Tips For Making Sure You Look Stunning This Summer

All ladies want to look their best during the summer months. That is because we love to spend our time outdoors or on the town with friends. With that in mind, I wanted to release a post that offers some tips and tricks. Most people are struggling for money at the moment, and so it’s not sensible to spend a fortune. However, with my advice, you should manage to look fabulous without breaking the bank.


Purchase your summer wardrobe now


We all know how retailers like to inflate their prices when they know you want to buy something. So, it doesn’t make sense to wait until the weather improves to purchase your summer wardrobe. In most instances, you’ll make substantial savings if you head out to the shops now.


Look after your teeth and gums


Lots of women become too concerned with their makeup and hair. In truth, the best way to look stunning involves looking after your teeth. I’ve added an infographic to this page that offers some excellent advice. Use it!


Share with your friends


I’m not saying I believe in communism as an economic system, but it sure works between friends. If you’re concerned about wearing the same outfits too often, maybe you should share? We all used to do it when we were younger, so there’s no need to stop now.

Wherever you plan to go this summer, I hope my advice will improve your experiences. If you’re single, it’s probably more important that you pay attention. Meeting that special someone often means you have to stand out from the crowd. So, don’t make the mistake of wearing your 2015 wardrobe because it’s outdated. You need something new!



Infographic Produced By Smile by Design

Inspiration For Putting Your Own Stamp On Your New Home

No matter how excited you and your family are about moving to your new home, when you first move in it won’t feel homey. It’s a brand new place, somewhere that you’ve never lived before, so it’s going to take a little getting used to. The best way to get rid of that new house feel is to put your own stamp on it and make your new home feel comfortable and cosy.

Here’s how to make your new home feel like, well, home, and how to put your own stamp on it.

Unpack and find homes for your belongings

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Start off by unpacking yours’ and your family’s belongings. This is the simplest way to make your new house feel more like home. It’s tempting to put off the unpacking as it can be a little stressful, but the sooner you do it, the better. There’s nothing like having your own belongings around you to make you feel more at home.

Make the bedrooms a priority, as bedtime somewhere strange is never nice. Start with the kid’s rooms and then once you’ve done them, move onto yours. Family areas, like the bathroom, kitchen and living room, can be unpacked once all the bedrooms have been done.

Start coming up with decor ideas

Once you’ve unpacked your boxes, the next step is to focus on decor. You might be a fan of the decor that’s in your new home but you probably won't. We all have different tastes, which is why the chances are that the previous owner’s style won’t match yours. If this is the case, you’ll want to update the decor as soon as possible. However, what you don’t want to do is rush things.

Get some ideas and inspiration for the type of space you want to create. The chances are that you have a style that you like, but even so, it’s worth getting inspiration. You’ve got a fresh canvas to work with and can redesign it however you like. Always dreamed of having a pretty pastel lounge - now is your chance. Have you longed for an elegant monochrome bathroom for years - well now you can create one.

Add features that you love

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Of course, making your new house a home isn’t just about the decor but also about the features that are in place. Has every home you’ve ever lived in had a fire that’s perfect for those cold winter months, but your new one doesn’t? Consider adding a gas fireplace or a wood burner, to give your home that cosy feeling that you crave. Are you a bath person but your new home only has a shower stall? Don’t go without, this your home; it needs to be somewhere you love, so have a bath installed. If you’re going to love your new home, it needs to have the features that you want and need.

It’s not just big features that make a difference; the small things can too. If you have an item that makes you feel at home, such as a cuckoo clock that goes off every half an hour, get that hung up right away. Often, when it comes to making a space feel like home, it’s the little things that make all the difference. Perhaps you’ve always had a certain piece of art on your living room wall - get that put up asap. It’s all about transforming the space into somewhere that makes you and your family feel comfortable and cosy.

Take these tips on board and you’ll find putting your own stamp on your new home, easy peasy.

3 Reasons Why You Need To Try Pilates This Year

If you never heard of Pilates before, where have you been? With celebrity devotees including Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow, it’s become on of the most popular ways of staying in shape. It aims to strengthen the body to improve fitness levels and general well being, through mat and apparatus exercises. It also incorporates breathing techniques, enhances posture and can assist with weight loss. It was first unveiled in the 1920’s and has had a continual growth in popularity ever since. Whether you’re an Olympic athlete or just starting your fitness journey, here are three reasons why you need to give Pilates a go.


