Working Mum Life

There are many mums out there that have to work, and there are many mums out there that choose to work. Whatever the reason work+children=hard work with a side of stress. If you are thinking about going back to work maybe don’t read this rant, its great, it really is but its also so hard. These are only some of my observations in the my years of finding work life balance.

-You feel like you have done half a day of work before you even get to work. Even if you get up extremely early to pack bags, dress children, feed children, brush teeth, put on the dishwasher, (the list goes on) you still find yourself running out the door and always feeling like you are under the pump. Your cortisol levels increase exponentially for every child you produce also.

-Your kids don’t give a flying F that you have to get up at 5.45 in order to prepare for the work day as mentioned above. Its usually on a work day that you are up 6 times in the night with a teething baby. You then get to go to work with incredible eye bags and have to be professional. They do have coffee in workplaces generally so that is of help.

-It’s another opportunity for self neglect. In your rush to organise your children and husband with food and clothing and all the other things they could possibly need you find yourself looking in the staff mirror mouthing “what the F” and sitting down for an appealing lunch of a tin of tuna and an apple with a toddler sized bite out of it. There are literally only so many things one person can do in a day and unfortunately you are the weakest link mumma.

-Most days you don’t take a lunch or coffee breaks. You are either making up for lost time because you are unreliable, late to work or spend your breaks using a breast pump or going to breastfeed your baby.

-It’s so great to get back to work and use your brain, contribute to society and the household and be seen as more than a mum. Then you are bought back to reality when you are in the middle of something important and you get the dreaded phone call. “Your kid has counctivitis you need to come and pick them up” Well shut the front door, this is not convenient my friend!

-Leading on from that point is that when your child is sick you have the mum guilts because it is such an inconvenience and it is your child, you shouldn’t feel like that. The best way I can explain it is you can’t be 100% mum or 100% employee. It feels as if you can’t give either role your full potential and think again if you are going to put “punctual and reliable” on your CV, you ain’t got a shit show.

-People make comments like “Oh good for you, would give you a bit of time out”. Firstly, because you have housed a tiny human inside of you does not affect your ability of getting a job, i haven’t won the lottery and it is most definitely not a hobby. It’s 2017 people you better do that iOS update. Secondly, you must have some warped idea of what time out is. Yes it is a short reprieve from the daily tasks of motherhood but in no way are we reading a book in the sun or getting our nails done. But if you do know of a job like this going, hook a sister up.

-When you finish work your day is not done. You not only get to walk through the dark hours (witching hours) with tired children you have to complete tasks such as washing, cooking, bathing, sorting lunch boxes to name a few. All the tasks that you normally would complete being at home are then tagged on to the end of your work day.

-You don’t feel like it is worth it and the end of the pay week/fortnight. When you work so hard you kind of envision bringing home the bacon looking like a Hellers 1kg pack of streaky. In all honesty, once you pay for childcare, taxes, kiwisaver and student loan it looks more like a  250gram of ‘home brand’ middle rasher. It’s like a bad countdown substitute on your online shop. Basically, you would be really considering whether the stress is worth the remuneration.

I absolutely love my job and it brings me self confidence and motivation but in no way is it a walk in the park. So choose wisely before you take the working mum life route!


Times when parenting is tough.

We all have those moments when we just think how tough is this parenting gig? It is by far the most challenging thing I have ever done. Crazily enough having a family is also my absolute favourite thing in the world. But I can’t be the only one feeling like this at times…

