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Tips to Live a Life Without Plastic - Sunday, July 26, 2020

TIPS TO LIVE A LIFE WITHOUT PLASTIC

We’re coming to the end of Plastic Free July and here at Little Organics, we want to do our part of promoting this worthy movement. Most of us are guilty of buying and throwing away unnecessary plastic. Let’s be honest. No matter how good our intentions are, it’s incredibly difficult to remove plastic from our lives completely. It’s a cheap material for companies to package essentials in and it’s convenient for us to throw it away in the recycling without thinking about what happens to it. Out of sight, out of mind.

No one expects you to carry the weight of the world on your shoulders and ban anything that has even a tiny piece of plastic from your household. Gosh, we’re sure you have enough to worry about as it is! In saying that, if we are going to create a better world for our little ones then we need to “be the change we want to see in the world”. As parents, we set an example for our kids to follow when they’ve grown up. Never underestimate the power you have to make a difference.

And we need to start making a difference now more than ever. It would be impossible to paint a picture of how much plastic waste is out there in the world, but needless to say… it’s a lot and it’s not going to vanish through magical thinking. Here’s a link that details some of how much disposable plastic we use on a daily basis without knowing it. We’ve listed some handy tips below to help give you some ideas about how you can reduce your plastic footprint. Don’t put pressure on yourself to follow all of them religiously if you’re not comfortable making massive adjustments. Swap out what’s right for you until your prepared to make bigger changes in your life. If you’re able to cut out one plastic habit, it will make a significant impact to the world.

Innovative Food Coverings

There’s something about clingwrap that’s brainwashed us into thinking there’s no alternative when it comes to keeping leftovers. It’s handy and convenient, but there’s better alternatives out there to keep your food fresh.

Saucepan lids and plates over the top of bowls do fine. Beeswax is another fantastic option, in fact humans had been using beeswax to store their food for centuries before plastic was invented. By buying beeswax, not only are you using an environmentally friendly alternative, you’re also supporting beekeepers.

Bees are becoming an endangered species, and industries that manufacture bee products are vital for their preservation. If you can’t get away from needing clingwrap, consider using biodegradeable ones that can be recycled with your soft plastics

Alternatives to Plastic Bags and Jars

We all know that countries everywhere have moved to a ban on single use plastic and so you see everyone carrying funky reuseable bags everytime we shop. But did you know you can extend replacing plastic bags into your home? Consider using glass jars like this great collection from IKEA for storing ingredients in. With so much focus on our environment these days, companies are releasing many other options to replace the plastic bag. Consider organic mesh bags for all your fruit and veggies that can go straight into your fridge.

BYO Cups & Cutlery

Everyone has a favourite spot for coffee or knows a café that serves wonderful food at great prices. The trouble is, sometimes we’re put off from going there because of how many plastic-lined paper cups we’ve been going through or maybe we’re not fond of the plastic cutlery they provide. You can get around this by bringing our own washable cutlery in a case. For takeaway coffees, most cafes now accept you bringing in your own reusable cups.

The Humble Toothbrush

Did you know that over a billion plastic toothbrushes are thrown away every year in the United States? This alone creates 50 million pounds of waste annually. Simply replace your toothbrush with a bamboo or cornstarch one that biodegrades, and you’re on your way to making your small footprint in reducing all the plastic toothbrushes going to landfill. Try these fabulous Bamboo toothbrushes produced by Munch.

A Straw to Last

More than half a billion plastic straws are used every day around the world. There is a large range of stainless-steel straws these days but we think these new Joco straws are a real style and a convenience super star! They even dangle on your keyring so you never forget them!

 

The Reusable Coffee Cup

With COVID-19 cases worldwide, getting our caffeine hit from takeaway cafes might not be the most comfortable option at the moment. Eventually though, everything will open up again one day and we can finally enjoy our afternoon coffee with peace of mind. What will give you more peace of mind, is if you aren’t relying on the plastic foam cups the coffee comes in. Now is a good time to prepare by getting a reusable cup. We’re a big fan of this stylish cup from Joco, just cause they look so good! Even if you’re not using them to buy takeaway coffee in, they’re still just as pretty at home for now. They even have an artist range.

Stop Buying Plastic Toys!

Sometimes we’ll be out shopping and naturally our little ones get bored and run into a toy section of a bargain shop. They’re cheap so parents most often will pop it into their shopping to get that little ‘yay’ squeal even though you know they will be bored after five minutes. One of the key things to remember that a lot of these toys are not only harmful to the environment but harmful to your child. Most plastic toys contain harmful toxins as you can see in this infographic.