You can do it independently

If you feel embarrassed about working out in front of other people, going to a fitness class can be your worst nightmare. While it’s common for pilates classes to be carried out in groups, you can book private sessions too. Studios like True Pilates offer packages to beginners who want to try pilates independently for one or multiple sessions. Usually this will be tailored to the individual's needs and provides a taste into what the exercise method is all about. You can also try practising it yourself at home using beginner's tutorials on Youtube. Pilates rings and balls can also be bought online and delivered to your home to assist you in your regime. This makes it highly convenient and allows you to feel more comfortable.


It can reduce lower- back pain

Recent studies have shown that pilates can reduce lower- back pain. This is due to it’s focus on improving the body’s core or powerhouse. This helps to stabilise the lower back region, which makes it more flexible and removes pressure and stress. It’s been claimed that those who practise Pilates regularly can see a significant improvement in just a matter of weeks. Continual practise can also prevent the pain from returning. So if you suffer from aches and pains in your lower back, pilates could help you keep it at bay. Always seek advice from your doctor before joining a Pilates class to ensure it’s the best option for your condition.



Anybody can try it

Whether you’re 18 or 80, pilates is something that anybody can do. It’s accessibility is one of the reasons why it have become so popular in the past decade. Unlike many methods, Pilates is carried out in reclining or sitting positions using gentle movements. This can help you develop lean muscles, improve your joints and conditions your entire body. Pilates methods can be adapted and changed to suit each individual’s abilities and requirements. So as your body strengthens and your fitness levels improve, the exercises and resistance can be intensified. So whether you want to challenge your body or just need help with a medical condition, Pilates is right for you.






So why not look for a gym or class near to your home and reap the benefits of Pilates for yourself. It’s a fun way to stay fit and active while keeping your core, mind and body strong.

Do You Need To Hire A Handyman, Or Can You DIY It?

If you’ve got your own place, there will undoubtedly come a time in your life where you have some kind of repair to make or something along those lines. But repairs with professionals can be expensive - can’t you just save money and do it yourself? In some cases, yes. In others, you shouldn’t even attempt it. Here are some tips that will help you to work out whether you need a handyman or whether you can do it yourself:

You Have No Idea What You’re Doing?

If you have no idea what you’re doing, this doesn’t mean you can’t give it a go. There are hundreds of YouTube tutorials and videos online that can give you some hints and tips and probably save you a lot of money when it comes to getting it fixed. If you feel confident that you can do it yourself after watching a video or reading a tutorial, then try it. You’ll need to make sure you have the proper tools and stuff, otherwise it’ll be what is known as a ‘bodge job’. You definitely shouldn’t take any chances like that when your home is at risk!

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How Risky Is The Repair?

If the repair is quite risky, then you should probably hire the handyman. The expense to hire a handyman will be worth it when you consider your life. If it involves wiring or anything like that, then you should probably leave it to a pro.

Is It Worth Your Time?

Although you may be able to perform a repair yourself, consider if it’s really worth your time. If it’s going to take you hours or even days where you could be doing something more important, then you’d more than likely be better off spending the money to get a pro to do it. You’ll get your repair in a fraction of the time and you can get other stuff done. If you decide that you do want a pro to do it, make sure you choose somebody who will do the job properly and not rip you off. Whether it’s a carpenter or a plumber, do your research and ask for recommendations.

Do You Have The Knowledge, Skills And Equipment?

Ideally you’ll already have some knowledge, skills, and equipment before you start trying to do repairs around the home. Be honest with yourself. If you’re not a DIY pro, then leave it to somebody who is. Then at least you can rest soundly in the knowledge that your home is taken care of. This is especially important if you want to keep your family safe!

You don’t always need a handyman for those repair jobs around the house, but if you want to make sure you get a high quality job done properly, you should hire one to be sure. Remember, not all handymen are created equal, so do your research to find one you can really trust. Do you have any DIY or repair tips you’d like to share? Leave a comment below!

Planning a Trip to Australia? What You Need To Know

For a lot of people, planning a trip to Australia is a once in a lifetime trip. Let’s be honest, as amazing as it is; it is quite far out from everywhere else. It isn’t the kind of location that you would visit while you were in the area. It is a specific destination so if you are heading over to my homeland, there are a few things that you will want to know.

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First of all, you will want to think about the time of year that you are visiting. Our summer months are December, January and February. These are popular times to visit because of Christmas, New Year and of course, because of the weather! Beaches can get pretty packed full during these months. If the sun is what you are after, it is the best time to visit, though. Springtime is another great time to visit if you want to visit when it is a little less full of tourists. Those months are September, October and November. You will pay less for things during the less ‘touristy’ months and will avoid long lines at popular attractions. March and April are good months to visit too before it starts to cool off for our winter.

