Miss 4's birthday party cake

Miss 4's birthday party cake

Yesterday we celebrated Miss 4's Birthday with an afternoon tea party at a play park with a few of her little friends.

Miss 4 & her friends had a great time playing on the equipment (monkey bars are now a hit as the girls showcase their skills to each other) and, as always, the parachute Miss just-turned-4 received for her 2nd birthday provided plenty of entertainment for the children - we saw many smiles & giggles.

I decided to make the birthday cake (that Miss 4 had decided on months ago) myself. 
I was going to source all the different ingredients/decorations individually but to save time & money I ended up buying a kit from Gold Coast based business Cake 2 The Rescue.
The business, which is a huge hit on Facebook with around 40,000 likers, posts out the cake rescue kits & also have a warehouse in Mudgeeraba (near Worongary shops) where you can pick up a kit &/or other supplies.

Miss 4 & I went for our first solo outing in a very long time (while Mr 2 & the twins were fast asleep & being looked after at home) to pick up the kit & do the grocery shopping for the party. 
Not only was it a nice outing for us both, but it was so easy compared to outings with all four children which includes prams/baby capsules/baby carrier/nappy bags. Miss 4 & I just hopped out of the car & walked into the shops hand-in-hand. It was so lovely (simple things).

Visiting Cake 2 The Rescue HQ/warehouse was interesting - Miss 4 liked looking at all the supplies. We chatted with the lovely owner who let Miss 4 choose between a brunette doll for her mermaid cake, or a red head more reminiscent of Ariel from The Little Mermaid (which she chose of course).

Making the cake
The night before the party, Miss 4 & Mr 2 'helped' me make the cake. From cracking the eggs, to pouring in the milk, they were both very involved & the kitchen was certainly a mess as you can imagine.
The kits come with everything you need from a baking tray to food colouring, fondant, rolling pin & more. The introductions were easy to follow (thankfully).

Decorating the cake
Miss 4 & Mr 2 insisted on helping to decorate the cake which was fine til they started combining colours to my freshly-rolled-out fondant. 
So it was a rush job while I was trying to keep their paws away (& repeatedly tidying our house & garden in case it rained & the party moved to our place, while feeding the twins, prepping other food & a million other things but thankfully my Mum, Nanna & sis arrived early to lend a hand). 
(But in case you're wondering, the orange things in the cake are supposed to be fishes, the yellow things are starfish, & the white things are bubbles. ;-)
My blue ocean icing did have a textured look so it'd look like the sea, but it dried flat/smooth so kind of lost that effect. The 'sand' looked & tasted great. 
Obviously I could have done better if I had more time up my sleeve but happy it was at least presentable & edible. An achievement if you've seen how far I've come since my attempt for Miss 4's 1st birthday cake (I'll share pics in a different blog post).
Miss 4 was overjoyed with her cake & it tasted delicious!
It was a success (success meaning = the birthday girl was excited & thankful, the kids could recognise what it was supposed to be, & it was yummy). Hooray!

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How many kids & counting?

How many kids & counting?

Have you watched/heard of the TV show 16 Kids and Counting? Well, the family have just announced some big news!
The Radfords have told fans they are expecting bub number 17! Holy moly!

While most comments on their Facebook page were messages of congratulations, there was some negativity with people questioning how the parents provide for such a large family, whether the parents get to spend enough quality time with each of the children as individuals, and whether the parents' desire to welcome another baby is selfish.

That's one large family. Wishing them all the best.

What are your thoughts?

See the announcement here:

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Easter 2014

Easter 2014

We just had the most enjoyable Easter ever!

After a super fun week full of school holiday fun checking out the entertainment at Gold Coast shopping centres Australia Fair (Peppa Pig show) and Pacific Fair (Easter performance, cupcake and basket decorating and a circus performance), Easter and our eldest daughter's birthday were also fantastic!

Good Friday - we decided at 4pm to call ahead and order fish and chips to pick up at 5pm from Burleigh. Great decision because when we arrived to pick up our order, the queue was out of the door and up the road, and the wait time was approx two hours.
We enjoyed a fish and chip picnic by the beach and the kids enjoyed playing at the park until it was getting dark.
A lovely evening enjoying the best of what the Gold Coast has to offer.

Miss 3 turned 4 & enjoyed opening her presents, doing some craft, making cupcakes as well as visits from some dear family members before we decided on a last minute trip to Ormeau in the late afternoon to check out the My Ormeau Easter Event, as suggested by a friend.

