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ISSUE 72 January/February 2016 SUNSHINE COAST


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Starting school – a family's guide Parents in the classroom Things to stop saying to our girls Local family favourites Litter-free lunches


[WELCOME] A warm hello to you from our team as we jump into 2016 – may it be the best year yet!

Harper, 8yrs

It’s the start of a new school year for many families and this issue has plenty of great school-related articles to give you some help and inspiration along the way. But first, if you’re starting to run out of ideas for school holiday fun, remember to check out our school holiday eGuide on our website for a comprehensive list of local activities and events that even the most hard-to-please child will enjoy. My daughters love to try out different things and our school holiday eGuides are my go-to resource to find new experiences for them. Is your child about to start school for the first time or starting at a new school? They are about to experience a big change in their life, however we can forget that this transition affects the whole family. Our Feature article details the challenges each family member is likely to face and provides tips for coping with those challenges. With a growing trend for parents to take part in the school day by helping in the classroom, our Education article looks at whether this is a good thing and also suggests ways to support your child’s learning in other ways if you are not able to make it into the classroom yourself. We share some simple and healthy school lunch ideas that will ensure not a scrap of litter is to be found in the lunch box. See, too, our pick of the best products for kids to take to school and activities they can try out throughout the school year. I am blessed with two girls who have settled on a great bedtime routine with their dad, letting us have our evenings remain (usually!) free of challenge and angst. We discuss the importance of a regular bedtime in our Family Health article this issue – not only for school children, but children of all ages. It’s not all about school though. Building on the success of the article ‘Must-have conversations with your son’ in our September/October 2015 issue (SC70), our focus now shifts to daughters. Turn to the Parenting Files to read an invaluable guide for parents of girls of all ages about the things we must stop saying to our daughters. Before you start reading, just a quick reminder to look at the new Web Wrap Up section for the most loved stories, reviews and competitions on our website over the past couple of months. Be sure to head to our website to check out these and many more – you’ll be surprised at what you’ll find! Please feel free to contact our team via our website or email, and don’t forget to sign up for our What’s On eNews that comes out weekly at

Natasha Higgins, Editor


36 EDUCATION: Parents in the classroom

4  WHAT'S ON: Find out what’s happening on the Coast during January & February

42 TEENS: Leaving the nest


46 WELLBEING: Litter-free school lunches


50 FAMILY HEALTH: A regular bedtime

10 F  EATURE: The starting school guide for the whole family 16 CHECK THIS OUT: The best back to school products and activities 18 PARENTING FILES: Things we must stop saying to our daughters 24  SPECIAL FEATURE: Local family favourites 28 BABIES: 13 ailments babies face in their first 12 months 34 PARENTVILLE: If only I knew


56 PARENTS TALK: Kids and mobile phones 58 DESTINATIONS: Farmstays –the call of the country 60 LIFE STORIES: Tara Colegrave 62 BOOKS – APPS – MOVIES

EDITORIAL CONTRIBUTORS: Megan Blandford, Dannielle Miller, Kerry White, Belinda Hopper, Eva Lewis, Jessica Jane Sammut, Kim Lahey, Victoria Forry, Sandra Smith, Kerryn Anker, Natasha Higgins COVER PHOTOGRAPHY: Verve Portraits

Printed with vegetable/soy based inks on paper supplied using pulp sourced from sustainable forests and manufactured to environmentally accredited systems. WE ENCOURAGE RECYCLING. Please keep this issue for future reference, pass onto your friends and family, use for craft projects or place into the recycling bin. |

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as o C e

WHAT'S ON Visit ou r new website to see more events!




Children are invited to create their own mandalas based on forms found in nature and/or geometric patterning. Mandalas will be drawn with pencil on paper first, then painted and next embellished with natural and/or upcycled materials.

A fun-filled show for all the family.


Discover the bright and vibrant underwater world of the Octonauts in an all-new experience at Sea Life Mooloolaba! Featuring beautiful aquatic animals in dynamic displays, 3D talking Octonauts crew members, activities and more.

DOWNLOAD SUMMER SCHOOL HOLIDAY EGUIDE Loaded with events and activities to keep your kids busy this summer. Download to your tablet device for easy offline reading!



The Ginger Flower and Food Festival celebrates Queensland’s sub-tropical climate with local celebrity chefs and gardening experts with three days of fabulous flowers, delicious food and entertainment.

A 5k race like no other! Runners start the race wearing white and are covered in paint throughout the course. Sign up to help celebrate healthiness, happiness and individuality.

DAILY TOP SHOTS FUN PARK Climb it, play it, splash it and hit it! Book a party here for the kids or a day event with family and friends. Plenty of fun, rides, attractions and relaxation await you at Top Shots Fun Park.


ICE CREAM Colin James Fine Foods, Maleny Gelato Mio, Coolum Gelateria Milano, Caloundra Cold Rock, Alexandra Headland Nitrogenie, Noosa Heads

JANUARY 26 AUSTRALIA DAY CELEBRATIONS AT AUSSIE WORLD Australia Day at Aussie World attracts thousands of people looking for family fun. The day is filled with true blue events, dunny races, live entertainment and food suitable for the entire family.


JAN/FEB 2016

LIBRARY EVENTS Check out your local library! Did you know that council libraries have free events, classes, workshops and activities for babies and children?


John Williamson performs classic Australian songs live in the Crocoseum, ahead of the Wildlife Warriors show! There will be so many Aussie adventures to enjoy like Pavlovas to decorate and devour and a pie and Pavlova eating contest. |

REVIEW OAKS OASIS, CALOUNDRA As parents, booking a family holiday can sometimes be a difficult task, with affordability, convenience, location and finding the right balance between child/ parent-friendly facilities a tall order to meet. Read the full review at

FEBRUARY 7 CALOUNDRA TRIATHLON The Queensland Triathlon Series welcomes athletes of all ages and abilities to compete in a fun, friendly environment. Includes the kool kids 7 years plus races.

* We publish information based on what is supplied to us - to the best of our knowledge all details are correct at the time of printing, however we do recommend you check event details with the organisers


i h s un |

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SOCIAL kidsonthecoastmagazine

Join us ... for daily conversation, insp iration and information. WE’VE BEEN INSTAGRAMMING THE LOVE! This season, we’ve been channelling the love with our gratitude challenge. It’s amazing how counting your blessings makes you feel. Here at the KOTC and KITC hub, we’ve been noticing all that is good in life and writing it down.

We want to hear from YOU! Here at Kids on the Coast and Kids in the City, we want to hear from YOU! YOU and your families are the air that we breathe! If you have any topics you would like covered or need help with, please don’t hesitate to drop us a line on Facebook. We can put the question to any number of our KOTC/KITC experts, or can even ask our cool collective of fellow KOTC/KITC mamas if you would like! We are all here to help each other, after all! It takes a village to raise a child (and don’t we know it) … #kotcsisterhood #kitcsisterhood #letssticktogether


It’s been a busy few months for us on Facebook, with a plethora of events advice, parenting knowledge and KOTC/KOTC hub in-jokes. We’ve had a blast chatting with you! If you haven’t already joined our friendly and sassy tribe of mamas, come and say hello at kidsonthecoast or We can’t wait to share more stories with you and hear what you have to say (and have a giggle).

Family Foodie Hub What’s making you feel the love today? It could be the taste of a frothy cappuccino savoured while bub is having a nap, or the look on your child’s face as you wake up in the morning. It could be the thought of watching your little one grow and develop next year. If you feel like sharing your gratitude on Instagram, let us know by using our hashtags and you could feature in our next issue! #kidsinthecitymagazine #kidsonthecoastmagazine


10 DIY craft ideas to make your kids grandparents MELT Source:


JAN/FEB 2016

Some of what we have been chatting about recently on Facebook is family-friendly food in the form of EASY yet delicious and nutritious recipes. Who doesn’t love those?! Over the next few weeks, we will therefore be expanding our family food section in our KOTC/KITC online magazine (, so make sure you head to our website for more features on tasty meals your kids will love, family food tips and a plethora of advice from our expert dieticians, nutritionists and chefs. And, if you have any tips/recipes/nuggets of gold of your own, we would love to hear them! Just drop us a line on Facebook, or join the conversation on our website.

