my favourite smoothies

Perhaps I’m writing this blog post in the wrong season but even during winter, I LOVE smoothies for breakfast. They’re easy, portable, quick, filling, healthy and delicious. So this quick blog post is all about sharing my three favourites that are on constant rotation in our house.

My favourites smoothies_lifelovetravelfood
@lifelovetravelfood

I prep mine the night before, placing everything (minus the chia seeds and frozen bananas) into the blender and into the fridge. That way, we just whizz it up in the morning and we’re good to go. You can add sweetener to these like 1 tsp of rice malt syrup, maple syrup or honey, however I find they’re sweet enough with just the banana. Yum – I hope you enjoy!

Greenãcolada
serves two – the new kid on the block, I love this one, it tastes just like a cocktail for breakfast 😉 Recipe adapted from Ashy Bines.

Greenacolada smoothie_lifelovetravelfood
Greenacolada smoothie
I added cacao nibs clearly for instagram purposes only (and they taste yum!)
@lifelovetravelfood

what you’ll need…
2x cups coconut milk (the long-life milk kind, not tinned. I like CocoQuench by Pure Harvest)
1/2 cup coconut water (regular water is fine too)
2 x handfuls fresh baby spinach (frozen is fine)
4 x tbsp oats
1 x cup frozen pineapple (fresh is better if you have it)
2 x tsp greens powder (optional – leave it out if you don’t have it)
1 x tbsp chia seeds
2 x frozen bananas

how it’s done…
Place the coconut milk, coconut water, spinach, oats, pineapple and greens powder into the blender and into the fridge overnight – not necessary, it just makes life in the morning’s much easier plus allowing the oats to soak means they’re easier for the body to digest.

In the morning, or when you’re ready for smoothie-time, add the chia and frozen banana. Blitz until smooth – YUM!

espresso banana smoothie
serves two – I think this is my all time favourite smoothie! Coffee hit first thing… yes please! Recipe adapted from Move, Nourish, Believe.

Espresso banana smoothie_lifelovetravelfood
Espresso banana smoothie
@lifelovetravelfood

what you’ll need…
2 x cups almond milk (I use Pure Harvest brand as it has no nasty additives. Regular milk is fine, just use what you’re used to)
1/2 x cup water
2 x tbsp peanut butter (go for one which is 100% nuts if you can, otherwise, reduce by 1 tbsp)
4 x tbsp oats
2 x shots espresso (or two tsp x instant coffee)
1/2 x tsp cinnamon
1/2 x tsp nutmeg
1 x tbsp chia seeds
2 x frozen bananas

how it’s done…
Place the milk, water, peanut butter, oats, coffee, cinnamon and nutmeg into your blender and into the fridge overnight. Try to make sure the oats are covered by the liquid  to soak to help make them easier for your body to digest. When you’re ready to make your smoothie, add the frozen banana and chia. Blend until perfectly smooth. The BEST!

Espresso banana smoothie bowl_lifelovetravelfood
As a smoothie bowl – just add less liquid
@lifelovetravelfood

mango and cashew smoothie
serves two – the first ever healthy smoothie I made for B that he didn’t screw his nose up at. Winner! Recipe adapted from Deliciously Ella.

mango cashew smoothie_lifelovetravelfood
Mango cashew smoothie
@lifelovetravelfood

what you’ll need…
2 x cups almond milk (or milk of choice)
1/2 cup x water
1/2 cup x raw cashews
2 x large handfuls baby spinach (frozen spinach works great too)
1 x cup frozen mango
1 x tbsp chia seeds
2 x frozen bananas

how it’s done…
Place the almond milk, water, cashews, spinach and mango into the blender and into the fridge overnight. It’s important to let the cashews soak so your smoothie isn’t gritty, and also again, to aid in digestion.

When you’re ready to blend, add the chia and banana then blitz till smooth. So delicious! And hashtag paleo too, if you’re into that!

– – –

So there you go! Three of my favourites! We have a smoothie for breakfast once or twice a week, I LOVE them! And H is really into them too (not the espresso one, obviously!) So if you find you have leftovers, freeze into ice cube trays and either add to your next smoothie or defrost a few cubes in a cup for bubba to have (again, maybe not the coffee one!) Mmm!

