Domestic Goddess box {GIVEAWAY}

Hey friends,
Today I would love to show you all a brand new subscription box service that one of my favourite bloggers & dear friends, Anne from Domesblissity has created…
The “Domestic Goddess” subscription box…  For more info please read HERE.
This box is full of hand selected items by Anne that are targeted for a certain theme each month, the month of November is “doing the dishes”…  Each box also includes special & indulgent products for the “domestic goddess” of the home!
To check out my unboxing video please click HERE.

If you would like to purchase a box or subscribe for a monthly parcel please click HERE and you can use the coupon code of ‘SUBSCRIBE5’ for $5 off your first box!
I also have a December 2017/Christmas subscription box to give away! So if you would like to enter please head on over to my Facebook & Instagram, find the image and make sure you enter!
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Good luck friends!
Please check out Anne on Facebook HERE, Instagram HERE & her blog HERE.
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1952 housewife wisdom.

Good morning friends,
I come to you today with some motivation I discovered from 1952…
I stumbled upon a few old magazines I bought years ago, they range in age from 1952 – 1984, so they are absolute gems! I love looking at the advertising from the 50’s!


Anyway, I was sitting down last night flicking through the Women’s Weekly from April, 1952 and I stumbled across an interesting little piece…
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I totally agree with this and I actually do that!
My mornings run like clockwork (when Trent is at work that is – I tend to be a little more relaxed when he is home), but most days my routine is firm. I get so much done between when we wake up until Tommy’s nap time at 9am’ish. I recently filmed my spring morning routine which you can watch HERE…
I thought I would share that little pearl of wisdom with you in hopes to encourage someone… I am very regularly asked how I stay on top of jobs especially with 2 small children… I just work hard, that’s the honest answer. I don’t like sitting around doing nothing, it drives me crazy… My days are usually very busy and I strive to get a lot done in them. But my mornings are the busiest and my theory behind that is if I get all my main jobs out of the way first thing in the morning, well that gives me free time to play with the kids, give a friend or my sister a call, have a visitor over for lunch, take it easy in the afternoon or get extra jobs done…
My top tasks that I do every single morning without fail are;

  • unload the dishwasher.
  • put at least 1 load of laundry on & peg it out. (It is folded & put away every evening)
  • vacuum the floors (with my Dyson stick vac. I usually vacuum 2-3 times a day, but bare minimum is once a day)
  • spot mop/mop the kitchen, if I didn’t do it the night before.
  • tidy up from breakfast. Stack the dishwasher, put toaster away & wipe down benches.
  • make the beds. (LuLu is starting to make her own)
  • Get the 3 of us ready for the day.

With those jobs done, I feel good about my home & if nothing else gets accomplished during the day that is ok. During most days I go about either dusting, cleaning bathrooms, tidying, baking or whatever other task needs to be tackled in between tending to the kids and playing. (Dusting & polishing is more fun when you are jumping around singing like a fool to get your kids to laugh…) I try to have most jobs done by lunch time or early afternoon, so I can rest, play & organise dinner.
I really love my productive mornings.
What do you do each morning? Do you have set jobs? What do you think of this little snippet of wisdom from 1952?
Let me know in the comments below or connect with me on social media.
(Also let me know if you would like me to do another blog post on some of the content from these old magazines)
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Tips on how to declutter & make money. 

Hi friends,
Happy Monday – how was your weekend?
Mine was busy and productive.
I was motivated to start spring cleaning and decluttering our home… thanks to that sudden urge to “move the clutter” I made around $400 in 2 days!

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I just sold a few items we no longer use and voila a few extra hundred dollars in my pocket!
So I thought in this post I would encourage you to do the same. Go through your wardrobe, your cabinets, your home – sort out what you don’t use anymore or what you don’t really love and pass it on. You can make some extra cash and at this time of the year extra money is a good thing to have – we always find the end of the year is the most expensive!
I highly recommend when you are sorting through items you use the method of looking at the item and deciding do you actually use it, do you love it or is it very precious/sentimental? If not sell it.
If I haven’t used, worn or even picked up in an item in around 6 months, I really have a good think about it – unless it’s a seasonal item, I usually sell it. I am trying to become less emotionally attached to items as well and let go of the guilt and expectation that I “should be keeping” items just because they were given to me. If they aren’t being used or enjoyed I think it’s absolutely sensible to either donate or sell them. There are certain sentimental items I will probably never part with, but I am trying to let go of many things. My sister is a great motivator for this, she seems to lack the sentimental emotion so she gets rid of most things very easily, where as I tend to hold onto them – so if I am struggling with parting with items I just call her! So I suggest having a support person you can call if you are on the fence about an item.
(When I’m decluttering I donate some and sell others.)

