How To Help Your Teen Study Successfully!

great study tips for teens

It’s that time of the year, kids all around the country are heading back to school.

Whilst many parents will be jumping for joy, most teens will definitely not be.

My ‘baby’ is certainly one of those, as she heads into Year 12.

Not all teens are academically inclined, but with some good study skills, they can still do their very best.

Five years ago my eldest daughter decided to apply for entry into the Queensland Academy For Maths, Science and Technology. She was successful and spent Years 10, 11 and 12 completing her high schooling doing the incredibly tough IB curriculum.

There were many times she felt like quitting, but thankfully she didn’t and one of the most invaluable things she learnt was fabulous study skills that helped her cope then and now as she enters her 3rd year at UQ studying a Bachelor Of Science, step one on her way to being a Neuro surgeon.

1. Have a dedicated study space – Ideally every teen should have a desk in their room, but if that is not possible, the dining room table will do the job, just try and ensure there is a clear space for your child to spread out and work.

2. Stock up on supplies – One of the best excuses to stop studying is not having the right supplies, I mean you can’t possibly keep working unless you have a 0.5mm graphite lead mechanical pencil that is in a pink case, ahhh try another one sweetie! I always stocked up on extra stationary at the back to school sales and kept them in a large plastic tub.

3. Bite sized chunks – High school assignments can be very daunting and as the days tick by towards the due date, so many kids procrastinate as they struggle to even know where to start. Breaking a big task down into small steps and focusing on completing on a little bit at the time can make all the difference and avoid that last minute panic when it is due.

4. Keep your eye out for distractions – If you have to confiscate their phone, do it! Texting buddies or scrolling through Facebook will suck away at time. Both of my girls do enjoy having music playing in the background when they are studying, but only accessed from their playlist not multiple trips to Youtube to find a new song.

5. Help them stay focused – Especially around exam time, I put an aromatherapy burner on in their rooms with a blend of basil and lemon. This combination is great for helping them stay focused and alert. Using any of the citrus essential oils are great for lifting spirits and creating a positive vibe in their room.

6. Get more help from Google – It is not uncommon for a child to not quite grasp a concept or idea. This can often have to do with the teaching style being delivered and many teens are embarrassed to ask for more help in front of their peers. Help your child discover the wonders of Google and the incredible selection of information available. My girls have often had breakthroughs by listening to someone else deliver the same information but in a different way.

7. Staying hydrated – Drinking lot’s of water is one of the easiest ways to give yourself an energy boost. If your teen complains about being tired, apart from making sure they go to bed at a decent hour, is to give them a big glass of water to drink.

Both of my girls have done really well at school, not because they are exceptionally gifted, they have to work for their good marks. I have worked really hard at keeping the lines of communication open and my girls talk to me about everything. This helps me know where they are at, what is irking them and what their workload is. There have been meltdowns and tears, but together we have found solutions and got the job done.

I want my girls to have careers that they are proud of and bring them joy. Good grades simply means more options for them to pick from.

What clever tips can you add to the list?

Sharing for #FYBF at With Some Grace.com

How To Teach Teens To Be Savvy Savers!

Both of my girls could not wait to be old enough to get their first job and earn some real pocket money.

They both got jobs at Woolworths like so many other teens and with the excitement of earning their first pay packet came the need for them to learn how to be money savvy with their new found ‘wealth’.

Gone are the days of popping into your local branch to deposit money, it’s all about internet banking now and finding the right account that lets your teen have control over their spending and savings. If they start establishing good habits from an early stage, this will help them greatly in a couple of years time when they will be thinking about their first big life purchase, a car! Getting car finance is a much easier task if your teen can show a regular savings habit. This post is brought to you by IMB Bank.

banking solutions for teens

TWO IMPORTANT STEPS TO TAKE BEFORE THEY START WORK

Before they put their uniform on for the first time and turn up for their first shift, there is two important tasks that must be completed.

1 – Tax File Number – Applying for a Tax File Number is free and easy. Your child’s school should have the necessary form that needs to be completed and sent in to the ATO. Your teen will need a Tax File Number for their employer so having this set up before they secure a job will make things easier for them to start quickly.