 

 

Keep these in mind the next time you allow them to reach out for a plastic toy and try to distract their attention away to something else instead. A promise to the park or a fun game of hide and seek when we get home often gets an exciting ‘yay’ too!

 

Kid Cops

No matter how diligent we are with trying to abstain from plastic, we’re all prone to slip up occasionally and forget about it until we’ve arrived at the shops and then, oops! We’ve got no choice but to buy several plastic bags to put the groceries in.

You can prevent this by getting your kids to help you out with your goals to live a plastic-free life. For example, you can assign your kids with an important mission to ensure you’re always prepared when going out. They can let you know if you’ve forgotten to put bags in the car. When you go shopping, they can look at the packaging and confirm with you if it’s plastic free or not. In this way, you teach your kids to learn how to be sustainable while making your life easier. Teaching them awareness at a young age can be the greatest gift you can give them and our environment too. 

 

 

 

 

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Change Your Habits - Sunday, July 19, 2020

CHANGE YOUR HABITS

If anything this Corona has taught us is that #stayinghome, saves lives. At the same time, for those lucky enough to be potterring around our home, it's helped us recognise and address some of the those niggling habits that somehow have manifested themselves over the years. 

It's the perfect time to reset our habits and start setting new ones!

 

Change your habits Image

 

There’s an old saying, “first we make our habits and then habits make us”. Habits are not only a way of doing things, but they’re a way of thinking too. Our last blog post talked about ‘imperfections’ and how we can have negative thought patterns. These are mental habits we’ve developed over time (for all kinds of complicated reasons), and the more you take notice of them the better you’ll be able to address them.

It’s subtle and we’re not even mentally aware when we’re doing it. It’s like driving a car to an area that’s in the same direction we frequently travel. Sometimes we find ourselves ending up at our workplace when we were suppose to do school drop off first! Of course, when we realise this mistake, we “refresh” our thoughts and map out the new direction where we want to go.

It takes time, but habits can be changed as long as you believe they can be. Research has shown that it takes a minimum of 21 days to an average of 66 days to break a habit. Course this varies according from people to people but the key thing here is to begin! Here’s a few good habits to help you get the ball rolling.

 

Begin anywhere

 

1. Set small objectives and don’t be in a hurry to complete them

We can get caught in this trap of expecting to accomplish so much, and then feeling overwhelmed when we set out to do these things. The reality is we’re not superhuman, and life will get in the way of our personal projects. There’s a reason why ‘less is more’ is a common saying. No doubt the biggest thing being tackled during lockdown is home organisation. If you're tackling your pantry, wardrobe or laundry for example, have a list of things you want to achieve for the week, and then rank them from most important to least important. Concentrate on one project at a time and slowly chip away at it each day. It can be tempting to do something all at once, but that leads us to wanting to finish it in a hurry and creeping into overwhelm. 

 

2. Be more creative with your free time

Video games are great entertainment for kids, but spending every minute of their spare time playing them isn't an ideal scenario. We are probably not setting the best example either if our own free time are spent watching streaming services like Netflix. Before you know it, every single member of the family is sitting in front of a screen and you might be texting your husband in the lounge to talk to him. Think of things you can do together as a family, like holding Friday movie nights, Saturday games night or Sunday cooking sessions. You can get your little ones engaged by giving them creative input into things like designing a board game or making a movie of your own together. Set a time each day to go for a family walk, scoot or bikeride. Once you have a routine time and activity every day, you will be more compelled to keep the habit and breaking that screen habit.

 

 

3. Pace your days and load up your freezer

Before corona, it was a habit to purchase food on the fly and buy as needed. With lockdowns and the corona pandemic, this habit quickly changed to weekly shops, home deliveries and meal planning. 

This habit probably was easier to break as the environment called for it. However, creating a good habit around meal planning isn't as easy as changing how often you buy. There will be days you stare at the fridge wondering what to feed the hungry family tonight and kicking yourself for missing a few of those key ingredients! 

Get help changing your habit by reading up and asking people how they do it well? Cookidoo for example if you are a thermomix user, breaks down your dishes into ingredients so you always know what's needed for your shopping list. Plan also for the days when you run out of steam. Being a mother is like running a marathon, so go at your own pace.

In an ideal world we’d always be full of beans and cooking restaurant quality dishes every night but in reality, make bulk food that you can stock up in the freezer like pre-made lasagna or sausage rolls. Pop in some easy premade meals from your local delicatessen in your shopping bag that allows for easy reheating. As long as it tastes good, no one is going to judge you for it!