What a great evening! Free face painting, craft stations, bouncy castle, Easter egg hunts, photos with the Easter bunny and more. Then, to top things off, there was a fabulous fireworks display and the kids scored fab glow sticks (also for free!).
It was a great, well-run event and our Birthday girl was so pleased that such an event was 'held in her honour' (sssh please don't spoil it for her. We're currently the best parents ever for also arranging the fireworks display for her! ;-).

Easter Sunday - the look on Miss 4 & Mr 2's faces was priceless when they discovered the treats left for them by the Easter bunny.
It was also a special morning celebrating our twincesses' first Easter.
After the kids stuffed themselves silly with chocolate, we headed to Carrara Markets to see the Dora the Explorer show live on stage followed by a pony ride, face painting & bouncy castle.
We enjoyed Easter dinner with family as well as an Easter cake AND cupcakes made my Miss 4 (with help from Mr 2 & Mummy) & yet another rendition of Happy Birthday for Miss 4 ("It's my birthday all week didn't you know?!")

Happy Easter! 

My little treasures

My little treasures

So my twincesses are now almost six months old and are absolutely divine!

The super hard (hectic/chaotic/teary) first three or so months are now a distant memory as our twincesses are cheerful little things & really quite chilled out (now!).
Our two tiniest cherubs are smiling, giggling, squealing, grabbing toys, rolling both ways (& prefer rolling over to sleep on their tummies), shuffling around &, in the past few weeks, have become finger & thumb suckers.

The biggest change from the newborn weeks has been the twins' love of sleep. 
It's like they have swapped places with Mr 2 & Miss just-turned-4 (who were good sleepers until recently).
Since around 4 months, our twins are sleeping 12/13 hours a night. They're still exclusively breastfed so it means I'm waking up quite engorged some mornings ;-)
It's now the older two who are waking once or twice a night wanting cuddles with hubby &/or I (so some nights it's pretty squishy in the bed).

Hubby & I believe it has been the twins' abilities to self-settle that has enabled them to sleep through the night from a young age (they had long stints from just a few weeks old). 

I try not to feed them to sleep (a habit I had to break with Miss 4 when she was around 11months as she was only able to get back to sleep by being fed to sleep), and they can be put to bed to go off to sleep quickly and peacefully on their own (most of the time, but there are times where we can't help but give extra cuddles etc).

Now that our twincesses are sleeping so well, it's also handy to have nappies that are super absorbent/keep them dry overnight.
We recently trialled Treasures nappies and found them to do the job perfectly for our twincesses & Mr 2 (who has showed lots of interest in potty training with some wees & no.2s but not 100% ready just yet).

If you'd like a chance to give the nappies a try, see details below:

WIN $75 worth of Treasures nappies!
To enter, please comment below & on the Gold Coast Mum Facebook page with your top tip for getting your little one/s sleeping through the night.
One winner will be selected by Gold Coast Mum on May 9, 2014.

*This is not a paid post. Product was received for review purposes only. All opinions are my own.

* These views are the personal views of Lauren - Gold Coast Mum & do not necessarily reflect the views of Treasures.

Megan Gale's nude pregnancy photoshoot

Megan Gale's nude pregnancy photoshoot

Gorgeous model Megan Gale has bared all for a photoshoot with Marie Claire magazine Australia.

Megan, who is pregnant with her first child, posted a sneak peek of the cover of Marie Claire magazine, due out tomorrow, on Instagram this morning.

She took the opportunity to thank Marie Claire editor Jackie Frank for handling the shoot "with sensitivity" with Megan revealing the experience - in the nudie at 30 weeks pregnant - was "daunting" and "liberating".

The gorgeous cover pic has a certain Demi Moore/ Cindy Crawford / Jessica Simpson / Britney Spears vibe about it. ;-)

Best wishes to Megan and her partner for the upcoming birth of their bundle of joy.

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That woman sobbing on the side of the road this week, that was me...

That woman sobbing on the side of the road this week, that was me...

This week started well. No, well actually Monday was a good day but things can quickly change.
Whilst driving home from an appointment, I noticed the blue & red lights start flashing behind me.
I was pulled over by the Police. I was fined for going through an AMBER light :-(

The damage...$330. An amount not in our budget. 

