June 10, 2016

Baby Gifts ›   Baby Hamper ›   Motherhood ›   Parenting ›  


Kate leads the way - a practical not perfect approach to Motherhood

It is reassuring for new mothers to see how refreshingly down to earth Kate is when it comes to babies, motherhood and her royal lifestyle.

I must admit I too was a gasp when I came across a picture of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at the Queens Garden Party in the same cream (Alexander McQueen) suit she wore for Prince George’s Christening. Fashion lovers and royal fans hang out for her appearance at royal events seeking so much pleasure in her parade.

But why wouldn’t she recycle it, shouldn’t we praise her for this? It’s a perfectly suitable choice for a garden party. There is this expectation she will always be in something new, what with designers throwing their wares at her, so it takes a very level headed sensible person to resist. I love that Kate brings normality to a not so normal situation. 

There was the time she had the family portrait taken and Charlotte had one shoe on the ground. The photographer claimed it was a very normal family portrait, "frenetic and rushed"!  Then the photos published recently of Princess Charlotte turning one weren't taken by a famous photographer at all, rather they were taken by Kate herself, the mother! She also sent out a very sweet yet uncomplicated thank you card to everyone who sent her a present. Well how normal is that! 

The first ever Little Kisses hamper delivery was sent to the Duke and Duchess prior to the birth of Prince George. At this stage no one knew if it was going to be a boy or a girl so the gift giver sent them a beautiful mix of both. I remember the pink and blue check Branberrry blankets going into the box along with the cream Flatout bear, so we were pleased to hear a girl followed so she could make use of both. Knowing how sensible Kate is, it wouldn't surprise me if these gifts were put to good use! 

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

 

June 01, 2016

Baby Gifts ›   Baby List ›   Motherhood ›   New Mum ›  


Putting The Love Back Into Gift Giving

I don't know how I feel about a Baby Registry, nominating all the baby gifts you’d like to be given. It’s certainly wonderful for a new mum to receive all the things she really needs to set her up for Motherhood but where’s the element of surprise in unveiling a gift from a loved one, the excitement of the gift giving moment, the element of joy in finding out you actually love what your friend has chosen for you. Of course babies most of all need love, so anything else they get given is a bonus, and hey your friend who's had 3 kids might actually know what will be useful and your girlfriends with no kids will probably buy you something really awesome as it's an opportunity for them to swoon through the baby stores. On the other hand older folk might get you something knitted with a nod to the yesteryears but how gorgeous is that!


 

So much love has been removed from the gift giving moment with people scripting their entire lists and the ready use of on-line gift cards. However at Little Kisses we wanted to bring the joy back into gift giving so we designed our baby hamper with that exact moment in mind, creating the box to be as beautiful on the outside as what’s inside. It can be kept as a keepsake or memory box for treasures as well. We want a new mother to feel special when she first looks at her gift.

(Hello Handsome Baby Hamper)

Our thoughtfully curated hamper features premium, yet surprisingly affordable, gifts chosen by experts in Babydom so there is no fear of any of the items not being put to good use. Each detail is carefully planned, right down to the hand-written card and the last bow and piece of tissue concertinaed around the package.

For customers seeking to personalise their gift further a concierge service is available.

So if you need assistance in putting the personal touch back into gift giving our go-to baby list may come in handy.

Delight Decor Bunny Light 

The Little Linen Company Bamboo Swaddles

Toshi Baby Cap

Emu Lamb Skin Rug

Wilson & Frenchy Romper & Hat

Little Kisses Baby Hampers

Lauren Hinkley Knitted Booties

Alimrose Knitted Blanket

Rock-A-Bye Baby Cd 

Dove & Dovelet Galactic Pram String

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

May 05, 2016

Mother's Day ›   Motherhood ›   New Baby ›   New Mum ›  


TO BE A MOTHER

It wasn't until I became a mother myself that I truly understood the sacrifices mothers make to raise their children and for that I honour them. Below we share with you a beautiful piece from a gorgeous mummy who like most of us have never been forced to be so selfless.

A letter to my one-year-old & an ode to new mothers

You were only just over 2kg when you were born, one year ago today. You simultaneously blew my world apart and put it back together again, with a greater colour and vibrancy than before. Life before you had been two-dimensional and two-toned, although I didn’t know it at the time. You arrived and the world became infinitely more full of meaning and purpose and potential.

You were so vulnerable, and yet strong. Born early and tiny, you needed me more than anyone had ever needed me before; my breasts and energy and sleep and thoughts were yours by necessity, because you needed your mummy to live. I was literally your life line.