It’s the school holidays, and yep, it’s time to keep our rugrats entertained! If you are looking for #inspo, check out our Make & Create and Kid’s Boredom Buster Pinterest pages, especially put together to rescue you before your little ones start emptying out the cupboards! Check them out here:

Here are a few of our favs:

101 almost free things to with your kids this summer Source:

10 awesome drawing ideas for kids Source:

Giant list of DIY kid craft recipes Source: |

Brisbane - Suns

hine Coast - Gold


“ Things to do, places to go!”






2015 / JANUA

RY 2016

And if you are still stuck for ideas, download our ULTIMATE Summer School Holiday Guide packed full of things to do, found under HOLIDAY EGUIDES (RESOURCES) on and

Family Day Care Q U A L I T Y H OM E BAS E D C H I L D CA R E

What people are saying about RB Family Law Candice was very helpful and informative. My matter was handled promptly. I was kept well informed. I am very glad that I chose RB Family Law. I would definitely recommend Candice to anyone with a family law matter.” Patricia, Noosaville: 2015

We will help you with:

• Parenting arrangements • Financial support for you & your children • Financial arrangements on separation • Obtaining a divorce

We aim to educate the whole child with a curriculum tailored to each child; children are honoured and valued for their capabilities and individuality. They are encouraged to reach their fullest potential by respecting individual differences in order to foster an enjoyment of learning and a sense of community responsibility in a safe, inspirational and nurturing environment.

We are located at Noosaville but will happily travel from Gympie to Caloundra to meet with our clients.

We offer an initial FREE half hour consultation


T: 5430 6667 E: W:

f PH 5476 3373

Children’s Dentist Dr Wei asks...

Is your child’s face “growing” the right way? Dr Wei Shen. B.D.S. Adelaide Principal Dentist

We want to avoid teeth that don’t line up properly by getting children to swallow properly and to breathe through their noses so that their face and jaw develop the right way. We try to ensure that they grow beautiful faces and, to do that, sometimes we have to look at habit correction, expansion of the space between teeth and other techniques so that when they become teenagers they will need minimal orthodontic work.

Gentle dental care for kids! Rosie Ngwenya Oral Health Therapist

Shop 1/ 13 Garnet Street Cooroy QLD 4563 P H O N E : ( 0 7 ) 5 4 4 7 7 6 6 9 |

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Stay up to date with your local community news. If you have any unique news that you’d like to share, please contact our editor at

Whats news » Visit our website for more news,


Nature Play QLD is coming to the aid of parents who are facing the challenge of keeping the kids occupied these school holidays. Its ‘Holiday PlayList’ comprises of 20 lists of the top 10 things to do and places to go throughout the Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast and Brisbane. Nature Play QLD program manager Hyahno Moser hopes this practical resource will get kids outside and limit their screen time over the holidays. “The recently released Australian Child Health Poll revealed the top three concerns for parents around the country are how much time their kids are spending on screens, obesity and inactivity, all of which can be alleviated with outdoor play,” Moser said. The Holiday PlayList can be downloaded free from the Nature Play QLD website at and includes ’10 places for bush walking on the Sunshine Coast’ and ’10 things to do to be a young marine scientist’.


This summer, young readers can explore the wonders and worlds of science fiction, with State Library of Queensland’s (SLQ) popular Summer Reading Club. More than 1000 libraries are taking part in this free initiative, designed to encourage a love of reading among children. Acting state librarian Sonia Cooper said the Summer Reading Club offered lots of free creative activities designed to inspire an ongoing love of reading and literature and encourage children to visit our libraries. “This year club members can sample newly released titles from 21 of Australia’s favourite authors and illustrators, search for answers in the Encyclopaedia Britannica online scavenger hunt, craft adventurous endings to Paul Collins’ and Allison Tate’s What Happens Next story starters, share their own book raves and artwork, and write their own Lost Worlds themed short stories,” she said. To join the club, visit your local public library or register online at 8

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Captain Cook gave the Glass House Mountains their name because they reminded him of the glass furnaces in Yorkshire.





Turtle season is upon us and Sunshine Coast Council is asking for your help to clean up the beaches before the newest members of the turtle families arrive. Sunshine Coast Council is organising a beach clean on Saturday February 6 at various locations along the coast including Coolum, Mudjimba and Shelly Beach. Volunteers are needed to help collect rubbish to prevent it from re-entering the water and hampering the turtle hatchlings. The event culminates with a BBQ at La Balsa Park in Buddina, where rubbish will be weighed and lucky door prizes awarded. Last year the event attracted 350 volunteers who collected 350kg of rubbish from our beaches. To register visit council’s website

BEST BEACH ON THE SUNSHINE COAST ABOUT TO GET EVEN BETTER Kings Beach, Caloundra, was named ‘Top Beach’ in the recent Surf Life Saving Queensland’s 2015/16 list of Queensland’s best beaches. And it is about to get even better. Division two councillor Tim Dwyer said locals and visitors could soon look forward to an even better beach experience when upgrades to further enhance infrastructure in the area start in late January. “With upgrades of the pedestrian pathway along Kings Beach and around the surf club, lighting installation, a staircase to the Esplanade car park, the development of a new open area on the headland, and the introduction of a tree-shaded plaza due to start in the area after Australia Day, Kings Beach will only improve,” he said. Factors considered when selecting the top 10 beaches in Queensland included the safety of beachgoers, frequency of patrols, services offered, coastal conditions, beach signage and overall cleanliness. Main Beach in Noosa came eighth in the list. |

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balance of carbohydrates, proteins and fats means that the young students won’t experience fluctuating blood sugar levels (highs and lows) and will actually be able to concentrate better in class and may avoid afternoon energy slumps.” The Healthy Kids initiative suggests these guidelines:

ADJUSTING TO NEW ROUTINES The school year will be filled with routines; it’s the only way to get your child to school on time, keep up with notices and events, and get everything else done as well. The routines you decide to set will depend on many things – and it’s worth trialling a few different ways that work for you, your child and your family – but there are a few tips the experts can offer to get you started on the right track. The first is this: don’t wait until the last minute to try getting a routine going. “Start the routine well before the first day,” advises Fiona Lunn from Brisbane-based Education Emporium, who provides guidance to students and parents. “This includes getting a set bedtime and a morning routine established.” Of course, this can be tricky to enforce during the summer holidays, but even a week of a new routine before school starts will set the pace for the year. Your new routine needs a few harsh realities, too. “Ensure your rule includes no television of a morning or at least until they are up, dressed, breakfast eaten, teeth brushed and bag packed, ready to walk out the door,” advises counselling psychotherapist and parenting expert Dr Karen Phillip. “If they are ready early, some television or computer games is permitted – but only after they are ready.” Your greatest challenge may be to have your child at school on time each day. How do you make this happen? “Add 20 minutes to what you think you need,” suggests Kathy Walker, education expert and director of Early Life Foundations. That way you can get your child out the door without yelling and rushing.

