Winter wonderfuls on the Mornington Peninsula (plus a few further afield)

Winter is here! I kind love winter because jumpers, fireplaces, doonas and hairy legs but I also kind hate it because no swimming, cold feet, dark and hairy legs. BUT, there are some truly excellent offerings on the Mornington Peninsula that I MAY even shave my legs for so get excited people as I bring you our top 5 picks.

  1. Boneo Maze; Winter Glow. boneo.jpgBoneo Maze is a Mornington Peninsula quiet achiever but I am telling you now, it runs some of the coolest family friendly events in the region. Always reasonably priced with a bit of old-fashioned charm, Boneo Maze’s festivals offer so much more than mazes and mini golf. Face painting, Neon Photo booth, fire show and movie tent, Winter Glow is set to be epic! Put June 10th in your diary. More info: WinterGlow at Boneo Maze

2. Winter Wine and Truffle Train-hosted by The 100 Mile Foodie

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You guys, I am more excited about this event than I was about my own wedding. The 100 Mile Foodie is hosting a journey with the romantic charm of being on an old fashioned train but with a contemporary menu and wines from some of my favourites (Stumpy Gully, Crittenden Estate). I die. Jump on at Moorooduc and enjoy ethically sourced, locally produced food including treats from Red Hill Truffles. Saturday June 9th. Tickets: Winter Wine and Truffle Train

3.  Disney on Ice

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Mini and I went to the launch of Disney on Ice a few weeks back and we had so much fun ice skating together. Shelley Craft was hosting and helped Mini get the hang of her ice skates while I did Insta stories because #instablogger4life. Anyway, we saw Shelly on TV recently and Mini was like “There’s my friend from ice skating!” Then we had to explain that they were not really friends and that Shelley was being paid to be there. KIDDING. We said “Yes darling, there’s your friend.” Then Insta-Husband said “I want to come next time.” And I said “Why do you only show an interest in my life when it involves an attractive celebrity?” Then he said “Why do you only shave your legs when you are going to meet Matty J?” Then we agreed to disagree and stay married for the sake of the children.
Disney on Ice tickets. Grab them here: Disney on Ice.

4. Winter Wonderlights at Sovereign Hill, Ballarat.

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We spent the weekend in Ballarat for this event last year (which you can read all about here: Winter Wonderlights at Sovereign Hill, Ballarat. )
This year is set to be just as magical as faux snow falls on Sovereign Hill and a light show dazzles kids and adults alike! Purchase your tickets here: sovereignhill.com.au/

5. Peninsula Hot Springs: new experiences and facilities launchphs-ice-cave-800x553.jpgpenhotsprings.jpg

Peninsula Hot Springs is one of the most iconic Peninsula venues. And it is set to get even better this Winter with the launch of new experiences and facilities. I am most excited to try out the ice cave and the new saunas as part of the ‘Fire and Ice’ experience. To keep up to date with the official launch date, check out their website here: https://www.peninsulahotsprings.com/our-story/our-future/

What are you most looking forward to about Winter?

Read about the perfect restaurant for Winter here: Red Gum BBQ = OMG.

New Café Alert! Saucery Café in Frankston.

Remember when Frankston was not that cool? I do. As young adults my sisters bought a property together in Funky Town and I thought they were crazy. 20 years later and I am Frankston obsessed! They were the smart (and rich) ones while I only just jumped onto the property market a couple of years ago and paid approx. 17 times more for my first home.

The more time I spend in Frankston, the more cool bars, boutiques and niche cafes seem to pop up. And this week, I have a super-cute one to share with you all!

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First up, let’s talk about the food. Because #important.

I had the risotto as pictured and my dining companion had some croquettes from the display section. Prompt table service from a friendly staff member and our meals were really delicious. Perfect thing to have on a wintery day in Melbourne.

But that’s not where it ends. This café has board games to choose from so you can spend an afternoon drinking great coffee and enjoy people watching out of the large street facing windows.

Sidenote: Have you played Mastermind lately? My six year old absolutely kicks my bum with it! I think she might be a mind reader. Would certainly explain how she keeps tricking me into letting her have chocolate. She sneakily chooses all the same colour pins when one would think a 6 year old would choose rainbow colours. Why is she smarter than me? I’m scared.

Talking of kids, there is also a gorgeous little activity nook lit up with fairy lights with colouring-in picture and pencils. Now this is the real test as to how committed a new café is to making parents feel welcome. Are the pencils actually sharp or will parents be pestered by their kids because they’re trying to draw with a blunt pink texta and a broken crayon? I am happy to report that all drawing implements were not only in tact but of good quality. It’s the little things.s4

Kids and adults menu all looked great too. Reasonably priced!