  1. The consistent nails on chalk board noise of your children squabbling over the most ridiculous of things. For example, an empty raisin packet, one of 6 dolls, who can get to the car the fastest, who gets to turn the tap off. I could go on forever. This noise in the background over long periods of time is one way to score your ticket to crazy town.
  2. Which brings me to number 2, the monumental meltdowns. The colour of my plate doesn’t match my cup, one of my weetbix is broken in half, I want to wear my denim mini shorts on a negative 3 day. Mum won’t let me eat 7 bananas in one day, I’m not allowed to ride my bike in the middle of the road along the white lines, I didn’t want my sandwich cut like I liked it yesterday, I can’t believe you fed the cat without me. Some of these things are enough to cause literally the biggest meltdown Mary moments you have ever seen. Some days I could honestly cry as well.
  3. Your children can keep you up literally all night, and you are exhausted. You then get to lay them down for naps the next day to refresh themselves while you walk around like you’ve had a hard night on the jelly shots. They wake up with energy to burn and then terrorise you all afternoon. These times are tough and those eye bags aren’t going to resolve for a few years yet. Sometimes I think I am so tired I just want to cry. But I can’t cry because I am too tired for that.
  4. Kids can be so selfish. Oliver goes to Kindy one day and tells the teacher “Oh yeah I could not sleep alllll night because my mum just snores and snores real loud”. Oh you cutie patooty…Here’s an idea mate how about you stop coming into my bed at night then and we can all have a good sleep?
  5. Kids have no idea about when shits getting serious. On the phone to the bank… “Muuuuum Evie took Rowan’s nappy off and there is a poo!!” Important paperwork…It is now time to be that crazy man off Art Attack and get the ole’ scissors and felts out. But I have to say, Oliver si slowly becoming more observant. The other day Oliver comes home and says “Mum, Evie is making me really frustrated…Like when you have the trailer on at the dump and its really busy and you have to go backwards”
  6. When ‘play’ is actually exhausting. Don’t get me wrong I love a good play but sometimes it can be a bit of a labour. At the moment Oliver is right into his role play and imaginative play which is great and we are obviously encouraging. But I am going to be honest and say it is seriously wearing me down. One minute I am Sam, the next I am Gracie, now I am a brother and then the Mummy. Then he gets all sassy if I can’t keep up, like sorry about it. I forgot that i am now Stevens cousin Marcus once removed and I’m eating a fake hamburger with my pet Kitten Gracie. To be completely honest with you I don’t even know who I am anymore? Like I am having a personal identity crisis.
  7. You have to be pretty selfless when you are a parent but you are also only human and sometimes you just think is anything sacred? Splashed out on a $20 pair of sunnies that got smashed into a thousand pieces within days. Lovely new moisturiser, smeared all over the mirror. Not only have they raped and pillaged all of my possessions, left my body in ruins but I’m also fairly sure one hemisphere of my brain is still lagging a little.

Anyway, no one likes a whinger but I have had my vent  now and I can move on and enjoy the thousands of positives. All I’m trying to get across is that the more children you have the closer you come to understanding Britney’s 2007 mental breakdown..

The Mum rage clean.

The mum rage clean is a manic episode of cleaning usually with underlying emotions of rage and self loathing, sometimes shame. There is a moment of recognition that this fight is going down. This could involve seeing filthy skirting boards, seeing that 90 spiders have shit their webs all over your ceilings and are not paying rent. Could be as simple as tripping over one too many toys when mums not feeling as mentally stable as usual. Now I am a nurse, but I am starting to think that there is an area of the brain still left undiscovered. Let’s call this the mum rage clean cortex and that bad boy has been triggered, she’s lighting up like ya mum’s tragic Christmas earrings.

Sorry Dad there is no bringing Mum down now best thing you can do is take those kids and retreat. You have out your cleaning supplies and you are scrubbing like no woman has ever scrubbed before. You have got that rubbish bin out and you are being brutal. All of a sudden you are a pilgrim on the journey to a minimalistic life. You can see it now, zero clutter, a few Montessori toys and dressing your children in linen to go foraging for berries because you have time to burn now and zero stress. Maybe not that far but its the mum rage clean that’s making you mad.

You are really starting to get into the groove of it and your house is starting to look spick and span but that underlying rage is still there as you scrub and clean nooks and crannies you didn’t even know existed. You are having an argument with yourself now, “You will always clean your skirtings once a month!” You are dreaming of a cleaning roster and how you will give your husband a frontal lobotomy in the hopes that one day he will learn to pick up his socks.

Music always helps and for reasons you cannot explain you are listening to a spotify playlist with some similar rage feels going on. Gangsta rap and hip hop aren’t usually a favourite but it just seems the right fit for a rage clean ya know. “As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death.
I take a look at my life and realize there’s nothin’ left. ‘Cause I’ve been cleaning, breastfeeding so long, that even my momma thinks that my mind is gone”. Totes appropes hey? “Pop, lock and drop it…and pick up those lego’s for the four thousandth effing time!”

Things are improving though and the fatigue is starting to set in. Your house is extremely clean, not sterile, but clean. You sit back and have a cuppa, scroll pinterest for templates for cleaning routines and post a photo of your house to instagram with a caption “gosh I really need to get in and clean this weekend” Ha-fucking-ha just jokes. And then the tribe is back and you say a sincere goodbye to your beautiful environment and hello to chaos. Until next time.


Confessions of a tragic mum.

Ok, I admit it. I’m a tragic mum. I’m not overly stylish, I rarely look at myself in the mirror and I kind of don’t give any fucks about it at this point.

