Friday, October 2, 2015

Bee Blocks #thebeehivequilts

I was so far behind in my bee blocks for my bee group with The Beehive Quilts but last month I got all caught up and for the past two weeks I've actually been twiddling my thumbs waiting for October's block to be announced.

I really don't know what's come over me! But anyway, I realised that I hadn't even blogged them and thought I'd better document them here or they didn't really happen :P

So here they are:

I don't have too much longer til I find out what this month's block is and I can't wait to get started!

I've shared more about my bee blocks both here and over at And Sew We Craft. You can find those posts here, here and here.
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Thursday, October 1, 2015

{Review and Giveaway} tommee tippee® closer to nature® Express and Go

This post is brought to you in collaboration with Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature and Kids Business.

I've been breastfeeding Darcy now for just over a year, and whilst I could just transition him to cow's milk I would prefer not to and for a while there he was refusing bottles of expressed milk completely and would only feed from me, but now he will happily take a bottle from B and this allows me to have a bit of a sleep in occasionally or to go out at night without worry about him missing a feed.

We recently received the tommee tippee closer to nature Express and Go system and have been trailing it for a few weeks now.

I love that it comes with adaptors so that the pouches can be used with my Medela breast pump. It also can fit Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature, Ameda, Evenflo, Lansinoh, Philips Avent pumps.

The storage case fits perfectly in my freezer and I'm no longer worried about people moving my expressed milk on me or leaving it out of the fridge/freezer.

And well the bottle warmer is just a lifesaver when I've decided to go out at the last minute and B's got now defrosted breast milk to for Darcy. I've never used a bottle warmer before and let me tell you, I'm kicking myself right now! All those years of sitting and waiting while a bottle heats in a bowl of hot water that you had to boil the jug to get could have been prevented. Or even those phone calls from B asking how to heat or defrost frozen breast milk.

The bottle warmer is really easy to use and comes with really clear instructions.

And the sterilised pouches not only have adapters for a range of breast pumps, but they also come with a breast milk pouch bottle (pictured below)

And now for the the giveaway!

One lucky reader has the chance to win a Breast Milk Starter set valued at $44.99 (pictured below).

To be in the running to win this great prize simply comment below and tell me in 25 words "How will the tommee tippee closer to nature Express and Go System make your life easier?" 

For more information on the Express and Go system be sure to check out the following links:

*Giveaway conditions: Entry is open to Australian residents and closes midnight October 14th 2015 AWST. Winner will be notified via email and will have 5 days to respond with their postal address in order to claim their prize. 

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Sunday, September 27, 2015

Around here

So I'm now a mother to a 9 year old, a 7 year old, a 5 year old and a 1 year old! How did that all happen?

We are going through all sorts of behaviour changes and growth spurts at the moment with pretty much all of them so our parenting skills are being tested and we are all changing. It's good and bad because I worry that I am making mistakes with the big one, but I think we are both learning along the way.

It's now school holidays so I'm excited to spend some time with all four kids, and I really do mean that. I love watching them all interact with each other and Darcy sure does enjoy having them all around.

So I best be off because not only is it the first weekend of the school holidays but B's not at work either! So happy Sunday y'all! Hope the weather is nice where you are and you get to spend it doing something you enjoy.

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Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Minecraft Creeper Cupcakes

So Caden turned 9 today, NINE! And of course like most nine year old boys in 2015 he is obsessed with Minecraft and had requested to take some Minecraft cupcakes to school to celebrate his birthday with his classmates.

Well, he made this request and then I promptly forgot about it until the last minute. Yep, bad mum right here. But luckily I had some black and green fondant colouring in the pantry and hubby ran to the shops for me and bought me some roll out fondant. So once I had all the supplies these came together really fast.

I just used a basic chocolate cupcake recipe and this cream cheese icing recipe but omitted the cocoa powder.

Then I made some green icing and dyed the roll out fondant black and followed the steps in this youtube tutorial.