After you, who did I become? Who was I after I became a mother? My identity - my very heart, body and soul - seemed to belong to you, was indeed bound to you. Never had I borne the weight of such responsibility, or such honour. Never had I been forced to be selfless. Never had another’s life depended on my own so profoundly.

Growing up, all the world was open to me. I was told that I could be anyone, do anything; as a woman of the 21st century, no door was closed to me. I was unprepared for motherhood. Yes, becoming pregnant was unexpected, but I would have been unprepared even if I had been waiting for you.

I was used to marching to the beat of my own drum. Following my dreams, making plans and executing them without much thought to others, because no one depended on me; becoming a mummy of a tiny baby even going to the bathroom and feeding myself were “rights” that had been taken away. Your needs came first. Every time. I loved you with a fiery passion; your delicate little features and sweet expressions.

My iPhone became full of pictures of you - I took at least 50 a day. Yet I remember wondering "how the hell did my mother have four" and confiding in my best friend "I hate this". I remember going for long walks and weeping as I thought of all the pain in the world (thanks hormones).

I remember holding you as you had reflux and I didn't know how to help you, so I just walked around the house as you cried in pain, tiny sharp finger nails clawing at my face and chest. I remember the guilt I felt - "I'm a bad mother because I'm sick of you crying", or "I'm a bad mother because I leave you to cry".

It has been the hardest and best year of my life. You are the apple of my eye. You have brought healing to my life. Deep joy and fullness. Your precious father and I have learnt so much. We wouldn't change anything! We love to play peek a boo with you, to watch you sleep, to cuddle and kiss you, to watch you explore our back yard. You are our darling.

But I want to share that the first year of motherhood hasn't been easy. All mothers have unique experiences; some find it easier than others. But whether we have a smooth birth, or a traumatic one, whether our baby has colic or eczema or allergies, or is perfectly healthy, whether we endure Post Natal Depression or not - the adjustment is the most significant one a woman will ever face.

Happy Birthday darling daughter. And happy one year anniversary of being a mother to me.

Emma Batts is the clever creator of Heartfelt Kitchen a place where she shares her recipes, tips and stories from the heart of the home. Her recipes, food styling and photography is just divine! Check it out for yourself.

April 21, 2016


Say it with a Red Box - Gift ideas for Mother's Day from Little Kisses

Little Kisses have the ultimate gift packs to spoil mum this Mother's Day, especially a new mum or mum-to-be.

Adored by modern mummies such as Megan Gale, Rebecca Sparrow, Lisa Wilkinson, Leigh Sales and Libby Trickett, your red box purchase is designed to delight.

Red boxes will be whizzing around the country to special mothers this May. Don't let her miss out on these pamper packs full to the brim of 5-star treats.

Great Expectations

Luxurious maternity essentials including, the classic black tank pairs beautifully with Dove & Dovelet's Geo bangle (teething toy for the future!), Belly Butter for the tummy, A Book About Me to start writing all those exciting pregnancy details and baby Bump tea for me time. See more

Mummy & Me

Don't forget Mum! A stunning and luxurious collection for both mummy and baby and the perfect baby shower present or gift for mum-to-be, even when the gender of the baby is unknown. See more

Luxuriate

Indulge the lady with some coveted 5-star treats that will keep her comfortable and pampered, exactly when she really needs it. See more

You also have the option of putting your own hamper together. For the full offering visit Little Kisses.

Individual items are also available and come beautifully gift-wrapped.

 Little Kisses 1300 652 971

concierge@littlekisses.com.au

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

Kids and the importance of Mindfulness Meditation

"Meditation is the most powerful tool we have to create smarter, kinder, more balanced kids. Our planet needs this now more than ever" - Chris Willitts

My mother-in-law offers such an incredible source of wisdom. Having 5 kids herself and now 11 grandkids I don't take lightly the comments she makes. At the time I never think much of them but in hindsight I find myself reflecting on the advice and I'm amazed about how timely and true it is. The latest thing is meditation. There has always been yoga but now it's chanting to a secret mantra by Deepak Chopra! We don't do this as this comes with a private yoga teacher however I often catch her on a Sunday or holidays with a visiting grandchild insisting they lie quietly on the bed and meditate (concentrate on the breath). The kids squirm around and resist the quiet and stillness but before you know it they are fast asleep. In such a busy world with the kids lives often as hectic as the adults they too need to learn how to stop for a minute, concentrate on the breath, be present, be aware and slow down. So why not take the time these holidays to teach your kids the foundations of meditation. We do it with our 3 year old and its simply a few deep breaths lying in bed at night. You can see the benefits after the first few breaths as instant calm washes over him.