The next thing to plan is where to visit. Australia is a huge country and there are a lot of attractions, cities and sites, that it can be hard to know where to go. If you like coffee shops, museums and galleries, then Melbourne is the best option for you. If you prefer beaches, good clubs and restaurants, then Sydney would be a good call. Brisbane and Perth are great cities too, both with different things to offer. If you want to travel a bit more, Perth won’t be the best option as it is quite an isolated city. Brisbane is a great place to surf, so heading there is a must if you want to learn.

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If you like to be at one with nature, then it would be a good idea to hire a car and drive to one of the country’s national parks. You could see crocodiles in the north, along with ancient aboriginal ruins and art. You could snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef and or visit Ayers Rock near the centre of the country.

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Hiring a car is a good idea, due to the vast size of the country. There are quite a few places for car rentals so you will be able to get a competitive price. You could even plan a road trip route if you plan to visit for a while. A good route is to start along the east coast and visit the beaches there. Then travel along to Melbourne. You could even take a little detour to the Tasmania to discover the beauty of the island.

Whatever you decide to do, you will love your visit. Australia has a lot to offer and it’s no surprise that it is on a lot of people’s bucket list.

Sharing pregnancy news, when to share?


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Image: newbornbaby.com.au



I am pregnant, very newly pregnant. We have only just found out and I am quite happy to share our joyful news. I know the risks of early pregnancy but I also feel that sharing our news with those around us is important. Important because should anything happen I would want those same people to understand and know what we were going through.

Traditionally you wait until the "safe" 12 week mark, traditional reasons for waiting till 12 weeks are the fear of miscarriage: with each passing week your risk of miscarriage lessens, unwanted advice and worries about work and employment.

We shared our first pregnancy news at 6 weeks because I was so ill and my 30th birthday party was right around the corner and felt it was easier than trying to explain the constant trips to the bathroom and not drinking.

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I'm terrible at keeping secrets, terrible at pretending and my morning sickness kicked me around for 6 so telling those around us made sense. I love when you share the happy news your family and friends support you and share the love and excitement and fellow pregnant friends confide in you and your network of support grows.

I know its know for everyone and that's ok this was our choice and I would love to know your thoughts on sharing pregnancy news? x

Take the Family: Fun Family Holiday Ideas

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Traveling with the family takes a little planning, especially if you have young children. There are medical and safety issues to take into consideration. And you need to think carefully about organizing a trip that will appeal to everyone. But with a little organization, you can enjoy a fun holiday that will provide you with a lifetime of memories.

City Holidays

City holidays are ideal for families. There are so many things to do and places to see that you won’t be stuck for ideas. Look for museums, galleries, parks and pools. Young children may not enjoy wandering around galleries all day and so look for interactive exhibitions. Many places provide activities for children of varying ages.

Another fun idea is to arrange a guided tour. Some outings, like Melbourne tours, provide trips around key hotspots and even TV sets.

Another great thing about cities is the variety of places to eat and drink. Many of these are family-friendly, which is ideal when traveling with young children.

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Camping

Whether you stay in a caravan or pitch your own tent, camping makes an exciting holiday. The weather is important of course. It’s not fun trying to put up a tent in the wind and rain. But then again, it can feel quite cozy tucked up in a sleeping bag while the rain patters against the canvas.

Camping teaches important life skills in a fun and entertaining way. Children are immersed in nature and are exposed to new surroundings and experiences. And food always tastes so much nicer when it’s cooked over a camping stove.

The destination and campsite will be important. Make sure there are lots of places to visit and a range of activities. Think about walking, cycling, swimming, etc.



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Beach Holidays

Beach holidays are the ideal choice for families. You can spend whole days there while the kids play in the sand, while you relax with a pile of books. Look for destinations that are popular with families, rather than just singles or couples.

Some resorts offer a good range of beach activities. You can find everything, including beach soccer, volleyball, surfing and horse riding. The more variety, the better. This will keep active members of the family occupied.






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Theme Parks

There are thousands of theme parks around the world. This covers everything from water parks, animal parks, and leisure parks. Many of them cover vast areas and take several days to experience fully. It is, therefore, important plan ahead and prioritize what you want to see.

Large parks tend to have their own accommodation to allow you to spend time there. Decide whether the park will be the focus of your holiday or whether you would prefer a one-day visit.

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We all look forward to our holiday each year. Many of us spend the whole year saving for it. So it’s important that it goes well and that everyone enjoys themselves. When traveling with families, there are more people to please. Therefore, it takes a little bit of thought and planning. Do your research in advance and read what other families have said about destinations. Have a couple of contingencies in place for when things don’t go according to schedule. Other than that, just have fun.

