Monday, 25 August 2014

How to rise early, shine like a goddess and get sh!t done

Yesterday I started this blog...I had to re-write it because it was really uninspiring and a true reflection of how I felt on a low point of the roller coaster that is my life. 
It's no secret I struggle through the winter months, my brain is negatively affected by a lack of sunlight, and I feel restricted with what I can do in terms of kids activities and exercise. So rather than get all emo on my blog followers, I save that for my private journaling!
Feeling better today anyway, my mum helped me with the kids yesterday as we've all been really unwell and while it's hard for me to ask for help I'm really grateful I had that support. Riv also had a sleepover with Nick after dinner which allowed us a relatively early night.
This morning Eric got up early and took the 6am WOD. It may not have registered but one of us has taken a 6am class every weekday for around 6months, which means the other is up with one or both kids at home. This is not usually a drama, our regular 6am crew is amazing to coach and they work really hard! I have noticed a few things though...some of our faves are finding it harder to get up with the alarm. 
So how do WE do it? How do we get up with our alarm (or kids) and make it through a full day? 
Here's my top 6 tips:

1. Food: making breakfast the night before is essential to getting up early. The easiest meals are overnight oats, smoothies/juices and chia seed pudding. Also eating earlier in the evening allowing your body time to digest dinner before sleep. If you go to bed at 9pm, eat no later than 7pm.

2. Exercise: get a routine happening. Whether you love to smash it out in the morning and have the rest of the day free, or prefer to get your activity done after work to finish the day on a high...get SOME movement in. My ideal is yoga in the evening and about 6rounds of surya namaskar every morning with a workout at 6am or 8am.

3. Gratitude: before you open your eyes to switch off the alarm just quickly note a few things you are grateful for. I wake up with my arms wrapped around my children or my handsome partner, it's not hard to feel happy and blessed. However on the days where Raine doesn't wake up to wee or when one or more kids wake up after a shitty sleep in a bad mood I have to dig a little deeper...and perhaps be thankful for the simple joy of life or that I have a roof over my head.

4. Boycott TV and smartphones: Eric, Nick and myself don't watch television. Firstly we don't have time, secondly media in the West is very fear promoting and biased, third advertisements are not to our taste. We watch tv shows downloaded or purchased with no ads (if the kids go to sleep early enough) and movies as a family on the weekends. Also using one alarm on a smartphone to decrease time wasting and brain overstimulation before bed. Read a book, or talk to your family.

5. Figure out your goals: I want to run a successful business, a holistic health empire and do it as an attachment parent. That's my goal and I work my ass off for it everyday. If I sleep in, I'm no good to my clients or my saying that sometimes I NEED a sleep in to recharge and then be a great mum and focused coach. So I try not to feel guilt about that and further overload my brain. If you want a 6 pack, someone else can't get up and sweat for you, if you want to snatch 60kgs there's work to be done, if you want to be healthy and fit but can't get up I'd say that something is not quite balanced in your life.

6. Habit: all of this will seem like an uphill battle at first, or possibly just in winter, but grabbing a warm glass of apple cider vinegar with water and lemon first becomes a part of your life. Getting up at the same time everyday unless as I mentioned you NEED to have a sleep-in, will benefit you now and in the long run.

One of our amazing members had a "nightmare" that instead of going to bed, she watched a movie and then slept through her own birthday WOD. That speaks to me about dedication.
Get up when your alarm goes off, make it a habit, feel great about it, listen to your body, and chat to your support team...I'm seriously a phone call away ;)

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

A new week

My friend Sally Parker has written some fantastic information for us on Extended Rear Facing (ERF). Sally is a beautiful Mumma to Oli, who is a month older than Raine, she loves baby wearing and is just a gorgeous mum all around.

Current Australian law states:
Children must be in a rearward facing restraint until a minimum of 6 months.
Children aged 6 months - 4 years must be in either a rear facing or forward facing restraint with inbuilt harness.
Children aged 4 – 7 years must be in either a forward facing restraint or an approved booster seat.