Daniel Goleman: Breathing Buddies video is a great starting point to meditate with the littlies. Read through some of Sarah Rudell Beaches techniques to see what resonates.

8 Ways to Teach Mindfulness to Kids by Sarah Rudell Beach - writer, mother, teacher, and blogger at LeftBrainBuddha.com

1. Listen to the bell. An easy way for children to practice mindfulness is to focus on paying attention to what they can hear. You can use a singing bowl, a bell, a set of chimes or a phone app that has sounds on it. Tell your children that you will make the sound, and they should listen carefully until they can no longer hear the sound (which is usually 30 seconds to a minute).

2. Practice with a breathing buddy. For young children, an instruction to simply “pay attention to the breath” can be hard to follow. In this Edutopia video, Daniel Goleman describes a 2nd-grade classroom that does a “breathing buddy” exercise: Each student grabs a stuffed animal, and then lies down on their back with their buddy on their belly. They focus their attention on the rise and fall of the stuffed animal as they breathe in and out.

3. Make your walks mindful. One of my children’s favorite things to do in the summer is a “noticing walk.” We stroll through our neighborhood and notice things we haven’t seen before. We’ll designate one minute of the walk where we are completely silent and simply pay attention to all the sounds we can hear — frogs, woodpeckers, a lawnmower. We don’t even call it “mindfulness,” but that’s what it is.

4. Establish a gratitude practice. I believe gratitude is a fundamental component of mindfulness, teaching our children to appreciate the abundance in their lives, as opposed to focusing on all the toys and goodies that they crave. My family does this at dinner when we each share one thing we are thankful for. It is one of my favorite parts of the day.

5. Try the SpiderMan meditation! My 5-year-old son is in to all things superheroes, and this SpiderMan meditation is right up his alley. This meditation teaches children to activate their “spidey-senses” and their ability to focus on all they can smell, taste, and hear in the present moment. Such a clever idea!

6. Check your personal weather report. In Sitting Still Like a Frog, Eline Snel encourages children to “summon the weather report that best describes [their] feelings at the moment.” Sunny, rainy, stormy, calm, windy, tsunami? This activity allows children to observe their present state without overly identifying with their emotions. They can’t change the weather outside, and we can’t change our emotions or feelings either. All we can change is how we relate to them. As Snel describes it, children can recognize, “I am not the downpour, but I notice that it is raining; I am not a scaredy-cat, but I realize that sometimes I have this big scared feeling somewhere near my throat.”

7. Make a Mind Jar. A mind jar is a bit like a snow globe - shake it up and watch the storm! But soon, if we sit and breathe and simply watch the disturbance, it settles. As do our minds.

8. Practice mindful eating. The exercise of mindfully eating a raisin or a piece of chocolate is a staple of mindfulness education, and is a great activity for kids. You can find a script for a seven-minute mindful eating exercise for children here.

Above all, remember to have fun and keep it simple. You can provide your children with many opportunities to add helpful practices to their toolkit — some of them will work for them and some won’t. But it’s fun to experiment!

Click here to read the full article. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sarah-rudell-beach-/8-ways-to-teach-mindfulness-to-kids_b_5611721.html

 

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

March 18, 2016

Craft ›   Easter ›   Food ›   Kids ›  


Hop to it! Easter is just around the corner

(image via Martha Stewart)

Gather some twigs or branches, you can spray paint them white if you like. Put them in a jug, mason jar, silver bucket or vase. Hang some decorated eggs on colourful ribbon. You could even glue on some feathers or add any Easter kindy craft the kids bring home.

(image via Pottery Barn)

Egg/Side walk chalk makes a fun Easter basket filler.

(image via Little Kisses)

It's so much fun putting Easter boxes together for the little ones. There are lots of things the Easter Bunny can bring instead of chocolate. Here are a few suggestions.. Bubbles, coloured Play Dough eggs, Egg chalk, Bunny ears, a new book, sunglasses, hat, water bottle, pyjamas, brightly coloured plastic eggs filled with little toys, a bunny nightlight or soft toy, Easter biscuits. Pull it together with some coloured shredded paper and some decorated eggs.

(image via Buzz Feed)

Magical Easter Bunny Footprints.

Leave a cute Easter Bunny Trail for your kids to wake up to on Easter morning, it could lead to their Easter Baskets. All you need is baby powder, scissors and a paper plate to use as the stencil.

