One of the many reasons I know he is the right "one"

Every now and then I have these realizations of why Dad'n was definitely the right "one", and this was one of them.

First a bit of background information to help you paint a mental picture. Who am I kidding, we all know there will be a photo included in this post somewhere, it is me after all! Anyways, apparently Dad'n can look a little intimidating to some. I have never seen this, obviously because I know who he is, but my sister pointed it out to me not to long ago, that to a complete stranger, Dad'n might look a little scary. I just think he looks hot ;)

On with the realization hey! Every night at 6.30pm there is a familiar scene that plays out in the Bower's Nest. We have all finished eating dinner, babes have had their bath, I am in the kitchen starting to wash up and Dad'n is getting comfy on the couch with Boo & Ace to settle them down on their home stretch to bed at 7pm. The channel gets changed to 126, 9.9 times out of 10 it's already on it.... Bless ABC2. I then watch on as this gorgeous man of mine makes all the appropriate sounds, calling all the characters by their right names and sings along knowing all the right words to In The Night Garden. Of course, Boo thinks this is the best thing in the world, and so do I. You really can never judge a book by its cover!

What I have just told you about is definitely one of my favourite scenes in the Bower's nest. He is my favourite man & he was definitely the right one.


This week in review (week.one) Captured.

Choc Banana Muffins! Always a winner here.

It was Sunday afternoon baking time here, had to think about filling hubby's lunchbox up for the week! Choc banana muffins are his all time favourite so I didn't have to think for too long when i realized I had the sad looking banana's left over from yesterdays "food shopping day clean out".

I whip mine up in about 2 minutes in my Thermomix but it's a pretty standard recipe that would be fine in your mixer or even the bowl and wooden spoon.

If you do have a Thermy though, follow the recipe below.


Wet ingredients

100 grams of butter
250grams of milk
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
2 ripe bananas

Dry ingredients

300 grams of self raising flour
100 grams of caster sugar
Pinch of salt
80 grams of Choc chips

1. Turn your oven on to 180 degrees (fan forced oven) and grease your muffin tray

2. Add your butter to your TM bowl and melt for 2 mins at 60 C on speed 4

3. Add milk, egg, vanilla essence & bananas. Mix for 3 seconds on speed 4

4. Add dry ingredients (except Choc Chips). Mix for 30 seconds on speed 4

5. Add choc chips and mix for 30 seconds of speed 3 REVERSE

6. Spoon into your muffin tin. I find using a tablespoon and a teaspoon the easiest way to fill your tins without dripping it everywhere

7. Bake in the oven for 13 - 15 minutes

8. Scrummy!


Food shopping day... Making life easier.

So we all know that feeling of wandering around the supermarket thinking about what to feed the family for the week. You start grabbing random ingredients, usually only half of what is needed for the recipe. You get home after spending a small fortune, put it all away and feel that you are still none the wiser of what your going to make for the week. Then you start making the daily dash. This is when you have to make your way back to the supermarket to buy the other half of the ingredients you need to make dinner that night. I used to do all this but as time has gone on and my love for wrangling two children into a shopping trolley has dwindled, I have started to shop smarter. Shopping smarter has made it easier to prepare dinner... there's no guessing game on what I'm going to make and there is no doubt in the amount of money I have saved!
So here is how I shop smarter. Starting from the beginning on my "shopping day".

Step 1.

I clean out the fridge and pantry. I get rid of the left overs, rotten veggies that are festering in the bottom of the crisper and fridge smarts. Clean my containers and put them all back... Ready for all the fresh stuff when I get home.

Step 2.

I write a list of what I can use when I start my meal plan for the week. So it's really a list of just meat and veggies that you already have.

Step 3.

I get my weekly planner (which lives on my fridge) and my diary out and write down what I have on for the week, so this includes appointments, catch ups, play dates and so on. Then I pick 5 meals, trying to use as many ingredients from the "what I already have" list. I don't plan our weekend meals as we go with the flow. Its then time to match up a meal for each day. I take into consideration what I have on for that day. For example, if I have an afternoon catch up and know that I won't be getting home till quite late... I will pick an easy throw together meal for that day.

Step 4.

The last step. Writing yourself a good list which includes everything!
I am such a list person, I even have lists for my lists so there is no surprise that I have made up a great shopping list to make my life easier.
I have columns for each place that I shop at. I go to Aldi for all my basics, Safeway for the rest, a market place for all my fresh fruit and veg and lastly the butcher for my meat. I listed all the possible things that I buy weekly and put them in rough order of the way the isles go...much easier when shopping from a list and even easier when you send your other half to do the job for you.
So when it's time to "write" your shopping list, all you have to do is highlight what you need! You can keep it somewhere handy so during the week when you run out of something you can simply highlight it!

Then all that's left to do is start shopping :) so many people hate doing the supermarket shopping but I'm one of those sick people who enjoys it ;)

Happy shopping!


Where did I stash the manual for this toddler?

Life with Boo is amazingly entertaining. She truly lights up our world everyday. The words and attempted sentences that are starting to fly out of her mouth are just so ridiculously cute they make us weak at the knees. But then... You turn the page and then you see the side that ain't so cute ;) I know.. I know, I totally get that she is just discovering the world, finding limits, pushing boundaries but sheesh, sometimes it can be so darn hard! Hence the title.... We really could use a manual about now! So... I should stop fluffing and get to my point!