THE LUNCH BOX CHALLENGE School lunch boxes can pose an enormous challenge when you’re a new school parent. You need to navigate the world of allergies and food intolerances (those of your child or their classmates), school rules, your child’s food preferences (and perhaps fussiness) and trying to set up your child for healthy eating habits – and all with limited time. Oh boy! The number one potential pitfall to be wary of is giving in to the call of too many packaged foods. Louise Edney, nutritionist from Nourishing Nosh, advises, “Processed food is so easy and attractive to kids and time-stressed parents, but hidden in these processed foods are unacceptable amounts of salt and sugar. Eating real whole food and ensuring that children receive a

• A starchy, preferably wholegrain, food (bread, rice, potatoes or pasta) • Some protein (egg, tuna or beans) • A bit of dairy (cheese or yoghurt) • Healthy snacks (fruit, rice cakes or popcorn) • Water, not sugary juices

TIME TO BE AN ORGANISATION NINJA There are other ways in which you’ll need to be super organised, too. For starters, says Phillip, “Label everything – all clothing, bags, lunch box, drink bottle: everything.” Things are bound to get lost, but hopefully they’ll be returned to you if they’re labelled clearly. Lunn suggests getting uniforms ahead of time, too. “Don’t leave the purchase of shoes until just before school starts,” she says. “It is a good idea if your child has time to walk around at home in their shoes so there aren’t tears and sore feet on the first day.” Any ways you can be organised can be helpful to your sanity and your child’s coping mechanisms.

SEPARATION ANXIETY If you think your child is the only one who might experience separation anxiety, well, you might be surprised. Many parents feel really emotional about their child starting school or heading into a new stage like high school, particularly on the first day when it can hit you that your child is gaining new independence…sniff, sniff. This is okay – and perfectly normal – but it is important to manage any outpourings of emotion to avoid negatively impacting on your child. “Mum standing at the gate crying will only tell the child that this school is scary and bad,” says Phillip. Instead, take your child to school with positivity. “Staying calm and happy yourself will help your children do the same,” advises Lunn. And Walker adds another big no-no: “Don’t say, ‘I’ll miss you’!” The last thing you want to do is make your child think there’s something to be worried about so say goodbye (don’t sneak away) and leave them to it. Once you’re safely out of sight, any tears that want to fall are welcome to do so. Take it easy on yourself and perhaps arrange some activities that you enjoy for that first day or when you’re feeling a bit down about it all. |

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You’re now part of a new school community, and this is a great opportunity to help out and meet other parents.

While you’re in charge of setting much of the routine, there’s a challenge for your child in becoming used to that routine and sticking with it. Kids are easily distracted in the process of getting ready in the mornings – after all, playing is much more attractive to their sense of fun than getting dressed.

“Research shows that having involvement in the school is really important for families,” says Marie Hirst, psychologist and national coordinator for KidsMatter Starting School. Try to find a way to get involved, whether that’s with reading groups or the tuckshop or even at school council level. Meeting other parents socially can also be a good way to feel part of the school community. After all, being part of a community builds a sense of belonging.

BE YOUR CHILD’S BIGGEST SUPPORTER If you’re a working parent, it can be a good idea to try and arrange a little extra time to be there for your child as they adjust to their new environment. “Take a couple of days leave during that first week,” suggests Walker, so you can be there for the first day, get to know the teacher, take your little one to school and pick them up. KidsMatter research has shown that family life has a huge effect on how well your child transitions to school. Your role is to provide a positive, secure and supportive environment that your new school child can rely on. The good news is that it’s likely you’re already doing that – but it’s worth taking this time to reflect on and discuss what this means to you. “It’s a good milestone to think long term and reflect on what’s really important in life,” says Walker.

FOR THE SCHOOL CHILD FAMILIARITY Your child’s transition to their new school takes some time, particularly in feeling familiar with the environment and the people they’re now surrounded by. Take an opportunity before school starts to prepare your child for what’s coming. Phillip advises, “Take the child to the school and show them around. Many children are scared they do not know where their classroom is or where the toilets are.” It will be easier to settle in if they’re familiar with the environment – things like the physical feel of the school and the size of the playground – and even day-to-day things like boys knowing how to use a urinal if relevant at your school. Any way to help your child feel more secure before the big first day is going to be of huge benefit to them.



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For this reason, it’s good to encourage your child to be as organised as they (and you) can manage. “Get your child into the practice of packing their bag with what they need the night before and placing their bag and shoes near the door,” Lunn suggests. They might also be able to help pack their lunch box in the evening, and it’s little things like this which add up to make mornings run more smoothly. You will also need to be aware of your child’s developmental abilities in understanding the logistics of getting ready. For example, Phillip says, “Children need to be aware of the time frame of preparing for school each morning. Much conflict erupts of a morning between parents and children when the children are slow to become ready for school. Set clear expectations and consequences so they understand; and remember, children have no concept of time under about seven years old so telling them you have half an hour to get ready will mean nothing to them.” You could also try to involve your child with a few decisions around routines that will work for them (if they’re old enough) or, for younger children, with things like choosing a new lunch box or pencil case. They’ll enjoy having some control over their new life.

BIG EMOTIONS In adapting to a new environment, developing new relationships, getting used to a new routine, learning lots and being exposed to many stimulating factors, your child may experience some big and confusing emotions. You can help by being careful how you talk about school, particularly in the lead-up to starting. “We often make it too exciting and build it up to the point where children become anxious about it,” explains Walker. Instead, talk about it in short bursts with low-key positivity. After school, it can also help to encourage your child to chat about their day and how they’re feeling. “Before going to bed ask them if there is anything they are worried about and try to allay their concerns,” says Lunn. Conversely, your child might be too weary to talk through all the happenings of their school day. “At the end of the day [your child] might not feel like answering lots of questions,” says Hirst. Some days they may just need some quiet time, so follow their lead. Still, as parents we’re excited to hear about how our kids are going so it’s worth thinking outside the box to do that, particularly if your child isn’t the type to stop and chat about their feelings. “Get involved in their play,” advises Hirst. “That’s when children relax and open up about their feelings.” |

Go wild these school holidays with our amazing Safari Zoo Adventure where animals large and small come to life right before your eyes! You can also create your own FREE safari backpack in our Safari Craft Village! When: Monday 4 – Friday 15 January 2016 Safari Displays: All day! Safari Craft Village: 10.00am - 1.00pm daily. Visit for more details.

/KawanaShoppingworld |

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Although starting school or moving to a new school may be an entirely positive change for your child, they may still have some conflicting emotions around it. This may be an unexpected side of starting school, but in reality we all struggle with change sometimes, and kids are no different.


It’s likely your child will have developed relationships with other kids and teachers in preschool, day care or another school prior to starting at this new school, and they may miss these people. “For some children there’s a sense of loss about leaving their early childhood setting,” says Hirst. Remember, your child is not only starting something new, but also leaving something behind, and that can be upsetting at times.

TIREDNESS In the first half of the year, new school children are known to be extremely tired. “Your child will be exhausted because of all the things they’re learning and adapting to,” says Hirst. The answer is to provide an early bedtime and to stick with the evening routines you’ve set. To help with tiredness, you might need to make some tough calls about the activities your child is involved in outside of school. Even if there’s an activity your child loves, you might need to rethink it temporarily. “Don’t book children into extracurricular activities in the first term,” Walker suggests. Remind your child that this doesn’t mean they won’t ever go back to it – there’s always term two and onwards. This will help your child in more ways than one, including their academic needs. “Tired children don’t learn well and don’t behave well,” says Walker.

GETTING USED TO THE LUNCH BOX For little ones starting school for the first time, little things like a lunch box can be an adjustment. “Have a few trial lunch days where you pack the child a lunch box at home (if not done at preschool) and ensure they eat the correct little lunch first, then big lunch, and can unwrap their lunch,” says Phillip.

The often forgotten ones in the starting school equation are the toddlers. While their older sibling has moved on to bigger things, the little one is still at home without the playmate they’ve become so accustomed to having around. While it might seem like life as usual for them, they can feel the effects. “Younger siblings are aware there’s a change happening. Take some time to make sure they understand what’s happening,” advises Hirst. “They might be feeling a bit sad or a bit excited and wanting to go to school themselves.”

