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30 Ways To Show Your Child You Love Them

30 Ways To Show your Child You Love Them via christineknight.me

Some days it seems like you’re just holding everything together. Rushing to get the kids to school on time, rushing to get to work. Rushing home and hurriedly cooking dinner, then rushing through the bath and bed routine. That’s just the way life goes sometimes. If you’re time poor like most of us are, and want to show your child how much you love them, here are 30 little ways that can be incorporated into your day with almost zero effort.

  1. Give your child kisses when they wake up.
  2. Read an extra book before bedtime.
  3. If you get home at night too late for books, read a book at breakfast instead.
  4. If your child can read, put a note in their lunch box, that says, “Have fun today! Love you!”
  5. Give big hugs and kisses before you leave.
  6. Ask what their favourite part of the day was.
  7. Ask what the hardest part of the day was, too.
  8. When your child is desperate for your attention, drop what you’re doing and give it to them.
  9. Look them in the eyes.
  10. Stay in their room just a few minutes longer than usual at bedtime.
  11. Notice something they’ve done right: “Thank you for putting your toys away, I really appreciate it.”
  12. Cook together – let your child help you make dinner if you’re not the baking kind.
  13. No matter how bad your day was, or how annoyed you are at your child, never go to bed angry, or let your child go to bed feeling that you’re angry with them.
  14. Compliment your child on something they do: “I really love listening to you sing. You sing so beautifully”.
  15. Try to get ready ahead of your schedule so you can cut out the “hurry ups” and let the child take their own time walking down the street, getting in the car, picking a few flowers along the way.
  16. Really listen to what your child is saying, without interrupting.
  17. Make your child feel like their opinion matters by asking what they think.
  18. Proudly display their artwork at home.
  19. Don’t talk about them, especially their flaws, in front of them.
  20. After you have an argument, give them a big hug and tell them it’s ok.
  21. Follow through on any promises you make.
  22. Play with your child, even if it’s just for a few minutes.
  23. Say “yes” instead of no.
  24. Give your child your full attention when you’re together.
  25. Think of a fun activity to do together on the weekend, even if it’s something as simple as going to a new playground together.
  26. Smile at your child.
  27. Be the last to let go of hugs.
  28. Ask to hold their hand.
  29. Try to see their point of view.
  30. Tell them you love them. Every single day.

This article was first published on MommyNearest.

Image by Raquel Frechette.

Linking up with Grace.

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

Disney’s Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast

#TinkerBell and the NeverBeast  movie via christineknight.me

A few weeks ago Cheese and I attended a special screening of Disney’s Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast.

Cheese loves the Tinker Bell movies (and so do I!), so it was a lovely way to spend the morning together. The movie was really sweet, focusing on the fairy Faun rather than Tinker Bell and a creature she finds in the wild (the “NeverBeast” from the title). The Tinker Bell movies are so cleverly made. They appeal to kids with their bright, sassy characters and beautiful animation, and also to adults with their well-written female characters and heart-warming morals that underpin the stories.

The moral of Tinker Bell and the legend of the NeverBeast is you can’t judge a book by its cover. Faun has to decide if she can to trust her own instincts and to go against all of her fairy friends to do what she believes is right. The message to be brave and follow your heart is a lovely lesson for little people to learn (and for big people to be reminded of). The movie was a touch scary for Cheese, but she still told me afterwards that she really enjoyed it.

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After the movie, we were interviewed on camera to give our opinions. It was both of our first time being interviewed on camera (she was fine, I was nervous). What do you think of Cheese and my film debut?