2 – Open a suitable bank account – It is time for your teen to have a bank account with card access so they can go shopping with their money instead of yours. Their wages will be paid by electronic transfer into this account, so again it is best to have this all up and running before they start work.

SAVING INTO A SUB-ACCOUNT

The sooner your teen starts saving even a just a small portion of their weekly wage, the quicker it will become a habit. They will discover the joys of earning interest (free money in their eyes). Big ticket items become a reality and they will be learning one of the most important financial lessons in life, save for the big things not depend on credit cards to get you what you want at a much higher price.

A sub-account is a second account attached to an everyday account. Logging into internet banking on their phone or computer will show both accounts and switching money from one to the other is quick and instant. Sub-accounts are interest bearing and it is the perfect place for your teen to watch their savings grow over time.

Both of my girls have become masters of switching money into their sub-accounts and will often transfer almost all of their pay into it. When they want to spend some of their earnings, they simply transfer money back into their everyday account. We do know a few people that have been the victims of card fraud, so by keeping most of their funds in their sub-account, if anyone should get hold of their card numbers, they wont get to have much fun because they keep so little in their everyday account.

TIME TO TRUST

 Both of my girls love to shop, and I was concerned that as soon as they got their first pay packet, they would go and blow it all. I had to let go and let them make their own decisions. I had to trust their choices. Much to my surprise, both girls loved seeing their savings growing and even set themselves limits of how low their savings account could go and would only allow themselves to spend what was left over.

Miss WW had no trouble securing car finance when she bought her second car and decided to get a brand new one with 7 years warranty instead of an older car that would constantly need expensive repairs. It is great to see young people savvy about finance and making responsible life choices.

Are you a saver or a spender? What valuable money tips are you sharing with your teens?

How To Teach Teen Girls About Safe Sex And The Value Of A Condom!

Sex education needs to start at home

Right before our eyes, our gorgeous little girls grow up into teenagers. With this transition comes a whole new set of worries such as drugs, alcohol and sex and how on earth do I keep my girls safe and thriving. Inevitably they now need to learn the value of a condom, eek!

Both of my girls have big goals and dreams and quite simply a teen pregnancy would bring all of that too a grinding halt. Miss WW Jnr has just turned 16 and one of the girls in her year is going to be having a baby in about 2 weeks. What the …….

Relying on sex education at school will simply not cut it in the real world.

It is absolutely vital that young women learn to take 100% responsibility for their own health and wellbeing and arming them with truth and knowledge so that they can make the right choices is the best we as parents can do, other than locking them away until they are 25!

This post is in collaboration with Durex, as a condom is one of the vital keys in empowering the young women of tomorrow.

HOW TO BE THE BEST TEACHER ON THE BLOCK

TALK ABOUT IT – You need to become your girls encyclopedia of life. This is no time to let Google do the work for you. No subject is off limits in this house. When your daughter comes to you with a word, phrase or action that they don’t understand, tell them the truth. My stomach has been tied in knots on numerous occasions over discussions that popped up, but never once have I lied to them or fobbed them off. They need to know they can come to you with anything.

LISTEN WHEN THEY SHARE – Over sharing happens a lot in this house. I am privy to more information about my girls friends and their behavior than I probably should be, and what some of these girls are getting up to is scary. It would be so easy for me to say ‘I don’t want to know’ or ‘it better not happen to you’. Instead I take these opportunities to highlight the possible negative outcomes of such behavior in a conversational way rather than a lecture.

SET REALISTIC BOUNDARIES – My girls have always loved spending time with their friends, and as they grew older wanted to be able to enjoy time without 100% parent supervision. We started off small with an hour alone at a shopping centre and it grew from there. They had to take responsibility for doing the right thing, knowing there would be harsh penalties if they crossed the line. Not once have they done that, and they both now have enough common sense to not want to go to parties or events that are going to be alcohol fuelled disasters.

EXPLAIN THEIR CHOICES BEFORE THEY NEED THEM – Contraception is readily available and effective if used correctly. Girls need to know what the options are and that relying on a boy to do the right thing is the worst thing they can do. There is no way my girls are going to miss out on the opportunity to travel and follow rewarding career paths because they did not know how to protect themselves from pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease.

