Sunday, 16 April 2017

Tutorial - Easter Bunny Footprint Template


Well it's just about to tick over to Easter Sunday here so I've been busy hiding Easter Eggs around the garden ready for the kiddies to find in the morning.

Easter is my second favourite holiday behind Christmas. I mean what is not to love when you get to spend the whole day, and make days afterwards, eating delicious chocolate eggs.

Ever since my kids were little when the Easter Bunny visits our house on Easter Sunday to hide the eggs he leaves little footprints all over our garden.

I absolutely love seeing the look of wonder and delight on my kids faces as they wake up on Easter morning, anxiously looking outside to see whether the Easter Bunny has been. It truly makes my day.

I've been having a few requests lately for me to do a video about how I make my vinyl labels, and while I haven't quite got to that one, I thought that I'd make a quick video tonight showing how I make a template using the same Silhouette Studio software I use to make my labels.

So here is the video, I know it's not the best quality and it's a bit rushed, but I really wanted to just show you how quick and easy it is to add a little more magic to you kiddies lives.

Monday, 20 March 2017

The ONLY Waffle Recipe You Will Ever Need

300g Plain Flour
430g Milk
1Tb Sugar
2tsp Baking Powder
1/2tsp Salt
100g Coconut Oil
3 Eggs

Separate the eggs and whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.

Place the dry ingredients into the bowl of your thermomix. Combine the egg yolk and milk. Add to the thermomix bowl and mix 5 sec/speed 7.

Transfer the mixture into a large bowl and add the egg whites. Gently fold the mixture together ensuring you don't over beat the batter. This will keep the waffles light and fluffy.

Divide batter into five bowl and colour with food colouring. I did red, yellow, green, blue and purple.

Transfer batter into snap seal bags and cut off a small corner of each bag.

Pipe the mixture into a pre-heated waffle maker. Allow to cook for 3-5mins or until golden brown.

Serve with your choice of toppings. I love cream and maple syrup... but strawberries and Nutella is also amazing


Don't forget to check out my YouTube channel for a video of this recipe ... and SUBSCRIBE to my channel so you don't miss an upload!!!

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

22 Make-Ahead Freezer Meals For $215

Hey everyone

Today over on my YouTube Channel I'm talking about Make-Ahead Freezer Meals.

In a month I'm going on holiday with my best friend and leaving my kids for 2 weeks with my husband. It will be the first time that I have left my kids and travelled alone and I'm pretty anxious and nervous about it. But most of all I'm feeling pretty guilty. Somewhere along the way of having four children I have lost apart of myself, and this trip is exactly what I feel like I need in order to be the best person/wife/mother/friend/sister/daughter I can be.

My very supportive husband and his team of helpers (my mum and his mum and sister) and going to have theirs hands full when I'm away, so I decided (much like I do before having a baby) to remove one of the daily burdens and cook up a whole bunch of meals and stock the freezer.

So I arranged an extra online grocery order and went to Costco. I spend around $215 all up and in a couple of hours (spread across a couple of days) I was able to make 22 meals to fill the freezer! *Bonus for me I have a few meals I can use before I go. So that equal less than $10 per meal!

So check out the video below to see how I did it.

Here's a list of the meals that I made...

2 x Chicken and Leek Pasta Bakes
2 x Chicken Enchiladas

2 x Shepherd's Pies

1 x Zucchini Slice

2 x Chicken Pies
1 x Steak Pie

2 x Creamy Chicken Fettuccine
3 x Spaghetti Bolognaise Sauce (with hidden veggies)
2 x Butter Chickens
2 x Beef Stroganoff
1 x Pizza
2 x Chicken Schnitzel and Potatoes

Freezing Tips
Freeze sauces and meals in snap lock bags to save space. Fill bag and lay flat to freeze. Once frozen you can stand the bag up.

You can freeze peeled and cut potatoes to save you time when making dinner. Place potatoes in a pot of boiling water for 5-10mins (depending on their size) to partially cook them. Then transfer them to ice cool water to stop the cooking process. Then you can peel and cut them as desire, place them in a snap lock bag and keep them in the freezer until you need them ... just add a little extra cooking time when you come to use them.

Use a Vacuum Food Sealer to freeze meats. It helps to keep food longer and it will last up to 5 times longer in the freezer. It's perfect for if you bulk meat in bulk.

Thursday, 9 March 2017

Australian Costco Haul and Coles Price Comparison

Hey everyone,

So I live in South Australia, about 45-50mins away from the one and only Costco. But never the less we drive out there probably about every 6 weeks to stock up on some of our favourite bulk items. 