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Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

Swissotel: High Teas In Sydney

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

Ever on the hunt for Sydney’s best high tea, this time I tried the Swissotel’s buffet high tea. For $69 (Sat & Sun) or $59 (Mon-Fri), you get to eat your fill of finger sandwiches, scones, savoury delicacies and delightful desserts. It sounded like a great idea for this little piggy, so off I went with a dear friend to see how much sweet stuff I could eat.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

I scored a Groupon voucher in advance which gave us the high tea experience at a 2-for-the-price-of-one deal. Seriously, a bargain. Keep your eyes peeled for more of these deals as they are run regularly.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

I was a little unsure about how this high tea would measure up from the outset, as I didn’t have much luck with their customer service team. I emailed them to confirm our booking, and to make sure that they received my note that one of us was vegetarian, and the other gluten-intolerant. I received a curt reply that it wad been noted in the reservation request and that was it. I was unsure if this meant that they were able to cater for dietary requirements or not, so email back asking this. The reply was again curt and vague. The staff would show us what food was vegetarian or gluten-free. Um. Ok ….

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

So I have to say that when we arrived we were a little worried about what we would be eating. The staff in on the day were also a bit confusing. We were each given a plate of sandwiches that suited our dietary requirements. The gluten-free one had three selections, but my vegetarian one was only one type: six small summer vegetable sandwiches. It was way too much of one sandwich. A plus: because the sandwiches had been made and delivered they were super fresh.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

On our arrival we were offered our choice of a special mocktail or cocktail of the day. I accepted the cocktail which sounded fruity, and then realised afterwards that I was supposed to have the option of a glass of sparkling, which I wasn’t offered by the waitstaff. Very confusing. I would have preferred he glass of sparkling, as even though the cocktail was delicious, it was about 70% crushed ice. It was also removed from the table half finished, when I went up to get my first plate from the buffet.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

We asked about the savoury items on the buffet, and if they could show me which ones were vegetarian (there were no labels on any of the dishes), and I received a vague, “yes, there are vegetarian dishes”, but it was up to me to work it out for myself. Through guess work I discovered that there was in fact a vegetarian quiche.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

My gluten-free dining companion fared better than I did. The staff very thoughtfully provided her with a special plate of gluten-free desserts, even though over half of the desserts on the buffet had no gluten in them. She received two little cakes and a pot of some kind of fruits. Again, we weren’t told what they were, so your guess is as good as ours. The cakes were really delicious, and the fruit proved to be nicely poached in a sweet juice.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

It was just as well that the food was pretty solid after the pretty meh service we received. There wasn’t anything that particularly stood out as being amazing or innovative, but everything was decent quality, fresh, well-made.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

I found a menu that listed the buffet dishes but couldn’t locate some items on the menu and vice versa, so I’m not exactly sure what everything was.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

Savoury dishes: roasted chicken, cucumber, cream cheese on quinoa soy bread, slow roasted NSW Angus beef, semi dried tomato, rocket, pesto aioli, grilled summer vegetables on dark rye with lemon mayonnaise, Gold Coast prawns and corn salad on mini brioche, smoked salmon, cream cheese and wild rocket on sourdough, goat cheese and pine nut quiche, chicken and leak pies.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

Sweet: roasted Forbes peach and pistachio tart, berry white mousse cake, stone fruit macarons, chocolate cherry with coconut (couldn’t find these), pistachio white chocolate slices (couldn’t find these), chocolate macadamia brownies, creme caramel, pavlova, salted caramel lamingtons (couldn’t find these), watermelon panna cotta with salted caramel (don’t think we saw this either), dark chocolate profiteroles filled with plum pastry cream.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

We had several items that weren’t on the sweets menu: a creme brûlée, a mango pudding, a strawberry pudding and a chocolate mousse or pudding. The puddings were a disappointing substitution for the items that were missing from the menu.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

Other food options include “freshly baked” scones with jam and double cream (the apricot jam was fantastic), and a variety of fruit ready to be dipped in the chocolate fountain.

The scones on the menu are listed as quinoa, but ours were chocolate chip. They had definitely been sitting there for a while as they were dense and hard.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

My favourite food was the cheese and pine nut quiche (it was so delish – flaky, fresh, cheesy), the pavlova (something about the cream! it was the perfect ratio of cream, fruit and meringue) and the roasted Forbes peach and pistachio tart (the fruit was flavoursome, and it had the perfect shortbread crust).

