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We Want To Look Nice, But What Is The Price?


I used to wondered what are those strangely named ingredients in the shower gel, shampoo, hand wash, toothpaste, hand creams and lotions etc. I did not carry a dictionary with me for shopping, and once I have purchased a beauty product, I did not care anymore. I have trusted that the beauty industry is not all about money, but they honestly want to provide a product that helps me to stay clean or young looking.

It’s all changed a few years ago when I have came across a great book about the many toxic ingredients that may be present in the body care products we use. I have started to read this book and I was shocked. I had to realize how ignorant shopper I was never questioning what is in the body care products I have used.

Samuel S. Esptein’s book: Toxic Beauty is a must read for everyone who is concerned about the wellbeing of their family. Not only it gives you an overview of the beauty industry, but it shares the information we need to know about the most commonly used chemicals and their biological effects. We have the right to know these, and we have the right to informed decisions and choice concerning the products we use.

Let’s look at Palmolive’s Antibacterial Lime Liquid Hand Wash.
Ingredients: Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Lactic Acid, Cocamide MEA, Fragrance, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Salicylate, Glycerin, Tetrasodium EDTA, Benzophenone-4, Poloxamer 124, Lime (Citrus Aurantifolia) Juice, Lime (Citrus Aurantifolia) Oil, Cl 47005, Cl42090

What are these?

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is the most toxic ingredients on this list. When used in combination with other chemicals, it can form nitrosamines, a deadly class of carcinogen. It is also used to clean engines, garage floors and at car washes.

Cocamidopropyl betaine is a surfactant and foaming agent. It was voted 2004 Allergen of the Year by the American Contact Dermatitis Society per Wikipedia.

Lactic Acid is a penetration enhacer, improve the body’s absorption of other ingredients, which can be dangerous if those other ingredients include toxins

Epstein, Samuel S. (2009-04-01). Toxic Beauty: How Cosmetics and Personal-Care Products Endanger Your Health… and What You Can Do About It (p. 36). BenBella Books, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

Cocamide MEA is hormone-disrupting chemical that can form cancer-causing agents — research indicates a strong link to liver and kidney cancer.

Fragrance” is a euphemism for nearly 4,000 different ingredients. Most “fragrances” are synthetic and are either cancer-causing or otherwise toxic. Exposure to fragrances has been shown to affect the central nervous system.

Sodium Benzoate is a preservative that promotes cancer

Tetrasodium EDTA is a surfactant and hormone-disrupter

Poloxamer 124 – surfactant

Sodium Salicylate or salicylic acid is a penetration enhancer, improve the body’s absorption of other ingredients, which can be dangerous if those other ingredients include toxins

Cl 47005 – also known as acid yellow 3, or yellow 10, cosmetic and food colorant

Cl42090 – also know as FD&C Blue No. 1, Acid blue 9, D&C Blue No. 4, colorant & it is an allergen

Even if the amount of these chemicals are very law in a single product, the problem is that they are included in MANY products we use daily, and a lot of little amount add up. These not only endanger us, but our babies too.

As a clear illustration of how easily the chemicals a mother uses on her skin end up in her fetus, consider these findings: An analysis of umbilical cord blood samples taken from twenty-seven European volunteers, in a 2005 study conducted by Greenpeace International and Britain’s WWF (formerly known as the World Wildlife Fund), detected eight groups of contaminants.1 These included fragrances used in perfumes and personal-care products, and synthetic musks, used to replace natural aromas in cosmetics, hand creams, perfumes, and soaps. The most common type of synthetic musk, known as HCB, turned up in almost all of the blood samples taken. Musk ambrette, another synthetic musk, was found in twelve of twenty-seven umbilical cords tested—despite the fact that this ingredient had been banned in European cosmetics (though not in U.S. cosmetics) as a toxin since 1995.”