Greenacolada smoothie_leftovers_lifelovetravelfood
See?! Green smoothies make H happy too!
@lifelovetravelfood

Tag me on instagram if you make one (or all!) of these – @lifelovetravelfood #lifelovetravelfood.

Love Dan xx

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how to keep organised and tackle the daily grind

Work life balance. Mum life balance. Life balance… everyone is busy, everyone  seems to be looking for that magic tip to help make life seem a little less chaotic. I’m on the eternal search for advice on how to stretch my day that little bit further so I can have more time to relax and just enjoy life!

So I thought I’d share a few things that help make MY life easier since going back to work and balancing life as a mummy, working girl, wife, sister, friend, daughter, aunty, and any of the other names I go by.

work_mum_lifelovetravelfood

My ‘sort it out’ basket

I have a basket that I keep in our main living area and anything that doesn’t belong in that room goes into the basket. My shoes from work, H’s jumper from daycare, toiletries I just bought at the shops to go to the upstairs bathroom, bills we’ve just paid that need to be filed.

At the end of the night, I empty my basket, making sure to put everything away properly (as in, not just moving it from one dumping ground to another!) Then I leave my empty basket at the top of the stairs and take it back down the next day. So simple but it’s such a great idea to keep the house from getting too messy. B has even started putting his stuff in it too (doesn’t empty it, but hey, it’s a start!) The novelty of checking what’s in the basket and emptying it out still hasn’t worn off for H so I do need to keep it on the dining table until he goes to bed!

my tidy basket_lifelovetravelfood
Honestly one of the best tips I’ve picked up – my ‘sort it out’ basket gets emptied every night
@lifelovetravelfood

Dinner cheats

I love cooking but after a long day at work, picking up H and doing the dinner, bath, book, play, milk, bed routine and THEN having to think about cooking dinner does sometimes wear a bit thin. I have embraced my slow-cooker – great for hearty winter meals like chilli con carne, pulled pork, curries and stews but there’s only so many of those I can handle so I keep those meals to about once a week.

Another idea is to pre-marinate your chicken (or pork). Not BUYING pre-marinated chicken (which are often full of sugar and other random stuff you don’t need in your life) I mean buying chicken in bulk and making your own marinades. Simple ones like honey, soy and garlic. Or smoked paprika, lemon, mixed herbs and oil. Pop your chicken in a freezer bag, add your marinade, mix it around then freeze. Then when you want chicken for dinner, take it out the night before and let it defrost in the fridge and while it’s defrosting, it’s also marinating. Perfect!

Also, amending your grown-up dinners to be kid friendly makes life a WHOLE lot easier. Not always possible but I will often cook a meal, take some out for H before adding salt, chilli or any other things I’m not keen on him having. For my spinach and ricotta triangles, I will pop the mixture in a wholemeal wrap and bake H’s in that while we have ours in pastry. I add chilli to my curries after I’ve taken out a serve for him. Taking those extra few minutes to make the effort means I don’t have to cook a separate meal for H. Plus it makes our meals healthier as I try to give H wholesome, healthy foods which in turn means we’re eating that too. Win!

cauliflower fritters_lifelovetravelfood
Same fritters, H’s are just mini versions and no chillis or chorizo for him! @lifelovetravelfood
healthy potato mince pie_lifelovetravelfood
No salt and a little less cheese but otherwise, same meal for us all – healthy potato mince pie
@lifelovetravelfood

My best friend the freezer

Embrace your freezer! Buy meat and fish in bulk when it’s reduced to clear or on special and freeze (saves you so much $$ too). Make extra dinner: taco mince, curry, lasagna, spinach and feta pie, san choy bau, burger patties. I TOTALLY understand not loving leftovers but making your meals in bulk and then having one night a week where dinner is pretty much done, I’ve come to appreciate them a lot more.

