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Hood Mamma Edit Coolness

Hood Mamma Edit Coolness

You may or may not have recently seen the amazing collaboration shoot that we did with Motherhood Melbourne recently. An amazing idea that celebrate all things Melbourne : bloggers, businesses and services. Holly from Motherhood Melbourne brought together the most amazing team to help shoot and showcase gorgeous clothing and accessories for Mums and their babes. It was such an honour to be part of this team, to help shine some love onto some up and coming businesses. Having my children be part of the day was so exciting, and seeing the results made my heart sing. It’s amazing what can happen when people come together to support one another!

✖️ The dream team ✖️
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BEHIND-THE-SCENES //
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HOOD MAMAS //
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MAMA THREADS ETC. //
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KIDS THREADS N’ TOYS
Here are my favourite snaps from the shoot, featuring some amazing threads from the above businesses!
Choose your own adventure! Netflix Interactive Stories (and a little giveaway to boot)

Choose your own adventure! Netflix Interactive Stories (and a little giveaway to boot)

Just when you thought Netflix couldn’t be more awesome: they launch their new Interactive Stories. If you’ve ever been at school, you would be familiar with the concept of ‘choose your own adventure’. The concept is a simple one. Everyone starts the story in the same place, but at specific points along the way, the reader needs to make a decision. It may be about a character, a setting or a plot. Making small decisions transforms the story, and takes you on a journey different to the next person. The one thing that traditional television has not allowed, is the ability for it’s viewers to choose the way their show evolves, unfolds and ends. Netflix has brilliantly brought this to life with their Interactive stories.

Curious? Here is a video to explain it further:

Recently, I sat down with Ella and Hudson with Netflix loaded to out iPad. Currently, they have two interactive titles:

  • Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale
  • Buddy Thunderstruck: The Maybe Pile

In our house, fairy tales rule, and so it was an easy decision to choose Puss in Boots! It begins like any regular show, where the characters begin to tell their story and set the scene. However something then changes, with Puss in Boots turning towards the audience and asking them to consider how the story will be told and unfold! Puss in Boots finds himself locked in a series of stories that he needs to navigate and find is way through. It’s like a maze where the children have control.

At one point Puss in Boots finds himself in the story of Goldilocks with the Three Bears staring at him.

The viewer is asked to make a choice of whether the bears are friends or foes. The 13 different choices throughout the episode lead to two different conclusions to the show, which is aimed at children between four and six.

The shortest path through the story makes an 18 minute-long episode, while the longest route through the options creates a 39 minute-long experience.

What I love about these stories is the fact that each time your child watches it, the story can be completely different. Your children have the chance to learn how a subtle change in character, scene and emotion can lead you to a very different outcome. It helps the children develop their attention and consider how their decisions actually effect the story. They themselves become the author and have the power to be the directors of their own show.

It is a beautiful addition to the every growing Netflix catalogue. One that I know my children really adore, and I know you will too.

WANNA KNOW SOMETHING EVEN MORE EXCITING? WE ARE GIVING AWAY 4 NETFLIX SUBSCRIPTIONS!

To celebrate, I have combined forces with Netflix to give away 4 x 3 month subscriptions to Netflix for you to use!!! To enter, simply head over to my Instagram page here!

Netflix
Ella helping Puss in Boots to make a decision!
Puss in Boots is stuck in fairy tale stories and needs your help!
Interactive Stories are available on mobile devices!

 

Superhero Sleepwear with Warner Bros & Best and Less

Superhero Sleepwear with Warner Bros & Best and Less

Winter is coming and we all know that this means time to rug up and battle the cold. Nothing is better than putting on a new, soft pair of pyjamas. Kids love nothing more than dressing up as a Super Hero, so when Warner Bros. Consumer Products Australia and New Zealand (WBCP) and DC Comics decided to combine the two and bring out a new range of sleepwear featuring your favourite Super Heroes, they were on to something! Available through Best & Less , their range caters for the Super Hero in any child, boy or girl, young or old. The sets not only include soft cosy pants and a matching top, but they are paired with their very own Super Hero mask to create the perfect sleep time costume! Your little Batman or Batgirl will go to bed dreaming of their favourite powers…. just like my two!

These awesome sets are available in sizes 3-7 for a limited time only. Whether you’ve got boys or girls, there is something for everyone!

Best and Less Super Heroes Warner Brothers Sleepwear
Batgirl!

Best and Less Super Heroes Warner Brothers Sleepwear
Batman!
What’s even better is the fact that I will be giving away six sets of pyjamas for six lucky followers.

To win, simply head to my Instagram account @happyellaafter  and:

  1. Like the image
  2. follow @happyellaafter and @bestandless
  3. Comment on which set you would like to win (Batgirl or Batman)
  4. Tag two friends
  • For an extra entry, leave a comment underneath this blog post indicating which Super Hero your child would be if they could choose anything they like!

Open to Australian Residents only.