Epstein, Samuel S. (2009-04-01). Toxic Beauty: How Cosmetics and Personal-Care Products Endanger Your Health… and What You Can Do About It (p. 68). BenBella Books, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

I think it is truly alarming and I have switched all the beauty products I use. My one stop shop for toxins free beauty and household cleaning products is Modere. Use coupon code: 566605 for $10 off from your first order (works on orders over $50)


What non-toxic beauty products do you use? Please comment. 

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Welcome to the new

How To Make Toilet Training A Fun Activity?


At one stage in our children’s life we need to introduce the toilet to our kids, some may love or hate it. Every child is different on when they begin going to the toilet by themselves or just going in general. Also all parents may toilet train differently some may start on the potty as some may go straight to the toilet.

Now what is the right way to toilet train your child every parent may ask. There is no such thing as right way – each child will do it in different stages and in their own time.

At one stage in toilet training kids are going to have accidents. Don’t house bond them as they need to learn how to go to toilet outside of home.

I personally can suggest using sticker charts or a reward system.

For some kids going to the toilet is like a waste of time or they just feel like they have time as our like children have so much fun and play to do! I would suggest taking your child to the toilet every 20-30 minutes when at home even if they say they don’t need to go because this will get them into the habit of going to the toilet.

For my Daughter she never used a potty it was like a toy to her. When she started toilet training it was straight to the toilet and have watched myself go to toilet she wanted to go to the toilet like mummy.

Sometimes in life there are situations that might get them to go backwards in toilet training or in their stages of learning in their life. When my daughter had to have surgery she went extremely backwards, she was going to the toilet perfectly fine before the surgery then after she just wouldn’t go because she was very upset – which I expected. After all the surgery, she was back to normal – it was like starting from scratch.

When we got back into the toilet training again I used pull ups if I knew we will be in the car for a long period or if she was tired. In between that it was underwear and I had a bag of clothes in my car at all times (in case of number 2 accident while toilet training) with spare wipes , clothes and some underwear.

We used a Sticker chart that every time she went to the toilet she got a sticker. In between stickers she would get her favorite piece of fruit like grapes or bananas. I would take her to the toilet every 30 minutes roughly to make sure she was going and this minimised her accidents as she was going to the toilet so often.

If she had an accident she would get in trouble for not going on the toilet as for my daughter she would have an accident straight after going to the toilet. Also every time she got babysat and went to her early learning centre I’d make sure they would continue the toilet training on so we didn’t go backwards all the time.

When toilet train, always remember to stay patient. We have all been though toilet training when younger so it is nothing new to us in that sense.

When night time toilet training I’d suggest going to the toilet before your child goes to bed and a few hours after to ensure they don’t wet the bed.

As each to their own you will find your own special way to toilet train your child.

How Supermoms Do It All?


As a Mum to my beautiful 3 year old daughter Amelia and Step Mum to my handsome 4 year old stepson Blaire, juggling full time work, running a Business and having family life sometimes can be tricky but it is all worth it.

Some people ask how do you do it? As like other mums out there you just do it and make it work and enjoy every moment with your kids.

As a mum we already have many titles for our name, we are the household chef, cleaner, nurse, photographer, friend and loving wife or partner for some of us. As having all those titles under our name MUM, some of us add on the titles and it can be challenging at some points.

For myself being a mum, working fulltime, running a business and having a social life at times can be stressful. Over time you learn you need a time schedule to make your busy life work.

When I say time schedule make sure to have ‘YOU time’ scheduled or you will crumble at points. Some people hate leaving their kids on their families to have that time. But at the end of the day, after you have that ‘YOU time’, you can then be the best version of a mother you can be.

Personally working full time, making lunches for work and school to be ready for the next day can also be the last thing I want to do once I am home each night. I have now become a popular fan of meal preparation for about twice a week, enabling us to always have healthy snacks and lunches available in our household.

As having a busy life you also have to make time to look after your own relationship with your partner and kids.

My partner also helps when he can but much like me, likes to keep busy and we enjoy every second we spend together as a family. When my partner isn’t working away we take turns in sorting the kids out after dinner. As a family we make it out and also schedule time for our family and time for us as a couple.