My tips for selling on buy, swap and sell sites (Gumtree, Facebook etc.) are…

  •  Take clear photos.
  • Be as descriptive as you can. Include sizing, measurements & state any flaws.
  • Price your item fairly. If I’m hoping for a certain amount (say, $20) for an item I will add on an extra $3-$5 so then I have negotiating room.
  • With pricing I normally do a quick google search of similar products to see what the average price is. That way I know I am pricing my item fairly.
  • Advertise the item in multiple local groups – even try surrounding towns groups.
  • Check your accounts regularly so you can reply to comments/messages in a timely manner.
  • When arranging inspections/pick ups, be wise and safe. I don’t normally give out my address until I know for sure the person is a serious buyer & I usually only have people come when Trent is home or I let someone (my sister, Trent etc) know that a person is coming to purchase an item. I also don’t let people in my home, I meet them on the drive way with the item or even better is to meet in a public place.
  • Don’t expect an instant sale. I just had a pair of boots for sale for 2 months & then just this weekend they sold. Sometimes it takes a little bit of patience.
  • Expect & accept that some people want everything for nothing, especially on buy, swap, sell sites. Honestly some offers are insulting – take it for what it is and just politely decline.
  • I would suggest not holding items for more than a day, because people are notorious for messing you around. I usually do first in best dressed. There is nothing worse than holding an item and then the person ends up being a no show.
  • Keep your post visible. Leave comments like “make an offer – must sell” regularly under your post, maybe once a day around a time many people might be online.
  • Don’t try selling something you are emotionally attached to, be prepared to let it go. If you still love the item you may not negotiate sensibly with it & this result in it not selling.

What are your best tips for selling your unwanted goods? I would love to know, comment below or on my social media.
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I’ve just created another Instagram account @MWL31preloved where I will be listing some of our preloved items, mainly LuLu’s clothes this week (hopefully, once I get a chance to dig through my baby boxes and photograph all the items. LuLu has so many beautiful baby clothes and the chance of me ever having another baby is incredibly slim thanks to the fact I just don’t do pregnancy well, so I thought I should start thinning out my baby clothes collection!) If you are interested please head on over and follow or share with a friend that maybe interested!

I’m off to deposit my money in the bank, have a great day!
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PS: Bonus tip – keep hand sanitiser on hand to clean your hands after handling money. Money is gross and flu/gastro season is in full force!! Keep your hands clean!

Homemade Laundry Powder recipe. {Video}

Hi friends,
One of my most highly requested blog posts & videos is to do a “how I make my washing powder”…
So here it is…washing powder1.jpgThe video can be found HERE. 

The recipe I use is by Sister Mixin and you can find it HERE. (I change the recipe slightly by adding in 1 bar of sard soap…)

The reason I make my own laundry powder is simply because –
A) I can. I have the time & desire to do so, you may not & that is fine.
B) I feel it saves us money. 
C) I also believe it is more gentle & more effective product than standard washing powders.
Laundry powder is so expensive & often full of extra fillers & chemicals, so by making my own I know what is in it and it is very cheap. All these ingredients are easily available at Coles or Woolworths & are very affordable, I always have them in my cupboard, as I use them for other uses as well.
I make mine in my Thermomix – you don’t need one to make this recipe, but I feel it would be easiest… If you don’t have a Thermomix, I would suggest you either grate the soap bars or blitz them in a food processor and then combine all the ingredients in a large clear container (a clear container so you can check that all the products are thoroughly mixed together)

I have been making this recipe for over 2 years now and I find it removes stains very well & all of our clothing is clean & soft. I do use white vinegar as a fabric softener occasionally (always with towels) & if I am washing our bedding I often add in some lavender essential oil (or even eucalyptus if we aren’t feeling well)

As mentioned in the video, I do occasionally buy washing powder. I bought one box of OMO sensitive to wash Tommy’s clothes before he was born, but I  have been washing his clothing with this powder for months and he has never had a reaction to it – none of us have. The other product I occasionally buy is Bosisto’s Laundry Powder – I only buy it maybe once a year, if it is on sale… And it is the product I like to have as my “back up” in case I run out of this mixture or I use it if we are all very sick.

