Tag: Welcome to the Hood

A magical unicorn party…. on a budget!

A magical unicorn party…. on a budget!

There is no doubt that there is a new trend around. Everywhere I look there are UNICORNS!

Slippers, clothes, bags, jewellery and not to mention the delicious UNICORN food! Cakes, milkshakes, bagels and even coffee! It is a trend I have been loving so as it was approaching to Rosie’s first birthday I just knew exactly what the theme was going to be!

First up was DECORATIONS. In every shop I went to there was some form of fun unicorn decorations to be had! However it was KMART AUSTRALIA that supplied most of my goods. (KMART IS MY FAVOURITE!)

I knew I had to have these napkins the moment I saw them and at a great price of $2 per pack. Total Bargain and As for plates we went with this pretty pink, purple and silver pattern. Not technically unicorn but VERY dreamy.

    

I blew up some pink and white balloons and attached them to the ends of our Happy Birthday Banner and hung this up above our table. We enjoyed a bbq on the day as well as food with sprinkles! Fairy bread, cupcakes, marshmallows. Lots of sweet treats to be had. We managed to find many different Unicorn pieces that we could reuse for Rosie’s bedroom. Such as frames, light up box and dreamy sleepy eyes.

   

THEN THERE’S THE CAKE….A friend had volunteered her time to bake a cake for Rosie’s party. I was thrilled as she makes the most delicious grazing boards so knew this would be good. I didn’t expect just how good! Take a look at this nothing short of STUNNING unicorn cake which is covered in edible glitter. As good as it looked it tasted even better. WINNER. I know if I had of attempted this it would of failed as I’m no good in the kitchen. I do try though. If you would like Sarah to do a cake for a party in Sydney – Let me know!

  

Another addition to the party was this giant wooden photo prop that I made Rob make (he is so handy). I decorated it with wooden letter pack from Kmart (IS THERE ANYTHING THEY DON’T DO) and a pack of gems. I encouraged all our guests to stand behind and take photos so that we would have a nice keepsake to look back on. They turned out great!

  

We also decided to do our own cake smash shoot. I have seen some really creative shots and wanted ours very simple yet floral, and a little bit magical. I bought a Woolworth $4 sponge cake and topped it with whipped cream and sprinkles. I really wasn’t prepared for how messy this would get. Rosie just loved playing with the cake and within minutes it was everywhere. She just made a mess, didn’t really eat much. We bought a $3 Unicorn hairband (Kmart again) as her head piece. Usually she would rip it off but she was way too interested in the cake!

  

  

 

All in all the party went so well and we didn’t spend a fortune. You can find all of the goodies bought for Rosie’s party at Kmart Australia by visiting their website

www.kmart.com.au

Rosie had a wonderful party and so did we. It was so nice to celebrate her first year of life. I best get thinking for next year’s theme!

Magical Unicorns dust to you all!

Danielle

xoxo

 

 

A few things no one told me about breastfeeding…

A few things no one told me about breastfeeding…

Yes yes, I went to all the classes. Which were great and everything but when it came to the negatives I kind of felt like they just glided over the top of them. As soon as I fell pregnant I knew I wanted to breastfeed but I had no real idea what I was letting myself in for. I had heard how amazing it was for baby and for mum too. I had heard the bond you get with your little one is a feeling of pure joy. And that was true but what I hadn’t heard was that…….

 You must wear a bra CONSTANTLY. Like seriously, never take it off.

You will leak into every top you own and suddenly those wet patches become the norm.

 If the latch isn’t correct your nipples can BLEED and BLISTER.

 You literally STINK. It’s this sticky mixture of boob sweat and milk. I like to call it Parfum de mum.

 You forget the bra pads that soak up your leaking milk are there and then you go to feed your hungry baby whilst enjoying lunch out and BAM milk soaked pad on your plate in public. Ok Maybeeee…just me? 

And if you don’t have a breast pad in – well yeah good luck with that.

 You can get breast and nipple thrush. THRUSH!?! Seriously…. I had no idea this could happen.

 You are hungry most of the time. Actually ALL the time.

 You come out of the shower and it’s a massive race against time to get your bra back on without leaking milk on every. surface. possible.

