Thursday, September 17, 2015
When visiting Mecca recently, the sales assistant was putting out Don't Blow It, and mentioned it to me saying that even though she had only been using it for a few days, she was calling it a miracle product. Sucked in by the sales pitch, I bought the little travel sized tube to give it a try. And you know what, it may have been a sales pitch, but she was right - this is a miracle cream, and I have since gone on to buy the full size!
So simple to use, you simply wash your hair, then a apply a dollop (I use about a 20c piece) through out your hair, including the roots, then let air dry. You can tousle or twirl to bring out more of a curl, you can brush through for a straighter finish, and you can layer with other products like surf spray for even more effects. If you head to B & B's site, they have a number of video tutes showing different effects.
The first pic shows it brushed through after applying for a straighter effect. It gives my hair that "cool French girl" kind of vibe - that textured, slightly dishevelled but still put together look! I simply washed my hair, towel dried, applied the styler throughout the hair, and combed through. Once dried, I combed through again, adding a touch of Kerastase Elixir The Imperial oil to the ends.
These two pics show the effect when I want to embrace my waves. The pic on the left was achieved by applying the Don't Blow It to towel dried hair, combing through, then giving my hair a good allover spray with Pureology's Sea Kissed texturiser, their salt-free version of a surf spray. A quick scrunch with my hands, then I left my hair to dry. Once dry, I gave my hair one more quick tousle with my fingers, especially in the root section, as otherwise I find you can see the product there, almost like you put hair gel in. Once tousled, it disappears completely.
The pic on the right takes a little bit of pre-planning, if you are like me and your hair takes forever to dry. I washed my hair at night instead, towel dried, applied styler throughout and then put my hair into four even plaits. When I got up the next morning, I simply undid the plaits, and gently broke up the hair with my fingers - do not brush! Again, a tiny bit of Kerastase oil on the ends. These curls come out looking so pretty, and lasted all day.
The best way to describe Don't Blow It is like a light leave in conditioner, with a touch of styling hold. It gives my hair just the right amount of weight to hold frizz at bay, without weighing down my hair at all. Most important, it does not leave your hair feeling sticky or crunchy, my two big bug bears with leave in products.
The fragrance is fresh but very light - TBH once applied, my shampoo scent still takes over, so it is probably safe for even those who a fragrance sensitive. I can't speak for how this would work on some one with thick hair, but for fine haired ladies like myself, this product is truly a godsend, and I highly recommend it!
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post - all products mentioned have been purchased by me.
Sunday, September 6, 2015
Monday, May 25, 2015
This porridge, with its mix of warming spices and protein from the chia and almonds is a delightful (and filling) way to start a wintry morning. And taking just 5 minutes to whip up, there is no excuse to be eating anything less!
Warming Pear, Almond and Chia Porridge
1 pear, grated
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup coconut or almond milk
2 tbs chia seeds
2 tbs Mayvers Almond Spread
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp vanilla bean paste
Place all ingredients in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat for 5 minutes until pears have softened and porridge is thick and creamy. Top with extra cinnamon and sliced pears.
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Thursday, May 21, 2015
Winter is no longer coming, it is well and truly here, and with that comes cold and flu season. This vibrant juice is full of immune boosting goodies to keep your system healthy and strong over winter!
Sunshine Immunity Juice
1 orange, peeled
1/2 lemon, peeled
1 slice fresh ginger
1 slice fresh tumeric (or 1/2 tsp ground)
2 tsp SuperElixir greens powder (optional)
1 1/2 cups cold green tea (or water)
1 cup ice
Place all ingredients in a high powered blender and blend on high speed until combined.
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Monday, May 11, 2015
Friday, May 8, 2015
You all know I love the Aerin range of beauty products so I was super excited when I found out they were finally available in Australia and I didn't have to have them shipped all the way from America! I was thrilled to see the entire fragrance range was available, as perfume is one of the few things I can't get sent to Oz (pesky flammable goods!). Unfortunately, the Lauder company seem to be doing a soft launch, and have not brought the whole range to our shores, with only the lip conditioner (my all time favourite lip balm) and the hand cream supplementing the perfumes, but I hold high hopes they will bring the rest of the range here sooner rather than later!
Available at Estée Lauder counters at David Jones and Myer, Australia wide.
Monday, May 4, 2015
Shortcut Chicken Soup1 packet pre chopped mixed veggies (from the fresh fruit and veg section) - mine had celery, leek, carrot, turnip, broccoli stems.
1 packet McKenzies Quick Cook Soup Mix
500g packet frozen shredded chicken
8 cups chicken stock (or water and included stock packet).
- Saute mixed veggies in a little butter and olive oil until softened (about 4-5 minutes) in a large saucepan.
- Add remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer.
- Lower heat to low, and then simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, until beans and grains are tended.
- Serve with crusty bread.
Thursday, April 30, 2015
Posted by Sarah Vitsas at 1:00 PM
Monday, January 12, 2015
For quite a long time now, I have been an electronic planner person, but late into last year, I just found it wasn't working for me as well as it had been previously. This made me think about going back to the good, old fashioned paper planner, and since I have, I honestly haven't looked back. I think that a full blown stationery obsession, coupled with a mind that simply works better when I physically write things down, has combined to create a system that seems to working much better for me.
I had used a MomAgenda in the past, but the reason it fell out of favour for me was that it was just too big, and so it didn't fit in all my bags, and just became too cumbersome to carry around all the time. And this is really a key point - for any diary system to work, paper or digital, you need to always have it with you. While browsing in kikki-k, I came across the most gorgeous lilac and gold leather planner in medium (it's 50% off at the moment!) that looked large enough to actually write things in, but not so large that I wouldn't tote it around with me. I also added a little pencil case designed to strap over a planner (from Officeworks) to contain my coloured pens (more on that later!).