 

4. Switch off socials ESPECIALLY at night

If you want a good night’s sleep then put away your phone an hour before bed and only use it to answer phone calls. That bright screen is terrible for your eyes at night! Formats like Facebook get continually updated all the time and are designed to keep you hooked on them. It’s so easy to get stuck in a cycle of Facebook and Youtube, browsing content for hours and not even enjoying it! You might be surprised how often you waste time on social media sites until you download an app that tracks how long you’ve been using them. Don’t kid yourself, social media addiction is real and too much of it can lead to negative thoughts. There’s a cure. Find a free app that helps you block the sites, as a reminder when you subconsciously go to the social media pages without thinking.

 

5. Smile more

When someone smiles at you, it’s natural to want to smile back. The best thing about a smile is that it's free but it's presence can be truly heartwarming.

Make it a habit to smile more at your partner. But do it in moderation or your partner might think you've gone crazy trying to maintain a cheesy grin 24/7. Jokes aside, smiling also works on yourself too. When you wake up and look in the mirror, instead of thinking about how you’re not as young as you once were or how dark those eye bags have become, give yourself a smile. You will feel better having your own reflection smiling back and it’ll give you a more positive and fresh start to the day. And one more thing, smiling, more often than not, it's contagious! But the good kind so don't forget to keep smiling today!

Smiling - It's Contagious Little Organics

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Imperfections - Sunday, July 5, 2020

 IMPERFECTIONS - The beautiful imperfections of motherhood

“Nobody’s perfect”, “Nothing’s perfect”. These phrases we hear or may say to ourselves all the time seem incredibly obvious especially as we navigate the journey of motherhood.

Those first few months will set the rhythm of expectations straight out the window. 

As we admire the perfection of our newborn in our arms, we can't help but feel overwhelm and stress on the other imperfections in our lives. This doesn't change as they grow older either and self doubt and mummy guilt seeps in.

We all have a natural tendency to demand perfection sometimes. If we recognise what these imperfections are, then we’ll have an easier time to disregard them. Here are 5 imperfections that creep into our thoughts without us even knowing it.

IMPERFECTION 1: We are not living up to the standards of others.

It’s impossible to have the approval of everyone in the world. When the kitchen is overflowing, and the house is a mess, you sometimes feel like you are failing. You're heart is full but you are physically and mentally exhausted after endless wake ups through the night.

Unfortunately, life isn’t so simple as being able to pick and choose who we interact with on a daily basis and sometimes this makes the pressure worse. A baby sleeping through the night when yours is not, a mother perfectly dressed when you have barely had time to shower today or a partner returning home to a kitchen full of dishes. We may feel like we begin to regularly disappoint others and ourselves without even knowing it. At the end of the day, you need to let go of these standards and understand that this is only temporary and does not define you. 

And the reality is, most people won't even notice or are too busy dealing with their own set of imperfections. There will be people who will embrace you for the imperfectly perfect you.

Don't let the imperfection be so dominating that it controls our destiny for us. 

IMPERFECTION 2: We failed at something.

This one can attack us in subtle ways we don’t even realise. Let’s say you like the idea of baking and want to take it up as a hobby in preparation for that 1st bday cake creation you envisioned. After the initial enthusiasm of buying the materials and watching Youtube tutorials, we get disheartened by your first project which looks like a complete mess. You’ve already learned so much about baking by this stage, but given how badly your cake turned out you abandon the new skill instead of trying to progress from there and get better.

This is a difficult imperfection to shake off in this day and age. The media constantly shows off all these stories about people who reached the pinnacle of success in their field. These images are heavily edited, because otherwise they would be large boring books about how dull and repetitive these people’s lives were before they became good at something. That baked cake may not look like the perfect instagrammable image but the outpour of love, the sweetness of the cake and baking failure may be come a laughable memory to look back years later with your child. Remember, progress is always better than perfection!

 

IMPERFECTION 3: There’s things we did in the past we’re ashamed of.

Imagine if we had access to platforms like Twitter and TikTok when we were teenagers. At some point in our lives, we’d be desperately trying to remember the passwords for emails like “h0t_punkr0ck_g1rl@hotmail.com” so we could remove all the cringeworthy and embarrassing things we wrote. Having regrets is part and parcel in life, and the person we used to be is not the same as the person we are now. 

Your past only matters as much as you want it to, and nobody has any right to judge you for it.

Take the example of Melissa Leong from Masterchef. She was found out for having written tweets from 2012 making fun of the show and its contestants. When asked why she didn’t delete the tweets, she defended herself by saying she didn’t need to present a “sanitized” version of herself on social media, and that her perspective has grown and changed over time. If she was able to publicly write something bad about Masterchef and become a judge on the show, why should your memories hold you back from who you want to become?