 Those things called Breast pumps make you feel like an actual cow. Can they make a silent one already? I swear that noise will haunt me forever.

 You can never be too far away from baby or your boobs will physically ache as if they are about to explode. Then when it comes to feeding your baby you will spray their teeeeeny tiny face with your bursting boobs. Poor babies don’t know what hit them!

 Your baby may not agree with certain things you eat. Like dairy, chocolate, coffee which means cutting them out…. All the good stuff basically.

That thing called sex also requires a bra at all times, Yep no nipple play here. Unless your partner wants a side of milkshake.

After you have stopped breastfeeding your once super pert breasts/bossoms/boobs (Whatever your preference in name) will no longer sit where they used to. Think south. Veryyy south.

 They don’t tell you that it’s ok if you don’t enjoy it, many mums don’t and it certainly doesn’t make you any less of a mother.

 I breastfed for 4 months. I loved and hated it all at the same time. It was a battle of recurring thrush, Sore nipples and constant cluster feeding. It got to the point where I was really dreading feeding time. I set 6 months as a goal and I did not want to let myself down by not reaching that point. I put a lot of pressure on myself and It was making me an unhappy mum. I knew something needed to change. I gave Rosie her first formula bottle and felt like a weight had been lifted. Truth is, i wasn’t letting anyone down.

Giving her a bottle did not make me miss the connection. I loved the connection breastfeeding gave me but bottle feeding also gave me that. It was beautiful to see her daddy feeding her too which took some pressure off me.

 Breastfeeding is wonderful but it’s not for everyone and that’s ok. So mama’s don’t judge other mums that feed in a different way to you. You have no idea what they have been through.

 Motherhood is a journey that we are all trying to navigate as best we can so let’s support each other and know we are raising happy tiny humans. After all, a happy mum means a happy bub.

 Danielle Lauren

 xoxo

The end of Maternity leave and beginning of daycare days

The end of Maternity leave and beginning of daycare days

Oh I remember when I was pregnant and it was my last day at work before I started my maternity leave. I could not wait to begin the journey but also have a little break from the daily grind of the 9 to 5. ‘Time off work, WOOHOO’ I thought. Little did I know that Motherhood would be the hardest job of all.

I had originally planned to take 12 months off however as I’m sure a lot of you have experienced, Finances do not go as far as you would like on one wage. (Especially when there are so many cute baby clothes to buy!)

We decided that I would go back 2 days a week initially from when Rosie turned 7 months. Sooner than expected but I actually felt ready. I was excited for my mum brain to be gone and to get stuck back into it. I craved adult conversation. Mummy dates are so great and everything but I do find we talk about our bubs pretty much the whole time, which don’t get me wrong I LOVE but I also love a bit of a gossip. (Bachelor anyone?)

As the day grew closer for my first day back we put Rosie into her daycare for a trial day. Ease her into I thought. (Ease me into it more like) I was a little apprehensive but felt pretty good and confident in our choice of centre. I wasn’t emotional at all. I felt strong. I felt ready. I could do this. She would be fine. I would be fine.

I got into the lift up to the daycare and suddenly I felt a lump in my throat. My lip began to quiver. ‘I’m fine I told myself, it’s just a trial day, and I’ll be around the corner’. I could feel my eyes starting to fill. My stomach was doing flips as if I was on a rollercoaster. This feeling came from nowhere. It was so out of the blue. ‘DO NOT CRY’ I told myself. ‘DO NOT breakdown right now. DO NOT be that person’.

The centre was already filled with babies, some screaming, some happily playing (most with a lot of snot hanging out their noses, Eww). I felt this huge overwhelming wave come over me ‘Omg my maternity is over. My baby is growing, this is a HUGE step. Am I ready for this?’ Why hadn’t I thought of all this before, and mentally prepared myself? If I’m honest I think I had thought about it, but shoved it so far to the back of my brain as i didn’t WANT to think about how it would make me feel. Boy do I regret that!

The super lovely childcare staff came over (She could clearly see I was about to have a nervous breakdown) She made Rosie giggle and feel at ease with her by playing peekaboo. Rosie beamed up at her ‘AHH she is just so cute whhyyy am I leaving you’ I thought to myself.