T’s & C’s & Stuff

  • Comp opens Thursday 11th May at 8pm and closes Thursday May 18th at 9pm.
  • One entry per person (no comp accounts please)

This giveaway is not sponsored, endorsed or administered by Instagram. By entering you are confirming that you are 18+ years of age, and release Instagram of any and all responsibility and agree to their terms of use!

*In partnership with Warner Bros. Consumer Products.

Nuts about Netflix Update

Nuts about Netflix Update

IT’s time to share some more NETFLIX love. Recently, Ella has been loving the ability to search for the shows she wants to watch by clicking through the various characters..Rather than having to find TV shows by scrolling through lists, NETFLIX allows little ones to search visually. IT means that the shows are grouped together in seasons. It’s so child friendly, it makes things so easy.

Screenshot 2015-07-22 17.39.57

Netflix has a dedicated section for kids under 12 years old featuring dozens of original series for kids as well as TV shows and movies from great partners like PBS, Disney Channel, DreamWorks Animation, Mattel, Hasbro, Lego and Scholastic, all in a commercial free environment. The dedicated section for kids is available across a broad range of devices including PCs and Macs, iPads, game consoles, streaming devices and smart TVs. Members are provided a kids profile upon sign up and can customize additional profiles for their kids. The kids experience features a character bar where you can find a deep selection of great TV shows and movies featuring that character. Kids, parents and caregivers will also be able to scan through row after row of movies and TV shows organized by easy-to-understand genres like superheroes, princesses, dinosaurs and girl power, featuring clear and simple descriptions of the plot of each title.

Screenshot 2015-07-22 17.40.06

Netfliz also allows you to create profiles for various members of your family. Each time you log on, it asks you who is watching. It remembers what you watched recently and suggests shows that you may be interested in. It is just wonderful!

Do you have NETFLIX? What do you like about it? I’d love to hear your thoughts below!

kate

Netflix: The initial verdict

Netflix: The initial verdict

images-2I was recently thrilled to have been asked to be a member of the new NETFLIX Stream Team. A select group of Australian and New Zealand bloggers who have been asked to try and share our experiences with this brand new service that has hit our screens. Over the next year, I’ll be sending you all reviews, tips, and previews of what’s to come. I have to start by saying that my husband was pretty excited to “finally’ be able to reap A reward of my hard work in blogging over the past three years. I have been lucky enough to review many products and experiences that focus mainly on children and Mums, and this new feature to my blog, certainly appeals to all members of the family.  So with our subscription and iPad mini in hand, we excitedly signed us all up, and from the get go, it has been a great experience so far.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Netflix and how it works, let me give you a brief summary:

  1. It is an online streaming service for your television, and mobile devices. It features hundreds of television shows and movies from the USA, UK, Australia and around the world.

  2. You pay a monthly subscription cost for the service. A very reasonable $8.99. The first month is free for you to trial.

  3. You can watch whatever you like, when you like. It is ‘on demand’.

So with those three things in mind, here are my thought’s so far…..

  • I love how you can create profiles for each member of your family. When you switch on it asks you who is watching. It remembers what you have watched, and suggests TV shows and movies based on your preferences.
  • I love how you can watch it on two devices simultaneously.
  • I love the search function and easy use. It is simple to navigate, on any device.
  • In the KIDS section, you can browse in so many ways. I love how you can browse based on your favourite character!
  • If you love Spotify, then you will love Netflix. Much like Spotify streams music, and you basically ‘rent’ the songs, so does Netflix with movies and TV shows. The best thing is it can travel with you anywhere you have access to the internet.
  • There is a great range of shows for any taste and age. The range is continuing to grow.
  • You can create lists to watch shows later. For me, as a Mum this is more like  a’wish list’ of shows that I’d love to watch when I have the time. The best thing is though that it will remember it…for when I eventually find the time!
You can search through the KIDS section based on your favourite characters!
You can search through the KIDS section based on your favourite characters!

Some things to keep in mind…

  • You really need to ensure that you have an unlimited plan for your internet usage, if you plan to watch shows regularly. There has been some debate about how much data it uses, so you need to ensure that you have the right plan to fit your needs.
  • You can access parent controls for children and teenagers. Something to definitely keep in mind if you are concerned about ratings.
  • WIFI signal. You need to ensure that your signal is strong in the areas of your home where Netflix will be accessed.
Screenshot 2015-05-19 10.13.21
Play on 2 devices at once!

Above all, we have simply loved Netflix so far. It is so incredibly easy to use. The set up is almost non existent! So if you would like to know how you can access netflix in your home or mobile device, then head on over to their website today!

kate

 

When did the word ‘beautiful’ become ugly?

When did the word ‘beautiful’ become ugly?