When you first open up my planner, I have a little motivational quote that I swap out weekly in front of my personal info page. This quote card is also from kikki-k, from a little set of quote cards I picked up on clearance. I also have some fun shaped paper clips in case I need to clip loose pieces of paper in while I am out and about, to keep them safe until I get home and can punch them in.
After my info page, I have my daily docket. This one is from The Polkadot Posie Printables and includes half the page dedicated to the schedule for the day, as well as a little meal planning box, and a To-Do list. I've added in downloadable "To Call" and "To Clean" stickers downloaded from and printed at home.
After a homemade divider, I then have a section dedicated to my health and fitness goals, as this is a real focus for me this year. The first page is a daily "My Healthy Day" tracker from Lime Tree Fruits that is a great visual summary for me - it includes drinking water, fruit and veg consumption, exercise, mind and soul, to name just a few.
Next is my goal tracker, also from The Polkadot Posie Printables, which I am using to track my long term health goals. What I love about this tracker is that while it lists your long term goals, it also breaks them down into monthly goals, something I think makes your goals so much more achievable. I love the little motivational quote as well!! I'm all about the quotes at the moment!!
In this section, I also have the weightloss tracker, measurement tracker, and a fitness calender, which were all part of the Health and Fitness Planner set (together with the goal tracker above) from The Polkadot Posie Printables. I use the fitness tracker to document how many steps I have taken each day (with the aim of consistently achieving at least 10000 daily) as well as what exercise classes I have taken.
Next is my monthly calendar section, also from Polkadot Posie Printables. I don't refer to this section every day, more like once a week, but it is great for longer range planning. I've decorated it with washi tape, taping out the bottom of each day that is a school holiday.
My final main section is my weekly diary, and this I refer to many times per day. I'm not sure why, but I didn't love the insert the planner came with, so I swapped it out for one from Filofax. Each Sunday night, I sit down and review the coming week, and decorate it with washi tape, stickers and quotes. I love how bright and cheerful it looks! The stickers are a mix, and include motivational and puffy cute little stickers from kikki-k, printable workout icon stickers from The Gifted Pepper, and my Flylady cleaning zone printable sticker from Juicebox Creations.
I also colour code all the entries so I can see visually at a glance who each diary entry refers to. Pink is for my daughter, blue for my son, purple for me, and green for entries that involve both the kids or the family. Colour coding has made a huge difference to the workability of my planner.
So there you have my planner setup for the new year. I would love to hear whether you have switched to digital, or you can't get enough of paper like me!
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Monday, January 5, 2015
Top Ten Posts of 2014
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Friday, January 2, 2015
2014 has been an incredibly tough year for me; I would go so far as to say that 2014 has, by far, been the worst year that I have ever experienced. It seemed like the year just progressively threw greater and greater trials at me, almost like I was being tested to see how much I could possibly endure. However, the year has ended, and I survived. I might not have thrived, but I survived.
Winter has swallowed us whole, taken us deep. In the chill of ice, trees stand stark as bones, the land is cold iron, frost slows all movement so Gaia is still as death. Only the brilliant stars in the black sky remember the rhythms of earth as they wheel through the night. All is connected. As stars bloom and die, as flowers fall to seed, as bone becomes nurturing ground, the wheeling universe lives in its Beauty and pattern. We are stardust, born of the Great Goddess, and in her is all hope. Even in the most severe terror of darkness and cold that Kali brings, the Spark flares again to ignite the perfect miracle of life. When all seems lost, the mystery of the universe begins to lift us into light and renewal once more.
Life has been irrevocably changed and can never be the same, but the love and support of your family, your friends, and your faith cradle you, hold you close, and lift you back towards the light until you can grasp it once again.
Posted by Sarah Vitsas at 11:44 PM
Friday, November 21, 2014
As a family, we have been watching a lot of documentaries on World War 1, and talking a lot about the war and what the soldiers had to endure during their time fighting on the front. World War 1, and the ANZACS, are a major part of the Australian identity, and with the centenary next year, I think that now is the perfect time to talk to our children about such a crucial part of Australia's, and the world's, history. One of the things we have been talking about was the food they had to eat, and from that, I decided to make a chocolate spin on the classic Anzac biscuit that was sent to those brave young boys by their loving families back on the homefront.
These are fantastic to make in bulk, and then freeze unbaked, so you can have freshly baked treats whenever you need them. I like to freeze them on a baking tray first, like the pic below, and then place into a zip lock bag to save space in the freezer. If you don't want to pre-freeze them, this recipe can be halved with no problems.
Freezer Cooking: Chocolate Anzac Biscuits2 cups plain flour
2 cups sugar
2 cups rolled oats
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup shredded coconut
2 cups dark choc chips
8 tbsp golden syrup
250g butter, melted
- Place all the dry ingredients into a large bowl, and stir to combine.
- Add melted butter and golden syrup, stirring until well combined.
- Using a small cookie scoop (or a tablespoon), place scoops onto baking tray, and gently press down with a fork.
- Freeze until firm, then transfer to a zip lock bag.
- When ready to bake, transfer to a parchment lined baking tray, leaving room for spreading, and bake from frozen in a preheated 170C/350F oven for 15 minutes.
- If cooking immediately rather than freezing, bake at the same temp for 12 minutes.
- Allow to cool on tray for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
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