Monday, January 31, 2011

Competition winners

Thanks to everyone that entered! I'm pleased to announce that the winners are:

1ST PLACE was Joanne with:
"Working a four day week and realising your Thursday is your Friday is amazing... everytime!"


2ND PRIZE goes to Kelly (On Polkadot Lane)
"A quiet house, knowing that all my children are happy and safely tucked up in their beds... plus a glass of wine..amazing everytime"

Congratulations, girls! Enjoy spending your vouchers :)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Competition closing soon!

Don't forget to enter my competition here.



Tell me (in 25 words or less) what is "amazing... everytime" to win:

$150 at Borders Bookstores
$100 at Spotlight


With thanks to The Soup and Finish Quantum

Drawn next week :)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Babushka Designs - on facebook :)

I did it - I opened a Facebook shop! I'm just going to see how it goes - I may be back to etsy before you kow it ;)

Here are some of the things I have on offer:




We'll see how it goes...

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PS. Didn't go so well! So I'm back to selling to friends :) If you are after any of my 'creations', leave me a message and I will get back to you ASAP!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Why not... Today?

I usually have a New Year's Resolution which I try to stick to.

One year it was... 'Wear less black' (harder than it sounds). Life seems so much easier when you know you can get up and put on a black t-shirt and a pair of jeans. It was a struggle, I'll admit, but I learned to incorporate a bit more colour in my life - even if it just meas that sometimes with my black pants and black top, I add a colourful piece of chunky jewelry before heading to work.

Last year it was, "Sometimes... say no" (even harder). I'm a bit of an all-or-nothing type of girl, so saying 'yes' to everyone gets me into a lot of trouble regularly!!! Hard as it was, I did learn to say no - I've learnt to value my time and patience as a result. I hope I didn't offend anyone along the way.

This year it is, "Why not... today?" I hate regrets, I hate hearing about regrets, I don't want regret in my life. So I decided that part of valuing my job as a mum is to make sure I don't end up with regrets... nothing is worse than feeling that you were the cause of some regret that has formed in someone else.

So... I'm going to go back to doing some writing - maybe just for myself, maybe for my kids, no idea really. For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be a writer. I remember being about five years old and having to colour the hammers on an ancient typewriter with green felt pen so that I could type lists and random five year old thoughts. I went to uni to become a journalist simply because I thought it would give me time and excuse to do more writing. I've kept journals and diaries for over 20 years just to record who I am - sometimes I go back and read these and laugh while I consider burning the evidence that that was ever me. So I'm gong to do more of some or all of that.

I'm finishing up all the things I've been putting off - cleaning out the pantry, taking stuff to goodwill, finishing random crafty projects. And I'm valuing my artwork, I've decided to sell off a few bits and pieces that I've made and get back into making more bits and bobs - it really makes me happy.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Some wall art...

One of the things I love about being a teacher is seeing kids swell with pride when their work goes up on the wall. We were all drawing and colouring the other day and the kids were talking about where they were going to hang their pictures (Daddy's work, Nana's fridge). My littlest man isn't big enough to have his own work up (yet) so I decided to make a little something for him. 



A little bit abstract, what do you think? I hope the small boy likes it :)

Aftermath... and ways to help

Last time I went to the shops, it looked like this:


There was no bread, no flour, no dairy, no meat... and this scene was replicated over most of South East Queensland as supply trucks had no way to get into our shops. At first glance, parts of the shop looked full, but on closer inspection, I noticed that there were lots of 'shelf filler' items everywhere. For example corn chips where the bread usually was, corn chips where the rice crisps usually are, corn chips where the ... well you get the picture! Obviously our town wasn't in total dire straits cos nobody had yet thought to 'panic buy' the seemingly endless supply of corn chips we seemed to have!

We have a 'cyclone stash' that I check/replenish every summer, so we were OK - doing without milk and bread for a few days was interesting but not a hardship. We also have a heavy duty filtration on the water coming into our kitchen so, thank God, none of us got sick either.

This week, things were mostly back to normal. There were a few dark, empty places in the cold cabinet and along the shelves and there was an oversupply of bananas, eggs and tomatoes (clearly all those trucks had arrived on the same day).

I've wanted to know a practical way to help. After reading this yesterday, I realise it's probably something a lot of people are struggling with. So, I've come up with a few things that are positive ways to make a difference.