A little bit each night

Often we save up all the chores for the weekend which means our time off isn’t as much fun and can mean starting a new working week without really having had any down time. By breaking up chores into little chunks and tackling over the whole week, it means I can enjoy my weekend’s a whole lot more.

lifelovetravelfood
Cause this is what weekend’s should be for
@lifelovetravelfood

I might bake some muffins or cookies on Monday night. Do some washing on Tuesday. Clean the bathrooms on Wednesday. Make two dinners on Thursday and Friday I prep H’s meals for the whole weekend (and then it’s all about wine, tv and relaxing!)

helping with the washing_lifelovetravelfood
‘Helping’ with the washing
@lifelovetravelfood

I also take that extra half an hour each night to prep for the next day. Making H’s breakfast – I take something from my freezer stash, pop it in a container and let it defrost overnight. I make all his breakfasts in bulk and freeze – sultana pancakes, blueberry porridge balls, mango oatmeal slice, banana muffins, cheesy vege pikelets, healthy breakfast cake – just to name a few… I told you I love my freezer!

mango oatmeal slice_lifelovetravelfood
One of H’s breakfast options that freezes perfectly – mango banana oatmeal slice
@lifelovetravelfood

I make our lunches, prep breakfast (usually overnight oats or a smoothie – all the ingredients into the blender and then we blitz it in the morning) make up snacks and take out some meat for tomorrow’s dinner. This just means we’re all prepped and ready to go in the morning so we’re not rushing around madly trying to get organised when I’d prefer to use that time to sleep! Half an hour prepping at night = half an hour extra in bed the next morning. Yes please!

toddler meal prep_lifelovetravelfood
What H eats in a weekend! Prepped Friday night so it’s all done for the whole weekend
@lifelovetravelfood

Lay out my outfits for the week

This one sounds weird and is something I’ve only just started doing but I love it! On a Sunday, I will pull out some outfits for my working week and set them aside. Then, each night I will choose one, grab some underwear, jewellery and shoes and lay it out in my bedroom, ready for the next day. It saves me standing in my closet wondering what to wear while B is honking the horn, cursing me for running late. It takes the guesswork out of my morning which can only be a good thing! Seriously, it’s been such a life/time/argument saver!

Keep a list

I love a good list. My phone is full of them! I also hate incomplete lists so by adding something to a list, I want to make sure it gets ticked off! Every time I think of something I need from the shops, an appointment I need to make, a friend I need to message back, I add it to my list. It saves me from having to keep everything in my head and I’ll often write myself a list of tasks for the week so I don’t get too lazy and conveniently ‘forget’ to clean the bathroom or water the plants. Even things like washing my hair go on the list with a scheduled day cause otherwise I put it off and then everything has to be done at once and I feel stressed out for being too busy to wash my hair and shave my legs! Lists make life happen!

I also write down meal ideas – when I flick through a magazine, watch a cooking show, scroll through instagram or just when an idea comes into my head. Sounds simple, but when it comes to meal planning for the week ahead, having some ideas already written down makes it a LOT easier!

– – –

So that’s it! Small but (hopefully) helpful little tips to help get you organised and find a bit of balance in your life. They certainly help me so I I hope you find them useful! Let me know if you use any!

Love Dan x

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life love travel pork – without the life, love or travel bit

I’m loving being in the kitchen lately – even more so than usual! I am obsessed with my beautiful new kitchen with the waterfall island, oven and gas stovetop of my dreams, walk-in butlers pantry – oh I could do an entire blog post JUST on how much I love my kitchen!

But anyway, that’s not what this blog post is about. As promised, here are two recipes by request – both pork (but other meats can be substituted) both dinners, both delicious and both EASY (my number one requirement for dinner’s these days) I hope you enjoy them!

Yogurt spiced pork
Start this one the night before – it works best marinated for as long as possible 

yogurt spiced pork_lifelovetravelfood

What you’ll need…
2 x tsp tumeric
2 x tsp smoked paprika
1 x tsp chilli flakes (optional)
2 x tsp mixed herbs
pinch salt and pepper
4 x tbsp plain Greek yogurt
4 x pork steaks (lamb, beef or chicken would also work)

How it’s done…
Mix the spices and yogurt in a small bowl. Add to a large zip lock bag along with the pork and massage to evenly coat in the yogurt. Leave to marinate for as long as possible – overnight is ideal.

Preheat oven to 180°C and bake pork for 15mins or until cooked to your liking. Serve on top of brown rice and roasted veges; salad with chips or however you like!

Sticky ginger sesame pork meatballs
This one is based on a Donna Hay recipe, made a little bit easier/healthier!