(image via Your Cup Of Cake)

Easy Bunny Ear Cupcakes made with marshmallows, so easy and perfect for Easter!

(image via La tana del coniglio)

Easter cookies are a nice alternative to chocolate and perhaps an activity you can do with the kids.

(image via Taste of Home)

Have the family wake up Easter morning with this playfully arranged stack of pancakes.

(image via Worth Pinning)

Heading to a gathering with family and/or friends to celebrate the Easter holiday weekend? How about adding to the holiday fun by constructing one of these quick, simple & delicious fruit trays?

 

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

 

March 04, 2016

Mummy Fashion ›   Winter Trends ›  


New season trends at a glance

March brings with it new fashion trends. After a long hot summer of kaftans it's nice to be greeted with some new silhouettes.  For multi-tasking mummies you'll be thrilled to see the key pieces will take you from park to parade with minimal fuss.

(Maison Scotch, Net-A-Porter, Country Road, Maison Scotch, Witchery, Camilla and Marc, Myer, Country Road)

Caps - perfect option when washing your hair isn't one

Breton Stripe - so frenchy so chic

Cape - instant polish over a uniform of t-shirts and jeans

Fedora - so cute, so quirky, so feminine 

Coatigan - part coat, part cardigan. Can be dressed down over jeans and slouch pants or smartened up over a dress

Turtle neck - compliments a great haircut and a new pair of sunglasses

Ankle boots - so versatile

Over the knee boot - gorgeous!

Earthy neutrals, stark white and soft creams - so grounding

(Maison Scotch, Seed, Adidas, J Brand)

Oceans blues - so fresh

Doona fashion - quilted jackets are everywhere

Sneakers - keep collecting them

Leg shape - wider

(Mimco, Witchery, Maison Scotch, Vince, Clinique, French Connection, Seed

Crimson, timeless black, metallics

Lace-up ballet flats and loafers

Leather and lace

Festive folk - think florals and fringing

 

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

 

February 26, 2016

family meals ›   kids ›   quick and easy ›   shared ›  


Fast friday night feasts the whole family can enjoy

Come Friday you've probably had to frequent the shops a few times, produced several family meals, made a number of lunch boxes and if you are anything like us, you are over it!!!

We have come up with some fast friday night meal inspirations that the whole family can enjoy and will hopefully help you face another meal at the end of a long week! 

Family mezze platter

The shared nature of the dish means no rousing on the kids to sit up at the table. They can pick and choose what they feel like, keeping everybody happy. Why not take it onto the back deck or lawn and enjoy the casualness and the warm weather. The options of what you can put on the platter are endless. Use up what's left in the fridge. Anything you put down will look impressive.

Popular kids additions:

Rice crackers, carrot, celery and cucumber sticks, cherry tomatoes, grapes, cheese squares, ham, sausage, meat balls, hard boiled eggs, hummus, lavish bread, pitas, bread sticks, crackers, olives, dried apples and apricots.

 Home-made hamburgers

Put out a selection of things and let the family members build their own hamburger.

Suggestions: small dinner roll for the kids, meat patty, sautéed onions, cheese slices, egg, lettuce, tomato, beetroot, pineapple and sauces.

 Family sized frittata

I love this dish as does the whole family. I cook it once a week without fail and it becomes the go to thing for a breakfast, lunch or dinner snack. It is nice served warmed and equally yummy cold. You can put whatever you like into it. My base mixture is usually 10 - 12 eggs, 1 small tub of ricotta cheese and a dash of milk.

Method:

Grease and line a lasagne pan

Pre roast your vegetables and fry off any bacon or onions

Lay the ingredients of your choice on the base of the lasagne dish (roast vegetables, pumpkin is always tasty, tin of corn, goats cheese, pan fried onion, pan fried bacon, ham, uncooked zucchini, cooked mushrooms....

Pour the egg mixture over the top of the ingredients and cook in a preheated oven at 180C for 30 - 40 minutes until nice and golden.

 

 

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

 

 

 

 

February 19, 2016

Body ›   Health ›   Pregnancy ›   Products ›  


Less is more for the next nine months!

'You shouldn’t put anything on your skin you wouldn’t eat'. This is the Vanessa Megan motto..