A NEED FOR FAMILIARISATION When one child does something new like starting school or changing schools, the whole family can be affected. With little ones, this can bring a certain level of uncertainty as they may not understand what’s really going on. Amidst the new routines, try not to change too much about the little one’s day – that is, there’s no need to add lots of extra activities. Walker says, “They adapt pretty quickly, but look out for that little hiccup period where they might be a bit lost and a bit more clingy.” Keep things predictable and stick to their usual sleep routines and family time.

EXTRA ONE-ON-ONE TIME If you change anything about your little one’s routine, make it a positive change like giving them extra time with you. “Having some one-on-one activities will be useful,” says Hirst. This can help you keep an eye on how they’re feeling and what’s going on with them. A good idea is to get involved in their play, to get a good insight to how they’re feeling. There are other little things you can do to make your younger child feel important by being mindful of involving them whenever possible. They might like to pretend to go to school with a ‘school bag’ of their own, and you can try giving them a special activity to complete when their older sibling is doing homework.




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eGuide MAY 2015

- on the coast

- in the city





™ & © 2016 Marvel & Subs

© 2016 Viacom Overseas Holdings C.V.

THE SUPERHEROES ARE ON THEIR WAY! See all your favourite superheroes save the day at Noosa Civic these holidays.

Mon 11th Jan Tues 12th Jan Wed 13th Jan Thur 14th Jan Fri 15th Jan Sat 16th Jan

Hulk Thor Captain America Iron Man Spiderman Nickelodeon’s Donatello and Michelangelo

Sun 17th Jan Nickelodeon’s Leonardo and Raphael Mon 18th Jan Hulk Tues 19th Jan Thor Wed 20th Jan Captain America Thur 21st Jan Iron Man Fri 22nd Jan Spiderman

Plus get creative in the craft village and have your face painted. Full details up on Big W • Woolworths • 100 specialty stores | 28 Eenie Creek Rd (Cnr Walter Hay Drive) Noosaville Ph 5440 7900

JAN/FEB 2016




2Kool4Skool’s slip-on PVC school book covers are fresh, edgy and creatively designed to make 'back to school' book covering a breeze. Available in four sizes: A4, scrapbook, 9x7 exercise book and 10x7 exercise book. Multi-packs from RRP $13.95. A select number of the cover designs have been used in pencil cases, water bottles and transport card/identification card holders. 2Kool4Skool also stocks awesome scratch and sniff name labels, lunch items and a huge range of funky school stationery supplies.

KIDS BEDDING & KINDY SHEET SETS Splashes of colour and pops of neon are the essential ingredient in Bramwell Designs kids’ bedding and accessories. Custom design a kindy sheet set or choose from the online selection for $89. Designed and made in Australia with hand printed top sheets. Create a colourful set with a mini pillowcase ($50) and drawstring tote bag ($65).


Kids Outdoor Gear is an Australian online shopping site which offers a selection of quality products to equip kids for the great outdoors. Shop online for back to school products including lunchbags, reusable sandwich wraps, drink bottles, hats, raincoats, swim gear and sunscreen.



Kids love to draw on their pencil cases so you may as well give them the tools to create something beautiful and permanent! This craft pack includes a hand sewn pencil case with two zips, fabric markers, glitter paint and more so your child can personalise their school pencil case ($32).

Check out the large range of cute crazy zoo critters – a child's best pal for back to kindy, preschool and school! The Skip Hop Zoo Pack is the little kid’s backpack where fun meets function. With many great animals to choose from and made with durable materials, these packs are perfect for kids on the go! Purchase a Skip Hop Zoo backpack and lunch set and receive your choice of a drink bottle. See the range of children’s products and great deals online, with free shopping Australia wide, at


Sunshine Coast mum Kate from Head of the Class - School hair bows and ties makes a range of quality hair bows, curly hair ties and headbands to order. All Sunshine Coast schools are catered for with other school colours on request. Priced from $2.50. Contact Kate on 0400 888 081 or via her Facebook page.


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Art classes with artist Alice West offer kids the chance to play, create, learn, dream, imagine, express, relax, get inspired, think outside the box and have fun! They’ll create some amazing art work while exploring lots of techniques and mediums and develop their artistic abilities. $22 per week or $18 per week if term is paid in advance. Visit for details.


Make your next school excursion your best ever with Nature Ed at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. Visit the wonderful world of wildlife and immerse your students in the rich nature, culture and history. They offer wildlife, Indigenous and games-based experiences.


Amy Beccari Dance Studios introduces two new classes for 2016: ‘Boys Only Funk Fitness and Strength Dance Class’ and ‘Bambini Lets Dance Together’ for 2– 4 year olds. Classes start from just $99 per term, with a free trial lesson available at the Sippy Downs or Buderim studios. Call 0411 801 144 or visit


Book now for Term one and give your child a head start to learning. School readiness classes for one hour a week to learn letters, numbers and handwriting. Individual primary tutoring programs. Call Begin Bright on 1300 234 462.


Come along to Helensvale Calisthenic Dance Academy and discover a sport unique to Australia, incorporating elements of dance, gymnastics, ballet, singing and acting. Kids will have fun and meet new friends, while developing confidence, coordination, strength, grace, team spirit and musical appreciation. Visit or email for details.

CONFIDENT TO LEARN EACH DAY With over 4.2 million enrolments globally, Kumon is helping children all over the world catch up in the classroom and challenge themselves with advanced work. Visit to see how Kumon can support your child’s learning.


Professional music lessons in singing, guitar, piano, drums, all brass and woodwind with Gavin Hamburger Productions. Learn performance and dance skills with award-winning Ausfunk coaches. Join the S-Factor performers group for a fast track to professional performance skills. Sign up now at


- on the coast

- in the city




Laser Tag in a Box will let you create a kids’ birthday party they’ll never forget with the entertainment delivered right to your own backyard. Hire for Saturday and get Sunday for free. Courier delivery nationwide or collect from the shop. Rent laser tag starting from $162 for a set of 6 phasers. Find more details and a KOTC special offer at

If you're looking for a school for your child or just want to stay informed about what's happening in the world of education, then this guide is a must read for you and your family. Day care, starting Prep, moving into high school, finding education activities or support outside the school system, all the information you need is in here. Download from |

JAN/FEB 2016






Confessions up front. When I was a little girl I was besotted with my Barbie dolls. Passionate about pink. Devoted to Disney princesses. And yet somehow I managed to turn out just fine. In fact, I am a loud and proud feminist, parenting author and an educator of teen girls who has devoted my career to empowering young women.

While boys who take the lead are praised as leaders, girls who put themselves forward are often labelled as bossy.

It seems that raising healthy, well-adjusted girls has less to do with the toys they play with and the colour of the clothing they chose to wear and more to do with the values we instil in them. However, that’s not to say marketers couldn’t do with joining us in the modern age. Despite all the work that’s been done on promoting gender equality, baby dolls and kitchen sets are still often pitched only at little girls, while toys that encourage children to build and explore are often plastered with pictures of little lads. It is helpful to call into question such stereotypes. But it’s not helpful to stigmatise those little girls who want to embrace their inner pinkglitter-ribbons-sparkly-trinkets self. In her essay ‘Betraying Our Girlhood’, feminist and social commentator Clementine Ford argues: The fierce determination to distance ourselves from anything perceptibly ‘girlie’ only furthers the stereotype that women who like ‘girlie’ things are stupid and one-dimensional – and indeed that girlieness itself is stupid and one-dimensional … I’m not ashamed of being a girl ... I know that girls are every bit as complex and nuanced as boys, and they deserve to be treated as such regardless of which toys they played with as children, or if they think camping is a bit gross. Rather than shutting pink down, we need to ensure girls’ toy boxes and their wardrobes include all the colours and all the range of possibilities. By also teaching our children to think critically about cultural goods and equipping them with the skills they need to navigate complex cultural messages, we will be empowering them for life.