 

ginger sesame pork meatballs_lifelovetravelfood

What you’ll need…
Meatballs
500g pork mince (chicken, lamb or beef would also work great!)
1/2 cup oats (or breadcrumbs)
2 x cloves garlic, crushed
2 x tbsp finely grated ginger
2 x tsp sesame seeds
2 x tsp sesame oil
2 x green onions, finely chopped
1 egg, lightly beaten
soba noodles, cooked, to serve
baby spinach, to serve

Sticky soy sauce
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 x tsp sesame oil
1 x tbsp mirin
1/4 cup rice malt syrup

– – –

How it’s done…

Preheat the oven to 220ºC. Place the pork, oats, garlic, ginger, sesame seeds, sesame oil, green onion and egg in a large bowl and mix well to combine. Place a large deep-sided roasted tray in the oven for 5 minutes or until hot. Roll tablespoonfuls of the pork mixture into balls and set aside. Pour the oil into the hot tray, add the meatballs and cook for 5 minutes.

To make the sticky soy sauce, place the soy, sesame oil, vinegar, miring and rice malt syrup in a small bowl and mix to combine.

*Note* If you’re making this for the whole family, you can set aside some of the meatballs and bake them separately, without the sticky soy sauce. Drizzle meatballs with a touch of olive oil and add a little bit of mozzarella to stop them going too dry

Remove the hot tray from the oven, add the soy mixture and carefully toss the meatballs. Cook for 15mins or until the sauce is sticky and the meatballs are golden. Serve the meatballs with spinach and noodles.

– – –

I hope you enjoy these – please let me know if you make them! Tag me on instagram – I might work full-time but I’m still obsessed with insta @lifelovetravelfood

 

Six ways I’ve changed since becoming a mum

I was recently tagged in an instagram post by one of my insta-besties, @aliceinhealthyland to share how I’ve changed since becoming a Mumma. I actually thought long and hard about this and I’m pretty darn proud of this list so I decided to share it on my blog.

That plus it’s Friday night and my darling husband has claimed our one and only tv to watch the footy so I thought it was high time I updated my neglected lil blog.

I do not judge. Ok, sometimes I judge but I follow it by putting myself in their shoes and nine times outta ten, I retract my judgement. I don’t know what that mum is going through. I don’t know their child. I don’t know their family life. I don’t know how they’re feeling and above all… I am not them. This has also helped me be less judgemental in all aspects of my life, not just with other mums and I feel I am a better person for being less judgemental. But I’ll be honest, it took becoming a mum and being on the receiving end of unnecessary judgement to make me realise this.

lifelovetravelfood

I never say never. Oooh this is a biggie! I cringe at the thought of things I’ve previously said to mums about what I will or won’t do when I have a baby. Oh shut up in-the-past-me! You have NO idea! I gave my baby a dummy. I sent him to daycare with a runny nose. I baby spam the shizz out of my instagramI went back to work full time. All things I didn’t think I’d do. Never. Say. Never!

lifelovetravelfood

I am (learning to be) more patient. This is a big learning curve for me and something I’m continually working on. I find I make much more rational decisions, am happier with myself and in my relationship when I’m more patient. It’s not always easy but I’m trying. Remind me to keep trying as we edge closer to terrible-two territory…

lifelovetravelfood

My life is fuller. I was worried I’d miss my pre-baby life that was more relaxed, carefree, let me exercise when I wanted to, travel often, sleep in and just be selfish. I was terrified I’d regret having a child. Never in a million years did I think I would love parenthood so much. I love everything (well almost everything) about it. This is exactly where I’m meant to be in my life. I honestly don’t miss my former carefree life. Except maybe the sleep ins…

lifelovetravelfood

Mummy-guilt is real. Do I exercise or spend that time with H? Do I catch up with my friends at night when I’ve been at work all day and won’t get home to see H? Will H remember always being at daycare and develop slower because I’m not there to teach him myself? I battle with these questions every day and I worry I’m not doing the right thing by my child. To live the life we want, I need to work. I envy stay at home mums yet enjoy having a career and a pay check. Are we doing the right thing by sending H to daycare five days a week? OMG can someone please tell me how to ease the mummy-guilts cause they’re killin’ me lately!