Don’t get me wrong I used to really care about the way that I looked, how I was perceived and was marginally less tragic. Although bebo might tell me otherwise. I would love to say that having 3 children has inspired me to be a milf, “get ma body back” and keep with the times but that would be a lie. To all you mumma’s who look amazing and are actually active in their active wear I commend you, I envy you and I hope that one day there will be time for me again. For now, I am actually at peace with the fact that this is me right now. So here goes… a couple of instances where I really let my tragic mum flag fly.

1) The children that I used to babysit are now telling me what is fashionable. Like are you serious?

2)My entire make-up collection can fit into a tiny little bag.

3)My two year old daughter gets into that make-up bag more than I do. Actually, I think the mascara she just smeared all over the mirror is older than her.

4)Everyone is talking a different language like highlight, contour, on fleek and I’m over here like “oh hey ya’ll is thin lizzy lip gloss still the goods?” *facepalm* FYI, save yourself from going for the ‘smokey eye’ look if you have dark mum bags under your eyes. Sultry? no, gang bash victim? possibly.

5)Don’t get me wrong, sometimes I go to the hairdressers!…Like that time on my wedding day…4 years ago…

6)I sometimes think maybe I should splash out, go see a professional, get some beauty shit done, let her get all up in my grill-you know the lady kind of business. But child free time is rarer than hen’s teeth around here! I mean my children came on an excursion with me to get a cervical smear. Afterwards 2 year old Evie came out into the waiting room with her dress above her head saying “me turn? me turn?”. It was then I decided that the education she now had on the female anatomy would suffice.

7)Going on from the child free time being rarer than a kiwi dairy owner. My single friend said to me the other day “I really feel like some down time, maybe a bit of a pamper day?”. “Shut the front door!” You know what I would love buddy ole’ pal? I would love to change my tampon without an audience. That would be brill!

8)The price of someone you know, dealing with the lady garden is crazy! “I’m sorry what, $60 for a wax, my god I can’t pay you $60 to look at my va-jay! I will do it myself and then charge my husband $60 to look at it!”

9)I have worn clip up maternity breastfeeding bras for 5 years straight. For a start, they are comfier than a pair of ‘crocs’ on a hot day. Unfortunately, they are just about as ugly as ‘crocs’. I have either been pregnant or breastfeeding for 5 consecutive years and I just cannot go back to the underwires just yet.

10)Going out is like a marathon and it takes 4 hours to get all the children sorted and ready and approximately 4 minutes to get yourself ready. I am slapping on some, what do you call this shit? concealer, with a baby attached to my boob and a two year old screaming “my do it, my do it!”. The husband is all sorted, even had time to clip his fucking toenails and the woman goes out like she has just escaped the mental health ward for a spot of sightseeing.

11)There is just no time to think about yourself. I went to work one day and someone was like “Oh hey your cardigan is on the wrong way” I don’t bat an eyelid, easy fix, silly sausage, what a rush I must of been in. I turn the bloody cardigan in the right way and its got a massive baby spew down the front of it. Like am I the only one up in here who is a hot mess? should I just put it in the wrong way and plead baby brain or wear it the right way and tell every second person the story of my terribly refluxy baby? No. No I think I will walk around in the middle of winter in a shirt and claim my Australian heritage.

All in all, I am a tragic mum and I have come to terms with the fact that the closest thing I will come to a spray tan is getting covered in ‘twisties’ crumbs, and you know what that’s kind of ok with me. ‘Twisties’ are delish.

The pro’s and con’s of owning a Mum van.

I crossed over to the dark side and bought a mum van, people mover, vangina, cereal box on wheels, whatever it is you call this desirable motor vehicle. For me, there wasn’t a lot of “cool” to sacrifice so the decision was easy. But I am going to help you to decide whether it is worth the sacrifice. Be warned, if you do go forth with this purchase your vocabulary will have an influx of words like efficient, practical, versatile, sexy.


1) If you have joined the mum club of spawning more than two kids, then a mum van is looking like quite a good option. Yes those tiny humans can fit into a normal car but what about all the other crap you have to lug around? You can take your three kids shopping, a double mountain buggy, get a fortnights shopping and buy up large at k mart including the rug, the new arm chair and an array of new decor for your “transylvanian style” house. No sweat.

2) Your vehicle is going to be filled from floor to ceiling with crackers, raisins, clothing and toys whether you drive a van or a normal car so why not have one that you can climb into with ease to vacuum and clean.

3)So much room for activities. If you ever get stuck on the side of the road with all the sprogs in the car just turn those seats around baby and you have got yourself a little whare.

4) Breastfeeding and nappy changing is super easy when out and about. No need to have an aggressive confrontation with a creepy old man who finds breastfeeding to be “disgusting” you can flip him the bird in the comfort of your beautiful mum van.