I put her bag (Which had EVERYTHING you could imagine in it X 2) into her little locker. Took off her little coat and gave her the biggest cuddle. You could see the staff were so ready to take her and let me be on my way. But I was not ready! Just a little longer I thought. Rosie was eyeing up all the colourful toys and taking in the new surroundings. I was just taking in every inch of my little girl. I knew that as soon as I handed her to the staff I would need to evacuate this place ASAP as the tear train was rolling in at any moment.

I had a tiny moment of strength and said to myself ‘get a grip Danielle – you are ready. Rosie is ready’ and I handed her over, I waved goodbye and I left.

I managed to hold back the tears but it felt so strange leaving. ‘WHAT DO I DO NOW?’ As it was just a trial day and I didn’t start work til the following week I knew I needed to keep busy. Netflix binge? Shopping spree? The pub? ALL great possibilities.

I had forgotten how easy it was without a pram or heavy nappy bag. I started to get excited over the fact I could use escalators (Why is this exciting seriously?) Make a phone call in peace and enjoy a HOT coffee. I ended up going to the local Westfield and decided to get my hair cut. I sat there and talked all about little miss to the hairdresser the whole time. The poor lady probably wanted peace and quiet by the time she had finished. I wandered around aimlessly and I rang the daycare every hour to see how she was getting on. All positive feedback from them and she was settling in well. (Me on the other hand…not so much)

I could not wait to pick her up.

After the longest day ever I ran into that daycare, scanned the room for her (Would be pretty embarrassing if I picked up the wrong baby in my excitement!). I scooped her up into my arms and felt the biggest relief. We had both made it. We survived our first day of daycare.

The trial day certainly prepared me for going back to work and I found that after my first day back in the office, I was not obsessing over how she was doing every 5 minutes (Maybe every 10!) as I had work to do and knew she was in very capable hands and that they would contact me if there were any issues.

When the time comes for your little ones to go to daycare or nursery or even school it all of a sudden feels like your baby is no longer a baby. It makes you reminisce about them being so tiny and new to the world where you doted on them day and night. We all have individual circumstances, whether you work full or part time, are a stay at home parent or work from home. We all have to choose what is right for our families. Some decisions are easier than others and whatever stage you are at take comfort in knowing you are not alone. Somewhere there is another mum feeling just how you are.

The daycare days will get easier and it will soon be on to the next challenge but for now i look forward to watching Rosie grow as I grow and learn alongside her.

Danielle Lauren
xoxo

Milestones and magical moments

Milestones and magical moments

When you find out you are pregnant for the first time, You don’t quite realise the journey you have embarked on. From that very moment your life has changed. All of a sudden there are so many wonderful milestones to celebrate. Like getting to that 12 week mark, hearing the heartbeat for the first time, feeling those wiggles. The list goes on. But it doesn’t stop there.

Pregnancy is just the first step in these milestones. Once you have given birth to your little bundle that’s when the real fun starts. Now, I had a general idea of what to expect with my babies milestones. But what I didn’t expect was how they would make me feel.

The moment Rosie beamed her first smile up at me, The excitement, the emotions, the pure tears of joy. It made me melt. All of a sudden she was gurgling, rolling over and trying solids. Just so many firsts i couldn’t keep up. Pre-parenthood you don’t quite realise just how big these milestones are. People tell you, yes, but once you enter into that world yourself you soon find out just how magical these moments are and suddenly you are the proudest parents in the world.

Now I really wanted to document all these milestones, As a memory and something to look back on. I had this wonderful baby book which documented everything throughout my pregnancy. Appointments, names, things we had bought. It was really great and I took it everywhere. Always finding a little bit of time either on my commute to work or of an evening.

When Rosie was born I knew I wanted to do the same and document all her special moments. I found the cutest little Peter Rabbit record book and keepsake box that was perfect to hold all these memories. When it came to actually filling it in though (Seriously who has time to fill these in?) it felt like a chore. Those newborn days are a haze of constant feeding and trying to cat nap here and there that I had no interest in sitting down and filling this out. Until now.

 

I finally sat down with my coffee in hand and took the opportunity to start completing her book. Now at nearly 7 months old, there was a lot to complete. Sitting back and reflecting on the past few months was actually a really beautiful process. I found myself getting pretty teary as I went into detail about the moment we met and just how happy she has made us from then on.