If you have read my post about my first aid kit, you will know how I don't like to not have something that I need. Being a Mum of four young kids it isn't easy to just pop into the shop to get something, so I like to prepare myself so I don't run out.

I headed to Costco the other day with my Mum and today I'm sharing with you on my YouTube Channel what I bought and also comparing it to prices at Coles Supermarket.

It's not always going to be cheaper at Costco so here are a few of my top tips before you go:

  • Figure out if you have room to store bulk foods ... eg do you have a large or second upright/chest freezer you can load up?
  • Know your supermarket prices. A good idea is to look up certain items using supermarkets website while your there, however it is also important to know how low items go down to when they are on special. As an example Coles sell Heinz Baked Beans for $2.31 everyday, on special I have seen them go as low as .92c but on average the special will be 2 for $2. Costco sell them for .84c a can all the time.
  • Decide what you will do with the amount you buy and if it has a use-by-date.
  • Be prepared to spend more than you think. Going to Costco isn't like going to a supermarket. You are not paying for one item you are buying 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 .... of something so you are going to have to outlay more money, but it should save you money at the grocery shop.
Right so if you want to see what I bought check out my video below and down below I will just list all the price comparisons for what I bought.

Hot Cross Buns
Costco - $8.99 for 24 = 37c each
Coles - $3.50 for 6 = 58c each

Costco - $14.99

BBQ Chicken
Costco - $5.98
Coles - $8

Hotdog Buns
Costco - $8.99 for 4pk = $2.25
Coles - $2.50pk

Veggie Sticks
Costco - $7.59 for 550g = $1.38 per/100g
Coles (closest match Kiddylicious Veggie Straws) - $1.35 for 12g = $11.25 per/100g

Baking Soda
Costco (Arm & Hammer) - $10.99 for 6.12kg = 0.17c per/100g
Coles (Coles brand) - $1.80 for 500g = 0.366c per/100g

Fruit Straps
Costco (Annie's) - $14.49 for 24 = 60c each
Coles (Fruitwise) - $6.70 for 10 = 67c each

Laundry Booster
Costco - $26.99

Dole Pineapple Slices
Costco (567g can) - $8.49 for 6 = $1.415 per can - $2.49 per/kilo
Coles (432g can) - $1.99 = 4.61 per/kilo

Leggos Pasta Sauce
Costco - $9.99 for 6 cans = $1.665 per/can
Coles - $3.15 per/can

Chicken Breast
Costco - $17.59 for 1.5kg = $11.726 per/kilo
Coles (Steggles Chicken Tenders) - $8.47 for 385g = $22 per/kilo

Friday, 3 March 2017

What's Inside My Nappy Bag - SoYoung Charlie Diaper Bag Review

Hey everyone,

Today I'm going to tell you a little bit about my nappy bag and show you what I keep inside it and how I keep it organised.

So for starters I have the So Young Charlie bag in Slate. Here is the website ... here is the website for the shop that I bought it from here in Australia, and you can also buy from SoYoung through Amazon.

I've had a number of nappy bags through my four kids and this one has been my favourite. What I love about it is ...
- The straps are really sturdy and robust. I literally throw this this around and have had no problems with any stitching coming away.
- The canvas material that the bag is made of, paired with the laminated inner, makes this bag really easy to clean ... and keep clean
- It is a very unisex looking bag. The grey is great but it's the shape of the bag and the design that makes it really look unisex.
- There are so many pockets so you can section everything away
- The bag is HUGE without really looking that big. I have so much stuff packed into this bag.
- But my favourite feature is the way that the bag sits. I have had a few bags in the past which have been really floppy and don't keep their shape. It means that when you put the bag down the contents ends up spilling all over the place.

As you can see it can fit a lot of stuff. I don't like to be caught out without something so I tend to pack for the end of the world!!!

Here is what I keep in each of the pockets.

In the first side pocket (the insulated one), I keep snacks, formula, containers, spoons, bibs, a colouring book and some pencils.

In the middle pocket I keep nappies (my baby's, my toddler's and some swimming ones), wipes, nappy bags, hand sanitiser, a changing pad, spare clothes, blankets, a trolley strap cover and some toys.

If you look inside the bag you can see the transparent sleeves on the sides where I keep the nappies.

In the other large outer pocket I keep my planner, a pen, my purse, breast pads, lollipops and my daughters spare soft bunny comforter. There is also room in this pocket for sunglasses, coins, credit cards etc.

In the little pocket at the front I keep a mini first aid kit containing infant panadol as well as children's panadol, teething gel, nappy rash cream, paw paw cream and band aids.