 

Being pregnant brings a heightened awareness of your body and what you are prepared to engage in now you are growing another human being inside you. If you haven’t already cut back on alcohol, this is usually the first thing to happen. Some do or don’t go caffeine-free but everything in moderation. Most avoid pre-packaged fruit and vegetables, ready to eat meats from sandwich bars, soft cheeses and cold/raw seafood, for fear of Listeria. Hot baths, saunas and spas are generally avoided to prevent over heating. Most women are pleased to discover that dyeing their hair and getting the occasional spray tan is ok (organic is best) but possibly less is more for the next nine months.

So what about your beauty routine? You should avoid skincare products with Vitamin A and Salicylic Acid to prevent ingredients penetrating the skin and entering the blood stream and forget those luxurious body wraps involving heating the body and high levels of mineral salts. Luckily one benefit of pregnancy is increased blood flow and volume which gives your skin a radiant glow and increased moisture retention may help blur fine lines to make you look fresh-faced!

Try our suggestions below to truly capitalise on your natural pregnancy glow. 

Invest in a Belly Butter or Tummy and Body Oil. It will keep your skin soft and supple throughout your pregnancy and prevent irritation from skin stretching. 

Buy yourself a cool new water bottle and keep it within reach. Drink plenty of water, at least 6 - 8 glasses a day. This helps with fatigue, headaches, overheating, constipation and haemorrhoids!

Enrol in a pregnancy yoga class to radiate beauty inside and out. It helps you to connect with your growing baby.

Spoil yourself with a beautiful and soothing Eye Mask which will allow you to get a bit of shut eye any time of the day as well as slip into deep relaxation either listening to music or meditating.

There is no doubt that most woman who become pregnant develop a renewed interest in their health. Make some basic adjustments to lifestyle, don't stress and invest in a lot of 'you' time. Light candles, read books, have a foot massage, go to the movies, get your hair blow-dried, go on dinner dates. Post baby these little luxuries are hard to find time for!

This blog was created or shared for the enjoyment of visitors to Little Kisses baby gifts and baby hampers www.littlekisses.com.au

February 05, 2016

Beach Holiday ›   Newborn ›  


It's not too late to have the relaxing holiday you missed at Christmas time!

There is nothing more special for the family than your baby’s first Christmas. However once Christmas has passed and you head off with your new family for your much-loved annual beach holiday the cracks start to appear. You’ve fantasised about the perfect summer break and spent hours in the planning so what could possibly go wrong? Quite a lot, it would seem! 

Firstly the place you booked on the Internet doesn't quite match up to the place in real life! You unpack all but the kitchen sink and spend the rest of the day making block-out curtains and baby proofing the place. After hopefully surviving the first night you wake fresh knowing that your only task for the day is getting down to the beach. After covering every inch of your child in sunscreen and SPF clothing you and your partner trundle down to the beach looking nothing short of a couple of packhorses. Beach tent check, towels check, floaties check, hats check, rashies check, goggles check, bucket and spade check, water bottle check, snacks check, beach cover ups check, nappies check, change of clothes check...and on it goes!

Once at the beach you spend 15 minutes decamping and erecting your sun shelter. Finally you get down to the shoreline and manage to get your toes wet for a moment before embarking on building sand castles to entertain your child. If lucky enough you play tag team with your partner where one runs in for a quick cool down while the other stays ashore to kid wrangle. You decide not to get in yourself as it's easier to dry the child and get them changed if you are dry yourself!

Departing the beach 30 minutes later with a hot, bothered and tired child (because you didn't make it down in the sun safe window which is far less time than it took for you to get ready), you surrender and decide to evacuate. Back at the apartment your afternoon is now bound to feeding and sleep times and your evening drinks have been replaced with a park and an early child friendly dinner.

The days repeat themselves with slightly more frustration building whilst you try to come to terms with the fact your holiday is not quite the same with a baby on board as it was when it was just the two of you.

However - it's not too late to have the relaxing holiday you missed at Christmas time! Start planning your next holiday, with Easter around the corner, using your experiences to make some practical adjustments:

1. Go somewhere where you are already familiar with the layout of the accommodation and facilities or if not and local, try to take a day trip before hand to sight it
2. On arrival, dial up the local babysitting agency and schedule in some ‘you’ time - walks, dinners, surf swims. You are likely spending a fair bit anyway so factor this cost into your holiday so you can maximise the enjoyment of the chosen destination
3. Take some good books and magazines with you so being tied to base isn't too bad
4. Cook much less, always other easy alternatives
5. Apply a washing ban except for essentials
6. Alternatively, with very young children, you could forget the beach holiday this year! Maybe better to enjoy outings from home, or plan to stay close to family that can lend a hand and give you some time to yourselves.