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

The high tea also comes with your choice of T2 loose leaf tea or coffee. When we were about half way through our meal I had to get up and ask for our tea, as it was never offered. I ordered a berry tea that was really delicious. The service continued to be lax, however. Our water glasses were filled on arrival, and then not filled again until just before we left.

Swissotel: #Sydney's Best High Teas via christineknight.me

We had an extremely mixed time at the Swissotel high tea. The food was pretty good, but a long way from the best high tea’s I’ve had, and with the Groupon voucher it was a decent price. The service and communication was a let down.

Swissotel Sydney
68 Market Street,
Sydney NSW 2000
Phone: (02) 9238 8888
Prices: $$$
Hours: Sat & Sun, call for their seating times. Mon-Fri 2pm – 4pm. Reservations advised.
Get directions.

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Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

A Guide To The Sydney Royal Easter Show With Little Kids

#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me

I’m a long-time lover of the Sydney Royal Easter Show. I’ve been going since I was a kid myself, so have been so looking forward to taking Cheese for the first time this year.

#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me

We tackled the day with one objective – to go at Cheese’s pace and let her enjoy it, however she wanted to. This meant we ditched all the things that we usually like to check out, and focussed on a small number of areas that we thought were do-able (and enjoyable!) for a 3.5 year old.

We had such a wonderful day out, particularly teaching our city kid about the animals and country life.

#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me

Top picks for little kids:
Here are my recommendations on ways to spend an enjoyable day with toddlers and preschoolers.

#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me

The Animal Walk: This is fun for all ages, and is particularly awesome for kids. Follow the giant paw prints around all of the animal pavilions. Pick up a “passport” and collect a stamp from each station. The pavilions are a lot more interactive now than when I was a kid. There are now colouring in stations, and areas where you can watch chickens hatching, “pat a chick”, and watch wool being spun.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Pat A Pig: Kids can give cute little piglets a tickle, and check out newborn piggies in the stall adjacent.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Sheep Shearing: After watching the demonstration, kids can assist the shearers in shearing a sheep.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Farmyard Nursery: A classic favourite. Get up close with goats, chickens and other barnyard favourites. As you exit, you can have you photograph taken with the cutest lamb you’ve ever seen. $15 for one large, high quality image, or $25 for a pack.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Food Farm: Technically this is on the animal walk, but there are no live animals here. Instead, you’ll find a lot of interactive stations for kids to play as they learn about where our food comes from. Cheese’s favourite was the play chicken laying shed, where she placed eggs under hens and then collected the eggs over and over and over. The tractor that kids could climb into and pretend to drive was another hit.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
The Dairy Farmers Milking Shed: Here’s your kid’s chance to try their hand at milking one of the more gentle cows.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Live Shows: Cheese highly enjoyed the My Little Pony and Giggle And Hoot live shows. Both had live singing and the characters dancing, and ran for 25 minutes each under the shady Big Top Amphitheatre. A great way to take a rest break and keep the kids entertained at the same time.

Circus Workshops: Kids can try their hand at circus arts under the guidance of Ashton Entertainment Circus professionals.

Character Meet And Greets: Say hello to “Oh” from the movie “Home” (have you seen it yet? It’s adorable!) and Transformers.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Ferris Wheel: The rides are expensive. For three of us to do the ferris wheel it was $23. It was worth it though, to take Cheese on her first ferris wheel and see her face light up with joy as we flew through the air. We also had a fabulous view of the show and surrounds up there, making it a nice change of pace when you need a break from the crowds.
#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Showbags: A visit to the show ins’t complete without a showbag. The little kiddie ones are at the entrance, making it a stress-free experience to drop by with a little kid and not get stuck roaming around the pavilion with a kid who wants everything. The showbags that Cheese wanted were all the licensed character types, which were around $26 each. Cheese picked out the Disney Princess and Dance bags, both of which I was happy to see were excellent value. Each had a lot of items that Cheese will get a lot of use out of (like dress up items, hair bands, play jewellery and wands), and were of good quality. She was thrilled.