This is an example of how a few people's donations can make $14 000 (with a fair bit of organisation, commitment and elbow grease from the organisers, I'm guessing). Projects like this are popping up everywhere, and with the opportunity to buy one-off, gorgeous goods for yourself, everyone wins.

Hannah's Foundation have set up a project connecting flood affected school kids with stationary supply packs. If you know someone who's lost their school belongings in the flood, it's not too late to sign them up. If you want to help, it is easy to get involved.

The Premier's Flood Relief scheme is another way to ensure money gets to the right people. If you don't have money to donate, but have lots of goods you'd like to contribute, they suggest you hold a garage sale or market stall to raise funds to donate. Chances are someone in your area is already doing this and you can simply donate your goods to them.

Similarly, you could bake morning tea for your Mum's group or workmates and accept a gold coin that you can then donate to Flood relief through Woollies, Coles and a multitude of other registered shops, banks and community groups.

Things are still interesting around here - unusable roads, closed shops and people cleaning up all over the place - but I have been amazed at how quickly the clean up has gone. I'm hoping that people who've been affected can get lives back to 'normal' (or as close to as possible) quickly.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Terms and Conditions

COMPETITION TERMS & CONDITIONS


1. The Promoter is http://neenaballerina.blogspot.com/ with prizes supplied by Soup (http://www.thesoup.com.au/).



2. Submission for this prize constitutes acceptance of these terms and conditions. All entry instructions and competition information published by the Promoter form part of these conditions. Entry is via the Internet only.



3. Entry to the competition is open to all residents of Australia over the age of 18.



4. The competition commences at 12.00pm AEST January 17, 2011 and closes at 12.00pm Monday January 31, 2011


Entry to the Competition

5. To be eligible for the prize, persons must submit a response to the question via public post on http://neenaballerina.blogspot.com/ telling us in 100 words or less ‘what is amazing, every time?’



6. The two (2) persons who in the Judge’s opinion submit the most original and creative answers, will be declared the winners and ranked in order 1st and 2nd by the Judge. The Judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. This is a competition of skill and chance plays no part in determining the outcome. Entries must be the Entrant’s own work and must not infringe any rights of third parties.



Prizes

7. First prize is a AU$150 gift voucher to Borders Bookstore. Second prize is a AU$100 gift voucher to Spotlight. The total prize value for this competition is AU$250. Prizes must be redeemed online and winners are responsible for any costs of redeeming online. The use of each prize is subject to the issuer’s terms and conditions.



8. Prizes are not transferable, exchangeable, or redeemable for cash. The Promoter reserves the right to replace any prize with another of equivalent retail value without notice.



Judging

9. Judging will take place on Tuesday February 1, 2011 when winners will be chosen. The winners will be notified by telephone and/or email within 5 days of the judging date. Names of the winners may also be published on Procrastinations of a crafty mum at the url http://neenaballerina.blogspot.com/



10. Prizes will be posted to the winners at the address nominated by them, via email correspondence with the promoter within seven (7) days of the winners being notified.

Amazing... Everytime!

Competition time!!!

So... all you have to do is tell me, in 25 words or less, something you think is "Amazing... everytime!"

First prize is $150 to spend at Borders Bookstore, second prize is $100 at Spotlight (both have online stores if you don't live near a store)

Terms and Conditions are here.

If you want a sample of Finish Quantum to try it for yourself, let me know :) If you've tried the product and want to give your own feedback, just visit

www.soupsurveys.com/QuantumFriends and tell them what you think :)

I'm so excited to be running my very own competition. You know how they give me a buzz!!! Entries close 12pm Monday January 31.

Finish ... a Quantum Leap?

A few weeks ago I mentioned I'd been asked to run a competition through this blog and the time has come to share the details :)

Here is my unequivocal opinion on the prduct:

I was asked by Soup and Finish to trial a dishwasher product - Quantum tablets, don't they look efficient? Maybe I've just spent too much time playing Transformers with Mr Z but they really do look like they could do a job fighting.. uhh... grime ;)


I've actually been using a different Finish product (Finish Powerball tablets) since we got our new dishwasher, and it has been very good. Since this was the more expensive product from the same range, I didn't really know what to expect, somehow something better?