 

IMPERFECTION 4: Things don’t turn out the way we want them to.

A good way to sabotage our own happiness is to have expectations.

If we have high expectations, we’ll always feel let down when those heights aren’t reached. On the other hand, constantly lowering our expectations leads us down the road of becoming more miserable and pessimistic about what life can provide. Expectations can be extremely harmful when we push them onto others whether we mean to or not. We might remember our own parents’ expectations being too much of us when we were younger, and then unwittingly push those same expectations onto our own kids!

Having zero expectations is what we need to aim for. No expectations allow us to stay concentrated in the present moment and appreciate what we have now, instead of hoping things will get better in the future. 

 

 

IMPERFECTION 5: Life can be challenging and difficult.

Life isn’t an easy journey and there may be a strong temptation to find the perfect solution to all the difficulties presented to us in our day-to-day lives. It’s true. Reality is tough to deal with sometimes and even more so with lockdowns and the Corona Virus unfolding.

That doesn’t mean though that you need to feel desperately unhappy all the time.  'Life is not a problem to be solved but an experience to be had' are wise words from Alan Watts.

 

Sometimes we run into difficulties that we should work through, and it’s a shared experience we all have.

The more you try to think positively, the better you’ll get. Don’t be afraid to seek out family and friends who can empathise with you though. Taking on all the mental responsibility of putting up with the pain is admirable but doesn’t do your mental health any service. Reach out for those who will help get you through the tough times and remember to have their back when they’re going through the same thing too!

Motherhood will quickly teach you to appreciate the imperfections and how simple the joyful things in life is actually as easy as staring into your child's face as they peacefully sleep.   

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Nurturing a Growth Mindset - Sunday, June 21, 2020

NURTURING A GROWTH MINDSET

It sounds corny, but there really is power in believing in yourself. While we all have limitations in what we’re able to achieve, anyone can grow their talents if they have the right attitude.

 

Growth Vs Fixed Mindset Infograph by Little Organics

Take for example two kids, we’ll call them Child A and Child B who are both learning guitar. Child A has a fixed mindset and believes people are either good at things, or they’re bad at them. Child A is a talented musician and learns how to play a popular song very quickly. After learning the song, Child A shows off to their friends who are amazed by his ability to play the guitar. Child A tries to learn more difficult songs but becomes quickly discouraged by how hard they are. Child A thinks you need to be older to be able to play these difficult tunes and ends up playing easy songs every day for 30 minutes.   

Child B is not a talented musician but has a growth mindset and believes with enough work it’s possible to learn anything. Child B struggles to learn how to play songs that they’ve seen younger people learn quite easily. Despite this, Child B enjoys the challenge and knows they will feel good when they’re finally able to learn the song. Child B doesn’t show off to their friends, but instead concentrates on more difficult songs. Child B knows they will need lots of help with it, so asks their parents for a guitar teacher and practises hard songs every day for 10 minutes.

We won’t insult your intelligence by asking you which child you think becomes the better musician after a year. The point of the story is to demonstrate the difference between a fixed mindset and growth mindset. These are terms coined by Dr Carol Dweck, a psychologist whose research has led to remarkable developments in boosting a child’s self-esteem and motivation.

The best news is a fixed mindset isn’t fixed. For years neuroscientists have been saying the brain is like any other muscle in your body. The more it’s worked, the more it grows.

This sounds great in theory and we would all prefer our kids to be more like Child B than Child A. But kids aren’t robots and we can’t magically program them into becoming musicians, chefs or scientists by telling them to ‘work hard at it’.

However, there are several ways you can nurture a growth mindset in your little ones, so they’ll more readily embrace challenges in the future.

1.       Don’t praise your child for what they’re good at. Encourage them with things they’re struggling with.

Praising children is great for raising their self-esteem, but Dr. Dweck cautions too much of the wrong type of praise can have a negative effect. Statements like “you’re a great artist” and “you’re naturally good at basketball”, might be true, but it can stop them from trying to get better in those areas.

To prevent this happening, Dr. Dweck says praise is best directed towards areas your child is struggling with. The trick is to encourage their efforts, rather than praising their results. Here’s a video that shows an example of how this works:

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2.       Demonstrate the value of the process, not the results.

A common question kids ask when they want to get out of doing math, is “what’s the point of doing math, if we’re not going to use it when we’re older?”. The best reply to this is “when you do math, you’re exercising parts of the brain you can use for other things”.

Every time a child struggle in these subjects, the brain forms new pathways to help them get better at it. Spending an hour trying to understand something complicated helps grow their brain. Getting a correct answer is simply a result of how much their brain has grown.