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Next time you are in Frankston, check it out. You will not be disappointed.

HOT TIP: If grabbing a coffee, purchase another one to pay forward to someone else. Saucery has a coffee card system that makes it easy to pay for 2 and leave a card there for the next person (or someone who needs warming up on these wintery days and cannot afford it.)

Find Saucery café at 7a Thompson St, Frankston or search @saucerycafe on Instagram

While you’re in Frankston, visit the Karingal book exchange. Free books for everyone! Learn more here:Karingal Book Hub

Emma Currie: Wine, Women & Wholeheartedness

 

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Photo by Tamlyn Patterson Photography

 

When I first moved to the Mornington Peninsula area a couple of years ago, I obsessively followed a gorgeous blog called Marvellous Mornington Peninsula. It’s author, Emma Currie, would blog about everything from wineries with playgrounds to day spas to where to buy the most beautiful blooms. She seemed to intuitively respond to exactly what I needed in my life!

I stalked her on Insta and when I finally met Emma in person at a blogger’s meet up, I was absolutely delighted to find that she is one of those rare people who is as beautiful in real life as she is on her blog.

Fast forward several months and in addition to writing her blog, working, raising a toddler and spreading Peninsula love on Instagram, Emma has launched Mornington Peninsula Wine Club- an open invitation to women to get together and connect with like minded people.

I sat down with Emma on the weekend and picked her brain about her why. This was going to be a formal Q and A session but, as always, once we got chatting it turned into a long convo so I will sum up the key points as best I can!

 

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Emma Currie, founder of Mornington Peninsula Mums Wine Club. Photo by Tamlyn Patterson Photography

 

It came as a surprise to me to learn that Emma can feel just as reserved and shy as the rest of us when it comes to meeting new people. The wine club was born from a desire to meet new mums and have some time out. That may have been where it started but since the first meet up in March 2018, it has evolved into something much bigger.

Maybe it’s because it’s obvious that this is a passion project. Maybe it’s because each meet up raises money for MSFIN (which you can learn more about here). Maybe it’s because small businesses recognise the value in sharing the love with dozens of locals and so supply awesome raffle prizes. Or maybe it’s just because Emma has tapped into a need for all of us to connect and engage. Whatever the reason, the club has gone from strength to strength over the last few months.

I, personally, have gone to each and every event. I love meeting locals and chatting to people about what they’re up to and what’s happening on the Peninsula. Highlights for me would have to be hearing Meredith Gaston (author/artist) talk about her take on wellness, meeting some lovely ladies I have only formally connected with via Insta and doing a flower-crown making workshop while drinking local wine at Mercetta in Mornington.

 

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Amanda Dark, Emma Currie and Katie Jones at the first Mornington Peninsula Wine Club event. Photograph by Tamlyn Patterson Photography

 

As you can see, each event is different. Guest speakers, raffle draws, workshops, informal group dinners; there’s even a pop up shopping night at Commonfolk Coffee coming up in June which is set to be epic. There will also be a Prosecco Van there! There really is something for everyone.

The July event is set to take place at beautiful Stumpy Gully Winery. I am so excited for that one as I have never been before and it’s been on my list for ages.

The best part (I think) is that tickets reflect the price of food and a glass of wine. No mark up. This is not a profit making exercise, it is truly something Emma does because she is a legend! The other great part is that you can come to one per year or all of them. There’s no membership; you just purchase your ticket for whatever event you want to go to.

So, have there been surprises along the way?

Emma says yes. “I have been surprised by how many ladies come along solo. It takes a lot of courage and I really admire them for that. Being a mum can be an isolating and bewildering experience. This offers women a chance to make new friends and I love making them feel special. Every woman deserves that.”

See! That’s why I love her so much. Such. A. Gem.

But don’t just take my word for it! I asked some locals why they decided to bite the bullet and come along to an event. Here’s what they had to say:

“I wanted to attend the wine night dinner because I wanted to meet people like me. I’m always keen to support local and I just wanted to get out of my comfort zone and meet people I wouldn’t necessarily get to meet in my day to day life. I feel like there are so many amazing women who I want to meet and chat with and this is a great opportunity for me to do that” says Karina (you can find Karina on Instagram here as @locallovin_morningtonpeninsula )

“There’s always such a great atmostphere at the MP Mums Wine nights!” says Lauren (who you can find on Insta here as @mpmade_scene_eat)

“The crown workshop was such an eye opener that we all need to take time out of our busy schedules to focus on us and our creative side. What a wonderful experience to learn how to make flower crowns with a lovely supportive group of women. Come as a group or come on your own, Emma makes sure everyone feels like they have been friends forever and when you throw in a glass of wine and great food it’s such a winner!” says Malene (find her on Insta here as one half of the @twotravellingplanners.)