My honest opinion is that while they did seem to get some hard baked dirt off dishes (we always seem to have extra people at our table and sometimes after cooking such a huge meal it does take me a little while to get those dishes in for washing), they aren't my favourite product ever. They seem to leave a bit of a residue on my teflon and plastic items and with three tiny kids at my house, the thought they might be ingesting soap from clean washed plates kind of gives me the heebie jeebies!!! So while I'll keep them in the cupboard to use on unsoaked giant 'dinner party' dinner plates, I think I'll keep using my existing product for day-to-day use.

I gave some of these new tablets to friends to try and they had similar concerns. Maybe it's just our machines because the feedback on the Quantum site itself has mostly been very positive!

Anyway, for details of the competition and to enter, click here. After suggestions from the blog and on my fb account, I've decided to make the prizes a $150 voucher from Borders and a $100 voucher from Spotlight. That should keep all the crafty readers in my life happy :)

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PS to anyone who is still cleaning up after the recent widespread flooding across Qld, I hope it has all gone well. Please let me know if you need any further help. To those who are still isolated, hang in there! Love you lots xx

Friday, January 7, 2011

Small boy's new pants...

Ta daaah!







They look way cuter as pants on him than it could ever have looked as a skirt on me...

OK, I know you can't see the pants, but he just wouldn't sit still!!! You'll have to take my word for it ;) Plus, aren't his eyes so much nicer to look at?! Our new family portraits will be ready soon, then I'll have proof that they turned out OK!!!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Not so much procrastinating today...

Not strictly procrastinating because I did something both useful and timely today!

Tomorrow is our tenth wedding anniversary and to celebrate we're having a family photo (since our family is actually finished now). N and I have new dresses in the colours our bridal party wore, hubby will of course be wearing black, even Mr Z has a snazzy waistcoat to wear with his black pants and a tie. Which just leaves poor bubba...

Nana and Papa brought this piece of deliciousness home from their last holiday:

 ...but unfortunately he didn't grow enough to be able to wear it yet...

So I did some digging in my old workwear and came up with something I was willing to remodel for my smallest boy.



It actually is black, just the light playing tricks with us today... and yes, it is a small - a Supre small at that - so there was really no hope of my ever having worn it again. But that's OK, I am over thirty after all and my body has done all it was designed for in growing and nurturing three babies, so I can cut it some slack. I'm told I'm way nicer to cuddle these days anyway ;)



Little Miss saw me cutting newspaper (pattern) and fabric and naturally had to join in. That's the beginnings of a kite which now has a long black tail...

Anyway, I'm at the stage of tucking all the loose ends in and generally finishing off, so I'm procrastinating again... but I'll be back tomorrow to show you the finished result!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A competition for you...

Ooooh! Lucky me :) I've been contacted by the people at Finish to trial their new Quantum dishwashing tablets and to thank me, they want to give my readers the chance to win a prize.

More details will be coming soon, but first - if you could win a $150 voucher to anywhere, where would it be? I'll be giving away $150 and $100 online gift vouchers to two lucky readers. I'll take suggestions as to where these vouchers should be from, just comment below :)

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To stay up-to-date with details for this and other competitions, just add my blog to your reading list :)

Queensland Floods

It hasn't been such a happy new year for some of our neighbours. We've managed to stay dry, but plenty of people have lost everything in this corner of the world. With friends and neighbours rallying around, hopefully those people affected can soon return to some semblence of normality in our town, and we hope and pray every day that the floodwaters to the north recede quickly without too much more damage and loss.

This is our town from the air. The river is in the top right hand corner... very little of the rest of the water should be there...



Our local shopping centre on the bottom left. The first floor carpark was completely submerged, as were several houses in the near vicinity



Our house is at the end of this street. At the bottom of the hill road signs ended up being completely submerged



The playground we visit on the weekends is under there somewhere. The yellow pegs to the left (centre) are actually street signs!



Cricket grounds to the left, netball courts to the right of this road. This was a few days before the peak



Another car just trying to get home *before* the big wet really began...



The river got wider than three times its usual size in most places. Some places it was even worse.

I am thankful that people still care enough to help one another out in times like these, that the hospital was able to stay open and that my family were high and dry. I hope the clean up in other towns goes as smoothly as it has here...


** These shots are photos taken with my own camera. I appreciate your asking my permission before using them elsewhere **


I love reading your comments, thanks for stopping by :)