3.       Identify when mistakes are becoming harmful

Children can often become frustrated by mistakes, especially in a classroom environment. They may compare their test scores with others and feel upset that they didn’t do as well as they expected. They may also feel they tried harder than others in the class and become ashamed of doing worse than them.

Look for common signs of mistakes doing harm. You will know our child better than anyone else and be able to see when they lose self-esteem after making errors. The next step is to help them work through it.

 

4.       Reframe the way they see mistakes

According to popular homeschooling website, Khan Academy, mistakes are a great opportunity for helping the brain to grow. There are different types of mistakes a child might make, such as being in too much of a rush. This is an opportunity to learn how to slow down and develop patience when doing tasks. It’s that old adage, slow and steady wins the race. Cliché but true. 

Reviewing mistakes is an even better opportunity for brain growth. After studying for hours and not doing so well on a test, most children’s reactions would be to throw away the paper and never look at it again. But little do they know that the brain had already started making connections to understand the problem. Throwing it away wastes all that potential for becoming smarter than they were before!

 

5.       Help them deal with frustration

The hardest thing about developing a growth mindset, is that it’s really hard to do! Like trying to lose belly fat or build muscles, developing intelligence is tough. Even kids who have a strong growth mindset prefer to do easy things that are fun, like playing video games or chatting online.    

If you see your child getting frustrated, let them know it’s normal and it’s something they can work through. According to Khan Academy, a good way to do this is through a three-step process. Let your child be honest about how they feel and recognise the emotion. Remind themselves it’s good to feel some frustration. Not only does it mean they’re human, but it means they’re on their way to learning something. Lastly, take some timeout to reset, by taking some time out from the challenge and then coming back to it after a few minutes of rest. 

 

 

 

 

 

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How to Treat Your Keepsakes - Sunday, May 10, 2020

Happy Mother’s Day! This day is all about you, and you deserve to be pampered and lots of appreciation on this special day! 

Hopefully, you’re also getting lots of presents that are especially valuable – like handmade gifts, or the first time your little one writes in a card with sweet letters of love dedicated to you.

 
These are the keepsakes we should all hang on to and keep forever. Like a fine wine, sentimental items age wonderfully, and we can look back on them in future years with a new appreciation. 
 
But as the years go by, we may find all these beautiful memories stashed away, taking up room and having to make hard choices about what to do with them.
 
To avoid this happening, there are five things you should keep in mind for your Mother’s Day gifts – Identify, Document, Organize, Upcycle and Limit.
 

Identify

 

Some handmade gifts can be especially creative, and your little ones might have their own explanation for what it is and what it’s called. If you have a gift like that, put a label on it. 

One day, you can hand it back to them as a gift of your own when they’ve grown up and remind them exactly what they made all those years ago!

 

Document

 

The memories of how you feel on the day you receive these beautiful gifts can be more important than the keepsakes themselves. 

On a special occasion like Mother’s Day, type up on a document what gifts you got and how you felt when you received them. You can look back on these journals and remind yourself just how much those keepsakes meant to you at the time. 

 

Organize

 

It’s nice to keep a drawing on the fridge or card on our chest of drawers as long as you can, but sometimes it needs to make room for something else. 
 
While it’s being used or on display, it’s good to plan ahead on how what to do with it next. It could be digitally storing it through photos, where you’re going to store it or file it in another temporary spot to be upcycled in the future.  
 
If you’re a fan of the Netflix show, Tidying Up With Marie Kondo, no doubt you’ve already made some gains in decluttering your home. 
If you haven’t, we definitely recommend giving it a watch. It’s filled with amazing advice that will make your life administration so much easier and give you ideas to help you store your keepsakes more efficiently.  

 

Upcycle

 

 The most efficient way to keep something is to ask yourself, ‘how can I incorporate this into my daily living?’ 

A collection of drawings you’ve been secretly filing away can be turned into a collage you can frame and hang on the wall. You can put all your Mother’s Day and Birthday cards into a fancy binder and add it to your bookcase. Scrapbooking is another way to upcycle and you can make a social hobby out of it. 
 
Sometimes you might unfortunately break a gift, but it doesn’t automatically mean you have to chuck it out. Again, ask yourself the question: ‘how can I incorporate this into my daily living?’ and find a new use for it. 
 
A broken hand painted flowerpot can be glued together and turned into something to hold your pens in. Play around with what you have and get creative!
 

 

 

Limit

 

It’s tempting to want to keep everything you get from your kids, but it’s not realistic. Besides, if you have so many keepsakes, it takes the shine off the ones that are extra special. 