I like making my own cleaning products, I currently make my own basic disinfectant spray, occasionally dish washer powder & stone bench cleaner. I have trialled making a few glass cleaners, but I’m struggling to find one I love – so for now I use the Method glass cleaner & also their timber cleaner/polish, I find both of those products to be really good. But if you have a great recipe for either of those I would love to try it out!
Please let me know in the comments below or on my social media any cleaner recipe recommendations you may have, or if you make your own laundry powder – do you use a similar recipe to this? I would love to have a read of yours!
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Have a great weekend!
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Entire house clean | Cleaning vlog.

Happy Saturday friends!

After I posted my power hour cleaning video the other week I received so many lovely messages on Instagram, Facebook & snapchat about how my video motivated some of you to clean your homes! That makes me so happy to know I’ve encouraged some of you in that way!

So today, I am back with another cleaning video. You can watch it HERE. (Keep an eye out for the sweetest little bit just after 15mins)
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This one is a bit longer, but it is more vlog/day in the life style video. In this video I have to do semi deep clean of our home… I like to do a good clean like this about once a week – a week & a half. Basically whenever Trent is off & he can entertain the kids for a few hours! It also makes sense to do this clean when he is home as when he goes back to shift the house is very clean & the cleaning I do daily is more of a maintenance style of a cleaning. Like wiping down surfaces, vacuuming with my stick vac, mopping when needed & general tidying up. But on days like this day I like to more thoroughly clean and use my bigger Dyson to vacuum before mopping.
I find doing a little cleaning every single day makes cleaning days like this a lot easier. A big day of cleaning still is exhausting because I basically find things to do all day and really make sure I get as much done as I possibly can, but I feel very accomplished at the end of it. I personally find vacuuming with that big Dyson so tiring – I really like my little stick vac, but I like the deep clean the bigger one gives my carpets.
Also can we talk about how much of a work out changing sheets is! Gosh, it’s tough! Like I said in the video, I never go to a gym – but I feel like I get a work out in when I do a day of cleaning!
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Isn’t the feeling of having a completely freshly cleaned home the best? I just love it – especially the next morning when I wake up and everything is so neat & tidy!
Thank you so much for reading this post & watching my video, I would love to know your thoughts – please comment below or on my social media!
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Have a great weekend!
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How to save money on groceries. {video}

Hi friends!

It is new video Friday!! Click HERE to watch my latest youtube upload!

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This weeks video is a groceries on a budget | grocery haul video…
On this particular week we had our normal bills to pay, which we always plan for, but then some unexpected ones popped up and that is life – that happens… But it meant our groceries that week had to be a little more thought out…
I try to be budget conscious when I am shopping anyway, but on this particular day I was more focused on sticking to the list and not buying any extras… Our usual grocery shop is about $200/week – week and a half… That includes, dog food, cat food, cat litter & nappies & wipes… Those 5 things are so darn pricey, added with a lot of fruit & veg and meat = pretty expensive groceries! We often try to stay in front of needing extra pet food so if we need to, we can skip a week of buying them…