Never miss an opportunity to tell them you love them, support them and only want the best for them.

Kids these days can be put under a lot of pressure to conform and be part of the ‘in’ crowd. We have to help build their self esteem enough that they can have the courage to say NO to doing things that they will probably regret at a later stage.

We can’t hold their hand 24 hours a day, but we can provide truthful facts that will help guide them to hopefully making good life choices.

Do you find it hard to talk openly with your daughter and are you prepared to buy her a condom to help keep her safe?

Every Girls Guide To Buying A New Car

Buying a new car can be very stressful, but armed with the right knowledge you can wrangle a great deal.

A few weeks ago Miss WW decided that it was time for a new car. Her cute little car was getting on in years and was heading down the path of being a sink hole for cash that she would never recoup.

She had made a list of all the possible choices that are available in the small car category that she was interested in and in true University student style, she researched everything you could about each car.

With finance sorted she had one day free in her busy week to test drive her final list of favourites. Together with a friend she hit the car dealers without me there as I simply could not get that day off work.

I could feel the dealers rubbing their hands together when Miss Blondie walked in, thinking this would be an easy deal. How wrong they were!

She might have been feeling a little under the weather after discovering she had shingles just days before, but she was prepared for battle.

Every girls guide to buying a new car

It’s a done deal!

***

The initial plan was for her to do the test drives, get the prices and then we would go together and score the best deal. But the best laid plans can often be thwarted….

Little did they know that Miss WW knew practically everything there was to know about each car, so they could not pull the wool over her eyes.

Her action plan went like this –

* Use the online ‘build a car’ planner available on every car manufacturers website to get the RRP of each model.

* Troll through CarSales.com for all the prices and models currently offered by dealers around Brisbane.

* Watched independent reviews of each model by car experts online.

* Checked the ANCAP safety rating for each car. Two models were immediately crossed off her list because they only got a 4 star rating instead of 5.

* Goggled reviews by the public as they are quick too complain if things are not right.

* Made a list of all the stats and inclusions including features, fuel consumption and optional extra’s etc.

* How many years warranty are offered and do they have fixed price servicing.

* Set your budget limit and do NOT go over it.

* Shop for a new car toward the end of the month, dealers that need to fill their quota’s will be more prepared to cut a good deal.

***

After each test drive she reported back to me with her discoveries.

It was down to 3. The Toyota Yaris, the Kia Rio and the Mitsubishi Mirage.

The Mirage was her least favourite of the three, a cheaper price point but a very basic car.

The Yaris was in second place, simply because of Toyota’s reputation for building cars that last.

The Kia Rio really won her over, due to it’s fabulous finish, well equipped cabin, and a long list of positive reviews from Kia owners.

So the dealing began.

The salesman had verbally agreed on Miss WW’s price. But when it came down to the crunch her $500 refundable deposit was no longer going to be refunded, in effect she would be paying $500 more than when had been agreed upon.

She rang me most distraught and I could tell she was ready to cave, and I told her she had to walk away from this deal right now as this dealer was simply trying to take advantage of her.

And walk away she did.

She then rang another Kia dealer and explained what had just happened and if they could offer her the original quoted price she would drive over right now, if not don’t waste my time.

Not only did they match it, they ended up knocking another $500 off the price for a brand new Rio that had 14 km on the clock!

She is now the proud owner of a new car that she just loves to bits.

This was no easy feat for a 19 year old to tackle, but it proved to be a valuable lesson and has grown her confidence in making adult choices like nothing else she has done in the past.

So damn proud of her!

When did you get your first new car?

Sharing for #FYBF at With Some Grace

Will You Take The Pepsi Next Challenge?

I love a challenge, and this one was really easy, Pepsi Next ticked all the right boxes, BUT would it taste good??

p3

What little bit of water was there is crystal clear, but only deep enought to wet your toes!

Getting two teens off the lounge, away from their modern technological contraptions and out into nature -now that can be a real challenge!

Actually my girls are pretty good, they enjoy the outdoors, they love water, and when I tempted them with a picnic by the creek, they were happy to come along.

We live in suburbia, but only 5 minutes from home is a natural creek. When it has been raining it is a really fun place to visit and you can paddle around in the water. As Brisbane is suffering from a severe lack of the wet stuff, the creek was home to tadpoles, but not swimmable.

p1

Getting comfy!