Please note that all of the above are the MINIMUM standard and should be seen as such. It is not a milestone to look forward to when moving your child to the next restraint as it could be compromising their safety. Having said that, children should be in a restraint that is suitable to their age and height. For example if a four year old is using a 0-4 year restraint and his ears are over the top of the shell, then he should be using an alternative convertible booster seat.

What is extended rear facing? Well it is basically keeping your child in the rear facing position in their restraint for longer than the expected age (6-12 months). Extended rear facing is not common practice in Australia but awareness of it is growing, particularly through the use of social media. The main reason to extend rear face is safety. It is, after all, why we have child restraints, to provide children with safety and comfort while in a vehicle.
Research has shown that rear facing is up to 500% safer than forward facing for children up to the age of 2 years. When a child is forward facing the harness is holding back a child’s shoulders and body but if there were a collision their head and neck would be thrown forward, putting extreme force on their undeveloped head, neck and spine. When in the rear facing position the child’s whole back absorbs the force while pushing the head and neck into the cushioned restraint, therefore, providing fantastic protection against injury ( You may ask ‘What about their legs?’ I can tell you now I would much prefer my child to have two broken legs than a broken neck.

As with all things, rear facing is only safer if the restraint is used correctly. For example; when rear facing the straps should level or slightly above the shoulders, when forward facing the straps should be level or slightly below the shoulders; if using a seat with Active Head Restraint (AHR) it should not touch the child’s shoulders but sit above; if the restraint is an older weight based version do not exceed the recommended weight limit for rear facing, you also do not want to go over the shoulder height marker (you can go to the top of the label) as seats are not tested beyond those limits; a restraint should not be used if older than 10 years, and finally only use restraints that meet Australian standards.

There are many child restraints currently on the market that offer fantastic shoulder height markers making them ideal for extended rear facing. The two brands that stand out are Britax Safe n Sound and Infa Secure, Britax being an American company and Infa Secure being Australian.
When looking for a child restraint you need to figure out what is going to suit your family. Have you got a small car or is space no issue? Do you need to fit multiple restraints? How much do you wish to spend on a restraint? Do you like the ease of AHR meaning no rethreading of the straps?
Both Infa Secure and Safe n Sound offer seats to suit everyone’s need.
Safe n Sound
If budget and space weren’t an issue the Platinum SICT would be my pick. It currently retails for $659. It is quite a bulky seat but it definitely has all the bells and whistles if that’s your thing.

Meridian SICT (RRP $499) is quite a wide seat but would suit a large vehicle or a vehicle containing only one child restraint.

Compaq AHR (RRP $449) is the narrowest of Safe n Sound restraints, which means it would be the perfect choice for a car with multiple restraints. The Compaq also comes in a range of nice colours.

All of the above restraints have a rear facing height of approximately 37cms.

Infa Secure
Infa Secure make a great budget seat that can be found at multiple stores but under different names. It is, however, the same seat. This is Infa Secure’s base model seat meaning it doesn’t have super thick cushioning or funky colours like their other seats, however many people use it for a newborn and feel that it provides adequate comfort and support. We use one for our little boy and have had no problems. You can also buy additional inserts that add a pop of colour for $39.99.
Below are the names and stores it can be found at.
Neon (Big W)
Glider (Baby Bunting)
Ascent (Toys R Us)
RRP is approximately $179 as it can vary slightly from store to store.
If you prefer a little more padding I would recommend the Kompressor Caprice (RRP $329) which comes in a great variety of colours or the Kompressor XT (RRP $249) the only difference being that it is only available in grey.
All of the above Infa Secure restraints have a narrow base so they are perfect for carrying multiple restraints. They all have a rear facing height of approximately 36cms.
If you are an supporter of extended rear facing and would like to see the laws change from 6 months to at least 12 months for forward facing please visit the following website and sign the petition:

I've also included a breastfeeding fact sheet for some of the new mums who may be in need of clarity and hope!

There is not too much about me this week, I shall update you all soon....time to address my real diary for a change. The positives in my life currently are many and I am using them wisely to stay afloat.

Love and peace to all xx