lifelovetravelfood

I love my body more. I’m not in the best shape of my life. Heck, I barely remember to brush my hair let alone fit in a gym class. But I have never loved my body more since having H. Not only did my amazing bod house and birth a whole human being (and one with a head circumference in the 97th percentile I might add) but I actually feel better in myself since giving birth. Sure, there are squishy sections and bits that ain’t what they used to be but I’m damn proud of how I look and what my body has been through #mumbodandproud

lifelovetravelfood

Until next blog – sorry for being MIA (AGAIN) but we’re mid-move so things are kinda hectic (surely I will stop having excuses as to why I’m not blogging soon!) Thanks for reading xx

That week I tried solo parenting…

Solo parents, I take my hat off to you. You are incredible. You deserve government rebates, discounted childcare and shorter working hours. You deserve all the help you can get cause oh my GOODNESS my one week of parenting on my own was hands down one of the hardest weeks if not THE hardest week of my Mumma life. And yes, I realise that I’m complaining about just one week, I realise there are many parents in way worse situations than me and I realise as I start to write this, that it all seems a little bit OTT and dramatic. But you know what? For me, it was REALLY hard!

lifelovetravelfood_mumma
Damn this parenting gig is hard!
@lifelovetravelfood

B left on Monday morning and I started my week by doing drop off at daycare, a full day at work, daycare pick up, did the dinner and evening routine on my own, got organised for the next day, ate dinner (even I was impressed at this one!) cleaned up and eventually sat down for a bit of down time. And then H woke up. He’s usually an excellent sleeper so this was a bit odd for him. It took ages for me to settle him and he woke again during the night which was tough when I then had to adult at work the next day!

Tuesday evening we were at my parents house where I put him down to bed so I could enjoy some adult time with Mum and Dad. H woke up. Frequently. To the point that we had to leave early and I put him down at home – where he woke during the night. Wednesday we were meant to have dinner at my sister’s place but again, H was really unsettled and cranky so I skipped dinner, brought him home and had another rough night.

lifelovetravelfood
My poppet hasn’t been himself in so long and it breaks my heart
@lifelovetravelfood

Each night was the same – lots of grumpy baby in the evenings, unsettled sleeps, late-night waking and to be honest, I’m not actually sure how I still managed to function. When B walked in the door late Friday night, I just burst into tears – the poor guy! I was just so relieved he was home and I didn’t have to deal with everything on my own.

Looking back at what I’ve written above, it doesn’t even sound that bad but for me, it was so, so hard. Having a sick baby is hard. Having to work full time is hard. Keeping a functioning house going is hard. Spending my precious weekends searching for a house is hard (oh my gosh, how ‘first world problem’ is that?! Poor me!) And I’m still not getting any real ‘me’ time, ‘us’ time or family and friends time in – I feel like I’m being a rubbish friend cause I’m never available to catch up! Plus I don’t feel like I’m giving as much as I should at work either!

Part of me didn’t want to post this blog. It sounds like a great big whinge (which it totally is) that would cause a whole lot of eye rolls and ‘it’s really not that bad’ comments. And I know all this and totally recognise that in the big scheme of things, I really have NOTHING to complain about. I am well aware of how many people would love to be in my position and I should really just count my blessings and suck it up. But that’s not my style. I’m not one to bottle it up or pretend everything is amazing when it’s not. That’s what my blog is for – a place to rant, a place to get it out cause that’s how I deal with my emotions and move on.

lifelovetravelfood
It’s impossible to stay grumpy at this face. But a full night’s sleep would be awesome!
@lifelovetravelfood

The week B got back was better – H was feeling a lot better but still has a snotty nose – has done for months on end, seriously, does it ever end?! He’s also teething and has nappy rash AND conjunctivitis – gaaaahhh!! Seeing him unwell and sad is heartbreaking. I know it’s daycare germs and everyone goes through it but it seriously, SERIOUSLY sucks. February has not been my favourite month so far, and we’re only 12 days in! B goes away two more times in the coming weeks so I’m bracing myself for solo parenting again. Can’t say I’m really looking forward to it so if anyone has any advice on how to not lose my sanity, I’m all ears!

Thanks for reading and understanding that everyone needs a rant every now and then. Hopefully my next blog post will be a bit more positive, happy and sunshiny!!

Dan xx

 

A healthy sweet treat for the whole family – strawberries and cream muffins

healthy strawberry and cream muffins_lifelovetravelfood

It’s no secret I’m a lazy baker. I prefer to cook savoury meals that I can kind of just throw together and add whatever I have to make it work. I don’t like having to be methodical and measure perfectly which you need to do when it comes to baking, unless you’re keen for a baking fail – been there, done that… more times than I care to admit.

