7 months & still TV free… 

Kids don’t remember their best day of television.

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Hey friends,

Back in February I did a blog post about giving up TV (you can read it HERE)… And I said if we made it to 6 months I would do another update… So here we are… 7 months later and we still are pretty much TV free, with a few exceptions.

  • Trent & I occasionally watch a movie together when he is on days off.
  • Trent likes to watch Netflix sometimes, it’s his way to unwind.
  • LuLu has been allowed to watch DVDs a little bit, mainly because in the past month we’ve all had colds twice and popping a movie on is the only way I can get her to lay down and rest… Her DVD choices lately have been; Skippy the bush kangaroo, Milo & Otis, a national geographic doco on dogs & cats – basically any “real animal” type of movie/program! She also gets to watch a movie sometimes if she visits her best friend.

For me personally, I don’t care to watch TV at all.. I find I am far too busy for it. By the time the night ends and I’ve finished everything I need to, I’ll do some social media updates & I’m done for the night… I don’t miss it and I feel my brain is healthier for not knowing the latest happenings in Summer Bay.

Positive benefits I’ve noticed since going TV free;

  • LuLu is more creative and her already big imagination has sky rocketed even further.
  • Any nonsense catch phrases or language traits that she had that were similar to any children’s tv characters are gone.
  • She isn’t exposed to advertisements marketed for children or possible inappropriate shows/ads.
  •  I feel her vocabulary has grown even more. (I do and always have spoken to my children in a sensible manner, just as though I was speaking to an adult. Yes, when they are tiny babies I speak a little cute/baby to them, but I mainly speak very sensibly to them. This has benefited LuLu greatly and she is well spoken & has a vast vocabulary. She asks what words mean if she doesn’t know and then strives to use them in context.)
  • We eat every single meal at the dining table.
  • She is even more interested in doing learning actives and crafts and can often do so unattended.
  • She is more mature – maybe that has just come with her getting older, but I truly believe silly kid shows like Peppa Pig/Charlie & Lola etc encourage children to behave bratty & silly.
  • All her toys are being played with. Each day she swaps between toys and each day is a new made up scenario.
  • She is learning so much from doing activities, learning books & reading. She loves to learn & that makes me so proud.
  • She has always loved being outside but she is outside & being active even more.
  • My mind is clearer and not consumed with nonsense.
  • I have more time and I am much more productive.

So does LuLu ask to watch tv? Nope… She does very rarely pick a movie and ask for it, and sometimes we say yes. Or if we suggest going outside or doing another activity 9/10 times she would pick going outside or the other activity. Movies are a last resort mainly used if she isn’t feeling well or she needs to rest.
She also knows now the tv is not broken, we just don’t watch it.
Will we turn the tv back on? I hope not… I am very happy with how our lives are without it. I do enjoy watching the occasional feel good, inspiring & uplifting movie – but that’s it.
I have been asked how we stay up to date on world issues. Well, if something major happens in our world it is on social media in minutes. I follow news channel accounts for this reason and to be honest, I would prefer to personally view the segment of news updates on my phone as the chance of LuLu seeing & hearing it is low. So why is that? Because she is almost 4, she does not need to know right at this very moment how very awful this world can be. Heck I am 28 and I don’t want to know half the time about the atrocities & devastation that go on in the world!  She will know soon enough, but for now I want her brain to be full of joy & her biggest concerns only being what words mean and if she is going to play farms or barbies that day.

So, do you think you could go TV free?
If you are considering it I truly encourage you to do it, it isn’t as hard as you think and you & your family will benefit greatly from it! Personally I believe it has been one of the greatest decisions we’ve ever made!
Try it for a week, or a month or 6 months! Let me know how you go or what your thoughts are! Let me know in the comments or connect with me on my social media…
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Snapchat; Bindy_30

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What am I gonna tell my kids when they see all of this bullshit that goes down on TV?
When the whole world is down on its luck, I gotta make sure they keep their chin up.
– Old Dominion.

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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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6 tips for a strong marriage. {6 year wedding anniversary}

In you, I’ve found the love of my life & my truest, closest friend.

Hello friends!

Yesterday Trent and I celebrated 6 years of marriage – for the past month I’ve been thinking it was 7, whoops! But it is 6!

Wedding photo

I thought in this post I would share 6 tips for a strong marriage… Now I am not claiming our marriage is perfect, we are human! But 6 years and still going strong is a great sign!