“MPM Wine Club is such a great concept. I love connecting with amazing and talented local ladies on the Peninsula and checking out new places. The guest speakers always make sure it’s also about self development which I love. And wine, did I mention wine?” says Julia (you can find her on Insta as @mumsgottatravel here)

If you would like to learn more about the Mornington Peninsula Wine Club or would like to purchase a ticket for an upcoming event, visit www.marvellousmp.com/

While you are there, take a look around her blog. I promise you that you’ll learn something new and be inspired to explore this beautiful place we call home.

Thanks for chatting with me Emma! And thank you for giving me a reason to put on lipstick once a month!

Wine not your thing? How about coffee? Read about our fave drive thru coffee places here.

Surviving Head Lice: How to Prevent Them and What to do When Your Child Gets Them

A few weeks into the school term and it has already happened. The HEAD LICE ARE BACK alert has been delivered into the inbox of each and every parent at my daughter’s school. Cue 700 kids scratching their heads and twice as many parents feeling something creepy and crawly up the back of their own necks.
FYI: This blog post has been sponsored by NeutraLice. Post concept and words are my own.
I understand the panic. I do. This is why:

IMG_7473 (1).JPGMini has amazingly curly locks and as much as I love her masses of ringlets, the idea of having to brush it, let alone comb it gives me conniptions. We got through prep unscathed which I put down to a few things:

  • Always putting her hair up for school. Check out Pinterest for cut hairstyles. Plaits, buns, whatever, as long as it is up.
  • School hat lives in a locker or a school bag and not in a big old pile with everyone else’s.
  • Hair spray. Sounds weird but it keeps loose hair from becoming like a swinging vine for little Tarzan lice

Despite your best efforts though, a case of head lice is probably something you are going to have to tackle sooner or later. But fear not, when I noticed a couple of suspect looking dots on Mini’s hair I treated it with NeutraLice and it was much easier than I anticipated.IMG_8858 (2)First of all I just put the lotion on Mini’s dry hair. I made sure it was absolutely saturated so none of the tiny beasts could escape the apocalypse. The first thing I noticed was that it doesn’t have that awful chemically smell that I remember from my own childhood.

IMG_8862 (2)Once her hair was covered I rubbed it into her scalp. Apparently, lice like to hang out behind the ears and near the neck so it’s always good to give those areas a bit of extra attention. We then let it soak in and do its thing for 10 minutes. Note: Mini has HEAPS of hair and we used about a third of the bottle during this treatmentIMG_8864

Then came the bit that I was dreading: the combing. However, not one single tear was shed in the combing of Mini’s hair! Totally different to my own experiences but maybe this formula is just different compared to what was on the market 30 years ago? Or maybe as the third girl in my own family my parents had zero patience when it came to combing out nits. Look, I am not saying that I have deep trauma from those weeknight combing sessions back in 1988 but let it be known that in grade three my mum took me to a hairdresser and had ALL my hair cut off because I refused to let her brush it. My older sisters told me I was a boy and frankly, I have been preoccupied with my hair ever since. So as a result, I am always very gentle with Mini’s scalp and I am happy to report that it remained intact throughout this process. Unlike my love for my sisters #neverforget
Okay, childhood trauma aside, once it was combed through we rinsed out the lotion and dried Mini’s hair with a towel. I put in some conditioning foam to soften it and then gave it another brush for good measure.

IMG_8883 (2)There you have it. One lice free head ready to face another day of grade one.
It is important that you do a follow up treatment one week and two weeks after the initial treatment to be sure that they are gone for good. Trust me, every other parent at your child’s school will thank you for following the instructions!
What we liked about this product:

 

  • Mild smell. It actually reminded me of glazed cherries.
  • Quick and easy to use. Took only slightly longer than a usual hair washing session
    Suitable for sensitive skin. Mini is quite a rashy kid and her skin was a-ok with this treatment.