These moments we share, the memories we create are up to us with what we do with them. With so many firsts yet to come it makes me look forward to the next chapters of our lives.

So enjoy the moment Mama’s, For it will soon be a memory.

Danielle Lauren xoxo

A play corner fit for a princess (also know as “The Kmart corner”)

A play corner fit for a princess (also know as “The Kmart corner”)

We had a busy weekend sorting out a little corner for little miss. Rosie is very excited about her new play area (Not as excited as me though!) Pretty much everything in it is from Kmart. Oh how i love that place. You just can’t quite walk away from their bargains! Affordable and oh so pretty! Win Win. I love their eyelash range (or are they cows udders?) The eyelash play mat is my favourite, When it gets dirty…which will be a lot i’m sure, i can just throw it in the wash. Easy Peasy.

Their cushions for children’s rooms are so fun and colourful. With different patterns and shapes (Who doesnt want a strawberry shaped smiley face cushion in their life!)

I like to keep my house fresh and tidy but also lived in. It’s not one of these “show homes” but that’s the way we like it. I love making my house homely and updating it but life on maternity leave means you need to do it on a budget (Can we seriously win the lotto already!?!) That’s why i love places like Kmart and Ikea. I call it “Affordable luxury”

 I also love stalking Instagram for ideas. There are so many great hacks and upcycles that you can do with outdated or old furniture. It’s also a really cost effective way of updating your home.

Hopefully Rosie gets lots of joy out of her play area. It will probably change too but for now. I love it.

Let me see your play rooms/corners! What are your must have items? Any storage ideas for hiding toys? Also any tips for baby proofing those storage box corners?

Post your ideas in the comments!

Happy Playing 🙂

Danielle Lauren xoxo

 

 

Welcome to the Hood – Blog 1

Welcome to the Hood – Blog 1

 

Welcome to the hood – Blog 1

Firstly, Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to read my ramblings. I decided to start this blog to document all the wonderful (and not so wonderful) times of parenting and being a first time mum.

Where do I start?

Rosie is nearly 6 months old. 6 MONTHS! How can that be! I honestly do not know where the time goes? It feels like just yesterday I saw those double lines on my first pregnancy test and now BAM She’s 6 months old. The saying “Blink and you’ll miss it” is oh so true. Although you do not realise it at the time. From a young age I had always wanted to become a Mum but little did I know just how magical (and exhausting!) it would be.

Our journey started long before we started actually “trying”. Not long after Robert and I met, I found out that I had a large fibroid causing me bother and I underwent 2 lots of surgery to have it removed. My surgeon and doctors “recommended” we start trying for a baby mid-twenties to give me the best chance of conceiving as they advised the fibroids could come back (URGH! Realllly?). I was 24 and Robert and I had only being dating a few months, it was a lot to take in! I knew my body needed to heal from the surgery and we just weren’t at the right point in our lives to even think about becoming parents.

Fast forward a few small years and we had made the move over to Sydney, both had good jobs, a comfortable apartment and a supportive set of friends. Deciding to add a baby whilst all our family are in the UK was a big decision for us. Would we have the support? Could we handle it? We didn’t have the answers but knew that we would make it work as we had each other. (Naww….Cute)

We were lucky enough that after a few short months we had conceived (YAY). The weeks just flew by, I had every app going and just loved reading what type of fruit my baby was the size of that week. Every little symptom I tried to embrace (Hello cankles!) and I actually LOVED being pregnant. Well except for the huge feet mentioned above and being heavily pregnant in an australian summer (Didn’t time that quite right did I!). Before I knew it, pregnancy was nearly over and I was giving birth to our baby. We had no idea on the sex and it really didn’t matter. The moment I heard her first little cry and she was handed to us was the best moment of my life and everything in that moment was utterly perfect.

The journey into Motherhood is one that is very individual. We all have our challenges. We all have our stories. And it’s those stories that makes us who we are as women and mothers.

By sharing our stories and connecting with one another, means we are inspiring, supporting and lifting each other up. After all we are all in this together.

Welcome to this wonderful hood called motherhood.