#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
Tips for making the day a success
Start early: Get there when it opens as the showground is very quiet for the first few hours. Crowds start picking up around midday.
Set a budget: Decide before you go how many rides/showbags/toys the kids can have and stick to it. Pack food and your own water bottle to help keep the costs down.
Schedule wisely: With little kids, you’re not going to see everything in one day, so pick a handful of experiences to enjoy, and leave the rest for next year.
Keep kids close: With so many distractions it’s easy to lose your kids. Write your phone number on their arm or on a band around their wrist (I think they hand these out at the main entrance as I saw a lot of kids with them).

#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me

#Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me #Sydney Royal #Easter Show Guide For Little Kids via christineknight.me
A big thank you to the Sydney Royal Easter Show for providing me with tickets to write this blog post. Head to the Sydney Royal Easter Show for your own magical day out. The Easter Show runs from Thursday 26 March to Wednesday 8 April, 2015, at Sydney Olympic Park. 

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

The Gingerbread House: Kid-Friendly Cafes, Katoomba, Blue Mountains

Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me

On our recent Blue Mountains drive we stopped off at The Gingerbread House for afternoon tea after several recommendations from friends. It’s the sweetest cafe, housed in a beautifully restored 100-year-old church. As you can guess from the name, The Gingerbread House is all about sweet things – milkshakes, Serendipty ice-cream, cakes, cookies & gingerbread. They do have light savoury food, by the way, but it’s the sweet things they’re well known for.

Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me

The Gingerbread House is owned by the creators of Josophan’s Fine Chocolates, so they obviously know a thing or two about the sweet things people go crazy for.

Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me

Inside the church is an adorably styled gingerbread house containing a sweet shop filled with lollies, and a mix of small and large communal tables. You can also sit outside and soak up the sun while the kids play in the gingerbread cubby house.

Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me

On our visit, we enjoyed a chocolate gingerbread man, a vanilla malt milkshake, a slice of chocolate cake with salted caramel frosting, an affogato with Serendipity caramel ice cream, and a scoop of Serendipity ‘Death by Chocolate’ ice-cream (which has just been awarded Champion Premium Ice-cream at the Sydney Royal Cheese & Dairy show).

Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me

The cake was mine, and I found it to be just the right mix of dense, moist chocolate cake, with thick caramel frosting for my taste. I loved the milkshake (nice and malty), as did Cheese, who stole mine off me. Alec enjoyed his affogato (said the ice cream was great) and Cheese devoured her ice cream (as the official “eat the rest of the cone when the kid is done” person, I can confirm that the chocolate ice cream was really, really good, too!).

Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me Gingerbread House: #KidFriendly Cafes #Katoomba #BlueMountains #Sydney via christineknight.me

The Gingerbread House is delightful and delicious – the perfect stop for a treat on your next drive to Katoomba.

Highchairs: Yes.
Stroller storage: Yes.
Easy access: Yes.
Change tables: Yes.
Kids’ menu: Yes.

The Gingerbread House Cafe
56 Lurline St (Cnr Lurline & Waratah Streets),
Katoomba NSW 2780
Phone: (02) 4782 6958
Prices: $
Hours: Daily 9am-5pm
Get Directions

Linking up with Grace and Bron.

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

Sydney By Sea

#Sydney By Sea - christineknight.me

One of the best ways to get around Sydney is undoubtedly by ferry. While a bit on the pricer side ($6 for a single short trip), the view is magnificent, no matter what destination you choose.

For Cheese’s first ferry trip, we caught one from Circular Quay to Darling Harbour. Adorably, she thinks all ferries are called “Fergus” after the book series based on a Sydney ferry called, you got it, Fergus.

#Sydney By Sea - christineknight.me

#Sydney By Sea - christineknight.me

ferry-7

#Sydney By Sea - christineknight.me

#Sydney By Sea - christineknight.me
#Sydney By Sea - christineknight.me

How much fun is it to just jump on a ferry and explore somewhere new? I’d love to hear where you’ve been exploring lately.