The problem: Boo goes to bed between 7 - 7.30pm. First she stalls.... "Need wee's mumma". We go to the potty... nothing. Night nappy goes back on and we try again. "Bot mumma...". She wants another bottle, she has a bottle of milk while she watches In the night garden at 6.30pm. We then go through the "no you have already had bot its time for sleep". We now enter the screaming tantrum phase for a while, screaming like someone is murdering her, crying & so on. Then we move on to singing songs, then talking to our teddies woofy & bubba...I think your getting the drift. Eventually, tonight's time was 10.30pm, you hear silence and Boo has decided that it's time to go to sleep.

Boo has never had a problem with going to bed, sleep, going to sleep, being left alone, nothing... never. I would even go as far as saying that she loved sleep and her cot. This is a new behavior that is foreign to us. She has always had a regular pre bed routine so this whole going to bed thing at a certain time is no surprise to her. We have tried moving day nap times around... removing her "friends" from the cot to minimize stimuli... making sure the routine is the same. Nothing.has.worked!

So.... Is this a stage? Do all toddlers go through it? Is she just "testing the boundaries?", I don't know.

If there are any toddler whispers out there, please step forward with your words of wisdom....pleaseeeee :)

The begining. 12WBT style.

A couple of girls i know did a 12 week challenge last year. They showed their before and after pics and oh.my.god! Their results were truly amazing. Like complete body transformations! During their 12 week journey I followed along side them, doing my own weight loss thing but their results were completely kicking bum over mine!

It got me thinking...Maybe I should be doing this??? Maybe I could get results like these girls??? This is where Miss Negative Nancy jumps right into my thought process putting her two bob in... Hell no, you wont be able to do it... you will just fall off the wagon blah..blah..blahhh. Curiosity was definitely stirring in my head though, so I jumped on the 12WBT Facie page and read some of their members stories. Before i knew it, the switch had flicked and I had decided to join up and kick some serious weight loss & fitness bum with the 12WBT

What is it? Its a weight loss / fitness / well being program that is based on line via a website, forum and emails, run by Michelle Bridges (The Biggest Loser trainer). It includes 4 weeks preseason, which prepares you for your 12 week challenge.

I'm doing it! It's not going to be easy... The two babes don't make my life the most exercise friendly, between sleep deprivation and tantrums, I'm still going to kill it though... Wish me luck!


My first "Thankful Thursday" linking it up with KateSaysStuff

For quite some time now, I have followed the blogging journey of a particular lovely lady... and by following, I really mean stalking quietly in the back round, reading all her posts (as you do).

This lady & I go way back... way back to Tupperware days... and even back then she inspired me to want to drive a pink tupper truck! Didn't get there.... but you get my drift ;) She was an awesome manager!

This certain lovely person is KateSaysStuff. She is the one that has actually inspired me to start my blog so Kate, this thankful thursday is for you!

I'm thankful for you helping me into the blogging world :) Very early days yet but so addicted already... Imagine that.



Mumma guilt... Action plan enabled!

So there was a conversation going on the other day between some of my fellow mumma's and it went along the lines of "what do you do with your toddlers? I feel like I don't do enough with X".

It got me thinking... What do others do? Am I doing enough? Just my usual hypochondriac motherly thoughts really. Once I had calmed down, I realised that Boo does do quite a bit during the week. We have swimming lessons, we have playgroup, throw in a visit to a park or play centre... and the week slowly gets filled up. What I did notice about our week though, is that I don't do enough one on one things with her that maybe she would love to do, but me really not like to do. IE. Things that require my full undivided attention (messy). Not things that I can do with her while I'm folding the washing, doing the dishes or feeding Ace. I'm talking painting, baking, craft activities. Just doing something focusing on Boo and what we are creating as a team.

This is where the action plan comes in... A minimum of once a week, i am going to plan a time where Ace gets to go have a lovely dreamy nap and I am going to bring out a nice messy activity for Boo & I to do.

Action plan has been enabled! Today's activity:
Finger painting! We had a ball. It was so nice to sit down with her and just take in the moment of her having so much fun with something so simple... No distractions, just Mumma & Boo time. Yes there was a bit of mess (I coped better than i thought i would HaHa)... and there were a few tears when it was time to pack it all up, but I can definitely say it was a winner!

I wonder what's on for next week Boo???


I guess it should start with why?

I did it. I have a blog. Maybe one day i will even be able to say... "I blogged about that once!"

My first blog... whoaaa feel the pressure! Where do I even start?

For those of you who know me, probably know that I have one wicked facebook addiction. I do. That's okay, I'll admit it to anyone who asks ;) I guess that's where this all started from. I'm one of those over sharers that spam's your news feed with 50 million photo's of her children, that truly believes they are THE cutest and most good looking children going around town (which they really are HeHe...) and shares way too many random things about her life for way too many people to see... Yep, that's me!

Why you ask? I guess I just love to share... and I really love looking back through what I have shared. I follow a few inspirational ladies blogs and love the way they are able to capture so many "insignificant"moments that at the time dont seem much, but imagine looking back at that. How awesome to a detailed account of what was going on in your life at that time. Pretty damn special I would say.

So this blog will be a bit about everything....Because.... I'm one of those over sharer's remember! It really will be just about my life... my nest! I want to capture some of those mundane moments that I will be able to look back on.. I want to share my love of my family, children, babies, cooking (thermomix style or not), organising, cleaning, stationary (yes, i said stationary!)... The list really does go on!

'Me' time is over, the baby is awake for a feed which signals this post is doneski!

Cant wait to do this again... until next time xx