Exercising in a busy schedule is always tricky just make sure if you really want to fit it in just make it work, maybe you might have to schedule the alarm clock an extra 20-30 mins early to get up and do your workout first before starting your day or even before your little ones are awake. While saying that if your little ones are up and clingy don’t let that stop you just make them a part of your workout and do it together. Kids love using their energy up so what a way to do it and teach them a great habit for when they are older.

Every work night is a rush for dinner and to get kids ready for bed. But in saying that my kids bedtime is my favorite time after work as we read a few stories, cuddle up and have a game before they go to sleep every night.

As a mum you know SLEEP is much treasured after going through hard nights or newborn stages. To keep up with my busy life I have to make sure I have enough sleep to get me through the day and that means Monday to Friday I give myself a bit of bedtime schedule.

Starting each morning off on the right foot can be tricky also if you wake up to grumpy kids (each of us MUMS know what that is like). To keep myself feeling happy and on top of my busy life I start each morning practising gratitude and thinking what I’m grateful for in life, this is something myself is quite new too but loving it!! I make sure to start my day off on the right foot with my nutrition and a good breakfast. I know breakfast can also be hard in a busy schedule for school runs or day-care drop offs etc. If I don’t have enough time to have a healthy proper breakfast, I make a smoothie for a nutritious breakfast on the run or even in a snack during the day.

Adding to my many titles as of the end of this month I shall be studying part time as well as everything else too, Just because I’m a busy mum I am not letting my dreams or goals disappear, for I can show my kids anything is possible.

So as the busy mum lifestyle can be crazy or take some time to get use too, remember to always take time for everything and that you’re not a bad parent for being busy.

Good Things Are Happening Every Day


There are countless things around us each and every day that we could be happy about, if we just notice them. The smile of your children, their first achievement in something, the fact that you have a smart husband, exactly that kind of a man you always wished for. The lunch or dinner you’ve cooked and it turned out to be really yummy; the plants in your veggie garden that are growing nicely; and the first delicious home grown strawberry you’ve just picked. Knowing that you have a secure job, that you have talent, that you have two legs and two arms, that you are healthy – are all reasons to be happy about.

There are many things that are right or has been done right in day to day life. The question is are we keeping our attention on these or we put attention on the bad news from the TV and the radio, on things that has been done wrongly in life, and listening to the ideas that negative people are plying us with? It is easy to sink down into a miserable feeling if we can’t see anything else but the bad things around us.

However the good news is; that you can control your feelings and you can choose to feel happy, even if everything looks doom and gloom.

“Keep your face to the sunshine and you will not see the shadows.” – Helen Keller

There are always more good things in life, than bad ones, and you will find that the more you keep your attention on the good things, the more good things you will find around you.

It may take a bit of practice to start noticing the good things when you are feeling unhappy. Remember, you have a choice! Why would you choose to feel miserable?

If you only have to do a little bit of a mental exercise and start to count up the good things around you in order to feel happier, can you force yourself to do it? Of course you can!

When you do it every day, soon it becomes a habit. When you have the habit of keeping your attention on the things that have been done right, on the success of yours and your loved ones, on the smile of the people around you, noticing that life is beautiful, than you will not only feel happy but you will attract even more things to your life that will make you happier and as commonly agreed upon healthier as well.

Day by day you can start feeling happier and happier and achieve more and more success in life.

Isn’t it what we all strive for?


My Top Three Ways To Save Money



In a lot of families dad makes the money and it is Mom’s duty to ensure that his pay goes a long way.

Mom is at home, so she has time to pay all the bills, to do most of the purchases of food, household items and to buy the necessary clothing. Does it sounds familiar?

When the family relies on one income, it is quite a task to provide all that necessary without the use of a credit card, and going into debt.