I baked these muffins on the weekend cause I ‘need’ something yummy to take to work each day for that mid-morning snack (rice crackers just aren’t cutting it at the moment). I wanted to make them healthy so that H could eat them, but still have enough flavour and ‘non-hippy-ness’ that B would eat them too. Enter the below winning recipe – hooray!

The name is a bit of a lie… there’s no cream in them but ‘strawberries and yogurt muffins’ didn’t quite have the same ring to it. These can be adapted to suit all tastes – change up the fruit if strawberries aren’t your thing. Add in chocolate if you want them to be even more awesome. Make them into baby sized muffins for the little people in your life. They freeze beautifully too so make in bulk and enjoy!

Healthy strawberries and cream muffins
Makes 12 muffins or 24 mini muffins

healthy strawberry and cream muffins_lifelovetravelfood

What you’ll need…

2 x eggs (can substitute for chia gel if you need these to be egg-free)
3 x bananas
½ cup x natural greek yogurt
1 tsp x pure vanilla
2 tsp x cinnamon
1 cup x desiccated coconut
1/3 cup x coconut flour (can substitute for wholemeal plain flour)
1 cup x wholemeal spelt flour (can substitute for regular plain flour)
2 tbsp x psyllium husks (or LSA mix – both are optional, just leave out if you don’t have it)
1 tbsp x chia seeds (optional, leave out if you don’t have them)
1 tsp x bicarb soda
1 tsp x baking powder
1 cup x strawberries, quartered (substitute with your favourite berries – frozen is fine or a mixture of fruit and chocolate chips)

How it’s done…

Preheat oven to 180o. Line a 12 hole muffin tin with muffin cases (no need to use muffin cases if you’re using silicon moulds).

Combine all ingredients (except the strawberries) in a food processor (or you can mix by hand) and mix until just combined (TMX speed 3.5, 30 sec). Fold through the strawberries (TMX reverse, speed 3, 20sec).

Pour into muffin moulds and bake for 35mins or until a skewer comes out clean (for the mini muffins, bake for around 20 minutes).

YUM! These muffins store best in the fridge – just warm in the microwave for a few seconds and enjoy.

– – –

I hope you enjoy these! Let me know if you bake them for you or your little people and tag me on instagram @lifelovetravelfoood #lifelovetravelfood !

Love Dan xx

Oh hey there 2017!

Hello 2017 and hello to my first blog for the new year! I’m excited for what this year will bring but I’m also sad to see 2016 go. I noticed a lot of people saying they were glad to see the back of last year and they were happy it was all over but for me, last year was wonderful. I spent much of the year watching my baby grow, travelled (sort of), moved back home, spent time with family, caught up with friends, and started a new job.

So what’s in store for 2017? Firstly, I’m one of those annoying people who sets new years resolutions and I LOVE them. I have done it for as long as I can remember and find them quite therapeutic. I’ve become a lot more realistic over the years and set broader goals and things I know are achievable… that’s not to say I pass with flying colours cause ‘stop biting my nails’ continues to grace the list each and every year.

I write down my goals because once they’re on paper I feel I’m more accountable for them. I also tell people (like you guys) so they’re out there and I can talk about my progress throughout the year. I love reading other people’s resolutions or goals as I find it quite inspirational, so here are mine for the blogging world to read!

lifelovetravelfood_2017 goals
Perhaps a goal should be to take better photos! Don’t worry if you can’t read them here, they’re listed below! @lifelovetravelfood
  1. Continue to eat clean – less sugar, less processed/packaged food

This one, while daunting at first, has become surprisingly easy to stick to. It’s taken me years to get to this point though! Stocking up on fresh fruit and veges, trying to avoid the middle aisles of the supermarket (except for things like tinned tomatoes, coconut oil and nappies!) and planning meals around what’s in season and what’s in the fridge have been some of my best tips to sticking to healthy eating.

I want H to grow up eating as healthy as possible and I think it’s important for us as his parents to set a good example.