And here is how mine turned out-

They aren't perfect, but the birthday boy liked them and that's all that matters!

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Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The Sisterhood of The Traveling Book- Fangirl edition

I posted this list of the books I was planning on read in 2015 and then promptly didn't read any, that was until this past weekend when I finally read Fangirl in 3 days.

It was a good light read, I'm a little older than what the target market is being a young-adult novel, but it was the kind of read I needed, one that didn't require any thought and would leave me feeling warm and fuzzy.

And it did just that so that's where my idea to send it off to someone else so that they could experience the same warm and fuzzys and just enjoy a light read which is something that we all need sometimes.

So this is where the 'sisterhood of the traveling book' comes in.

All you have to do is comment below and then email me at amy @ andsewwecraft {dot} com to let me know your address and I'll post it off to you. Then you read the book and put a call out on social media for it to be passed on again. Please do pass it on after you've read it and then let me know that you've passed it on too as I'd love to keep track of where it is :)

I'd like us to write our names, Instagram handles and the date on the inside of the book too so we can all see where the book has been on its journey.

And please comment if you'd like to be included in future instalments of the sisterhood because I don't intend this to be the one and only.

UPDATE: I've decided to create a Facebook group to keep track of everything and so others can join in on the book swapping experience of the Sisterhood of the Traveling Book- Let's get books moving across the world! 

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Saturday, September 12, 2015

How did that happen?

Next week we will be celebrating Darcy's first birthday and truthfully I'm in all kinds of denial about it. I mean how can he be ONE already? But I really should pull my head out of the sand and acknowledge this little milestone in all our lives. He's gone from a dark haired newborn to a blonde hair blue eyed baby/toddler in what feels like a blink of an eye. 

He's got 6 teeth and has crawling down pat, I'm not expecting him to walk anytime soon as all of his siblings started walking between 14 and 16 months. He loves to laugh and he enjoys being the center of attention. He really does bring all of us so much joy. 

We are having cake tomorrow afternoon to celebrate his birthday a few days early because B will be working on his birthday but no doubt there will be more cake and presents on his actual birthday so we can celebrate it with a bang. 

But now if you can excuse me I'm off to cry in the corner about my baby turning ONE. 

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Thursday, September 10, 2015

My Top 5 Baby Sleeping Tips

I've been pretty lucky in the baby sleeping department. And yes LUCK is a big part of it. For some babies it just doesn't matter what you do they just struggle to go to sleep or sleep past one sleep cycle.

But here are a few things that I have always done with my kids to ensure we all get a decent block of sleep.

1. Ensure that the room that baby is sleeping in is a pleasant temperature- We have two things in Darcy's room the are able to tell us the temp. One is his baby monitor and the other is the room thermometer that came with his grobag sleeping bag. Both are pictured below.

 2. Use the room temp as a guide to dress baby- This can be tricky sometimes but over time you will be able to figure out what temperature and clothing your baby is comfortable at. At night D's room sits at around 25 degrees at bedtime, but quickly drops to 19-20 overnight so at the moment he is wearing a longsleeve romper and a 2.5 tog grobag. If I put him in a 1.0tog grobag he wakes from getting cold. We do use a 1.0tog grobag during the day now though since it's heating up here.

3. White noise is your friend- We have a small box fan in D's room that it switched on for all sleeps. It's even used in winter! I just make sure it isn't pointing towards him if his room is cold. This has been a lifesaver because the sound of the box fan drowns out the loudness that is our house.

4. Routine- I'm not saying that at 10am he must have a sleep and at 7pm he must be in bed for the night, but he knows that after he has had dinner, a bath and a small amount of nappy free time that it's time for his feed and then bed. Same goes for day time, we do things in the same order every day and then watch for tired signs.

5. The use of sleeping bags- this is linked to point number 1 and 2 but they are a lifesaver. We both get more sleep because I have never worried that he has kicked his blankets over his head and he never wakes up cold because he has kicked them off! I've always swaddled/wrapped my babies until around 4 months and then I transition them to sleeping bags. They are lots of reputable brands of sleeping bags on the market today (heaps more than when Caden was a baby almost 9 years ago!) but we have pretty much always stuck to Grobags because they are fantastic quality and have lasted so well. Darcy actually wears grobags that his big brothers and sisters wore.

