Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday on my Mind

{Where's Wally? A visit to the Park...Can you spot Oscar??}

Our week just flew by.

Did yours?

Not only did we do all the usual things of Playgroup, Library, Kinder Group and many visits to the park but we also managed to sneak in a few cheeky cafe reviews. The boys and l visited a fun cake shop in the city too, so stay tuned for all the details and snaps coming soon.

Did you enjoy our guest blog? We have another fun guest blogger next week so make sure you drop past and have a read.

Well the weekend is here and for us it's all about family time, eating yummy food and doing fun things. Much like everybody else really.

Enjoy your weekend. xx

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Etiquette of Eating Out

This week we welcome Alli from Motivating Mums with her guest post on 'The Etiquette of Eating Out' with baby.

It was a couple of weeks ago that we were all out for lunch one day when the baby started crying a couple of tables over. That was fine, babies cry, you deal with it.

Then the baby continued to cry and cry and then even screamed for a bit. It was about this time I started to get annoyed.

I have kids so I can understand that sometimes you need a bit of time to settle them but that’s also the point – I’ve got kids, I listen to them scream all the time, do I really have to also listen to someone else’s scream while I’m trying to enjoy my eggs?

As a mum, diner and part-time waitress of nearly 20 years I like to think I’ve experienced it all when it comes to eating out with kids – from every angle – so I thought I’d put down my top tips to the etiquette of eating out.

1. When your baby cries, it’s great to take a little time to settle, but if it continues to cry you might think about trying to take your baby outside or away from other diners until it stops crying. Even as a mother myself, it can get a little annoying when you’re out for a brekky or lunch and it’s interrupted by continuous crying. Actually, it’s probably more annoying than if I was childless as I rarely get the opportunity to go out!

2. Leaving a whole load of food under the highchair for waiters to clean up is not fair on the staff. At least offer to clean it up or use a wipe to pick up the bigger pieces. You wouldn’t leave all that mess at a friends so why in a restaurant?

3. Take colouring books, pencils and other items to engage your kids, you can’t assume that the restaurant will have those things and kids need to be entertained.

4. Restaurants and cafes are not places for kids to run about and waiters are not babysitters. Dodging kids with hot food or coffee is hair-raising for staff and can be dangerous for your children.

5. Sometimes items like high-chairs can be double-booked – these things happen as cafes are run by people and people make mistakes – and some cafes don’t even offer them. If you really want a high-chair, take one of your own (the little portable ones) and take a towel to change bub on, as there may not be a baby change.

So these are my top tips. I guess it’s hard to think about anything else when you’re kids are running amok or bub is crying but these are the times you need to be considering others the most.

What about you? What are your thoughts or top tips?

Alli Price runs Motivating Mum, a website and events service offering support and advice to Mumpreneurs (or those wanting to be). Set up in Oz and the UK, she provides networking lunches, brainstorm sessions, phone mentoring, articles and features, an online forum and more. She also runs the Biz Mums Blogging Carnival. Join Ali on Facebook and Twitter!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Monday Love

A little girl is sugar and spice and everything
nice - especially when she's taking a nap.

~ Author Unknown

Friday, February 18, 2011

Eating out with Kids in Japan

Eating out in Japan for us adults was a true delight. It was such a wonder of interesting tastes, smells and textures. The food was always so amazingly fresh and magnificently presented, although most of the time we had no idea what we were eating – we just knew it looked and tasted good. Thank God they have pictures on the menus!

I must admit l was worried about what my 2 year old would eat – but not overly worried as l know he will try anything you put in front of him and if he doesn’t like it he usually spits it out.

Breakfast was simple – we had a kitchen in our hotel room so it was honey toast, fruit yogurt and orange juice from the local supermarket – EASY

As for lunch and dinner Mr 2 tried everything from fresh sushi, soba noodles, tofu, prawn tempura, gyoza and fresh ginger chicken bites.We found the food markets and department stores were the best places to grab lunch as you could eat on the run and Mr 2 could eat little Japanese goodies in his pram.

Dinners were fun – early but fun. We did plan ahead (as anyone with a toddler knows) and would always choose a restaurant close to the hotel just in case of any unpredictable tantrums and tired tanties.

Every restaurant we visited in Kyoto made us feel welcome. A highchair was always quickly set up for Mr 2 and room was made for the pram or sleeping bag for Mr 3 months. Also everyplace we visited always had a plastic plate and bowl for Mr 2. They were usually covered with colourful Japanese characters which were fun and bright and kept him amused. We were also very spoilt at some restaurants – the staff just fell head over heels for Mr 2 and sometimes had small toys for him to take home; he was chuffed and loved all the special attention.