Hot Tip: Because lice spread so enthusiastically, it’s a good idea to treat everyone in the household at the same time. This product is suitable for adults and children (over the age of 6 months.)
For more info on NeutraLice products head to their website here: www.neutralice.com.au
We purchased this product from a Priceline pharmacy and it is available in most pharmacies.
Always read the label. Use only as directed. If symptoms persist, see your healthcare professional.

 

Part Two: Rainbow Light Therapies

To read part one where Mini had a session with Kim from Rainbow Light Therapies, check out Excavating Undertones with Rainbow Light Therapies |Local Biz Review. This time, it was my turn to take time out and head to Langwarrin to the cosy hideaway that is Rainbow Light Therapies.

I’ve been really stressed out lately. I think it’s the kids, the hot weather, the work and the life. I explained all this to Kim during our session and within minutes she confirmed what I already knew: anxiety. I’ve struggled with it on and off my whole adult life and even though I am all about transparency, I don’t like admitting when I have it. But Kim saw through that almost instantly and had me up on her treatment table as quick as a flash.

This is where Kim is one of the most interesting people I have ever met. Behind her eyes I just know that there is so much going on. She’s picking up on things unseen and feeling energy but her manner is so calm, so in control that I found myself wanting to throw myself at her feet and wail “Fixxxxx meeeeeee.” Kim would probably argue that there’s nothing to fix. That stress and anxiety are a natural part of life and that the strategies in coping with, rather than trying to rid ourselves of, are going to have a much more positive impact in the long term.

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During my treatment,  I lay on a treatment table (like a massage table) and, with my permission, Kim lightly touched different areas of my body. She was clearing out all the old crap by sweeping it out through my feet.

What I felt: Emotional. I cried. A lightening in my stomach area.

What I thought about: Well, nothing really. We chatted during the treatment but I was very much in the moment with Kim.

What happened afterwards: I lost my appetite for a few days. Thought ALOT about the topics we had covered. Tried to be more gentle with myself and stop being such a psycho. It seemed to work.

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It ended up being quite a personal experience (more personal than when I got a spray tan before I met Matty J and got my boobs out with a very nice woman I’d met on the internet) so it’s hard to put it into words without delving into 97 of my ongoing issues. But I did feel lighter afterwards and I felt compelled to make another appointment.

Mini Update: She is still sleeping really well. She does yoga every night before bed and, apart from when she was recently sick, she has been staying in her bed all night. Yay!

You can get in touch with Kim via her website here

Want more ways to do things that make your soul happy? Read this!Where Art Thou?

 

 

Excavating Undertones with Rainbow Light Therapies |Local Biz Review.

If I said the word “aura” to you, would you stop reading this blog post on account of it being too woo-woo? What about if I said “holistic counselling”? Whether you acknowledge the link between body and mind or not, I think we can all agree that stress and anxiety DO take their toll on how we react and feel in every day life. Agree? Phew, let’s carry on then.

When Kim Norton, the beautiful brain behind Rainbow Light Therapies approached me to see if I’d like to learn more about her business in Langwarrin, I was unsure what to expect. So like all good mother’s I volunteered Mini for a session. Mini is big into mediation and is on a first name basis with the forces of the universe. She is also a deep thinker (like both her parents – the poor kid got a double dose of the ruminator gene.) and is quite empathetic. This translates to being a typical (slightly erring on the side of highly intelligent) kid but one whom cannot watch films (not even Paw Patrol) and you can forget about anything with loud noises (ie circus acts, motor bikes.) She has also taken to jumping into our bed in the middle of the night which means no one gets any sleep. Cue cranky mum. I am sure I am not alone in this issue!

So, we went down to meet Kim and see if she could help us out with this particular challenge. We’ve done straight up bribes and….well actually that has been our one and only strategy up until now. Sticker charts, ACTUAL money #desperate and promises of toys.

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This is what occurred during the session:

  • I walked in and felt instantly calm. The space is professional but welcoming.
  • It occurred to me within 5 minutes that Kim actually knows exactly what she is doing. All ideas I had of woo-woo nonsense went out the window.
  • Mini TALKED. And talked. And talked. She was talking about how she sees shadows in her bedroom and about how much she loves her pink wall and about how sometimes when she starts thinking about something she cannot distract herself and she just keeps thinking about it. I had no idea about any of this.
  • Kim gave her three things to try when she wakes up at night in order to go back to sleep in her own bed. Then Mini practiced those things.