5) You can seat your kids further back than in a normal car. This is super great when you can’t be bothered listening to them whine and fight with each other. It also doubles as an anti-smacking regulator because if they really get on your last nerve you can’t reach them anyway. I generally just look at them with that special kind of crazy in my eyes that is only reserved for moments when mum has gone from zero to psycho mum. Don’t act like you don’t remember that look from Mum, the “Oh shit I have pushed mum too far” moment.

6) Now I don’t know if this is factual or not because oddly I can’t access statistics on this, but I tend to think that hot messes in mum vans get pulled over less. When my mum was a young mum she got let off something like a bad ass and thought it would be lovely time to hug the policeman mid let-down giving him complimentary milk boob imprints. Brill. So the moral to the story is that the Po-Po going to be telling you to go-go, because you a hot hot mess and you need to get home to get the roast on in time.

7) You have already sold your soul when buying a mum van so you really don’t give no fucks what people think. You just embrace that mum van and all its capabilities. This includes turning up to kindy drop off like a bad ass with your remote sliding doors like something out of ‘Men in Black’. Your kids think you are cool so that’s all that matters.


1) Because you have “spare seats” in your mum van you can be the target for people to offload their little pleasures. This is when you specify that it does not say “school run” on the front of your van. Or you could breed until the van is full so you can put out your no vacancy sign.

2) Sometimes it is hard to distribute supplies to the back seat of the mum van when travelling. The having to pull over thing is a real pain at times. I am looking into a bit of a pulley system here so watch this space haha.

3)Your husband drives around real low in his seat. I’m not talking re-living his boy racer days low. I’m talking he fears that his testosterone is being sucked out with every kilometre. This is when you remind him that it is effective, practical, versatile, and sexy.


Super mums’ need a day off too

This has been weighing on my mind for some time and my main worry was not to offend. I am now of the opinion that in this day and age I could say “My favourite colour is blue” and i could offend someone somewhere. People will read into anything and interpret things differently so just keep in my mind my aim is to make other mums feel less lonely in this issue not offend anyone who fits into any other category possible.

My issue is with the growing trend of the “Super-mum”. I have on many occasions been called a super mum and in this context I have taken this as a lovely compliment. However, over time I have started to look at this view of myself as a curse.

I think that the general image of a Super mum is someone that juggles around 450,000 things at once, probably earns an income, can still parent to a moderately high standard, doesn’t stab their husband and still has time for themselves. All jokes aside, the role is fairly hard to live up to. When you are labelled as a Super mum what I find is that it is actually quite isolating. I find its actually a bit of a cop out. I find it denies mums of the opportunity to NOT live up to these incredibly high standards. Chances are this mum already has incredibly high standards of herself or she wouldn’t be classed as a Super mum.

For a lot of “Super mums” they have little support or help from those around them. For a lot of “Super mums” they look like they have it together all the time because they do not have an alternative. What is the alternative to coping? There isn’t always a village to support these mums so they are “Super mums” because they have to be.

Like the saying goes, “If you want something done, ask a busy person”. Well I call bullshit on that, and we are sick of being the bloody work horses! Every Mum deserves their moments of weakness, this is one of the hardest times of our lives.

When we  call mums “super mums” we need to be aware that without realising it we are adding more pressure for them to maintain this view or illusion. What we are doing is denying them of the right to be just a mum and sometimes not have it together.

By no means am I perfect. I catch myself calling my friends that are acing motherhood super mums. But after experiencing a time when I wasn’t coping with the huge weight on my shoulders I asked myself why I was so terrified to actually ask for any help or support? The answer was the embarrassment that I should be able to cope and that I should be able to do this on my own, all the time, perfectly.

I don’t know the answer, I would love to know if you do. But all I can suggest is to ask the real questions. Offer your friends and family the help even if they won’t accept it, you never know when they will take you up on the offer. Make a meal for a “Super mum” who looks like she has it all together, because you don’t know if she is at the end of her tether. Lastly, mums need to be there to support each and every mum, and make it OK to not be perfect all the time. The “helper” sometimes needs to be helped. There should be no classes or cliques or categories in motherhood. Motherhood is not a race or a competition, or a perfect looking instagram account. So have each other’s back mumma’s!


Easy Loaded Lasagna

Here’s my recipe for a delish lasagna that is super easy to make and packed full of veg. It’s a great way to hide veges from kids and I have given measurements to make a bulk lot- the equivalent of 3 medium lasagna’s. I quite often freeze them once baked.



-1.5kg of mince (I used 1kg of beef and 400-500grams of pork mince as I had this on hand)

-oregano, sage or whatever dried herbs you have to taste.