When it comes to soft drink, my girls are pretty fussy and know their stuff. Normal soft drink is loaded with a ton of sugar and the diet varieties are loaded with aspartame. Neither are good options so only occassionally do we have them in the house. Both girls are heavily into ‘Physie’ which requires them to dance in nothing more than a leotard, tights, fake tan and big hair. Nothing else to hide behind. Bonus for me, they are very concious of what they eat and drink. There are no diets in our house, but they know that what they eat will go with them on to the physie floor, so they make their own informed choices.

Pepsi Next is the next generation of Cola.  It has the great taste of regular cola but with NATURALLY LESS SUGAR.  Actually it has 30% less sugar but the really important message is that we have been able to do this naturally, thanks to using Stevia.   Pepsi Next is the first Cola in Australia to use Stevia.”  This is a huge step in the right direction. Less sugar and no artificial sweetner. Winning!

So does it taste good?

Miss WW (Jnr) was already a big fan, Miss WW (Snr) was hesitant but took the plunge and was very surprised. It does not leave that nasty after taste that accompanies ‘diet’ soft drink, but is not rediculously sweet. Another vote in favour. Our guest does soft drink in a big way and certainly had no complaints. Doing very well so far.

The toughest nut to crack though is me! A coke addict from WAY back, who only very occassionally allows herself a glass of the real thing and will not have diet soft drink as the body won’t do artificialy sweetner without kicking and screaming……..another vote from me. It tastes great, icy cold it was lovely and refreshing on a hot afternoon.

p2

Normally a lovely flowing stream, but not at the moment!

Pepsi Next is a good choice for a cool refreshing drink with a lot less sugar, certainly a better choice for my family.

GIVEAWAY

Would you like an 8 pack of Pepsi Next delivered to your front door and take the taste challenge?

Simply leave a comment about why you would like to take the Pepsi Next challenge and I will have Miss WW (jnr) select a winner, the old fashioned way!  🙂   (Open to Australian residents only) – Competition closes on Friday 8 March at 8.00pm.

Sharing for #FYBF at With Some Grace

(I was sent a product pack from Pepsi for my editorial consideration) Thanks 🙂

** Update – Congratulations Emily, your pack of Pepsi Next will be delivered to you shortly!

A Special Mother/Daughter Moment

Motherhood has it’s trials and tribulations, but it also brings huge rewards.

When your children are young, you do your best to teach them manners, respect, striving for excellence and what is right and wrong. You keep your fingers and toes crossed that don’t come to harm, get hooked on drugs, or heaven forbid – come home and announce they are pregant. So far so good on ALL those counts.

Nothing gives you more pleasure as a parent to see your child reach a big milestone, exactly as they planned.

uq

My little girl is all grown up and heading off to Uni!

Today Miss WW and I went to have a wander around her new home away from home for the next 8 years.

She had to go to pick up her ID card, so we decided to go on a little discovery tour and check out all the locations for lectures, tutorials and lab work.

UQ really is like a city all of it’s own. There are so many places to eat, drink and be merry. She found the post office (a necessity when you have to post off physie leotards to people all over the country), the bank, the book shop, the chemist, the bars (the joys of having a January birthday), the co-op (full of books, beauty products and all other manner of goodness) and all the different bus stops she can use. With lakes and parks and pelicans and more coffee shops than I could count, it really is an amazing place to inspire you to learn.

uqbec

This is Miss WW’s first port of call for life at Uni. Bachelor of Science majoring in Bio-medicine. Next stop Degree of Medicine, final stop Surgery. One can’t be impatient when one wants to cut open people’s brains for a job.

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Necessary supplies have been aquired, ID card and UQ hoodie. Add that to the sparkly Victoria Secret pencil case and an ever so stylish Forever New laptop bag and Miss WW is ready for orientation next week. I keep having visions of Elle Woods heading off to Harvard in ‘Legally Blonde’ and seem to see some similarities going on here!

Good Luck my gorgeous girl, you have made your mumma very proud. 🙂 🙂 🙂

Sharing for #IBOT with Essentially Jess

Never Say You Can’t Do Something!