When it comes to keepsakes that can’t be used or upcycled, you should buy a nice box to store them in for each child you have. This box is your limit for storing keepsakes, and you never get another box to go over this limit. 
 
If you want to add something new and don’t have the room for it, declutter expert Marie Kondo’s advice for keepsakes is, ‘ask yourself what you want to keep, not what you want to chuck’. That way you have the most valuable keepsakes in the box to hang onto.
 
Take pride in the past, but don’t let it get in the way of the present! 
 
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7 Tips For Parents To Help Cope With Stress And Anxiety - Sunday, May 3, 2020

“When I saw the coronavirus case numbers go up, the mental load for me as a mother had skyrocketed. I found myself wandering around the house in the middle of the night, restless and sleepless during the first few weeks as I was absorbing all the information from the 24/7 media coverage. I went to bed feeling overwhelmed and waking up unable to go back to sleep.

 
The worst fear was that I could be responsible for bringing in the virus to my precious family. I thought I’d woken up one night panicking because I hadn't wiped a grocery item, but that turned out to be a dream. Even in my sleep I couldn’t escape worrying about it! 
 
The day I was washing all the groceries on the front lawn with all my SunJellies baskets lined up, I officially declared myself corona looney. Despite this, I knew that without a doubt I wasn't going to stop.”
 
 
 
 
 
Stories like this are common among mothers and fathers recently. Parenting is extremely difficult at the best of times, yet we take it for granted when there’s no major crisis like the current pandemic.
 
If you’re one of the mothers or fathers out there who has become obsessed with social distancing, washing your hands and not touching your face to the point where you look like a crazy person then CONGRATULATIONS! You’re smart enough to realise this is a big deal and you’re doing the right thing by yourself, your family and the community.
 
At the same time, it’s important that we’re looking after our minds too. Psychotherapist Katie Hurley says that parental anxiety can have a circular effect. “Parents are stressed and it trickles down, kids experience stress and exhibit behavioural symptoms, and this triggers more parental stress.”
 
The good news is this also works in reverse. The better you get at coping mechanisms, the more likely it is your kids will mirror them and develop their own stress reduction techniques as a natural habit.
 
There’s heaps of relaxation strategies out there on the internet to help you. Everyone is unique and you might find that some strategies work better for you than others. Here are seven great tips to get you started.
 

1. Know the difference between stress and anxiety

 

Part of the skill in mindfulness is being aware of your feelings when they arise. Stress and anxiety are similar yet two different beasts. Stress is caused by things that are real. Anxiety occurs with things that are imagined. 

Being constantly bothered when you’re already trying to do a million things at once will make you feel stressed. Worrying that you’ll never be good enough as a parent is anxiety.
 
Next time you feel overwhelmed ask yourself: Is something causing me stress, or am I worrying about something out of my control? Then label your thoughts as either ‘stress’ or ‘anxiety’.
 
The reason this works is because as humans, we love to label things. Having a name for something gives us comfort and makes us feel safe knowing what it is. The more you’re able to realise you’re ‘stressed’ or ‘anxious’, the more your mind will be at peace with it.
 

2. Accept it and learn to laugh

 

Stress and anxiety aren’t pleasant, but they exist for good reason. They help us sense danger and how we respond to them. Telling yourself not to feel stressed is like trying to give up eating. You can’t stop something that’s natural and necessary for your body. When we try to block out these feelings, we end up becoming a ticking time-bomb and that doesn’t end well for anyone.
 
If you catch yourself feeling stressed, try to see the funny side of it. Studies show laughter activates and relieves your stress response, and while it’s easier said than done it’s a great skill for your kids to pick up on.
 
 

3. Meditate or try other relaxation strategies with your kids

 

Even if you’re not feeling stressed or anxious, any time is a great time to work on exercising mindfulness with meditation.
 
You might have little ones who are a bit restless and don’t like the idea of sitting still and doing nothing. That doesn’t mean you can’t get them to do other activities that use the same methods.
 
Blowing up balloons or blowing bubbles are a fun way to get your kids more focused on their breathing. Colouring in books and drawing pads are great for relaxation if they prefer to be more creative.
 

4. Stop Googling it

 

Anxiety is obsessed with Google and it’s not all bad. You might be worried about your clothes hanging on the line, so you use google to look up the weather.
 
But if one search leads to another search, to the point where you’ve been on the computer for hours trying to find an answer – that’s when anxiety has crossed the line into an unhealthy obsession with Google. We’re all guilty of this (although maybe not about the weather) and it’s nothing to be ashamed of.
 
Anxiety is always on the lookout for danger, so any hint of something bad coming up in the search results is going to make it want to know more. Remember, as great as the internet is it’s NOT the answer to everything.
 