And of course, not denying myself treats like wine (cause I think we all know I’m NOT giving that up!) ice-cream on holidays, visiting bakeries on the weekend – because life is for living and if I eat well MOST of the time, the treats taste so much better!

lifelovetravelfood_eatclean
I hope our good eating habits will rub off on this kale-eating guy
@lifelovetravelfood

2. Make exercise a priority and schedule time in my calendar

Apart from 2015 when I was on a fitness role, exercise has never been that easy for me to stick to. Throw in a baby and full-time work and it’s slipped further and further down the priority list. This year I’d like to exercise but I also want to be realistic. I won’t exercise every day, I won’t get up an hour earlier than I have to and I probably won’t run home from work so I’m not going to promise myself that I will.

lifelovetravelfood_peaceloveyoga
This top needs more use in 2017
@lifelovetravelfood

I think what I might try to do is try to get up half an hour earlier two or three mornings a week and try to move when H is having his morning sleep on the weekends. I want to exercise because I feel great when I do, but I don’t want it to be a chore. Go for walks on the weekends with my boys and maybe even try to get out at lunchtime once or twice a week. This one will be the hardest to stick to so I will also try to schedule my workouts into my calendar to be more accountable (I’m a lists girl and HATE having things un-ticked!) so I’ll keep you posted!

3. Listen more – less about ‘me’ and ‘my’ stories

This one really annoys me when it happens to me – when I’m telling a story and the person I’m chatting to turns it around to be a story about them. And then I realised I do it too so if I find it annoying, other people probably do too! So this year I plan on listening more – it’s a wonderful way to learn more and be a better friend.

4. Me time! Read/yoga/get my nails done – a happier me is better for my family

You can’t pour from an empty cup. I see this quote everywhere and always agree with it but never actually do it! Sometimes I put so much time and effort into making sure others are happy that I find myself feeling drained, unhappy and sometimes resentful which doesn’t help anyone.

lifelovetravelfood_metime
2017 I’m going to prioritise ME!
@lifelovetravelfood

Here’s how I’m going to make sure I get some me time in this year – I want to make sure I do a really good job at work, but also leave on time to spend quality time with H and B. I need to remember how good yoga feels and DO it! Sometimes the hardest part is just rolling out my mat which seems ridiculous, but so true! Read a book – oh when was the last time I did that?! Blog – I want to take time out like I’m doing right now, while H sleeps and B watches the cricket. It’s the perfect time and I really enjoy doing it, yet last year I seemed to just waste this time doing… I’m not really sure what!

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My beautiful yoga mat was neglected last year
@lifelovetravelfood

I recently got a remedial massage and holy moly did it make me feel like a million bucks or what?! Sure, not something I plan on doing every day but I’d love to take time out to get a mani, massage or treat myself (I wonder what B will think of this one!) because I work damn hard at work and at home and I deserve it!

5. Be organised – do a little each day to spread the load

When I know I have to clean the kitchen, the bathroom, tidy H’s toy room, do six loads of washing, change the sheets, vacuum and mop, go grocery shopping, do weekly meal prep, make more food for H… it all seems too much and quite overwhelming. Plus now I’m working full-time, the idea of spending my weekends cleaning and doing house stuff just seems like a waste. So this was something I actually started a few weeks ago – I made a list of all the things that need to be done each week, and broke them up over seven days and all of a sudden it seemed much more manageable.

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I can’t clean when this guy is awake – this is what happens!
@lifelovetravelfood

For example, on Mondays I clean the toilet, basin and mirror. On Tuesdays I clean the bath and shower. Wednesdays I do one load of washing and clean the kitchen sink, bench and stovetop… breaking up these chores and doing them in the evening when H has gone to bed has so far been working out well and means I have much less boring stuff to do on my precious weekends.

6. Stop. Biting. Nails – reward for sticking to it (see #4)

Oh my gosh, I am embarrassed this has yet again made it onto my new years resolution list. I do really well for a good few months then fall off the wagon and I don’t know why! It’s a horrible habit and I hate it! So, I will get a regular manicures (again, let’s see what B says about this one!) to encourage myself to STOP this habit once and for all. Surely this will work?!

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So that’s my list! I will try to revisit them partway through the year to see where I’m at and to make myself more accountable. I will also post regularly on instagram cause that addiction is still going strong!

Thanks for reading and I hope your 2017 is off to a beautiful start!

Dan x