JAN/FEB 2016

When we tell a girl to stop being bossy we are often telling her to shrink; to talk less, put your hand up less and be less confident. No wonder that by the time our girls reach high school they experience a significant drop in their self-esteem and are less likely than boys to say they like taking the lead. This doesn’t mean that girls (or boys) should be encouraged to dominate, intimidate or be overbearing, behaviours that are often rightly recognised as being inappropriate and ineffective. Truly effective leaders learn what works best to motivate their team and inspire others to follow them – not bully them into it. The next time you see your daughter waving her finger in someone’s face and telling them to do something her way, rather than branding her as bossy (which really doesn’t provide any meaningful feedback on her leadership style), pull her aside and take the opportunity to redirect her. Talk to her about the differences between being passive, aggressive and assertive, and encourage her to become more aware of her body language. When I was a little girl and pointing at others and ordering them about, my wise grandmother who was very much the matriarch in our family would say to me, “Danni, you have your bossy finger out. They won’t listen if they see that. Go and try it again in a calm voice with your hands by your side and see if they get why your idea is great then!” In fact, my grandmother, often unknowingly, showed me what a female leader looked like every day. We are all role models for our children, and as I so often say, girls cannot be what they cannot see. As mothers we can take pride in the leadership roles we take on and share what we enjoy about being out front, rather than feeling that corrosive mummy-guilt for spending time away from the home. In our homes too, we can show that we value the contribution of female bosses by talking about those female leaders we admire and the skills they possess that impress us. In my house our ‘Hall of Fame’ has consisted of both the fictional and the real – women as diverse as Wonder Woman, Emma Watson, Hilary Clinton and Malala Yousafzai. |


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JAN/FEB 2016





The policing of the way teen girls dress can be deeply problematic and dress codes almost always disproportionately target and shame girls. In fact, almost every teen girl I’ve spoken to has complained that at some stage they have been told things like ‘You’re asking for trouble wearing that!’ or ‘Your outfit is distracting the boys’. This is the slippery slope that excuses the harassment of girls based on their clothing choice and ultimately may lead them to feel shame about their bodies. Author, columnist and academic Dr Karen Brooks agrees: I think what bothers me most about this whole uniform and clothing issue is that somehow female clothing has become a visual barometer used to measure a woman’s/girl’s morality and ethics. Our clothes are also simultaneously expected to be a tool used to control men’s morality and ethics; there is a false notion circulating that women can control men and keep ourselves safe by our clothing choices. What utter nonsense. If that was the case, why would women and girls who wear hijabs or dress in conservative clothing still be harassed or raped? Clothing is not the issue; society is. As long as we shift the blame for the harassment or the harm caused to women back on to women nothing will be resolved. Clothes do not maketh the woman, but actions maketh the man (and woman)! Journalist Tracey Spicer believes it is also important for us to reflect honestly on how we dressed as young women. She says, “What I really hate are the casually sexist comments about how young women are dressed for a night on the town. All this ‘They look like hookers!’ and ‘They’re asking for it’ stuff. For goodness sake, I used to dress in revealing outfits at that age as I was discovering my sexuality. That doesn’t mean I was asking to be sexually assaulted.” This is not to say that you shouldn’t talk to your daughter about which clothes might be most appropriate for an occasion, just as you might with your son, as ultimately we all have to adhere to dress codes at some point in our lives, but you should take the moral judgement out of the discussion. Also keep in mind that just as we may now shudder at the memory of the huge shoulder pads and neon prints we wore in the ‘80s, so too may your daughter look back and cringe at some of her clothing choices when she is older. In the interim, don’t alienate her.


JAN/FEB 2016

There’s a popular belief that girls are almost genetically predisposed to gossip and be nasty to one another, whereas boys are simple creatures who sort disagreements out by throwing a few punches – the latter physical violence almost dismissed as being harmless. In our current culture that mocks teen girl friendships and highlights the negative ‘mean girl’ stereotypes, it is easy for us to forget just how genuine and healing the bonds young women develop can be. When I talk to girls in schools, they tell me their girlfriends are the people they feel most understand them, support them and love them. However, it is true that teen girl world can also be a place filled with cliques, secrets and gossip. But we mustn’t automatically assume all of that politicking is always destructive. There is plenty of research to show that close friendships – the sort developed largely through the sharing of hidden truths – also serve vital functions in promoting a sense of self-worth and belonging. Many researchers in fact believe gossip is an evolved psychological adaptation that enabled individuals to achieve social success in our ancestral environments. In their Journal of Applied Social Psychology article ‘Who Do We Tell and Whom Do We Tell On? Gossip as a Strategy for Status Enhancement’, researchers McAndrew, Bell and Garcia argue, “Gossip can be an efficient way to remind group members of the importance of the group’s norms and values; an effective deterrent to deviance; and a tool for punishing those who transgress.” And it seems it’s not just young girls who are instinctively drawn to information sharing. In her book Deep Secrets: Boys’ Friendships and the Crisis of Connection, Professor of Applied Psychology Niobe Way argues that boys relationships in early to middle adolescence rely too on sharing ‘deep secrets’. Way states, “Boys openly expressed to us their love for their friends and emphasized that sharing ‘deep’ secrets was the most important aspect of their closest male friendships … I realised that these patterns among boys have been ignored by the larger culture …” Way goes on to explain that due to cultural pressures to become a ‘man’ during late adolescence (and thus be emotionally stoic and autonomous) boys begin to lose their closest male friendships, become more distrustful of their male peers, and in some cases, become less willing to express their emotions. “They start sounding, in other words, like gender stereotypes,” she says. |

Bed Wetting | Ear Infections | Irritable Babies | Feeding/Sleeping Dressing/Bathing difficulties | Flat Head | Constipation | Headaches | Reflux | Colic


Unsettled, Irritable Baby?

It is estimated around 80% of babies commonly develop some musculoskeletal problems following birth.(1)



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The musculoskeletal discomfort may present as irritability, resembling reflux or colicky symptoms.

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It seems secrets may well be timeless fundamental building blocks in building positive, strong friendships for both genders. Adolescents with close friendships have lower rates of depression, suicide, drug use and gang membership, and are more likely to stay at school. As it is in fact young men who seem to struggle most with feelings of isolation and a lack of belonging during late adolescence, could it be that we need to stop demonising the sharing of secrets and labelling this act as solely the domain of gossip girls?

The urge to protect our children is a natural one. However, even though our intentions may be good, when we overprotect we are taking away much-needed learning opportunities: to learn both from our mistakes and from the disappointments that every one of us must face in life.

We need to remind ourselves too that we often expect girls to know instinctively how to tend to relationships and sort things out when there is a falling out, when they may well have few skills to fall back on. Who shows girls how to navigate girl world respectfully? Where do they get taught how to handle their complex emerging friendships? Schools struggle with an already crowded curriculum and the pressure to prepare students for external exams, and the soap operas they may watch on television tend to be filled with drama and tumultuous interactions.

The most dangerous thing we can ever say to a young person is that there is no way forward, no light at the end of the tunnel, no possibility of recovery ... If a young person has made a mistake, catastrophising the situation will only lead to catastrophic outcomes. Already we have seen one case in America where a teen took her life following a school seminar which reinforced the notion that she could never get a job or a university degree since she had already made an online mistake. Instead of this doom and gloom approach, we need to help teens develop resilience, the strength to overcome setbacks, and the insight to be able to put their mistakes into context.

Providing solid friendships strategies (everything from how to make new friends to how to resolve conflict respectfully) and positive role modelling (we all know plenty of adults of both genders who use gossip in a destructive way too) is vital work for those who care for young women.