“If you want it bad enough, you will find a way”!

Lot’s of celebrations happening at WWHQ today.

Apart from the fact that it is my birthday.

Miss WW logged on to her QTAC account today, and was greeted with the offer of a place at the University Of Queensland for Bachelor of Science. Her first preference and the only spot she really wanted to get.

In the beginning…………

Grade 1

This is her grade one year book entry.

In grade 1 she thought that girls were nurses and boys were doctors. By the end of grade 2 she discovered that both men and women could be doctors. From that day on her path has never wavered, she was going to be a doctor.

Her father never went to University, nor did I. I could have but really had no idea what I wanted to do with my life when I finished grade 12. I just sort of slipped into a job in the travel industry and spent 13 years as a high flying corporate travel consultant until I had the girls.

Just because we didn’t go to University, does not mean that my daughter can’t.

Never once have I said she was aiming too high.

I have always told her to follow her dream.

At the end of year 9, she passed the entrance exam and interview and earnt her spot at the prestigious Queensland Academy for Science, Maths and Technology.

She spent 3 years working very hard and graduated at the end of last year. She had to wait until the 6th of January to get her results (she did the IB not the normal Queensland OP). Her score was more than high enough, so today we celebrate her offer to go to UQ, the only place she wanted to be accepted in to.

Come March, step one of the very long road ahead to becoming a neuro-surgeon begins.

I have no doubt in my mind she will make it through over a decade of study before she is even close to being a surgeon, and neither is she.

She has a goal, she has a plan, she will succeed.

So proud of her and her acheivements.

Never tell your child to stop dreaming, anything is possible.

Any child can acheive anything they set their mind too, if they are taught how to use their thoughts and the amazing power they have been given. You can teach your children how to become masters of their own destiny with the help of my book….. How To Unlock Your Child’s Super Powers! – A powerful guide to help your child be the best they can be and create an extraordinary life. Your child will learn lot’s of valuable things at school, but the most valuable tool is how to use their minds to create what they truly want. You can purchase your copy here for the cost of two coffee’s. 🙂

Sharing for #FYBF at With Some Grace

Protecting Our Teens From Cyber-bullying!

I am angry, I am sad, I am the mother of two teenage girls!

Cyber bullies are the biggest cowards, they hide behind their computer screens and torment others. They are gutless theives of precious life, and if they were face to face with their target would probably not have the nerve to say what they do.

When is this ever going to stop?

The following is taken directly from Gammon & Chips as this tells it like it is!

In memory of Izzy Dix. Together, we must stop cyberbullying!

Last week, our dear family friend, a 14-year-old schoolgirl called Izzy Dix, died. It appeared that she’d taken her own life. And this action seemed to be linked to bullying, both at school and online.

I know that Izzy had been bullied. She had discussed it in depth with her mum, Gabbi. Izzy and her mum had the closest, strongest and most natural mother/daughter bond I’ve ever had the pleasure to witness. They had come up with strategies to try to beat the bullying together, her mum had contacted the school on many occasions, and Izzy herself had spoken to her teachers.

Izzy was an incredibly bright student. She was caring, very funny, beautiful and wise beyond her years. Gabbi is understandably utterly devastated and broken by what has occurred, as are all of us who loved her.

A lot of the bullying that Izzy was so troubled over occurred on a social media website called Ask.fm.

If you haven’t heard of this before, it’s a Latvian-based question and answer site with over 70 million registered users worldwide, the majority of whom are teenagers. It allows anyone to post anonymous comments and questions to a person’s profile and is increasingly being used to communicate abusive, bullying and sexualised content. It’s this anonymity and lack of accountability and traceability that makes it really dangerous.

I’ve spoken with Gabbi and she’s told me about a particular game that is encouraged on Ask.fm, and photo-based networks like Snapchat, called ‘Body Part For Body Part’ – where anonymous people urge others to post naked photos of themselves online. Izzy never joined in. She was really passionate about women’s rights and Gabbi has told me the fact that this particular game existed and was so prolific really bothered and affected her.

Ask.fm has already been linked to the suicides of nine young people in less than a year, with Izzy’s name tragically bringing that number to ten.