5. Keep a journal

 

This is a great way to get things off your chest and encourage your kids to start writing more. If they’re too young to write, drawing works in the same way for them.
 
Get a pen and a notebook and start writing your thoughts and experiences. It doesn’t have to be every day, just whenever you have the time to spare and reflect on your stress or anxiety.
 
There might be days where you look back and feel embarrassed about something you wrote. This is totally normal, and your kids should know this.
 
A journal is a great habit for kids to pick up on to experiment with their writing. Many great writers were born because they just needed to release all their emotions on to paper.
 

6. Stay socially active

 

This is a tricky one under these new circumstances.
 
Being social is important for reducing stress and anxiety. Seeing a familiar face can help set our minds at ease. It’s great to have someone to talk to, and you never know how much they might appreciate your attention.
 
It’s not the same as going out to a café, but having regular Facetime or Skype meetups with your friends is helpful. It also sends a strong message to your kids about the importance of looking out for others.

 

7. Be kind to yourself

 

Psychologist Ellen Hendriksen, author of How to Be Yourself says ‘We are our own worst critic’. It’s good to question yourself, everyone needs a healthy dose of reality to be a great parent. If that little voice starts weighing you down, give yourself a pat on the back. Your fault is caring too much, and that’s a flaw every parent should be proud of!
 
Copyright @Littleorganics 2020
 
 
Imaged source from http://simpleslowlovely.com/
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Update from Australia Post - Saturday, April 25, 2020

An update we have received from Australia Post regarding the elivery of our online parcels. We understand times are tough and ask for your patience and understaning. Please order early to avoid delays on your essentials to allow extra time for deliveries.

At Australia Post, we are doing everything possible to keep delivering during the coronavirus pandemic. Almost all of our Post Offices are still open, while our posties and drivers are working to get parcels delivered to your customers.

 
 
With our business adapting to the challenges the current pandemic presents, our normal practice of delivery has been impacted. We are experiencing significant delivery delays due to limited flights, hygiene and social distancing requirements in our network (such as one person unloading a loose load trailer which halves productivity) and an increase in parcel volumes as more people shop online.
 
We appreciate the current delays are causing frustration and increased customer enquiries for both you and our contact centre. We have made some important changes to some of our tracking notifications to provide your customers with more information about the progress of their delivery.
 
We have a new notification - "We’ve got your delivery details" - which will now be the first notification sent to consumers when Australia Post has confirmed receipt of the manifest. We have also updated the "It’s on its way" notification to include information about delivery delays and refer customers to find out more detail on our website. Click here to see the enhanced notification experience and suggested messaging for your use to explain the delays.
 
You will be aware the Federal Government has announced it will soon implement changes to allow Australia Post to operate under relaxed regulatory requirements, including removing the Priority Mail letter product, delivering letters every second business day in metropolitan areas (with no change to delivery frequency in rural or remote areas), and extending the delivery times for regular intrastate letters to five days after the day of posting.
 
For Priority Mail, we will honour any customer orders and/or known lodgements and will support and keep you updated as we continue to work through the detail on these changes.
 
For those of you who use pre-purchased retail packaging, the Express Post guarantee of next day delivery with the Express Post network has been temporarily suspended due to the significant reduction of domestic passenger flights (which carry parcels), social distancing and hygiene requirements in our network, and the increase in volumes. Express Post is still available, but parcels may not be delivered next business day every time.
 
As a reminder, for information about changes to the letter service, up to date details on delays and impacts including any Post Office closures, please visit our website.
 
Our people continue to work tirelessly under difficult circumstances to support you and your customers so we appreciate your ongoing support in treating them with the courtesy and respect they deserve.
 
Thank you very much for your understanding and stay safe.
 
Kind regards,
 
Gary Starr
Executive General Manager
Business and Government
 
 
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Little Organics Breastfeeding Hamper | Gift Hamper for New Mums - Monday, February 17, 2020

Little Organics Breastfeeding Hamper - Give yourself or a friend a precious gift!

 

We call this our breastfeeding delight! A hamper full of things to support us during those strange first days and weeks of totally not knowing what’s going on with your body and how to get baby to latch properly!

I remember the first two weeks with the first was so difficult, it’s amazing that I’ve forgotten all about it after breastfeeding both kids for so long. Luckily a lot of different nurses came out to see me and I found that lying in bed was most comfortable until I gradually was in tune with everything and became more confident. I blame it on the breastfeeding as it’s suppose to be the same as running a marathon 🤷‍♀️ but I was always hungry.