“ONE MISTAKE AND YOU’LL BE RUINED!” We are in the midst of an overprotective parenting trend known as ‘cotton wool’ or ‘parachute’ parenting, in which adults try to protect their child from every conceivable danger or conflict. This trend is often particularly prevalent among the parents of girls for we have been culturally conditioned to see girls as more fragile and in need of support; more sugar, spice and everything nice than robust puppy dog tails!

Author, speaker and women’s advocate Nina Funnell warns too about the dangers in using fear-based education, which highlights the worst possible outcome, as a means of changing teen behaviour:

We have known for some time now that, apart from anything else, invoking fear frankly just doesn’t work. When we present only examples of possible catastrophes, threats and dangers, we shut down learning. How much more powerful it is to share with our girls our own stories of personal failures and setbacks, and to explain how we bounced back. And when our teen girls do trip up? We must try not to say, “I told you so.” Even if we did tell them so!

Dannielle Miller is a highly experienced educator and the co-founder and CEO of Enlighten Education, Australia's leading provider of in-school workshops for teen girls on body image, self-esteem and empowerment. She is the author or co-author of four books, including The Girl with the Butterfly Tattoo, about helping girls claim their power, and Loveability, a girl’s guide to dating and relationships. She writes for magazines, newspapers such as The Daily Telegraph and popular opinion sites, and she is a regular social commentator on television and radio. Dannielle actively supports a number of causes and is on the board of The Sanctuary, a domestic violence shelter. She and her company have been recognised with numerous awards. Danni is a huge fan of Wonder Woman, friends who make a snorting sound when they laugh, and wearing ugg boots in winter. To find out more about Dannielle, go to


JAN/FEB 2016 |

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JAN/FEB 2016



favou rites LOCAL FAMILY


BEACHES Point Cartwright has the river, beach, lighthouse and rock pools Golden Beach Alexandra Headland Coolum Beach The Spit, Mooloolaba Bulcock Beach for floating and swimming Shelly Beach for rock pooling Sunshine Beach, Little Cove, Tea Tree Bay, Doggy Beach – all in Noosa

Image courtesy Tourism and Events Queensland


JAN/FEB 2016 |


SWIMMING Mudjimba beach Chambers Island Twin Waters North Shore All the amazing beaches along the Sunshine Coast Cotton Tree foreshore Ewan Maddock Dam Gardener's Falls just outside Maleny Noosa Aquatic Centre Noosa – very calm for little ones and crystal clear The Spit end of Mooloolaba for a (usually) sheltered swim Cotton Tree Aquatic Centre with its great water play area for the little kids Waterfalls at Buderim Forest Park Kawana Pool

PLAYGROUNDS The playground at Mary Cairncross Reserve in Maleny Quota Park, Nambour


Currimundi Bike Park Dick Caplick Park, Eumundi

Wikid Fish & Chips, Mooloolaba

Nelson Park, Alexandra Headland

Moffats Beachside Takeaway

Noosaville Lions Park at Gympie Terrace, Noosa

Boatshed Café, Cotton Tree

Bells Reach at Caloundra – the new cafe is great

Mooloolaba Fish Market

Cotton Tree Park, Maroochydore

Caloundra Seafood Market or Sandbar, Caloundra

Skippy Park at Beerwah is a great playground for kids (and kids at heart too!)

Smokey’s Char Grill Burger Bar, Beerwah

ICE CREAM Nitrogenie and Massimo’s Gelateria, Hastings Street, Noosa Gelateria Milano, Caloundra Cold Rock Ice Creamery Gelato Mio, Coolum Colin James Fine Foods, Maleny |

JAN/FEB 2016


Image courtesy Tourism and Events Queensland


WALKING From Mooloolaba to Alexandra Headland – it’s downhill that way! Coolum Cliffs Boardwalk or Noosa National Park Maroochy Bushland Botanic Garden Foreshore at Cotton Tree Spicers Tamarind gardens Gardner’s Falls, Maleny


Buderim Forest Park Ewan Maddock Dam between Mooloolah and Landsborough Mary Cairncross Reserve at Maleny

The Ginger Factory’s free school holiday entertainment TramFest, Nambour

Boardwalk between Bulcock and Kings Beach Noosa National Park

Kawana Waters Hotel for great free children’s entertainment at the weekends or a wander around Nights on Ocean Street markets

Sunshine Beach, at sunrise


Noosa River

Buderim Tavern for face painters and a jumping castle on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays – it's nice to sit and have lunch while the kids are entertained.

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JAN/FEB 2016 |

Holiday locally at Oaks Oasis Resort As parents, booking a family holiday can sometimes seem like a difficult task. For our family of five, which includes two teens and a toddler, the choice is crucial, which is why Oaks Oasis Resort on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast with its variety of rooms, villas and apartments and its second to none kids activities ticks all the boxes. Before we had even unpacked, my youngest daughter was begging to go to the onsite water park which was visible from our room and stands out like a bright coloured beacon amongst the otherwise lush green resort grounds. If a kid’s paradise existed, this place would have to be on the list. Needless to say, the water park is a major draw card for families of all ages, particularly those with kids under 12 with its shallow splash zones, fountains, interactive activities and slides. There are plenty of sun loungers, umbrellas, tables and grassy picnic spots and the kiosk was a hit.

Older kids have plenty of options too with a deeper, tropical lagoon pool and spa located amongst the landscaped gardens – ideal for those wanting to escape the excitement of the water park – in addition to a floodlit tennis court and beach volleyball court. During our stay, we received word that a brand new Adventure Zone will be ready in early 2016 adding an 18-hole miniature golf course, triple galaxy climbing frame and giant jumping pillow into the mix. All of the rooms have been refurbished in recent years and they look amazing. You can choose from a hotel room or go for an apartment or villa with up to 3 bedrooms. Why travel far when you have the best family resort right here on the Coast.

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JAN/FEB 2016



A baker’s dozen:

13 ailments babies face in their first 12 months

This list shoulde not replace th consultation and advice of your doctor.


IT IS DIFFICULT TO SEE YOUR BABY SICK OR IN PAIN, ESPECIALLY IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT WHEN HELP IS LEAST ACCESSIBLE. SO HERE’S A LIST OF THE MOST COMMON AILMENTS BABIES FACE IN THEIR FIRST YEAR OF LIFE. This should not replace the consultation and advice of your doctor. Rather, consider it your middle-of-the-night, first port of call in finding out the likely reasons for your baby’s discomfort. Trust your instincts: call an ambulance if you think it’s serious. But be encouraged that in most cases, this too shall pass.


JAN/FEB 2016

BABY ACNE Around six weeks of age baby’s face can suddenly be inflamed with infantile acne, due to mum’s hormones still coursing through their system. In rare cases, it may be due to a hormone imbalance. Symptoms: Baby’s face appears red with |

white pimply pustules and blackheads that persist for about a month. Treatment: Avoid thick moisturisers and clean their face with a washcloth, gentle cleanser and running water. It should clear up in a month or so. For prolonged cases, the doctor may prescribe topical medications or refer to an endocrinologist.

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JAN/FEB 2016



COLDS Babies’ immune systems are immature, making them vulnerable to the 200+ viruses that cause colds. Symptoms: One of the first symptoms is nasal congestion. The mucus might start out clear and then turn yellowish or green. Sniffily noses, fevers, persistent coughs and loss of appetite are common.