-half cup of water

-2 onions

-1 can of chickpeas or lentils.

-2 carrots

-Bunch of silverbeet

-Half a pumpkin

-2 tins of chopped tomatoes

-50 grams of tomato paste

-1 Tablespoon of brown sugar

-1 Tablespoon of balsalmic vinegear

-1 tablespoon Worcester sauce

-2 tsp of minced garlic

-2 packets of lasagna sheets


For the cheese sauce:

-2 cups of milk

-1 cup of grated cheese

-4 Tablespoons of flour

-4 Tablespoons of butter.


  1. Chop half a medium sized pumpkin into slices no thicker than 1cm and par-bake in the oven with a little oil.
  2. Fry off diced onions in a little oil and brown the mince. Add the garlic, tinned tomatoes, balsalmic vinegar, brown sugar, 1-2 teaspoons of herbs and water.
  3. Add chopped silverbeet, grated carrot and one tin of drained chickpeas or lentils. Let this simmer/wilt down.
  4. For the cheese sauce melt 4 Tablespoons of butter in a pot on medium heat. Add the 4 Tablespoons of flour and stir quickly to get a smooth paste. Add 1 cup of milk and stir. After a few minutes add the second cup of milk. Let simmer and stir until thick and smooth. Take off the heat and add a little salt and pepper and 1 cup of cheese stirred through, let it cool.
  5. Layer up the baking dish with the base layer being pumpkin, on top of this mince, and then the lasagna sheets. Top with cheese sauce and then add second layer of mince.
  6. Top this with another lasagna sheet, remainder of the cheese sauce and top with a little grated cheese.
  7. Bake in the oven at 180 degrees for about an hour or until you can put a sharp knife through soft lasagna sheets.

Like I said this makes 3 Medium lasagnas’ so feel free to halves this recipe if you just want to make one large one. It;s great to get rid of any veg looking like its at the end of its life. Enjoy!


How to spend less on groceries

Many of my friends have asked how I spend so little on groceries and I thought it was a great time to share some of the changes that we have made. In this day and age the growing cost of living can be crippling, especially feeding a family. Living to your means is difficult and saving money seems impossible. If you are on struggle street, ice cube week, or just want to cut back on what you are spending I hope that these tips will help you in some way.

Firstly, a little disclaimer because there are always those that want to cut the juicy head off a poppy…I do know that my children are not teenagers yet and that my budget will grow to reflect this. Secondly, I am not a Nutritionist or a Dietitian and we eat a diet that suits our family so don’t come asking me for vegan recipes because I only realised a year ago that vegan isn’t a brand of bread.

After the birth of our beautiful chaotic second daughter I found we were spending a ridiculous amount on groceries. I suppose we were sucked in by selection and convenient foods and didn’t buy intentionally. We would not blink an eye at spending $500 a fortnight on food, cleaning products and toiletries. What we realised was that it was limiting the things we could do elsewhere such as save, spend money on our house and of course outings and adventures with our children. We decided that better quality of life meant that for us we had to cut back on the money we spent and the best place to start was the groceries. So here is a few ways in which we cut our fortnightly grocery bill in half.

1.Meal plan, meal plan, meal plan. We used to go to the supermarket and see what took our liking for that week. We usually forgot vital ingredients and then made multiple trips back to the grocery store. These trips also included extra things that we really did not need. Now, I meal plan for a fortnight and write a corresponding shopping list. I cannot emphasise this enough! If I got to the supermarket without my list I would turn around and go home. Meal planning is a massive topic in itself so there is a blog post to come on this. Also supermarket shopping use to be a “we” affair and now its only me because we all know men like the treaties.

2. When meal planning ensure you include easy “take-away” style meals on a Friday or when you are likely to fall off the bandwagon. This way its easier to stick to, easy to prepare and you can have a takeaway fix. Some of the Chelsea Winter recipes such as the “Chelsea Fried chicken”, sweet and sour chicken and the burgers are a hit in our house which has helped us to avoid takeaways. Ensure you put realistic meals on your meal plan that fit around your families schedules. Factor in treats or ingredients to make treats. For us, we really enjoy something sweet with a cup of tea at night and don’t have dessert as such. Being realistic about your wants and needs in the week will stop the late night dairy stops when you could have just bought a $3 block of chocolate or tub of ice cream for the fortnight.