Following the Ask.fm related suicide of 14-year-old, Hannah Smith, on 2nd August this year, the Prime Minister, David Cameron, called the site ‘vile’ and told the website it needed to ‘clean up its act’. Ask.fm responded by saying it would enact various small measures on the site. All in all, a move in the right direction, but this didn’t go nearly far enough.

561113 182796345189207 1111077896 n 150x150 In memory of Izzy Dix. Together, we must stop cyberbullying.

So we are lobbying for the complete closure of Ask.fm before any more names of teens are added to that list.

At the very least, we need to permanently disable the ability to remain anonymous on this site, as this is the aspect which is causing the most damage.

The government also needs to bring in new regulations that will keep people, and young people in particular, safe on the Internet.

We need watertight procedures making social networking sites accountable for revealing the identities of trolls and cyberbullies to the authorities, so cyberbullying can easily be stopped in its tracks.

36531 631371003551843 1480931815 n 150x150 In memory of Izzy Dix. Together, we must stop cyberbullying.

We need police forces to take bullying seriously.

We need education programmes for schools and community groups so we can teach the power of love and kindness.

And we need support programmes for both victims and bullies.

In my opinion, Izzy is a casualty of a changed world and a society that hasn’t yet caught up.

There are 3 things you can do to help us:

  1. Urge your teens to delete their Ask.fm accounts as a mark of respect, as well as for their own safety and wellbeing. If they don’t have one yet, ban it in your household.
  2. Sign this petition and help us to lobby the government on the dangers of Ask.fm – once we get 100,000 signatures, it can get presented to the UK House of Commons.
  3. Spread this message via social media and beyond, in whatever way you can. Share on Facebook. Tweet and Retweet on Twitter. Write to your MP. Talk about it with your family and friends. Just don’t be silent.

Beyond our campaign, there are things you can do as parents too. If your children are old enough, talk to them about cyberbullying. Sit them down. Explain to them what it is, why it happens, and how they can report it. Monitor what your children are doing online. You wouldn’t let them walk down a dark dangerous street alone, so take this analogy and relate it to your children’s Internet usage. Tell them that you love them. Not once, but several times a day. Because you can never, ever, give a child too much love.

If you suspect that your children may be involved in bullying others, then you need to talk to them too. There are charities like ChildLine, The Samaritans, Beat Bullying, and The Talk Easy Trust that can help.

And when it comes to a response to bullying, we need to educate our kids to turn the other cheek, rather than become bullies themselves. Two wrongs don’t make a right. We all need to rise above this, take our hurt, anger and passion and use it to rally together for real societal change.

Izzy Dix – We love you to the moon and back. If only you could see how very much we all miss you. We will change things for the better in your name and you will never be forgotten. The world has been so privileged to have had you in it. We will all make you so proud. Rest in peace gorgeous girl.”

535866 10153131327400297 859767719 n 150x150 In memory of Izzy Dix. Together, we must stop cyberbullying.

Izzy Dix. RIP

One of my daughters is 14! This scares me beyond belief.

If you have teenage children, share this with them, find out if Ask.fm is a place they hang out.

Please sign the petition and let’s protect our gorgeous young children. I realise this is currently an Australian based petition, but it does affect children around the globe. Please feel free to use the postcode 4000 (Brisbane, Australia) so that you can enter.

We can only educate and be open with out children, ultimately we can not control every minute of their day.

They are worth it, I know mine sure are!

Has your child been a victim of bullying?

 

Sharing today for #IBOT with Essentially Jess

The Long Road To Legal (Driving That Is!)

The joys of parenting teens! It is sometimes just pure heart stopping material!

The process of getting a drivers licence, should be relatively simple. Get your learners permit, do 100 hours of logbook driving, send it off to be approved, go for your driving test, and whammmmmo! You have your licence.

BUT oh no, this has been a long and harrowing experience! Very grateful for a heart that still beats.

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P-plates have kicked the L’s out the door!

Getting her Learners Permit was easy as, she got 100% on the written test, and then with my heart in my mouth and my hand clutching the hand grip on the door, she managed to get us home without hitting, squashing or scaring anything!

Over 100 hours of log-booking (which is such a tedious chore!!) complete, the book is sent off to be authorised and the text message arrives a couple of days later, all good! Booked in for a driving test, well we thought she was…..