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

Surviving Silent Reflux

This is a post I wrote a while back for The Fussy Baby site, about our battle with silent reflux.

Surviving Silent Reflux via christineknight.me

Before my baby was born, I spent months in search of the perfect everything: The crib that would be the perfect size to wheel into our bedroom, an organic mattress that would ensure no toxins be near her sweet head, a stroller with bassinet so as not to disturb her slumber.

I was under the illusion that babies sleep, on things, other than me.

Our little girl, you see, would not sleep in her crib. When we placed her in it after arriving home from the hospital, she screamed until we picked her up again.

baby-reflux-1

Unperturbed, we tried again. Same result. Scrunched up her face and gave high pitched wails.

Exhausted, we let her sleep with us in bed, with my husband and I taking turns to be propped up with the baby on our chest.

The next day, after a sleepless night for us both, we tried again. The bassinet in the stroller? Negative. The play mat on the floor? Nope. The crib – one more time! Uh-uh, still hating it.

The only place Cheese would stop screaming was upright, in our arms. We reasoned that maybe she just liked being held. Maybe she’d change her mind soon and decide that she loved the crib!

That night we started a routine that would last the next six weeks. My husband and I would rotate shifts during the night, sitting awake on the couch, holding the baby while the other got a few hours sleep. My husband would then go to work, looking somewhat like a zombie, and I would spend the day holding the baby.

Having to hold her while she was asleep turned out to be a sweet relief from the alternative. It felt like if she wasn’t asleep or feeding, Cheese was screaming.

People, including the pediatrician, insisted on multiple occasions that if we read the “Happiest Baby on the Block” book that it would change our lives. Taking advice from the book, we shushed, swaddled and swung our hearts out, but we were convinced we were doing it wrong, because Cheese kept crying.

We bought a ring sling to carry Cheese in since she wouldn’t sit or lie in the stroller, and we had a breakthrough. If we walked the baby in the sling, she would eventually stop crying.

Sometimes 10 minutes of walking would do it, other times almost an hour of pacing the streets would be needed. We felt so relieved that we had finally found something that stopped the baby screaming. We also got to know our neighbourhood extremely well.

We kept returning to the pediatrician, convinced there was something more we could do to stop the screaming, to get Cheese to sleep on anything except our chests. The answer was always the same: “It’s colic! She’ll grow out of it”.

Never mind that we weren’t sleeping, and I was going completely out of my brain. I felt like I was all alone, drowning in misery and exhaustion.

I was trying so hard to do my best for our baby, but no-one would listen to me, no-one would help.

My baby was obviously in pain and I couldn’t do anything for help her. It was a very hard, dark time. I cried a lot. I hated my baby. I hated myself for hating my baby.

My husband and I didn’t know what to do. We truly believed something was wrong with our baby, but didn’t know what. It was heartbreaking seeing our baby in so much discomfort every day, and feeling completely powerless to help her.

We disagreed with our pediatrician’s opinion, but didn’t realise that we had other options than those presented to us at the time.

The breakthrough moment came for us when a friend emailed me after reading my blog post on the difficulties we were experiencing with Cheese. She suggested our baby might have something called “silent reflux“, which I’d never heard of.

I looked it up online, and the symptoms matched Cheese’s exactly. I went straight back to the pediatrician, and asked if this is what our baby could be suffering from. The pediatrician replied that most babies had some degree of reflux and, again, she would grow out of it.

Because Cheese wasn’t vomiting and was gaining weight, no help was offered. I persisted, requesting medication and the pediatrician reluctantly gave us Zantac, repeating that our baby would eventually outgrow it and there wasn’t much we could do to help her.

I can’t describe how this made me feel. My pediatrician made me feel like I was overreacting, like I was a crazy woman who couldn’t deal with a normal, new baby.

We waited the time period the pediatrician asked us to try the Zantac for, and at the end of the period (a week and a half?) with no change I returned and asked for a referral to see a pediatric gastroenterologist, as I refused to believe that there was nothing to be done to help our little Cheese.