3. Shop to season and specials. At the start of every fortnight I flick through the flyers from Countdown, New World and look at Pak n Save online. (All of these can be seen online). It really pays to see what specials are available and shop accordingly. I know you are totes into pork mince based recipes at the moment but mate that shit is pricey when its not on special, not this fortnight girlfriend! A little effort meal planning and shopping around can save a lot of money. Usually I shop around for where has the best specials on meat and dairy such as butter and cheese. Last fortnight I did my full shop at Pak n Save and only nipped into Countdown to grab a cheap Pork Roast and cheese that was down to $8. In comparison to Pak n Save who had no cheap larger cuts of meat and cheese was $9.50. Quite often New World have good mince specials so will often stock up there. It wouldn’t be that unusual for me to do a whole fortnights shop solely at Pak n Save either with fruit and veg from the orchard.

4. Selection is not your friend. I don’t know about anyone else but I used to buy a huge selection of fruits and vegetables with no real aim for their consumption. This meant a lot of wasted food and a lot of wasted money.  When meal planning I started to utilise veges that were in season and on special and chose meals with these in mind. For example, One huge cabbage at the Orchard the other day was $2.50, so I included recipes for that fortnight such as chow mein, meat and veg, coleslaw or salad based meals. The same goes for meat. If you are buying one pack of meat for each night as we were, this is hiking your food bill up enormously. If you can have one meat free meal a week go you! and if your Husband will act like his throat has been cut then you have other options. Planning meals around a large portion of meat works well. For example, when pork is on sale one leg can cost approximately $10-$15. We either slow cook this pulled pork style and use this for 4 different meals or roast it and use it for four meals. Quite often this can be used for lunches for my husband as well. Whole chickens are usually on good sales and the same principle applies. For example, 2x $5 chickens = First night a roast, second night chicken and mushroom pasta, third night chicken and vege quiche, and then fourth night I boil down the carcusses and make chicken and vege soup. Again, I could talk for hours on meal planning…so keeps your eyes peeled for the next blog if that tickles your fancy.

5.Don’t be a fussy shit. If the thought of eating chicken four nights in a row makes you want to die then you can always freeze portions and change it up a bit. At one stage we really needed to save as much as possible in a short time and my husband ate chicken for a whole week. He said his farts smelt like chicken but he still smiled at me at tea time like Darryl Kerrigan from the castle “what do you call this Darl?”…”Chicken” (Great movie that, if you haven’t seen it!)

6.In addition to the don’t be a fussy shit, is stop feeling the need to buy instagram-worthy fruit and vegetables. Massive food suppliers such as Supermarkets throw out crazy amounts of perfectly good fruit and veg because we have become too precious to buy the mandarin with a little blemish or an oddly shaped cucumber. Too bad if you are going to have people sniggering at you for buying the penis shaped cucumber it doesn’t deserve to go to landfill!. ‘City Harvest’ in Christchurch are a charitable trust that are now bridging the gap and taking surplus or wasted food from different segments of the food industry and getting it to Organisations to distribute to those that really need it. They state that statistics show that New Zealanders throw away 122,547 tonnes of food a year! A little effort to use our food intentionally and cut back on waste will not only save you money but helps in the bigger scale.

7. Supermarkets are ridiculously pricey due to their need to provide blemish free perfect fruits and vegetables all the time. When I walk into the supermarket I almost faint at the price of a broccoli at $3.50!! Shop local and find an Orchard, vege stall or shop near you. The same size pumpkin I bought at the Orchard for $2.50 was $4 at Pak n Save. $1.80 worth of silverbeet at the Orchard, $3.50 at the supermarket. The photo used in this blog is some of the beautiful fruits and veges I got at half the price and the man knows my name, gives the kids free fruit and carries it all to my car! We need to stop thinking spending ten minutes here and ten minutes there is such a big deal because convenience shopping is costing you at least one to two hours of wage to put it into perspective. I have recently been made aware of community initiative of vege boxes made up and delivered to your door weekly or fortnightly. Be aware of other community gardens and fruit and vege co-ops in your ares.

8. Grow your own! Everyone has to start somewhere, if it is a few buckets with tomatoes or some old tyres with potatoes. Once you get rolling it actually becomes very easy and surprisingly gratifying. Due to backyard landscaping, our vege patch has been on the back burner but I am super excited to get this up and running again.

9. Take your list to the supermarket and stick to it. Don’t get sucked into the stock piling trap because specials are thrown in your face. I know you think you are saving money by buying 10 bottles of dishwashing liquid but at the exact moment at the check out you are only spending more not saving. That and the next fortnight when you need more dishwashing liquid I can bet my left love handle there will be one type of dishwashing liquid going really cheap. (God I hope I’m wrong haha). Ignore the end of aisle savings as they are usually a distraction to the cheaper items that are just down the aisle. Research some of the tricks of consumer marketing and you will be amazed at how we are encouraged to part with our money.