Tips for saving money on groceries…

  • Write a list and stick to it… If you go in with no set list, you may buy unnecessary items & not what you actually need.
  • Meal plan & shop from your kitchen first… Write out your meals for the week and shop from your fridge, pantry & freezer… Make meals around what you have left and write down what you need for the rest of the meals.  
  • Go meat free… Now anyone who knows us knows we love meat, we eat a lot of it… But not every one of our meals is a meat based meal… During a week we often have 1 or 2 meat free dishes, such as cannelloni, risotto, pumpkin soup etc… Not eating meat can be a wise money saving move, as meat is expensive.
  • Hunt… If you can & if it appeals to you. We have delicious fresh venison in our freezer that my husband was able to get for us. Not everyone can do this or wants to do this, but if you can, it is a great way to have some beautiful free range meat for very little money. (This also applies to growing your own, have a veggie garden or some chickens for fresh eggs!)
  • Budget… Occasionally if I am watching what we spend, I set a goal for my total and I write down the price of every item I buy as I shop (yes I am that woman) that way I know if I am over spending and also when I get to the check out there is no surprises – I also find it motivating to try and beat my “goal total”…
  • Check specials… Each week I check where nappies are on sale, they are normally our most expensive item so I look at Coles & Woolworths online before I leave the house and see who has them cheaper, normally that is a saving of around $5.
  • Keep a well stocked kitchen… Always remember ingredients you use regularly, like pasta, sauces, flour, sugar, spices, meat etc and keep them on hand and stocked up. And if you can, buy them when on special and stock up! If roasts are on sale I often buy 2 at once and one goes in the freezer for the following week.
  • Buy in season produce… Now, I don’t always do this because I have a certain little miss who loves blueberries all year round, but the smart thing is not to pay $7 for a small punnet of them and wait until they are affordable and that is when they are in season… Also check out farmers markets for great fresh produce!
  • Try and shop on the outside aisles & skip the middle or some aisles… Sticking to the fruit & veg area, meat department & the dairy/freezer section can help save us money & be healthier! Avoiding the middle aisles that are full of preservative filled foods is better for us and our wallets. That being said, I do still wander down them, but I very often skip the soft drink & chip aisle as we don’t really buy soft drinks or lots of chips – only on the odd occasion, or I walk quickly down the middle aisles knowing exactly what I need and not browsing each item…
  • Try to be focused when shopping… Know the item you need, get it – perhaps have a quick look for a cheaper alternative but don’t be distracted by items you don’t need or can’t afford.
  • Check out the discount trolley… Occasionally they will have things like cat litter or pet food marked down super cheap because it may have been torn… Even sometimes they have end of line, discontinued products there that have been marked down super cheap! Try to only buy what you NEED though, not unnecessary things just because it is “on sale”… If you genuinely need it now or will do in the very near future it is a smart move, but buying “just because it’s cheap” isn’t actually saving you money.
  • Don’t buy ready made… Sometimes premade/chopped/sliced items are great time savers… But you have to weigh up money for time sometimes… I tend not to buy grated or sliced cheese, veggies and most of my pasta meals I make the sauce for. (Except spaghetti Bolognese/cannelloni – but I have to get back into making tomato pasta sauces)
  • Use rewards cards… I always make sure to scan my flybuys or everyday rewards cards, each amount of points adds up to be money off in the future and this can be super helpful – especially around Christmas time… I think these sort of loyalty cards are well worth having!
  • Make your own… Household cleaners are so insanely expensive and we can make wonderful alternatives that work just as well! I have been making my own laundry powder for well over a year now & I do make my own cleaners as well. I have recently bought Method glass cleaner & timber polish, only because I am struggling to work out a recipe for those that works well… A bottle of white vinegar is just over $1 & a packet of bi-carb soda is around the same amount… With those 2 ingredients you can clean almost anything. I use both of those to clean my toilet, together they can be used with a bit of dish soap to clean the bath/sink/shower/grout. Vinegar + water + essential oil of your choice (optional) makes a great disinfectant. Vinegar is also a fantastic fabric softener.
  • Bake your own… I often bake our morning/afternoon tea treats instead of buying them… Firstly because I feel better letting LuLu eat a treat that I know what is exactly in it and secondly I find it to be cheaper… My pantry is always stocked with baking supplies so it is easy for us to whip something up.

Also check out the blog Domesblissity, Anne who writes the blog is so full of knowledge on leading a sensible life & saving money! I learn so much from her posts!

I would love to know what your tips are for saving money on groceries…
Please leave me a comment or let me know on my social media!
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Thank you so much for reading!
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Domestic Engineering; Dettol Give Away.