To be completely honest, I held about 55% hope that Mini would suddenly start sleeping in her own bed. That night we did our teeth, book, yoga routine and I tucked her in before reminding her of her three new strategies. And then the magic happened. SHE. DID. NOT. GET. UP. UNTIL. MORNING. Whaaaaaa? It worked! And then it worked the next night and the next. Admittedly there has been a blip or two during the last two weeks; when Dylan goes out she slyly announces that it’s a girl’s night and I find her tucked up next to me in the morning. But overall, there has been a massive improvement.

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Kim also sent me some reading material about empathy in children and it was really relevant not only to Mini but to our whole little family.

If you’d like to learn more about Kim and what she could offer you or your family, take a look at her website. FYI, Kim is registered for NDIS and is a member of the International Institute of Complementary Therapies. She is accredited and has a current Working With Children’s Check.

Tune in next time to hear all about what happened when I booked MYSELF in for an appointment to tackle stress, anxiety and my lifelong need to be in charge (read: control freak.)

Read about my own appointment here: Part Two: Rainbow Light Therapies

 

Flash Mob Alert!

The Frankston Waterfront Festival is being held on Frankston Foreshore over the weekend of the 10th and 11th of Feb. We have been madly rehearsing for a special surprise during the event-a flash mob!  IMG_8558.JPG

I’ve been wanting to be in a flashmob since that Fat Boy Slim filmclip back in the 90’s. There’s something thrilling and weird (but cool) about the whole thing!

IMG_8583.JPG For this particular mob, there will be adults and kids from across Frankston and the surrounding areas joining forces to perform in front the crowd on both Saturday and Sunday.

Have you ever been in a flash mob? Or even better, have you ever seen one?

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The Frankston Waterfront Festival includes food trucks, entertainment for the kids (don’t miss the fireworks at 9:45pm on Saturday night from Frankston Pier) plus a chance to celebrate how terrific Frankston is.

For more info on the events and activities over the weekend visit The Frankston City Council Website

Want to read about another fun activity to do with kids? Check out Brambles Berry Farm in Langwarrin |Cheap & Cheerful Family Fun

Mornington Pier. The perfect place for a walk after dinner on the Mornington Peninsula.

Have you taken a walk down on the Mornington Pier lately? We went the other night and it was seriously beautiful. There were people fishing, the tour boats were coming back in and as the sun dipped down and the heat went out of the day we realised that we were in the perfect spot on the Mornington Peninsula for an evening stroll.

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And there are so many great spots on Main Street to enjoy your dinner before your walk. I’ve recently been to Mi Mexico and Bronx Napoli 1999 and they were both seriously delicious. You basically cannot go wrong.

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We were not the only ones enjoying the beautiful evening.

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What’s your favourite place to enjoy dinner and a walk on the Mornington Peninsula? Drop it into the comments and let me know. X

Find out about another fun and free activity  on the Peninsula here: Rock On

Brambles Berry Farm in Langwarrin |Cheap & Cheerful Family Fun

Have you discovered Brambles Farm in Langwarrin? It is such a cheap way to spend the day with your family. We have been twice on the school holidays and spent just $10 each time and left with a heap of berries!

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It’s a pick-your-own farm which is great if you have a couple of hours with the kids to fill. There’s also a small play ground area and table and chairs in the reception area so there are a few things to do.

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Find them here:

The Bramble Farm
bramblefarm.com.au
25 Lyppards Road, Langwarrin Victoria 3910

After more cheap and cheerful fun? Take a look at: Free Art In Frankston

New Year’s Resolutions of a One Year Old

Found Emily’s New Year’s Resolution list today:

  1. Up my efforts in smearing banana on the pram. Mum loves how it looks like bird poo and makes people in Safeway judge her.
  2. In 2017 I only went to the hospital once or twice. Increase this to at least once a month. Ideas: Fall off kitchen table on to floor boards (hit head? break arm?) Endless possibilities with new cat inc. cat door injuries. Maybe just an old fashioned trampoline mishap? Start research into ED’s busiest times.
  3. Start childcare. Mum feels guilty about this one so I’ve got to keep the pressure on by hitting her computer whenever she is on it, not falling asleep in the evenings unless she is holding my hand and randomly vomiting whenever she is on a work call.
  4. Trash my sister’s room regularly.
  5. Grow some more teeth so that when I bite dad on the stomach is hurts even more.
  6. Bite dad on the stomach
  7. Lose 10202 socks or shoes
  8. Ruin $2991092 worth of clothes/homewares/carpet/plants
  9. Refuse to speak. That’ll freak her right out.
  10. Become even cuter so I can get away with all of this and still have them wipe my butt 6 times a day.

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