  1. Be each other’s best friend. Trent is my absolute best friend, I have my 2 best girlfriends – but he knows me on a level no one else does and I swear we can read each other’s minds! I can be thinking of something and he just does it or appears with it… (Or maybe he is just amazing at knowing when I need a glass of wine!)
  2. Keep dating your spouse. This! Remember this!! Do not let it go, ever! It is so easy to slip into habits where we get super comfortable with each other & all romance & effort goes out the window… Don’t do that – sure get comfortable, but don’t get so comfortable you stop making an effort! Tell your partner you think they are hot, let them know you are thinking of them, do unexpected surprises for them – even just buying their favourite drink or chocolate while at the shops – little things count! If you would’ve done it back in the “dating days” – do it now! Doing it now is even more important!
  3. Build each other up. Brag about your husband, tell him he looks great, tell him about how awesome he is – let him know you value and absolutely adore him. Compliments go a long way! Building up your partner gives them confidence and motivates them to be even better as a person… If you are constantly negative and have nothing nice to say about the person you chose to marry – well, nothing positive will come from that! They will lose confidence and motivation. The words we say are powerful, chose to build your husband up – not tear him apart.
  4. Trust, respect & understanding. A marriage is nothing without out these 3. You need to be able to trust each other, respect each other & have a clear understanding on how you want your life & marriage to be. If you aren’t on the same page with these – you need to be! I trust Trent completely, we have a respectful relationship where we understand our roles & we work together as a team in every aspect of our lives…
  5. Be each others strength & be strong together. There will be hard days. Really, really hard days – everyone has them… There have been times in our marriage that I feel would’ve possibly broken other people, moments that have shattered us & each time we’ve come back stronger. Our marriage has had some absolutely wonderful highs & some heartbreaking lows – each time I am so thankful to God for Trent. He has been strong for me countless times & together we are so strong.
  6. Communicate & forgive. This is basic, but learn to talk to each other… Don’t sit in silence and stew with anger – be open & honest. Learn to disagree respectfully & agree to disagree. Also forgive, no one is perfect – yourself include, so learn to move on & forgive.
  7. Bonus point – HAVE FUN. Learn to laugh… Sometimes if you don’t laugh you’ll cry, especially when you are parents. Be silly, play jokes & don’t take life too seriously… Have fun & happiness is contagious. (Ladies, remember if Mumma ain’t happy, ain’t no one happy! Our tone controls the tone of our home!)

What are your tips for a great & strong marriage?
(Trent would like me to add in here, “happy wife, happy life” – that’s his tip.)
I would love to know your tips, please comment below or on my social media!
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To celebrate our anniversary yesterday we had a “couple photoshoot” with Tina from “Tina Ebenal Photography”. We have so many sweet images of our kids but it’s rare to get a photo of “just us” – so this was a real treat! Tina was wonderful to work with, very professional, calm & knowledgable. We’ve had a sneak peek of some of the images and they are beautiful!

Tina Ebenal photography

Tina Ebenal Photography
You can see more of our photos and find Tina on Facebook, Instagram & her website HERE.

Have a great week!
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Get to know me | 50 random questions. {VIDEO}

Hey friends!
Happy Friday!

I am back today with another video… This one is a “get to know me” style video. (Basically I googled the get to know me tag and answered the questions!)

To watch the video click HERE…
I would love to know what you learnt about me in this video and if you have any questions for a future Q&A type of video please comment below or contact me on my social media!
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Have a wonderful weekend!
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PS: Have you seen my blog post from Monday? On the most stunning unicorn party? Check it out HERE.

A magical UNICORN party.

Be a unicorn in a field of horses.

There is a massive trend currently sweeping the world, unicorns.
Unicorn everything is everywhere!
LuLu’s best little friend is a lover of all things horse & unicorn, it is so sweet. LuLu doesn’t mind horses or unicorns but she knows Sophie loves them more. So each time we see horse or unicorn anything she has to stop and I have to talk her out of “needing to buy it for Soph”.
Over the weekend we attended the most beautifully decorated unicorn party to celebrate darling Sophie turning 4. (I still am coming to grips with the fact our girls are 4 this year, FOUR!) 
I thought I would share some photos from this stunning little celebration in case any of my friends are looking to have a unicorn themed party…
Everything was done by Sophie’s Mumma, my best friend, the most talented, crafty & amazing party decorator I know – Kelsie. All of LuLu’s parties have been outstandingly stunning because of her, she has helped me so much with decorating… I can have a good idea, but I am hopeless at executing it – where as Kels can have an idea and actually make it happen! Heck, I can half explain the crazy idea in my head & she can actually turn it into some pinterest worthy creation! The woman is an absolute magician with craft supplies & decorations!
(I will do some posts in the future of LuLu’s past parties.)

Unicorn birthday cake

The delicious birthday cake. (In LuLu’s mind Kelsie made the unicorn and caught the fairy… I may have let her look through my old Lady Cottington’s pressed fairy books the other day…)

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Unicorn party

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Unicorn fudge

Delicious unicorn fudge!

Unicorn cakeunicorn cake Unicorn cake

If you have any questions about any of the party details feel free to contact Kelsie on Instagram; @Kmck85 

Thanks so much for reading & if you like come follow along on social media;

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PS; Have you seen my latest YouTube video? Check it out, HERE. 

 

Starting again.

The comeback is always stronger than the setback! 

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Hi friends and welcome,

Welcome to the new Modern Wife Life 31.

I had no intention of moving over to WordPress, but my little blog over on blogger crashed and had some tech issues (thanks Photobucket!) and while it required basically an entire overhaul, I figured I  may as well start a new blog!
I also thought if I’m moving everything I may as well make an exciting change & become a .com – that is right, my site is now modernwifelife31.com – this may not seem like a huge deal – but to my tiny blogging self, I am almost ready to pop the champs! I’ve been wanting to do this for ages!

And continuing on with exciting news – I am coming back to YouTube!
You can check out my first video in about 4 years HERE. Please excuse the awkwardness & glancing at the display screen, they will improve – I promise! Please leave a comment below or on my social media about what videos you would like to see in the future!
(For those that don’t know I’ve been on YouTube for about 6 years as “Bella In Bindyland” & stopped uploading after my daughter was born.)

I was going to hold off on publishing this site until next week, but I’m just too excited about it. Please excuse any glitches at the moment as I still try to figure everything out and continue to edit the site. I am still repairing many of my old posts – but it’s coming together! Slowly but surely!

In the mean time I would appreciate it greatly if you could resubscribe to this new site & give it a follow on my social media if you haven’t already. Your support means so much to me!

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