We were given the referral somewhat reluctantly (“They’ll tell you exactly what I have”, our pediatrician told us) but I felt certain there was more we could do.

Our visit to the pediatric gastroenterologist was life-changing. For a start, she believed our baby had a medical problem, and she also wanted to help us.

During our visit she gave us a fantastic list of things we could try to help our baby deal with the reflux, asked that we try these for a few weeks, and if things didn’t improve asked us to return for a different medication that they preferred not to give if they didn’t need to. Here is a run down of the suggestions we were given:

Feeding: when feeding, stop the baby every 3 – 5 min, distract him/her, then keep feeding. This stops their stomach from getting overfull and helps to stop as much of the stomach contents from coming back up and causing reflux.

Sleeping: try placing the baby on surfaces that are a long slope. Don’t put the baby flat for too long or in things that crunch her tummy at a right angle.

Baby carriers: keeping the baby upright during the day as much as possible is meant to help, as reflux is cumulative.

We followed the advice and soon after our visit, things started to slowly got better. We had been given a vibrating bouncer from Fisher Price and, miracle of miracles, when we put the baby in it, she slept.

After a very long six weeks of the baby sleeping only on our chests, my husband and I finally had our first night sleeping in bed. At the same time. It. Was. Amazing.

Cheese still screamed a lot for the first four months, and it took us until she was six months of age to get her to sleep in her crib. (Yes, she slept in the vibrating bouncer for four-and-a-half months.)

It was a very, very slow progression, but we finally made it through the reflux and out to the other side.

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield Review

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me

After our wonderful Octonauts experience at the Sydney Sealife Aquarium a few months ago, Cheese has been very excited about seeing the Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield show. We finally saw the show over the weekend and both thoroughly enjoyed it. Said Cheese: “It was my favourite!”.

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me

This brand new show takes place in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, making it a fun and educational experience for the kids. The Great Barrier Reef is under attack, and it’s up to the Octonauts to find who is hurting the reef and to stop them.

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me

I thought I’d do this review a bit differently, and list what Cheese and I both enjoyed about the show.

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me

What Cheese enjoyed:
All of the characters from the TV show were there on stage.

She loved all the songs (there were 15 songs!).

She was equally scared by and enjoyed the grumpy coral.

She thought the sea snot cucumbers was both gross and funny.

Simple storyline she was able to follow.

The dancing: a lot of the characters actually danced!

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me
What I enjoyed:
Run time: Including a 20 minutes interval it went for about an hour and 20 minutes. Perfect for the attention span of little people.

It was fun: The show is very entertaining with very colourful and cute characters and lively songs.

It was educational: The villain of the show, the Crown of Thorns Starfish, has a propensity to eat coral. We learned how an outbreak of these animals can destroy a reef. We also learned about many of the animals that live in the reef and their part in keeping the reef healthy.

It was age appropriate: Everything about this show was perfect for preschoolers/young primary aged kids. The volume of the show, visuals, content, time of performance. It was extremely well done.

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield via christineknight.me

Thank you so much Life Like Touring and Octonauts for this very special experience.

Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield is touring Australia from 21 Feb to 28 March 2015. Tickets for Octonauts Live! Operation Reef Shield are on sale now at octonautslive.com.au.

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Growing up in Sydney, it was always a special day trip to drive up to the Blue Mountains and go bush for a few hours. I’ve always loved spending hours traipsing down trails through lush rainforest to a waterfall with no one else in sight. Magical.

Since moving back I’ve been wanting to take the Cheese for a trip up to the mountains to get a bit of bush into our city kid, and we finally got around to it a week ago.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Going bush with a preschooler who hates walking long distances anyway required a different type of preparation. I decided that the best way for us all to enjoy the day out was to visit Scenic World, so we could get a bit of variation in our activities, so we could all still experience the bush, but in a way that was accessible and fun for a 3.5 year old as well.