The fact that I genuinely didn't think I had broken the law combined with the cost of the fine (& just my general annoyance with bad luck striking as - until now - I have a squeaky clean record) brought me to tears & I sobbed throughout my time on the roadside while being breath tested & waiting for the newbie officer to check my rego details & return to my car to hand me the fine.

When I got home, Miss 3 noticed something was up straight away & asked if I was upset & I made up an excuse about hurting my toe (as we usually prefer to only discuss Police in a positive light).

With some encouragement from hubby, sis & my mum, I (& my puffy red crying face) went along to Zumba class to dance it off. Which, after a couple of songs I was able to do.

The next morning I woke up feeling like I had been hit by a truck. Not just because of the tears I had shed the evening before, but because during the night, Mr 2 began showing signs of a fever.
A house-call Doctor diagnosed it as a virus. Our lil man was up all night due to the pain in his throat/mouth.

By Wednesday morning, our lil man was in a great deal of pain. He couldn't swallow & a rash had made its appearance on his hands, feet, mouth & neck.
Another appointment with a GP confirmed it was Hand, Foot & Mouth.
And so began the process of cleaning & sanitising everything to prevent the other three kids from getting it and a diet of ice cream, ice blocks, ice cold water, fruit smoothies & chocolate frappes for our lil man who wouldn't eat anything else (though he did have twisties & a piece of cookies & cream choc, tsk tsk I know).
Poor Mr 2 would cry every time he had to take pain medication & would cry each time he rolled over during the night.
A call to kindy to advise them of Mr 2's condition also confirmed that the nasty virus was doing the rounds at our kindy with a girl being sent home with it the day before.

As usual, it's been a hectic week. Though instead of catching up with a friends for play dates or attending swimming & dance classes, we've been kept in quarantine.
I'm thankful to have family members in the area who were able to lend a hand while hubby was at work & I was trying to console a sad, in-pain, clingy 2yo, & deal with 5-month old twincesses who still breastfeed quite often & my THREE-nager ;-) whilst also trying to keep them apart.

According to Health NSW:
Hand, foot and mouth disease is generally a mild illness caused by a number of enteroviruses, particularly coxsackieviruses. It is usually not a serious illness, and occurs mainly in children under 10 years of age but can also occur in older children and adults. 

It is not related to the foot-and-mouth disease that affects cattle.
  • When symptoms do occur, they include blisters that start as small red dots which later become ulcers. Blisters appear inside the cheeks, gums, and on the sides of the tongue, as well as on the hands and feet. In infants, sometimes blisters can be seen in the nappy area. Blisters usually last for seven to 10 days.
  • Children can sometimes have a low fever, irritability, sore throat, tiredness, feel off colour and may be off their food for a day or two.

Which unfriendly illnesses have your little ones had?
Any tips on avoiding the kindy illnesses?
What was your last brush with the law?



Five months of double delight

Five months of double delight

Well that was the quickest five months in world history, surely!?
That's right, my twincesses are now five months old. That's almost HALF A YEAR. What the?!
They're such delightful little things and are so happy and content now, which is so lovely and such a relief after an unsettled stage to begin with.

Natalia (the bigger out of the two with slightly more hair) and Victoria love to smile and giggle and love being squished by their big brother and big sister.
They also love rolling from front to back and back to front. And, when we put them to bed on their backs, they love to turn over onto their tummies. Just how I like to sleep too!

The girls are still breastfed and we'll be starting solids in a few weeks, around six-month mark.
At their recent weigh-in, Natalia was 6.8kg and Victoria was 6.3kg. So they're doing super well. :-)

The girls' hair, as well as my own hair, is shedding. Victoria likes sucking her thumb while Natalia likes to suck her own fingers. The girls are sharing a cot for now. They have also enjoyed a trip to the circus and a road trip to Sydney and back (for a friend's wedding) where they did so well - 11 hours of travelling each way!

I can't yet fit back into my wedding rings but have been back to Zumba a couple of times. But am feeling good. 

Thankfully, the twins are sleeping 10-12 hours most nights (it's now the toddlers who are causing grief some nights amazingly when they were previously the best sleepers).

We still can't believe how lucky we are to have our precious cherubs - all four of them. And through the chaos and mayhem each day it's such a lovely thing to reflect on.

And here's a pic of Mr 2 who hasn't been feeling well lately. Xx

CLICK BELOW LINK for VIDEO of our youngest princesses squealing at each other:

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