Attempt No 1. – We turn up at Rosalie at the alloted booking time, to discover that Miss WW, had accidently cancelled her appointment, hitting the refresh button trying to get an earlier appointment. We sat there all afternoon in the hope that someone would no-show, but no go. One very disappointed pair head home for the night.

Attempt No 2. – We manage to score an appointment for the next afternoon. The test was going really well until on the way back to the depot, she misread a 4 lane intersection, everyone including the car were safe, but no passing the test, oops!

Attempt No. 3 – We manage to get a booking nice and close to home at Strathpine, and low and behold, one of the indicator globes decides to go and even after a dash up the road for a replacement, there is not enough time for her to sit the test. Home we go again.

Attempt No. 4 – 7 days later, we are off to Strathpine again, this time with an almost a perfect score, she is now the proud owner of P plates, and the freedom to drive where ever she wants.

My heart will still be in my mouth every time she puts the key in the iginition, but I have no choice, I have to let my precious teen hit the road without me. The worries never cease, no matter what age they are, you just want them to be happy and safe!

I now know how my parents felt, but they let me go, and I am still around!

Was getting your licence easy or hard?

Sharing the stess for #IBOT with Essentially Jess!

I Am Rocking This Single Motherhood Gig!

After a very painful start, a ton of tears, sleepless nights and panic attacks, I am truly rocking this single motherhood gig!

I applaud all single parents as this can be the hardest thing, as parents, that we ever have to do.

When 23 years of marriage comes to a grinding halt, the feeling of terror is indescribable. It washes over you with every breath you take. As the days pass, it slowly releases it’s grip and you start to see your world in a whole new light, one that I am kind of liking.

The Universe sent me lot’s of messages, but I did not listen, I did not see, I did not notice, that my marriage was over, until one day it slapped one at me so hard that I could not ignore it. One of today’s vital necessities, the mobile phone, and text messages on my husbands phone that happened at odd hours. He was in the shower late at night, and I glanced at the phone and just about threw up! The next 24 hours were devestatingly hard, but by night fall the next day, I asked the questions that needed to be asked, I made no plee, I found strength that I did not know I had, and it was over.

2 1/2 years later, and I am the CEO of WWHQ, and totally rocking this!

Strawberry champagne

Cheers to me!

A house full of girls is fraught with a dose or 10 of bitchiness and hormonal fluctuations, but holding it all together is a bond of love and support. We are an awesome team, forging ahead and moving mountains.

I have my chauffeur’s cap, my chef’s cap, my maid’s cap, my banker’s cap and my nurturing cap, that all fit snuggly. I call the shots, I make all the decisions, I get to chose what we eat, I mow the lawns (never did that before, we had a deal, he didn’t clean toilets and I didn’t mow lawns), the rubbish bin does get put out every week, I decide what my teen girls can and cannot do, I hug them when they are in pain, I support them when they are stressed, I nurse them when they are unwell, and I would not have it any other way.

I am blessed with two girls that are going through their teens with a positive attitude, big dreams and strong work ethic. They have fortunately both avoided the dreaded teen sulleness that so often rears its head when the hormones kick in. They have great friends, do really well at school and make me so damn proud.

One of them wants nothing to do with her father if possible, and the other one loves him to bits, and goes and stays with him for the weekend quite regularly. We have things nicely sorted without the need for lawyers, mediators or the like.

I am still single and have no idea if or when that will change. Will leave that to the Universe to sort out. I enjoy having the whole bed to myself, I enjoy not having anyone tell me what to do, I enjoy being me and not the ‘pretend’ person I was. I am now the only one responsible for my future, and I intend to keep rocking it!

Getting cosy on THE LOUNGE and sharing our awesomeness with Musings Of The Misguided

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like…..Physie Interclub Season!

It’s that time of the year again, Physie Interclub Season, has begun!

The scent of spray tan lingers in the air, cans of hairspray are stock piling, new leotards have arrived, hair pieces have arrived from the UK and the road tripping has begun.

Months of learning and practice now hit the floor for warm up competitions begin in preparation for Champion Girl at the end of the year.