10. Cook from scratch and cut down on pre-packaged foods. Learn to cook and put in the effort to make food from scratch using less pre-packaged foods and flavouring. This is not only better for your health but becomes natural and easy after a while. Home baking is essential and put ideas for lunches and snacks into a little notebook so that you can plan for them each fortnight.

11. Decide on 5 family must haves and  don’t stray. For example, my husband will strictly not eat any other baked beans, spaghetti or Tomato sauce other than Watties. Another way to save money by not being a fussy shit is to cut back on expensive toiletries. Believe it or not you can actually get through life hygienically without smelling of Ylang Ylang and Cherry Blossom. You don’t even know what the F Ylang Ylang is, so you sure as hell don’t have to smell like it. A normal bar of soap works pretty well, but of course if smelling like Ylang Ylang is a high priority to you then you can always add to your family top 5 must haves. Although your family might be dark on you that they have to eat Oak or Budget baked beans this fortnight. The cheaper alternatives to most things are in most cases no different so push that food snobbery away because you on a budget girl.

12. Most cleaning supplies can be replaced with Baking Soda and vinegar so the only thing I buy in that aisle is dishwashing liquid and washing powder. For more ideas on this I strongly recommend reading ‘Pig tits and Parsley sauce’.

13. Keep a little notebook with meal ideas that can be quickly looked through for inspiration when meal planning. You can even categorize with mince or chicken for example. This is helpful to then group meals using similar ingredients.

14. Look into shopping fortnightly if you don’t already do so. It is much easy to group ingredients and meals and less opportunity to stray from the budget and meal plan.

We are still improving and finding better ways to do things and I’m sure that others will have other brilliant ideas to pass on also. For us a little bit of organisation and cutting back on luxuries has given us a better quality of life. By no means are we frugal and have no fun. By no means do we not splurge occasionally. I would rather consume food intentionally over a fortnight and have spare money to spend on my family, save and buy nice coffee with hahahaha. If you want to follow me on any cooking, baking, food prep, meal planning to see that we don’t only eat toast and two minute noodles feel free to follow me on snapchat or instagram (MallochMadness)





How you know that you are a seasoned Mum.

At some stage in your parenting journey you will realise that you have crossed an invisible line. This line is the separator between “new- have it together mum” and “seasoned mum”. You wont know until you are borderline psychotic one day and the realisation will hit you harder than a silent but violent fart in a locked car. For those that are all too familiar with this or are wanting to prepare themselves for the shit storm coming their way I have listed a few ways to know you are a seasoned mum.

1. Before becoming a seasoned mum you didn’t understand the obsession with coffee. Now you blame your bad mood on lack of coffee and are wondering where and when you will get your next fix. You tell every barista you need 3 shots of coffee, one for each child you have spawn and then laugh like you have escaped a mental asylum. You will take coffee in any form, at any temperature, and are considering buying a ‘death before decaf’ t-shirt. Your husband may start to be your enabler because he knows what brings you true happiness. That, or the foaming at the mouth look doesn’t float his boat.

2. The husband cleaning the house has now become an extreme turn on. “Move over Magic Mike this man is vacuuming the floor”. “Oh god he’s using that little attachment to get along the skirtings, shit is getting hot up in here!”

3. You have had to mediate a fist fight in the back of a mini-van over a raisin. The fighting is making you psychotic but all you can do is wonder…Was this a long lost grape dehydrated into a raisin or was it always a raisin? The life span of said raisin is not really important right now and you need to leave ASAP because the neighbour just witnessed you splitting the raisin in half with your teeth to resolve World War 3.

4. You can dress 9 children from the boot of your van for all seasons. But when your son has a poo explosion I can bet your bottom dollar there will only be one pink skirt available. Why in the world did I clean the wardrobe, I mean van out. Not only do you have enough clothes to fill up the Salvation Army bin in one foul swoop you could vacuum up your body weight in cracker crumbs and raisins.

5. The mum bun is your only hair style and wearing your hair out is only reserved for going out. That day you wore your hair out ‘mumming’ with an enormous baby chunder in it still haunts you.

6. Your children look stylish, clean and well presented and you feel like a sloth who’s dressed themselves out of the back of a mini van. Oh wait..

7. You look back on photos pre-baby and see how much you have weathered in a few short years. You also have three token grey hairs at the ripe ol’ age of 26, one for each child. See how that same rule applies! You totally embrace those grey hairs because you can’t afford highlights living that povo family life.