This post is a give away sponsored by Dettol. Dettol is a brand my family & I use in our home. We know it and trust it, I am please to be bringing you this wonderful give away. 

November is here and I am going to be honest and say I may have possibly set up all my Christmas decorations last week… My house may look like somewhere Buddy the Elf would love to hang out… And I love it.
I like to get my Christmas decorating done early, it leaves time for Christmas activities, crafts, baking, I can see what new decorations I need/want to buy and the house is festive for when we have visitors.
 (I have posted some photos of my latest Christmas purchases on my social media and I’ll share some photos of my decorations shortly!)
November and December is a busy time for everyone, I feel when the weather warms up and the Christmas season arrives everyone gets more social. We have more bbqs, more friends drop by to say hello and we just enjoy having people visit. 
But being this busy often means my cleaning routine gets messed around, so I like to keep products on hand that help me quickly give me a house a “clean appearance” but at the same time make it actually clean & hygienic.  
Sometimes in the silly season people like to give you a 10 minute warning before they drop around. A quick text to say “hey, what are you doing? Mind if we pop over and say hello?” – now I will rarely turn someone down to visit – especially around Christmas, I love our home being a warm and inviting place for people to visit. So after a message like that it normally sparks a “clean as much as I can shake down” of the house before they arrive. I like to believe my house is in a constant state of being reasonably clean, but a quick re-clean of the kitchen bench & guest bathroom just makes me feel a little more confident in the appearance of my home.
The cleaning products I am using at the moment and that I think are great are by Dettol. 
The Surface Cleanser and the Healthy Clean Kitchen Spray are my top 2. 
Dettol is household name that people associate with hygienic & clean – well I know I do. It is a brand I trust. 
The Surface Cleanser is a great cleaning product, it cleans everything from toys, the bench tops in my bathrooms and kitchen, the bin and I even use it to wipe down the toilet. 
The Healthy Kitchen Spray leaves my stainless surfaces really shiny and I feel confident knowing my kitchen surfaces are clean and hygienic after using this product. 
The surface cleanser is good for a quick clean and the kitchen spray is a wonderful deep cleaning product that is perfect to use if you have a bit of time up your sleeve.
Another product by Dettol I really like and have a few stashed in different places are the little healthy touch hand sanitisers. I’ve been using these since before I had LuLu, they are great for keeping in your hand bag, nappy bag and in the car. I had the pump version as well on LuLu’s change table and also have them in the bathrooms. Hand sanitiser is a must for anyone, but especially for parents! 

Dettol also has a vast range of other great products for your family and home, I also really love the disinfectant wipes that make cleaning super fast & convenient. 
I’ve partnered with Dettol this month to bring you all an exciting give away just in time for Christmas. Having extra cleaning products is a blessing this time of year, we are cooking & entertaining more often and therefore cleaning more, so I thought this give away would be perfect.
For this give away you’ll win a gift pack of 3 brilliant Dettol products,
1x Surface Cleanser Wipes.
1x Surface Cleanser trigger – mint & lime.
1x Citrus Shower gel.
*Prizes are subject to change.

To enter please fill out the form below and follow these rules. 

Rules to enter give away & a few terms and conditions;

  1. You must be an Australian or New Zealand resident. 
  2. You must be a follower of this blog, either subscribe via Google, bloglovin or by email!
  3. You can gain bonus entries by following ModernWifeLife31 on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
  4.  A way to earn a bonus entry is to leave a comment below with your best cleaning tip for the Christmas season. 
  5.  Competition begins on Wednesday 11th November 2015 and ends Wednesday 18th November 2015.
  6.  Winner will be announced on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter on the 19/11/2015.
  7. The winner has 48 hours to contact me with their postal address. If there is no contact within that time frame I will redraw another winner.
  8. The prize will be sent to the winner by a representative for Dettol. 
  9. I have no control over the postage of the item, but I have full faith that your prize will arrive in a timely manner once I pass your postal details on to the company.
  10. Prize is final and cannot be changed or exchanged for money, the prize may vary slightly from the description given.

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Good luck! 
If you have any trouble entering please let me know and I will help you the best I can…
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