COLIC Internal discomfit may be due to an immature digestive system, acid reflux because of an immature oesophageal sphincter or sensitivity to food passed through the mother’s milk. In their first month, babies block out their environment to sleep. After that, some develop colic as a stress response to external stimuli. Symptoms: Around three weeks old, baby starts to scream for about three hours at a time, often starting early evening, until they fall asleep, exhausted. They writhe, clench their fists, arch their backs and even vomit. Treatment: Some babies are soothed by lying tummy-down along your forearm. Speak with your doctor about wind drops, gripe water or probiotics to alleviate tummy problems. Try changing formulas if your baby is formula fed. If breastfed, speak with your health professional about foods you eat that may cause sensitivity. Monitor your baby’s response to stimuli and avoid things that trigger or worsen colic. Swaddle them firmly and create a calm environment with soothing music. Sucking a dummy or thumb helps some babies self-soothe. Colicky babies prefer movement: try a sling or walks in the pram. It’s exhausting caring for a colicky baby, but they still thrive and grow out of it as suddenly as they develop it.


JAN/FEB 2016

Treatments: Babies need a lot of fluids when they have a temperature, but a blocked nose makes it hard to feed. Fifteen minutes before feeding, turn on a vaporiser with a few drops of menthol or eucalyptus oil to let the steam clear their nasal passages. Put a few drops of saline in one nostril at a time and use a syringe to suction out the mucus. Cough and cold medicines should not be given to babies. Ibuprofen can be given for fever to babies over 3 months old (please refer to the dose on the bottle based on your child’s weight), however take your baby to the doctor if they have a fever for more than two days.

CONSTIPATION It is normal for breastfed babies to pass a bowel motion anywhere from 10 times a day to once a fortnight. Formula-fed babies usually pass a bowel motion every day. If babies on solids have not used their bowel for three days or their daily stools are hard and difficult to pass, they are constipated. If it hurts to push, the less likely they will try. A build-up leads to a misshapen colon, which reduces the sensation of needing to go, affecting their long-term ability to pass a bowel motion unassisted. Symptoms: Most constipation starts when solid foods are introduced. Watch for blood in the nappy, which suggests a rectal fissure caused by a hard stool. Baby may have a hard or painful lower abdomen, be restless and cranky, or cry when they strain to pass a motion. Treatment: Constipation is due to dehydration and a lack of fibre. If your baby is formula-fed, try different brands. Monitor diet and fluid intake, increasing high-fibre foods such as pureed prunes, pears and barley cereal, and decreasing low-fibre foods such as bananas and rice cereal. A bottle of water with liquid from boiled prunes can help. Give your baby tummy time or crawling time, and lay |

them on their back and move their legs. If increased fluid and fibre doesn’t help, the doctor may prescribe a mild laxative, suppository or enema.

CRADLE CAP Cradle cap is a yeast crust that forms on a baby’s scalp. It’s a dermatitis that develops between one month and two years, because mum’s hormones still in baby’s system overstimulate their oil glands. Symptoms: It may present as a light smattering, or the baby’s head may be covered with waxy scales stuck to their scalp in hues of yellow, orange and pink. Treatment: Massage some olive oil into their scalp every few days and wash it out with mild shampoo. Never pick the scabs off, as this can lead to permanent bald patches. Use a soft baby hairbrush to sweep away dry flakes. The doctor may prescribe medicated shampoo in severe cases.

DIARRHOEA Diarrhoea is when bowel motions are watery instead of formed. Viral or bacterial infection, parasites, antibiotics or food allergies are known causes. The danger is dehydration from fluid loss, so look out for lethargy, dry eyes, dry mouth and fewer wet nappies. Symptoms: Baby’s bowel movements suddenly become more frequent and take on a sloppy consistency. They may have increased thirst and a loss of appetite, a temperature or abdominal cramps. Treatment: List what your baby has eaten in the previous 24 hours. Note changes to their diet that may have caused the diarrhoea. Keep fluids up and their diet bland. Yoghurt helps to replenish their gut flora. Track the frequency of diarrhoea to monitor fluid loss and don’t introduce new foods until it has passed. Your doctor may prescribe an electrolyte solution to help rehydration. Your baby requires medical attention if they have a high fever, bloody diarrhoea, abdominal pain, vomiting or weight loss.

Trust your instincts: call an ambulance’s if you think it serious.



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JAN/FEB 2016



EAR INFECTIONS Ear infections are common because the Eustachian tube between baby’s ears and throat is flat, allowing fluid to accumulate in the middle ear, producing a culture for germs. The infected fluid presses on the eardrum, producing intense pain. Symptoms: Baby may pull their ears, become restless or cry in pain, especially when lying down or feeding. They may also develop a fever and diarrhoea. Treatment: Give ibuprofen for pain and fever (for babies over 3 months – refer to the dose on the bottle based on your child’s weight). Feed in an upright position so formula or milk cannot enter the ear canal. See the doctor if you suspect an ear infection as they may need antibiotics. Recurring infections may require a simple ear grommet surgery.

ECZEMA Eczema is a genetic skin irritation and sensitivity that results in dry, inflamed, itchy skin that usually develops on a baby’s cheeks, neck, underarms, elbows or behind the knees. Babies who develop eczema have a greater risk of developing allergies and asthma. Symptoms: Eczema presents as a red, inflamed, itchy rash that may be dry and scaly, crusty or weepy, particularly if it has been scratched or rubbed. It usually shows up around the three-month mark as dryness on the cheeks and may slowly develop on other parts of the body. Treatment: Trim baby’s nails so they can’t scratch. Use warm water and gentle cleansers. Apply fragrance-free cream or natural ointments such as pawpaw on the affected areas once dry. Feeding and drooling can irritate sensitive skin. Dab on pawpaw ointment before feeding and bedtime. In severe cases, the doctor may prescribe an antihistamine or topical treatment. Massage in Emu oil for a natural antibacterial remedy.

FEBRILE CONVULSIONS Febrile convulsions occur due to high fever in children between three months and six years old. Simple seizures last for a few minutes and do not require treatment. Complex seizures last more than 15 minutes or occur more often that once in 24 hours. It’s not understood why they occur, but they don’t cause other health problems.


JAN/FEB 2016

Symptoms: The baby’s whole body may convulse, shake and twitch, their eyes may roll, and they may moan or become unconscious. They may vomit or urinate. Treatment: Febrile seizures are frightening, but stop on their own. Lay your child on their side so they cannot fall or choke. Do not give them medicine or a cool bath for the fever. If the seizure lasts for more than five minutes or if your child’s lips turn blue, call an ambulance as it may be a different type of seizure.

NAPPY RASH A baby’s skin is vulnerable to irritation, especially when trapped inside a nappy rubbing up against urine and faeces. The chemicals in soaps and creams used to clean and moisturise their bottom may also contribute to a persistent, painful nappy rash. Symptoms: A red, painful rash around baby’s genitals, anus and bottom cheeks that may develop little white pustules. Treatment: Check your baby’s nappy often and change it as soon as you notice it’s soiled, leaving enough room for some airflow. Use fragrance-free wipes and smear a zinc-based barrier cream on each time you change their nappy. Use soapfree washes in the bath to maintain their PH balance. Gently pat your baby’s bottom completely dry after a bath. Lay them on a towel without a nappy and let them kick freely for 15 minutes each day

TEETHING Every baby experiences teething differently. Some have no symptoms while others are out of sorts for months. Baby’s first tooth can appear as early as three months and as late as twelve months, but the norm is around seven months. Symptoms: Common teething symptoms include drooling, rashes on the cheeks, biting or chewing, refusal to feed, sleeplessness, general irritability, tugging at ears and crying. Teething may cause bleeding under the gums, which presents as a bluish lump. Some babies develop low-grade fever. Treatment: Cold teething rings and wet washers can provide something to bear down on to alleviate sore gums. Babies like cold, soft food when their gums are sore. Amber teething necklaces are not recommended as they pose a choking |

hazard. Topical teething gels numb baby’s gums for temporary relief.