There's Still Time To Make Resolutions This Year!


Did you make new year's resolutions at the beginning of January? How have they worked out? Like many people, you may find that by now they have fallen by the wayside. It doesn’t have to take long. After all, we may have promised ourselves that this year will definitely be the year we stick to our plans, but once again, it hasn’t happened.



But it’s not too late. The first of January is not the only time you can give yourself a new challenge. Why not start again now? After all, it’s how you deal with failure that counts. Did you know the Chinese word for crisis and opportunity are one and the same? So you can treat things that don’t go as well as you might have hoped with a better perspective, if you apply some positive thinking, and act on it! That’s the most significant bit. Procrastinating isn’t going to help. If you’re not going to do whatever it is, that is important to you now? When are you going to do it?

If procrastination is your problem, then there's no point in someone to just telling you to get on with it. You know that yourself already. Work out the reasons behind why you’re trying to put things off. Is it a self-confidence issue? Do you fear failure? Whatever it is, you need to work out a strategy to overcome it. Sometimes you just have to, as they say, feel the fear and do it anyway.

Of course, life isn’t always that easy. If you have any sort of disability, it can make things twice as hard. An NDIS provider can help point you in the right direction. There are lots of assistance schemes and different bodies that can assist you in following your dreams. If you receive disability funding in Australia, then you could be eligible for this plan, and it won’t cost you a cent.



If you just need a little extra support towards your goals, then no one has to do it alone. Even if you don’t have any particular circumstances, you can still find support. For example, if your goal is to shed a few pounds, slimming groups where there is support given are a proven way to lose weight. You’re more likely to be successful if you have others in the same boat as you to talk to and share stories with. Doing anything alone is tough, and it helps to ease the burden.



Maybe you’d like to learn a new skill. Enlist a friend to come along with you to a class. If no one is interested in the same things as you, why not go alone? There will be people in the same boat as you, and they'll probably be feeling self-conscious, so don’t worry you're on your own. It’s a great way to learn new skills and make new friends. You could find yourself with a whole new social life too. What’s stopping you?

Have you found a way to reboot your goals for 2016? We’d love to hear them. Drop by and share your story in the comments below.

Get the Scandi Look in Your Child's Bedroom

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Scandinavian interiors: you either love them or hate them! Some people think they're too cold and they lack colour and texture. But others love their minimalism and pops of colour. Personally, I think they're great, although I'm not sure I would want the look through my whole home. One room I do think they suit is kids' bedrooms. I see so many children's rooms where there's a lot going on. They often have entire themes, from wall to wall, whether it's princesses or a favourite TV character. While those rooms are fun, I can't help but think that their occupants will get bored of them quickly. With a Scandi-style room, you can easily mix things up without a lot of effort or expense. Have a look at my rules for getting the look.

Start with White

When you want a Scandi-style room, it's all about starting with a blank canvas. If you don't believe me, take a look at any Swedish real estate website. You'll struggle to find homes with coloured walls! The great thing about having the walls and floor so plain is that it's so easy to change everything else. You can put whatever you want in the room and it won't clash with the decor. So you need to begin with white, white, white. So get those paintbrushes and rollers out! The floor doesn't need to be white, but it should be a neutral colour. You should even go neutral with the furniture, from light-coloured kids bunk beds to the wardrobe.

Choose Some Bright Colours

It doesn't have to stay white for long. If you can't stand looking at a colourless room, you need to pick some colours out quickly. If you're not a fan of the all-white walls, painting just one wall is acceptable. But if you want to go further, you might want to consider a different interior style. You can pick several different accent colours to use around the room. Because you're working with a blank canvas, it hard to make things clash against each other. Each burst of colour can stand on its own without interacting too much with other items.

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Find Some Scandi Patterns

If plain dots of colour don't do it for you, get some patterns in there too. There are lots of cute patterns that are more on the traditional end of the scale. A lot of modern Scandi decor has patterns that are reminiscent of last few centuries. But if you want something more modern, you can find that too. Check out the ubiquitous Swedish furniture store for some ideas. They have some fun fabrics, rugs, and other textiles.

Add Fun Details

A Scandi-style kid's room, just like any child's room, should be fun. There are lots of cute details you can add to give the room more colour and texture. Pick some mid-century modern furniture with bright colours, for example. You can use decorations and accessories, from bright photo frames to patterned pillows.

It's quite simple to achieve a Scandi-style minimalist look in a child's bedroom. Now you just have to keep it that way...