Scenic World sits right in the middle of the world-heritage listed Blue Mountains, and consists of four activities: the Scenic Skyway, the Scenic Railway, the Scenic Cableway and the Scenic Walkway.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

We arrived a bit hungry, so started our morning off with coffees and snacks at the Terrace Cafe. The views from this cafe are spectacular – I’d suggest visiting just to get a few photos at Mary’s Lookout.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Next we hopped on the Scenic Skyway to take our first look at the valley from the air.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Suspended 270 metres above the Jamison Falls Valley, the Skyway glides between two cliff tops. With 360 degree views and a glass bottom floor, the view is nothing short of breathtaking. On one side is the famous Three Sister rock formation and the Jamison Valley stretching off into the horizon. On the other are the majestic Katoomba Falls.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

It’s interesting to hear that the Scenic Skyway was actually Australia’s first cable car (constructed in 1958 and pictured above), and that it boasts the world’s only electrostatic glass floor, turning from opaque to transparent. In its 67 year history, the Skyway has carried over 25 million passengers.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

When we disembarked at the Skyway’s east station, we had the option of checking out the views and getting back on the Skyway to ride back across, or taking a stroll down to the Katoomba Cascades and then walking back to Scenic World (about a 15 minute walk). I was lured by the cascades and off we went. Of course, what’s meant to be a 5 minutes walk with a preschooler ends up being an hour walk once we stopped to pick up sticks and throw leaves into a little river.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Eventually we made it to the cascades and they were gorgeous. The helpful guide on the Skyway actually suggested we take Cheese down to the cascades as it’s a short walk down and kids can get right up close to the waterfall. He was certainly right. Cheese and Alec took off their shoes and happily splashed around in the cool mountain water.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Back at Scenic World we stopped for lunch at their restaurant, EATS270.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

We grabbed a table with a view that made us all stop in awe for a moment, and ordered burgers (one meat and one vegetarian) and fries, plus a beetroot salad. They had lots of vegetarian meals on offer, and the cuisine, while simple, was varied enough that most people would be able to find something to eat. Their menus offered Asian, Italian and Australian items, with options ranging from light (sandwiches, salads, wraps) to substantial (pizza, pasta, burgers). The restaurant features seasonal produce sourced from local suppliers where possible.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Our food was cooked quickly and also eaten just as quickly, as we admired the view and prepared for the next stop on our adventure. Everything was fresh and well-cooked. Simple, hearty food that was good for this picky eater and her family to nourish them on their day in the bush.

Next on our agenda (and unfortunately everyone else’s) was the Scenic Railway. We really should have done this first as it had the longest wait of any of the experiences. No matter. The train departs every 10 minutes, so even with a huge queue it moved quite quickly.

While we were waiting, the friendly staff gave Cheese and some of the other kids a few instruments to play to occupy themselves.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

The Scenic Railway is famous for its 52 degree incline, making it the steepest passenger railway in the world. Since the Railway opened to the public in 1945 (happy 70th birthday!), it has thrilled over 25 million passengers.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

After a redevelopment in 2013, the carriages now have glass roofs, so you get an even better view of the rainforest and Jamison Valley than I remember from my last visit when I was a teenager. If you’re more of a daredevil you can adjust the seat position by up to 20 degrees and choose an adventurous ‘Cliffhanger’ ride at a steep 64 degree incline.

The Railway ride took us on a very fast descent through a cliff-side tunnel, and then ancient rainforest. It was fast, and steep, as promised. It was so steep that Cheese was falling out of her seat and I had to hold onto her tight. She loved it. The preschooler in front of us was screaming to get off. Cheese was yelling to do it again. Of course.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