I don’t normally write posts about other articles I read, but today I came across a story that really made me think. Today Mamamia posted a story called: ‘If you meet my daughter, please don’t tell her she is ‘beautiful'”.  Written by Mum Ally Grace, this story was indeed written from the heart, and it was a brave message of challenging the world and the way she has chosen to raise her daughter and tackle an issue that is close to many.

beauty-1

If you have not read the article, you really need to. You see Ally has a daughter who is now five years old. From the moment she was a baby, she was challenged by the idea of calling her ‘beautiful’. She felt a real uneasiness by the connotations that this word brings, and the pressure that society puts on girls to indeed ‘be beautiful’. The pink, the princess, the perfect looks. She simply did not want her daughter growing up thinking that in order to be ‘beautiful’, she had to conform to the expectations of modern society. So she decided to challenge this notion and erase the word from their household. She does not want people calling her daughter beautiful. She wants her daughter to flourish, to be who she wants to be, to create a self perception and character that is based on her own understanding of the world. She says:

“If you happen to meet my daughter, feel free to speak to her, be kind to her, converse with her and spark her interest.But please refrain from telling her that she is “beautiful”. We don’t want your judgement.”

After reading it myself, I felt two things: 1. Admiration and 2. Sadness. Firstly, I truly admire her persistence and determination to challenge society and the negative ways in which we mould our girls towards achieving ‘perfection’ based on looks and stereotypes. I hope that I too can help Ella, and my next child (girl or boy), to be who they want to be without the feeling that they need to ‘be’ what others ‘want’ them to be. I hope she follows her interests, dreams and passions no matter what they are. I hope that she dreams big and does not see the world as a barrier towards achieving her dreams. I hope that we can support her through the tough times. Through peer pressure, through teenage hood and through all of the ups and downs that life will bring. I just want her to be happy, and I truly admire Ally for wanting the same for her child, and making a stand agains what society believes girls ‘should’ be in life.

However I also felt an overwhelming sense of sadness. I felt as though somehow she made the word ‘beautiful’ an ugly word. A swear word. A word that should not be used. I completely understand her point of view and the sentiments behind it. However I am sad that she is not tackling the hard task of redefining ‘beautiful’ to ensure that her daughter understands the true meaning of the word.

I want my children to feel beautiful inside and out. I want them to understand that there is so much beauty in the world. In the way we feel, in the way we treat others, in the way we appreciate life. I want them to love beauty in all of its forms. I don’t want them to think that in order to be beautiful, they has to be a princess with perfect hair, skin, makeup and a skinny body. I want them to develop a positive self perception and self confidence. I want them to be persistent and to treat others with empathy and compassion. However I do want them to see beauty in their life, and feel as though they are beautiful. I don’t want it to be a negative, but rather a chance to explore what beauty really means, and how they can develop a beautiful character.

I guess I’m just sad that the word ‘beautiful’ has become an ugly word. There is so much to be thankful for in life, and as a parent I want to help my children understand it’s true definition. I want it to be a positive word in our house and in our lives for many years to come.

kate

*image linked to it’s original source.

 

Ella’s 1st Birthday on Bondville

Ella’s 1st Birthday on Bondville

Screen Shot 2013-10-01 at 7.55.34 AMToday we are thrilled to see Ella’s First Birthday featured on the super stylish Bondville Blog. The brainchild of Stephanie Bond, Bondville features a whole host of fabulous Australian products, designs and art for kids. Stephanie supports Australian and Hand made products and features a whole host of ideas that would inspire any family. The aim is to help Mums and Dads, whether it be with styling a new nursery, creating a magical birthday party on a budget, or featuring new fashions for kids.

Key categories on the site include:
Party Ideas (featuring real Australian kids parties)
Room Ideas (featuring real Australian kids rooms)
Stylish Kids (featuring Australian-designed kids fashion)
Gift Ideas (featuring Australian-designed products for Mum, kids and Home)
Printables (featuring Australian-designed print-your-own stationery)

It is with great pride therefore, that Stephanie featured Ella’s First Birthday Party. I was so excited to be able to share my tips and advice for creating a beautiful celebration without breaking the bank. When I originally posted about her birthday back in March, I wanted to share my ideas with parents so that they too could afford to create the perfect party for their kids. There are so many options out there…whether it be on etsy, a diy idea on pinterest, or a youtube clip. By using the power of technology, you can transform simple paper into a stylish creation!

Some of the ideas from the blog post include:

Creating your own personalised invitations with the help of graphic designers on Etsy. The one we used was J for Jordy.  The other stroke of pure genius is using a Cake Rescue Kit from Cake 2 the Rescue. Never again will I need to worry about the perfect cake…

Screen Shot 2013-10-01 at 7.56.03 AM

Simple, beautiful and personalised decorations from Vens Paperie on Etsy. All you do is send off your child’s name and age, and they send you a PDF to print and laminate! We also made the tissue Pom Poms by watching a youtube clip. All it takes is a little patience!

Screen Shot 2013-10-01 at 7.56.25 AM

And finally, the sweets were clearly the piece de resistance, so simple recipes like this one from Kidspot helped to make the sweet treats yummy! These mars bar teddy cars were a real hit!

tiny-teddy-chocolate-cars

I hope that Stephanie’s Readers enjoy the post and can benefit from the ideas and advice! It’s a great site with loads of suggestions for Mums and Dads! You can follow Bondville via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest!

Thanks Steph!!

kate