Here are my top three ways to easily save a considerable amount of money:

  • When I’m planning to buy electronics, furniture or pricier items, and I have an exact product in mind, I do a search on the internet and find at least three different retailers and compare their prices. Instead of just walking into Harvey Norman, first I check out their website and the website of Goodguys and any other local retailers. Than I know which sells item I want for the best price and it often can be a huge difference.Depending on the item, I check out Ebay and if the item is not too large and heavy and the postage is not too high, I buy it online. I found it to be cheaper to get my beauty products from Ebay. (Set up your Ebay search to show the listings by price lower to higher.)


  •  Many times I buy used items. I ask myself: do I need this item to be brand new or a used one will do the job? I needed a cloths dryer. My son was 2,5 years old and going through toilet training = lots of dirty pants and undies. It’s winter with lots of rainy days and it took long time for the cloths to dry. I realized that I do need a dryer now even if it won’t be very frequently used in the rest of the year. I have been able to pick up a dryer in perfect working condition from Gumtree for ¼ of the price of a new one. Gumtree is a great place to get bargains. I got a brand new bread-maker a few years ago for half price, the lady who sold it, got it as a present and she already had one. She sold it as she did not needed it.I used to pick up kids clothes new or used from Gumtree or Ebay for bargain price as well. Kids needs lots of clothes but they are growing them out quickly and more often than not, the second hand clothes are still in pretty good nick.


  •  I have started to pay off a little bit more than the minimum payments each time I’m paying our car loan. How does it saves me money? By having to pay less interest. I have calculated that by doing this I’m saving around $500 this year. If you have a loan, you can save on interest payable just by paying off 20% more each time than your minimum payments. That 20% extra will lessens your principal and can save you hundreds or thousands in compounding interest over the years.

There are many more ways to save and I will share a few more ideas in my next post.

How Did We Manage A Very Long Road Trip With Two Young Kids?


We’ve been living in Western Australia but had a dream to move to Queensland.

The first opportunity came two months ago and we have moved over.

My daughter is 4 years old and my son was 2,5 at the time.

We have decided, that instead of flying the half of the family to Brisbane, we all going for the long ride with daddy. It took 5 days to reach our final destination: Toowoomba city in Queensland.

We knew that this trip will take about 5 days, and I took special preparations to have enough entertainment for the kids. Our portable video player broke a few months earlier so watching DVD with them wasn’t an option. I have searched for and found some good ideas.

Packed a few picture books, their toy cars, teddy bears, Angie’s doll. I bought two coloring books and color pencils, I found a sticky foam, do it yourself, zoo picture, and two wooden puzzle set, one with the ABC and one for the numbers. The wooden puzzles were a hit. They both loved them.

They especially enjoyed to take the puzzles apart to do it again, once every piece were in place.


Whenever we have stopped for lunch at a place that had a playground, we give our kids a half an hour to enjoy playing outside and move their bodies.

When we were out of the city, we laid down the back raw and created a large playpen in the boot of our Ford Escape. They were able to play or sleep if they wanted to. This is a choice we made to make the trip easier on them.

Apples and nuts came very handy, so we got new supplies whenever we could. Water is paramount, and if I could go back in time, I would make sure that we have a large supply of bottled water, as it is very expensive to buy at the gas stations.

My hubby had the great idea to put the potty in the car in case of emergency, and sure it was a life saver a few times when we couldn’t stop right away.

How frequently or for how long you want to stop depends on how fast you want to get where you going to and how frequently a sudden need arise. But travelling with kids will take a lot more stops even if these are short.

I hope you can pick out some ideas to make your travel as much fun as possible.

by Etelka Koshemakin

The Best Ways To Enjoy Summer


young girl on the beach

Summer time is usually sunny, hot and dry in Western Australia. The best way to enjoy it is to go out early on the day to the beach or a park.

For a midday fun I used to fill up the little pool, that is placed in the shade for them.

My kids love playing on the playgrounds, but during the day it is just too hot for a walk or be outside on the sun.

As the best sun protection is staying in the shade, we usually spend the afternoons in the house.

Their favorite afternoon activity when it is so sunny and hot outside – is baking “star-cookies”. Now that warms up the house too.