At the Railway exit, we emerged from our thrilling descent onto the Jamison Valley floor. The Scenic Walkway is at the base of the Railway, giving passengers the opportunity to stroll along 2.4 kilometres of Jurassic rainforest on an elevated walkway. The walkway means there is limited impact on the environment from all of the visitors, as well as making it super easy for families and less mobile people to enjoy a bush experience.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Right at the exit sits one of the original carriages for visitors to climb up on and take a look at. Of course Cheese wanted to climb everything so up we went and perched on the edge of the seats. I cannot imagine how scary it would have been to ride down the railway in this carriage.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Along the boardwalk, we checked out a few elements of the site’s cola mining history, including the mine entrance, a replica miners’ hut and scale bronze sculpture of a miner and his pit pony. The sculptures of the miner and pit pony were very popular with tourists and kids alike.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

There are three different routes you can take on the boardwalk that take 10 min, 30 min or an hour. I was keen for a longer walk but Cheese was showing signs of getting pretty tired by this stage so we opted for the shortest walk, which also lead to the Scenic Cableway back out of the valley.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

The Cableway gently descends and ascends (depending which direction you’re going) 545 metres between the Jamison Valley and top of the escarpment at Scenic World. With all-glass sides we were treated to another killer view of the valley and rock formations as we returned to Scenic World HQ, including Orphan Rock and Mt Solitary.

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Scenic World: A Day In The Blue Mountains With Kids

Our bush outing was a complete success. We catered to our preschooler’s ability and thus we all had a very enjoyable day.

I absolutely love the mountains and we will absolutely be back to explore more as Cheese gets older and can handle more strenuous outings.

Scenic World
Tickets: The ultimate Scenic World experience includes unlimited rides on the Railway, Skyway, Cableway and Walkway.
Adult: $35.00
Child (4-13yrs): $18.00
Family: $88.00 (2 adults and 5 children)
Concession: $32.00
To enjoy the Unlimited Discovery Pass experience, please allow at least two hours.
Open daily from 9am-5pm
Scenic World is located at on the corner of Violet Street & Cliff Drive, Katoomba in Australia’s World Heritage-listed Blue Mountains.
Get Directions

EATS270: Open 10:30am – 3:00pm daily.
Terrace Cafe: Open 9:00am – 5:00pm daily.

FAMILIES WITH YOUNG CHILDREN (From the Scenic World website)
Scenic World is a third-generation family business and welcomes families with children.

All Scenic World experiences are suitable for children of any age. Babies and small children are welcome on all rides and must be held by a guardian as baby seats are not provided on the Railway, Skyway or Cableway. Prams are not permitted on the Railway and pram accessibility is limited on the Walkway.

Pram parking, storage lockers and baby change facilities are located in our Main Building.

A huge thank you to Scenic World for hosting us.

Wanderlust

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.

Let Me Grow: If A 3-Year-Old Wrote “Let It Go”

#Frozen #birthday #party via akissgoodnight.co

I just had to share this hilarious take on “Let It Go” by Sydney mum Tricia McMillian. She rewrote the lyrics in tribute to her Frozen-loving daughter on her 3rd birthday.

Let Me Grow –  by Tricia McMillan (sung to the tune of “Let It Go”)

The hair turns white on Dad’s head tonight, forehead wrinkles can be seen.
A household of noise pollution, and it looks like Mum is green.
My brother’s howling, it’s a swirling storm inside. Couldn’t keep him clean, I know Mummy’s tried.

Don’t let Mum win, play with my pee, take her things and hide where she wont see,
Conceal my poo, don’t let them know… they always knowwwww

Let me grow, let me grow
Cant hold me back anymore
Let me grow, let me grow
Spread my toys across the floor

I don’t care ’bout my nap today
Let my mum rage on
Her moods never bothered me anyway.

It’s funny how Mum’s washing keeps making my clothes seem small,
And the shoes that Mum is wearing wont fit me at all!

It’s time to see what I can do
To test my parents and break through
All right, no wrong, no rules for me – I’m thrreeeee

Let me grow, let me grow
Im one who’ll break wind and lie
Let me grow, let me grow
I’ll make my brother cry

Here i stand, but i wont stay
Let this song rage onnnnnn
Wrong words never bothered me anyway.

Linking up with Grace.

Christine Knight
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby! She loves cake, her tolerant husband and her busy preschooler.