With my second, it was great to have these new mama inspired business brand come up with lactation cookies and tea. Especially when you are short for time.

A heat pack is a traditional thing for me. My mum insisted I had to lay in bed, keep warm and have one on my tummy all the time and because I was always hot, the liquid flowed easily.

The Breastpads are great, reusable but I must admit I couldn’t use them the first few weeks as I was changing towels almost non stop! Maybe the heat worked well after all! We also had to pack our bamboo Nursing singlet. Comfy and soft as for you to wear day in day out.

Last and not least is the @badgerbalm Nursing balm for first few weeks of trial and error! Don’t despair, always ask for help. I hope these things are useful to you too but of course fed is best. There is pressure everywhere so do what you feel is right for you. You got this mama bear 😘

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Top 3 reasons why we would choose Holle formula over another formula in the market. - Thursday, March 7, 2019

Becoming a mum is such an exciting and at time overwhelming experience. There are so many things a new mum needs to get her head around including feeding. Whether breast feeding or bottle feeding, both methods require a little practice and trial and error.

There are many reasons a new mother may formula feed and luckily there are organic and natural options available in the market offering your baby the best possible start in life.

Choosing formula can be a daunting and overwhelming experience especially for a first time mum. There’s such a plethora of choice out there… At Little Organics, we have been stocking Holle since day 1 but it's the parents who come in looking for it who has actually taught me about how great this brand is.

When we first started receiving Holle Baby formulas from USA, it made me wonder why parents would purchase it all the way from us here in Australia and pay expensive shipping to get it delivered. Turns out, we are so lucky that it's so easily accesible to us and that it is such a superior formula that meets really stringent European standards. 

 These are our top 3 reasons why we would choose Holle formula over another formula in the market.

1. Holle is not genetically modified and 100% natural. There are no chemicals, artificial colours or flavours or preservatives.

Sure, many things are hailed as organic these days but EU regulations are the strictist to the highest possible standards. This means ingredients such as corn syrup, glucose, fructose, rice syrup, table sugar (Sucrose) or carrageenan are not allowed to be used in their formula. Breastmilk is generally sweet and the Europeans have found that using lactose or maltodextrin are more viable alternatives for our young babies. These complex carbohydates has starch like properties and yet doesn't taste sweet. Because of the shorter chain length, it is easier for babies to digest and releases energy slower than sugar. Many mums find babies are more settled, regurgitate less and happier on the Holle formula for this reason. 

2. Holle formula is produced on Demeter Farming.

What is Demeter Farming? Demeter farms follow EU regulations and international rules to the letter, which is actually even better than normal organic farming. Demeter's 'biodynamic' certification requires biodiversity and ecosystem preservation, soil husbandry, livestock integration, prohibition of GMO and viewing the farm as a living holistic organism. Interpretation? Happy cows living on luscious farms makes for better quality milk and healthier children.

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3. Holle is one of the few brands that offers an Organic Goat Milk option.

Goat milk is taunted to be the closest to breastmilk so is more easily digested by growing babies. This helps with less digestive problems, colic and wind and is well tolerated. It is important to note that some babies who cannot tolerate cow's milk thrive on goat's milk but there are the exceptions as the milk still contains lactose. It just contains less than cow's milk. The main benefit of using oat's milk for cow's allergy is the makeup of the goat's milk proteins and fats. This helps settle better in baby tummie's as the proteins in goat milk form smaller curds as the stomach acid binds to the protein and begins to digest.

We are thankful we can help parents out with this great brand and always have stock on hand of the cows baby formula and goat baby formula from Holle. Find our range and bulk buy prices here.

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Recipe of the Week - Gluten Free Chocolate Cake with Ganache and Fresh Berries - Tuesday, November 20, 2018

The Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix

We've got you covered for the silly season with a cake that is as easy to make as 1,2,3!

Ingredients:
1 packet Gluten Free Chocolate Cake mix
1/3 cup vegetable oil
200ml water

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 170°C and line an 20-22cm cake tin with baking paper.
2. Empty the contents of the packet into a bowl.
3. Add the oil and water and whisk until smooth.
4. Pour into the cake tin and bake for 35-40 minutes.
5. Allow to cool before cutting.

Why not make a chocolate ganache to really impress! Method below;

Chocolate Ganache
1. Heat 200g coconut cream in a small saucepan. When hot, add 200g chopped dark chocolate (50-60%) cacao solids, dairy free if possible.
2. Remove from the heat and whisk until the chocolate has melted into the coconut cream.
3. Spread over cold cake or allow the ganache to cool and then whip it into a mousse.

Impress those guest with your baking skills.

Image and recipe from The Gluten Free Food Co.

 

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