8. Your child free friends send you snaps about being exhausted and you laugh like a hyena.

9. Your child free friends spend two hours at your house and need to go home to rest as they now think they are coming down with glandular fever. Cancel that contraception script girlfriend, I got you covered.

10. Things you claimed you would never do as a first time parent you are now all about. Who would feed their two year old McDonalds?….This bitch would. I hear they sell coffee there too, just saying.

11. You actually don’t care that people think you are a hot mess. You tell them all that when you are out of the trenches you are going to be as skinny as a stick insect and get fake boobs and a real job.

12. You become dramatic and join a mum cult. Those mum friends speak your language and are the only ones who would understand your anger on standing on 4 landmines (lego) on the way to the toilet. They are also the only ones who would say “babe you bangin” when you are wearing a weet-bix covered fleece top.

13. You belt out ‘twinkle twinkle little star’ in the car like Adele and don’t give no fucks that people are watching you at the lights. The fact you no longer have kids in the car is none of their bloody business anyway.

14. Your husbands toilet time while you are having a shower doesn’t make you vomit and you class it as quality time with your significant other.

15. You’ve answered the door to the courier with one entire breast out and been embarrassed for a total of 40 seconds because ooh Nespresso capsules have arrived! Those breastfeeding bra’s are a real trick anyway. Click them up-perky boob job, unclick- saggy sacks of skin.


When delving into the wonderful world of DIY with your beloved husband or partner there are just a few things to consider for your marital safety and sanity. Firstly, is the health of your left kidney good enough that you could sell your right to pay for someone else to do it?

If things are a bit rocky in your marriage, this is not the time to be pouring petrol on the flames. So avoid these kinds of escapades until you are at least back on regular rooting terms.

Be prepared for your house to lack general cleanliness and order for a while, it will have to look worse before it can look better (or so I keep telling my Husband). Just don’t let it get to the point that you are tucking your child into bed to realise its actually a pile of pink batts.

Ensure you pack away any tools you are using if you have young children. Explaining to your Husband that your 2 year old had an interesting experience sanding is not ideal, nor encouraging.

Sometimes men need a little bit of jollying along, You know the ones…piss assing around about projects and throwing Mitre 10 quotes like “its a big job”. I find the best way to get that ball rolling is to take to the room with a good old crow bar and fill that trailer up like a fatty at the chinese buffet. They will come home thinking you’re manic bitch but that’s ok, because you’re manic bitch that gets shit done.

So now you are balls deep in a DIY project and you have come down off the demolishing high and a little bit of doubt in your abilities creeps in. That’s fine, fake it ’til you make it and get on with some google research to at least fool your husband that things are smooth sailing from here on out. Watching a series of ‘The block’ is now the equivalent of an apprenticeship nowadays anyway aye?

Fencing is a great start in your DIY career. A bit of success in this area can lull you into a false sense of security and now you think you are auditioning for a part on the block. You have got that useless fucking tape measure girl and you are measuring up those fence posts. You have your cement badge, and your gumboots are now dirty. I see you strutting into that Mitre 10 drive thru like you own the show. You are throwing out slang like ‘4b2′ with an unusual tradie accent and you have those tie downs strapped down tighter than your reno budget.

Mitre 10 has now become your favourite place. You even let the “ferals” demolition derby with the mini trolleys. That stand of weed killer was in the way anyway. The person who put a coffee shop in Mitre 10 must of been a woman because by mighty nothing is sexier than a woman carrying her latte and a 4L of deck stain. Unfortunately, Mitre 10 has now also become your husbands’ favourite place and he thinks he needs to purchase $4500 worth of tools to put up a shelf. You have to drag your husband away from the enthusiastic salesman who is weirdly convinced you aren’t living under the poverty line.

Which brings me to the money. Renovating or building anything is so ridiculously expensive you will start to consider that 13k boob job value for money. 4k for lino?! you must have the measurements wrong, it’s for my kitchen, not Pak n Save”

Be very prepared to take everything to heart. When your husband asks you 4 times if something is level before he secures it, it’s definitely him doubting your skill base and knowledge in DIY. All of a sudden you are regarded as legally blind and visualising hitting him over the back of the head with a shovel.

There are some things a woman is just better at, and this needs to be agreed on early in the piece. For example, choosing paint colours…”No, penis pink would not look nice in the hallway” “No, two tone is not all the rage”. “I don’t give two flying fucks if it’s your favourite colour, it looks like the urine of a highly dehydrated person so it’s not happening” Even better when you have these kind of discussions in the paint isle.

So tread carefully my friends, you have been warned. As far as I am aware “disagreement on kitchen splash-back” is not a viable reason for divorce.