I didn’t record the names of all the restaurants we ate at, as there were simply too many to mention but l can confidently say they were all child friendly. We ate a mid-range restaurants in the back streets of Kyoto and had a few meals at the Kyoto train station complex - which has nine levels of shops and restaurants.

Stay tuned for my post on changing facilities!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wednesday Love

A grandmother is a babysitter who
watches the kids instead of the television.

~ Author Unknown

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Happy Snaps

{Mum & Dads dam after all the rain}

{Fresh sweet roses from my Mums garden}

{Having a "cold one" at the pub}

{Fresh honey from the Farmers Market & my latest crochet project}

{Mr 4 months chillin out on the play blanket}

I'm going back to the books.

l wanted to learn something new this year.


Not the point and shoot kind but the type
using a SLR camera along with all the lingo -

Exposure - Aperture - Mega pixels - Shutter speed

So far I've bought a book on photography
and using my hubby's old camera for practice

Here are some shots from our weekend in the country

Not the best but hey I'm still learning!

Are you learning something new this year??

Monday, February 14, 2011

Love Me Do

Happy Valentines Day All!

Love from Us

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Black Swan

l was given a "leave pass" last night so l
went to see a film with some gal-pals.

We went down to one of my favourite
cinemas - Nova - and saw Black Swan.

It stars Natalie Portman and if you haven't
heard about it you must be living under a rock!

My four word review of the film is:

It was absolutely AMAZING!

I'm not a "ballet" kind of girl by any
means but l really enjoyed this film.

It was a bit 'X-rated' and quite graphic in some scenes,
and at one stage l was covering my eyes and
nearly jumping onto the lap of my neighbour.

l highly recommend it to anyone looking for a good film
to transport you to another world to forget about
the washing, the dishes and cleaning for 90 minutes.

My prediction: Natalie Portman - BEST ACTRESS at the Oscars 2011

Monday, February 7, 2011

Yum Cha = Family Friendly Dining

Our family is slightly obsessed with Yum Cha

Actually let me rephrase that

My husband is slightly obsessed with Yum Cha

He would sacrifice a round of golf with the
boys for an early 11am sitting of Yum Cha

Its tasty, family friendly and a great way to eat

l guess what we both love most about Yum Cha is that it's
casual restaurant dining and if you make a mess on
the white table cloth it means you've enjoyed your visit!

It not only delivers tasty steamed goodness by the
trolley load but the big bubba also LOVES it too, he
can be a bit loud and drive his trucks on the table,
without getting ' stern glares' from the staff.

Below you'll find our list of favourites that we visit
from time to time that are good value for money
while also providing good family friendly dining.

East Imperial - Carlton

Gold Leaf - Preston

Gold Leaf - Harbour Town

Dragon Boat Palace - CHINA TOWN

Dragon Boat Restaurant - CHINA TOWN

Golden Dragon Palace - Lower Templestowe

Shark Fin House - CHINA TOWN

Shark Fin Inn - CHINA TOWN

Told you we are SLIGHTLY obsessed!

**Highchairs and Boosters seats are available at each Restaurant**

**Bookings Essential**

Wonderful Weekend

{Birrarung Marr Park Taken By: ME!}

Well that weekend came and went!

Sunday was family day.

We were very lucky - the boys got to see Grandma
and Grandpa for Yum Cha at Dragon Boat Palace.

And then off to Nonno and Nanna's for dinner!

Also lucky for mummy too - no cooking for me.

Hope you all had a FAB time with the family.


P.S We also found a NEW baby friendly cafe in the
WEST on Saturday so stay tuned for more details.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

It's the fashion baby!

l was very lucky that when we went on holidays to Japan just
recently l had the opportunity to do some shopping - all by myself.

Not a nagging toddler or husband in sight.


Having said that l really didn't spend up BIG on myself.

l don't know about everybody else but these
days all l seem to do is buy stuff for the kids.

I'm very much at the bottom of the list
when it comes to shopping for myself.

So when l was cruising around the HUGE department stores in
Japan here are a few of the kids labels that caught my eye.

Stomp Stamp
Mezzo Piano

(l especially LOVE Mikihouse and even got the
chance to grab some items for the big bubba!)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Thursday Love

I have to exercise in the morning before
my brain figures out what I'm doing.

~ Marsha Doble

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Japanese Food Diary

l know l really must get around to writing a post
about "dining out with children" in Japan.

It's in the making and keeps getting put on the back burner
as playgroup, library and play dates keep getting in the way.

So until then l will show you some of the delicious, the
weird and the wonderful food delights of Japan.

Check out our food dairy in pictures...


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