Also in the bag in the side pockets is a spare bottle and a drink bottle.

I have also made a video of this so if you are interested watch down below or check out my channel Labelling Chaos.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Grocery Shopping on a BUDGET - How you can be saving $$$ on your grocery bill

I switched over to grocery shopping online about 3 months ago now and I haven’t looked back. I love how simple it is and I love how much money we have saved.
This is why I love it:

You are able to do your grocery shopping from the comfort of your own home, which means you can check instantly whether you are running low of something and need to buy more
Creating an account allows you to work on any computer, laptop, tablet or phone and sync your shopping cart – Start your shopping on your phone while you are waiting for school to let out and finish it later that night on the laptop once the kids are in bed – have your partner add things into the cart from his computer at work.

You can link your Flybuys card (if you don’t have one you should get one! You save and earn back money just by signing up and using your card) which means you’ll never forget to use it.

You can easily check the Flybuys offers as you go so you don't miss out on any.

If you choose the right delivery times you can get it delivered for free.

Ok so let me get into a bit more detail now of how you could be saving money on your groceries by doing it online.

The first things you need to do is create an account using Coles Online and sign up to Flybuys.

Now onto ways to save money on your groceries…

Create a meal plan so that you know what meals you are having over the course of the week. Then create a shopping list with everything you will need to make those meals. This will eliminate you having to go to the shopping throughout the week to pick up things for dinner. This stops you from going to buy mince and coming out with $60 worth of groceries you didn’t need (mainly bought because you were hungry!). I'll link a copy of my monthly meal plan below you can use to create your own.

Check the “Specials” sections of the Coles website, and more specifically the “½ Price” section. You will be able to buy most of your laundry, toilet, bathroom, cleaning products, makeup etc. for ½ price if you buy them when they are on special and not where you have run out.
Use the “Sorted by” in the top right corner to sort what you are buying by either what’s on special that week or by unit price.

Always check the unit price of the item you are buying. Just because a certain brand is on special it doesn’t mean that it’s the cheapest price available for that item.

Choose the cheapest delivery time, or if you can use the free times. To get free delivery choose one of the 8hr time blocks and spend over $150. They offer these times (6am - 2pm or 2pm - 10pm) Monday to Saturday and just the early one on a Sunday. Don't be deterred because of the 8hrs. You will get an email from Coles the night before your delivery is due and they will tell you the estimated hour they will arrive. It is meant as a guide but they have always been spot on for us. It means that you can chose the 8hr time block and you don't have to stay at home for the whole 8hrs, just around the time they estimate they will arrive.

Log into you Flybuys online account and activate all the offers.

Look through the offers to see if you need or buy the items that have bonus points.
Flybuys points can be used to purchase items off their website as well as gift vouchers. When purchasing from one of the available gift cards 10,000pts will get you $50. So for every 1000pt = $5. Keep this in mind if there is an offer for 250 bonus points it equals $1.25.

In general, go for the Coles home brand items. Items like flour, sugar, pasta, even nappies, wipes, yoghurt and ice cream. You will find that after Coles completely revamped their Coles brand at the end of 2016 the quality now rivals that of the most well-known brands. Also, is the case a lot of the time, that Coles have contracts with the same manufacturers as the bigger brands to produces items with their label on it.

Ask yourself why you are buying the popular brands. Is it purely for the look of it. Do you buy Kellogg’s Cornflakes because the box looks nicer? Did you know that the ingredients in the Coles brand is exactly the same and it's 19c cheaper for every 100g. Not only that but (now don't quote me on this one because I'm not 100% sure what the product was but I think it was Rice Bubbles  and the Coles brand one actually had less sugar in it.


Another things if you have seen my video showing my Pantry Organisation or my Bulk Pantry Organisation you’ll see that about 80% of the food products that come into my house do not stay in their original packaging. So who is even going to know whether the brown sugar in my ‘brown sugar’ container is home brand or CSR?

Have a look at the difference in unit price for the Self Raising Flour.
It is $2.72 more per kilo for the brand name.
If you are still unsure whether you want to switch to online shopping try it out for a few weeks and see how you like it. Then you can make the decision if you this it is worth it or not.

I hope this has helped you to see where you could be saving a little bit of money on your groceries each week.

Thanks so much for stopping by…

Friday, 10 February 2017

BUDGET - Creating a family budget - STEP 1 Yearly Expeniture

Knowing how much money you are spending over a year is the first step to setting up a successful budget for your family.

Here is a printable version of the template for my budget. Feel free to download it either on Excel, Word or as a PDF and fill it in.