Everton hit the road of the weekend, for a ‘little’ trip down to Tenterfield to join in an awsome interclub, hosted by our ‘sister’ club Granite Belt. Beautifully organised to perfection, it was great to see so much wonderful physie in a fun and friendly enviroment.

physie bags

Guess what our club colours are?

Yes the red and white bags are full of make-up, hair bits, tan, fishnets, leotards and more!

The winter woolies came out of retirement, as in Brisbane we really don’t need too much of that sort of thing. Heading south with overnight forecasts of 1 degree is a bit scary for the subtropical dwellers like us.

Physie weekends away are fun! Lot’s of wine, good food, physie, and time to relax and enjoy meals together. As my stomach is tied in knots when my girls go on the floor, after a long a day it is great to have the time to relax and chat to all the families that make up team Everton.

physie breakfast

Competition day starts with a good breakfast. French toast, banana, bacon, maple syrup and really good Merlo coffee hit the spot perfectly at the Willow Tree Cafe in the main street of Tenterfield. Others at the table had waffles, ham and cheese french toast or a big traditional hot breakfast. Not one of us was disappointed with their choices.

physie girls

The sun shone, and it was really quite mild if you were not in the wind, so we took the opportunity to to take some pics, before the girls hit the floor for competition.

Physical culture or physie as it is called is an amazing sport for girls to participate in. Building strength, flexibility, stamina it is great for health and deportment. Fantastic friendships have been formed. Some families have mum and daughter participate and this really is the most delightful sight. My girls only started 6 years ago, but some start as little tiny tots and never stop. With age brackets for all ladies, it is one of the wonderful things you can do at any age. Celebrating 120 years of dance sport, BJP Physical Culture is a fabulously healthy and inspiring thing to be part of.

Thank you Tenterfield for making everyone feel so welcome, nothing beats country hospitality. We are looking forward to our next visit in a few years time.

Sharing today for #IBOT with Essentially Jess.

Have Passport Will Travel!

Travel is in my blood, I have completely lost count of how many flights I have been on, how many amazing cities I have visited, but when your father is in hotel management and you then become a Corporate Travel Consultant, it is inevitable that the list is long….

It all started when I was 9, our family packed our bags and the family home, and jetted off to Lae, Papua New Guinea. Three years later, Fiji here we come! Two years after that it was back to Australia and resort south of Adelaide.

Here are a few of the ‘back yards’ I grew up in.

melo

The Melanesian Hotel, Lae

fiji

The Westin, Nadi, Fiji

A2

Wirrina Hotel Resort, Second Valley, South Australia

Needless to say I had a rather awesome childhood, living in hotels, meant no housework, no cooking, no chores, just fun. I learnt how to dive, how to play golf, how to ride horses and how to order room service!

Eventually the moving life got too much and my parents settled in Brisbane, and after finishing school (it only took me 13 different schools to get there) it seemed natural to get into the travel industry.

For 13 years I worked long and hard, but played just as hard, in many different countries and time zones.

Life as a travel consultant is fun!

Educationals saw me head to UK and Europe quite a few times. I have been all around the Pacific, Asia, the USA and more.

I flew to London to have dinner with my brother.

I used to go to Auckland just for the day to have lunch at the Hyatt.

A weekend away could be a quick trip to Vanuatu or Fiji.

10 nights accommodation for my honeymoon cost $250.

$200 for a 9 night cruise, and then won $160 at bingo on the first night.

I have eaten snails in Paris, chocolate in Switzerland, marzipan in Lubec, and Tom Yum Goong in Bangkok.

I have been in a seaplane, a DC9, an open sided helicopter, twin otter, jets, jumbo’s and on a camel.

AND THEN I HAD KIDS!

So my travel consultant days came to an end. I chose not to go back into the industry as the hours involved to do the job properly simply do not work when you have kids. I can’t come home and tell them “I am off to Europe for two weeks, you will just have to look after yourselves”, so I clock it up as history that was very awesome at the time, and has so many fond memories.

We still travel, my girls have been interstate and overseas, and in the years to come I hope to venture further afield with them!

Have passport will travel!

Do you love travel or do you prefer to stay close to home?

Sharing for the first time with The Lounge for Travel Tales Day!

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