Monday, February 28, 2011

I'm Back...

After a small blogging break, I am now back. My heart is still hurting badly for the people of Christchurch and the tears have been close to the surface during the past few days. Amidst all the horror though, there have been tales of bravery, unfailing support and love from all over the world. I am so proud of the way that New Zealanders have banded together to support those in their time of need. This also brings a tear to my eye.
So from tomorrow I will return to my normal blogging. Project Life, organisation and trips to the park seem so trivial at a time like this but recording these moments are uplifting to me and at the moment I need as much of that as I can get. My thoughts and prayers continue to go out to all those who have been affected by this terrible tragedy.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Christchurch Quake

Like the rest of New Zealand, I am devastated by the news of the Christchurch earthquake yesterday. Something like this makes you question what is most important and I spent most of the afternoon close to tears as I watched the footage. In the end I had to turn it off as it was too upsetting.
My thoughts and prayers go out to the people of Christchurch and I think I will be taking a break from blogging for the rest of the week. This sad news has really affected me and I would like to focus my attention on what matters most for the next few family.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Project Life Tuesday: Enjoying Your Local Parks

Project Life Tuesday today: Enjoying your local parks.
This park is just down the road from us and has been a great place to pop down to when our family has some free time.
We have been trying to take advantage of the summer evenings while we can and Rosie and Harry love running around and wearing themselves out before bed. :)
Challenge for Project Lifers: Take a picture of your family enjoying your favourite park. :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Learning to Ride

Our little man is growing up and we felt it was time he learnt how to ride a big boy bike.
He is very attached to his beloved Triang Tuff Trike so this has been a big step for him.
There have been tears and frustration but he is gaining confidence and after a few rounds of the church carpark and local bike tracks, he is slowly getting the hang of it.
His new bike is an Avanti MXR 12 which we picked up from Trademe in almost new condition. He feels pretty grown up with his new big boy bike and we are hoping that he will grow to enjoy it even more in the coming weeks. :)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

I'm an Aunty Again!

Very exciting news...I am an aunty again!
My newest little niece, Paige Harrison, arrived safely yesterday morning and although she was a few weeks early, she is doing great.
She weighed in at a whopping five pounds, 2 ounces and is breathing on her own. I am so proud!
Congratulations CJ and Chris, she is delicious. :) 

Saturday, February 19, 2011

PETAL Cupcakes

I have made a recent discovery...the best cupcakes in the world!
Petal is situated in Newmarket and they have recently opened a new store in Ponsonby as well. Their cupcakes are true works of art and absolutely delicious.
A Golden Syrup Cupcake...Genius!
The kids and I decided to brighten Taff's day last week and bought him a Goldern Syrup cupcake for dessert. We made him share it with us too. :)

Hawkes Bay Peach

Rich Dark Chocolate

Tropical Mango
Everyone loves cupcakes and these really are beautiful. We are looking forward to trying some of the other flavours...sooner rather than later. :)

Friday, February 18, 2011

Happy Birthday Mum!

A few days ago it was Mum's birthday and I made her a Keep Calm and Carry On print like mine, except pink!
They had no red prints left at the Homestore but they had this gorgeous pink and silver one, which I think I actually prefer. The white frame is from Factory Frames.
I think Mum plans to keep hers on her desk at work. A great message for any work environment in my opinion! :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Online Bargains

Isn't this a gorgeous assortment of cushions? Today I thought I would share one of my best tips for snaring bargains on Trademe! You need to keep your eyes peeled and you need to know what you are looking for, but even with Trademe as saturated as it is, there are still great deals to be had. :) These cushions for example...cost me nothing. Yep, that's right nothing...well, almost! I spotted them late one night (they were three separate bulk auctions from the same seller) and added them to my watchlist as although they weren't photgraphed very well, I could tell they were all good brands and in great condition. The next day the seller sent through fixed price offers at a BARGAIN price and I LOVE cushions so snapped them up!
When Rosie and I picked them up (from a very very nice house) the seller even gave me a few extras for free. I took them home, decided which ones I wanted to keep, and sold off the rest individually or in pairs. They were all from pretty high end stores so they sold quickly. Not only did I get all the money back that I paid for them, but I actually got three times the amount I paid, as well as keeping half the cushions for myself!
Some of the cushions I kept were used in a spare room update.
So my tip is to look at bulk auctions and try to identify the value of items indivually, rather than as a whole. Often items in bulk lots could sell for a lot more indivually but many sellers just want to get rid of everything in one hit, this can work to your advantage. Keep what you want and then resell what you don't. My aim is to make back most of the money that I paid for the whole lot in the first place and hopefully more. You can then put this towards something else you are saving for! Happy bargain hunting.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A New Strategy...