So there you have it- My top 5 baby sleeping tips!

I really should apply those tips to myself so I can wake up as happy as this guy.

Do you have any tips sleeping tips for babies? 

What has worked for your family?

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Monday, September 7, 2015

monday gratefuls

Happy Monday! It's time to find some positives in what sometimes can feel like a mundane and somewhat groundhog day existence!

1. Sunshine! The weather is just perfect here in the Pilbara, but it won't be this nice for long. We will no doubt be getting 40+ degree days soon and it's going to be like hell on earth everyday when we leave the comfort of our homes, but right now it's just perfect.

2. Watching the bigger kids play with Darcy. He adores them and they adore him right back.

3. It's only 4 more days until B has 6 days off! And I'm hanging out for those days big time.

*Please note: I KNOW I have a lot of positives in my life, but just sometimes the drudgery does get me down. You know like things like picking up what feels like the millionth dirty sock in a day or cleaning up spilt milk and weetbix AGAIN. Whilst I LOVE my tiny humans, parenting and mothering is HARD WORK and we need to take time to find a few positives to reflect on every so often.

What are you grateful for today? 

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Wednesday, September 2, 2015

DIY: Harry Potter Wands

I was feeling particularly lazy this year and decided that we would just do bought costumes for book week. So I asked the kids want they wanted to be and set about the expensive but a lot less time consuming task of ordering their costumes from ebay or raiding the dress up box.

I had a two week delivery timeframe so everything should have been here in time but NOPE! The wands didn't arrive for C and M's costumes and since we live in the middle of nowhere I couldn't just duck down to the shops and pick up something so I first raided the cutlery drawer and decided that the chopsticks were too small so my next move was my knitting needles. Luckily I somehow ended up with two sets of 10 mm wooden needles!

Then I had to hunt down my hot glue gun. That was no mean feat since my craft supplies are stored in many places around the house. But never fear I found it and managed to turn the needles into something resembling magic wands as well as not burning myself in the process. WINNING!

Anyhow, I thought I'd share here just how I did it.


10 mm bamboo knitting needle- but you could use dowel, a tree branch, anything wooden really. The knitting needle is just a perfect size and shape especially because of their bulky ends.
Hot Glue Gun
Acrylic Paint
Clear Varnish- I haven't sealed these wands yet because I was on a strict timeline, but sealing them with some clear varnish will ensure that the paint lasts and doesn't chip away or rub off.


All I did was spread hot glue around the base of the needles until I was happy with it.

There was no pattern in mind at all. Again, I was on a strict deadline!

Then I pulled out the kids cheapie acrylics and painted one brown and the other silver.

And ta dah! They were done. 

Both kids were happy with the results and that's really all a mother can ask for! 

Do you do handmade or store bought costumes for book week? 

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Monday, August 31, 2015

Monday gratefuls

It's a tough one this week. B's away at the moment and he just came off 6 x 12-14 hour days at work so I've had very little adult time lately and very little help in the way of parenting BUT you gotta look on the bright side to get through sooo..

1. Caden and Mahli both did really well at their sports carnivals last week and I'm grateful that I could be there to see all of their events. I can only be there because B works those long hours, if he didn't I'd have to work too and I'd miss out on a lot of time with the kids.

2. Darcy's smile- I mean who can be in a bad mood when a baby grins at you from ear to ear and shows so much love to everyone.

3. Sunshine- It's something else that lifts my mood. I've been struggling lately. Forgetting things and just being generally run down. But sitting in the sunshine is good for the soul. Now if only I could throw in some sleep for the next few nights on top of the sunshine I'm sure I'd feel on top of the world. But 3:30am wake ups seem to be what I'm in for at the moment.

What are you grateful for?

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