Riveting stuff on the blog today! You may be wondering why we would be needing cloth nappies at our house? Well, we are putting a new strategy in place to try and encourage Harry out of his night nappies.
We have suspected for a while that Harry is more than capable of staying dry all night and that his comfortable disposable nappy was making it too easy for him not to. We decided to dig out the old cloth nappies (old fashioned cloth squares, no modern comfortable fleece lined ones!) and give them a go.
It was quite a show getting one on him. He had no idea how they worked and was really unsure about his big cloth butt. The hope is that after a few days of this he will decide that being dry is a far more comfortable option. We have no idea whether this will work! :)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Project Life Tuesday: Making Smoothies

Project Life Tuesday today...making smoothies.
Harry and I are the berry fans in the house so we had a mum and son bonding session over the blender. We made raspberry smoothies and Harry actually did most of the jobs himself.
Challenge for Project Lifers: Take a photo of your child making something in the kitchen...even if it is just a mess! :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day

Happy Valentines Day!
Rosie made up a cute little Valentine for her teacher this year.
She filled an organza bag with some Hershey's kisses and together we made this tag. We love crafting together!
I hope you have a great day with your family and loved ones. :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Changing Your Photography Angles

Since beginning Project Life I have been trying to vary the angles I use to take my photos, in the hope of capturing something a little different from my usual shots. I am a true beginner with my photography and have a basic point and shoot camera, but I am doing the best I can with my lack of skills!
In fact, it is a goal of mine this year to really try and improve in this area. Last night I took some shots of Rosie and Harry in the bath and instead of snapping from the side of the bath as I usually would, I got a chair and took the photos from above.  
I loved seeing the suds in their hair (Rosie thought it would be a good idea to wash Harry's hair!) and these pictures really show how much they enjoy playing together. It has encouraged me to try and think more creatively about the angles I use in my photography.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Loving this Bedroom

Just had to share the love today. :)
Isn't this bedroom beautiful?
I love the grey on the walls, the empty frames above the bed, the simple bed and the bright cushions which add a shot of colour. Makes me want to repaint...again. :)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Small World

I have been wanting to give Rosie and Harry's room a more eclectic look and while I was in Newmarket a few days ago I found a gorgeous fabric shop (yes, another one!) tucked away in a dark alley.
They have the most beautiful fabrics and when I saw these I thought they would be perfect for Rosie and Harry.
They are Harlequin fabrics from the UK and are part of their 'Small World' range. They feature people from different cultures all around the world I think they are super cute and great for boys or girls, ideal for littlies who are sharing a room.
I have a very simple plan for these so will share the finished products when I can snatch a few moments with my sewing machine! :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Rediscovering Old Favourites

We have been rediscovering old favourites at our house lately. I try to rotate our toys as much as possible so that we never have too many out at one time. This helps to control the mess and ensure that all the toys are enjoyed as they should be! Rosie and Harry were very lucky to have a large Brio train set sent to them from Taff's family in the UK last year. The Brio has been in Taff's family for a few years and has been enjoyed by many...including our two!
Unfortunately due to our play area downstairs being out of action, we had to pack the Brio away for a little while but Harry requested that we bring it out again last weekend and he has been playing with it ever since! He can literally play for hours with this and it is the first thing he asks to get out when we get home each afternoon. He has never been particularly interested in TV (Rosie is a different story!) and I love seeing him chatting away to himself, immersed in the journeys of his imagination. :)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

DECORATING with Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen

I have long been an admirer of coffee table books and this beauty is my very first one! It was a generous gift from my beautiful friend Rosie and every page is filled with inspiration.
It is 'Decorating with Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen', a British interior designer and television and radio personality.
Check out the gorgeousness! :)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Project Life Tuesday: Photos

Welcome to Project Life Tuesday!
I have decided to dedicate one post a week to a Project Life POTD (Photo of the Day) from the previous week.
This POTD is a sad one for me as it represents a number of photos from several years ago that we found floating downstairs last weekend. Yes, that's right, floating. We had a flood downstairs in heavy rain and our entire basement was covered in 4-5cm of water. We managed to get everything out without too much damage but the photos were saturated. We weren't sure if they would be able to be salvaged but Taff laid them all out on the table and after a days drying time, they were ok again. They aren't as perfect as they were but at least we got to keep our photographic memories intact! :)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Centsational Girl

Prepare to be inspired! A few weeks ago I discovered a new favourite blog...
This woman has the most amazing talent and I am in love with all her ideas, especially her Project Gallery. As the name suggests, this blog is all about maximum style on a budget and reinventing old neglected pieces and giving them another life. 
I loved this Project Art Gallery Wall that she created for her children in a blank space in their home. Her aesthetic really appeals to me and I love the way she used what she had and turned it into something special.
She painted the mismatched floating shelves white, she covered the desk with fabric and jazzed up a plain white lamp. Art from her children added colour and I love the finished product!
One of the best things about her site is the advice she gives on how to prepare and paint almost any surface, including plastic and glass! Do check it out if you are in need of some DIY inspiration. :)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Valentine Decorating

A little spot of Valentine decorating fun has been going on at our house. :)
Of course I didn't want to spend much on this at all so I picked up a few bargains, which made it guilt free fun. :)
I found these DIY Christmas glass balls in the Clearance Bin at Spotlight for a bargain $1 per box! I then found these lovely ribbons in Valentines colours and tied a loop through the glass balls.
The only other thing to do was place them in these beautiful glass jars that I picked up from Bed, Bath and Beyond (also on sale!) and we were done. It took about 10 minutes to do and adds some lovely sparkle to our entry hall now. :)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Eames Rocking Chair

I have been dreaming of owning an Eames rocking chair for a long time now and every time I see one I am filled with chair envy. They were designed in 1948 and are an abolute classic!

I finally decided to treat a bargain replica and I love our new rocker! It has already become a family favourite and we all love taking turns in it.
I was especially surprised at how comfortable it was! It is extra special when you finally get something you have loved for a long time and I think you appreciate it all the more when you finally get it. :)