URINARY TRACT INFECTION (UTI) Babies develop urinary tract infections (UTIs) when bacteria enter the urinary tract or from blockages. UTIs are an inflammation and infection that may affect any part of the urinary tract. UTIs are more common in boys than girls and more common in noncircumcised than circumcised boys. Symptoms: Sometimes a fever is the only symptom. Other symptoms include unexplained crying or irritability, crying when urinating, cloudy or bloody urine, diarrhoea or odd-smelling urine. A boy’s penis may become red and swollen. Treatment: Newborns are usually hospitalised for treatment with IV antibiotics. Take your baby to the doctor if you suspect a UTI, as it can lead to long-term damage of the kidneys, even kidney failure. Your doctor will obtain a urine sample to determine the correct antibiotic and may suggest an ultrasound, x-ray or scan to rule out blockages and conditions that require corrective surgery.

WIND Babies tend to gulp down air with their milk, trapping it in their tummy and causing discomfort. Symptoms: Baby may stop feeding before they are full to writhe and cry in discomfort. Treatment: Breastfed babies have less wind as they have better control over milk flow. You can help bottle-fed babies by holding them upright and tilting the bottle up so there is no air in the teat. After every feed hold your baby over your shoulder and massage their back to encourage them to burp. Or try sitting them up, their chin resting in your hand, or lay them across your lap. Have a cloth handy as they may bring up some milk with the air.

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If only I knew by EVA LEWIS

AS A BLOGGER I OFTEN USE DIFFERENT WRITING PROMPTS AS INSPIRATION FOR MY BLOG POSTS. THIS WEEK THE PROMPT WAS ‘IF ONLY I KNEW’ AND WOW, COULD I CONTINUE TO GO ON WITH MY ‘IF ONLYS’. If only I knew that my obstetrician’s warning was accurate and that I would, in fact, be diagnosed with postnatal depression. If only I knew that focusing on getting back to work straight away instead of appreciating time with my baby would make me want to have my time all over again and question my decision. If only I knew I was to have three miscarriages, I would have tried to be healthier and less stressed. If only I knew that not recording milestones for my son would mean I would lose memory of his first words and other important milestones. If only I knew that my son was unhappy at his old childcare centre, I would have moved him sooner. But I’ll stop there – that’s enough ‘if onlys’. You see, my opinion of thinking ‘if only’ is that it’s not healthy. Looking back on life in hindsight to me is counterintuitive unless you plan to do something to improve on it. When I look at the same ‘if onlys’ with a different perspective, this is how they sound: I had postnatal depression but it’s made me stronger, it’s helped me to look at life differently and more positively. I did go back to work earlier than I should have, but it’s helped me discover something I love, something I’m good at and has allowed me to start a brand new career. I had three miscarriages, but they have made me value life and my family so much more. I didn’t record milestones for my son but ever since I’ve made sure I’ve made the most of every moment. I missed the signs of my son disliking his previous childcare centre, but I did finally realise and the change was the best thing we ever did; he is thriving. It’s fine to think ‘if only’ but we shouldn’t be so hard on ourselves. Most of the time when we make decisions, it’s based on our emotions and knowledge at the time. And sometimes when things happen to us, it’s completely out of our control. This is life, this is how we learn, and as we continue to make decisions and live our lives, we learn from our experiences. So next time you think ‘If only I knew’, why not try considering why you’re glad you didn’t know. Eva Lewis writes at her blog The Multitasking Woman (, a blog focused on stress-free living for the multitasking woman with a mix of inspiration, ideas, perspectives and personal stories. Eva is also a freelance writer and a digital ‘nerd’ and enjoys helping individuals and businesses with their content, social media and digital presence. When Eva is not in the digital space, she enjoys spending time with her husband and 4-year-old son, reading her favourite magazines, gardening and dreaming.


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PARENTS in the


IN RECENT YEARS, PARENTS HAVE BEEN INCREASINGLY ENCOURAGED TO SPEND TIME IN THEIR CHILD’S PRIMARY SCHOOL CLASSROOM. AND NOW? IT IS THE EXPECTED NORM. BUT SHOULD IT BE? When a child begins their journey into the school system, no longer do parents breathe a metaphoric sigh of relief as they pass over the responsibility of their little one’s learning to the arguably more knowledgeable and highly trained mavericks of the education system, but instead a journey of collaboration between parent and educator unfurls, where mum and dad get used to the weekly requests for help in the classroom. So, is this a good thing for our children? And how does this operate in our modern day society, where generally most parents work?

THE NEED FOR HELP “A connection between home and school is crucial to a child’s success,” reveals Clare Crew, leading child development consultant at Thrive Education and Wellness ( au). “The goal is to make the classroom an extension of the home, with parents assisting to help create an effective learning base.” “Parental involvement in childhood education is crucial from a developmental standpoint,” agrees Dr Ash Nayate, clinical neuropsychologist at the Royal Children’s Hospital. “A child's early experiences shape so much of who they become in adulthood,


JAN/FEB 2016

and this includes the school setting. It is important that parents are involved in what's happening at school. A parent's physical presence in the classroom is one way to achieve this.” So what motivates us parents to tick the ‘YES’ box when being asked to sacrifice our time in the classroom (when usually we have 101 other things we could/should be doing)? Fun? Guilt? Are we looking to create happier children or better learners? The latter, says Jenny Atkinson, primary school teacher and education specialist at Sparks Education Australia ( “Research shows that when parents are positively engaged in their child’s schooling, a young learner is more likely to do better at school and stay in school longer,” explains Jenny. However, we should be mindful of any repercussions in assisting from the front with regard to our child’s education, warns Dr Justin Coulson, author of What Your Child Needs From You: Creating a Connected Family. “Although research suggests that when parents are involved in their child’s education they perform better academically, we must consider the question of helicopter parenting. Too much control can lead to a child feeling suffocated, losing their sense of autonomy.” |

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PARENTS IN THE CLASSROOM – THE PROS AND CONS So, what are the benefits and concerns of a parent helper in the classroom? Jenny Atkinson, Clare Crew, Dr Ash Nayate and Dr Justin Coulson set out the pros and cons. “Although there may be potential drawbacks, most of them can be addressed with clear guidelines, organisation and management by the teacher,” says Jenny.



• Targets learning Having an extra adult in the classroom helps to ensure children are on target with their activities and also allows for immediate help if they get stuck or stray off track.

• Allows for judgment Parents may make judgements about other children’s abilities and may share this information with other parents or compare their child’s abilities to their peers.

• Enhances sense of school community (social cohesion) It allows for parents to become a constructive part of the school community.

• Unsettles children It can unsettle children or exacerbate separation anxiety for children who find saying goodbye in the mornings emotionally challenging. A child can become overly reliant on their parental presence and may feel insecure when their parent is absent if they become used to them appearing at school. It can also cause a child to behave differently when a parent is present (i.e. showing off).

• Builds relationships Parents are able to bond with their child’s teacher and also with other students of the class. Knowing who the children are that their child spends so much of their day with creates a deeper understanding of their world. • Increases individual attention Parents are able to give individual children greater attention when in the classroom, which helps fill any gaps when there is a large class group. • Enhances parental understanding Parents are able to get a clearer idea of what a day in the life of their school child looks like, which helps them develop an understanding of what their child is learning, how they learn and how demanding their day is. It also allows them to find ways to further encourage the child’s learning. • Boosts educational value When a parent makes an appearance as part of their child’s school day, the child gets a clear message that what they do at school matters and that home and school are synonymous. • Creates positive shared experiences When parents and children are able to enjoy a school experience together, positive shared memories are created and bonds with the school strengthened. It is very empowering for a child to share their learning with their parents. • Creates opportunity for feedback Parents get to see how a child’s teacher teaches and can give feedback with regard to any teaching strategies which may be useful for their child or another child. For example, if a parent discovers that a child is more of a hands-on learner, the parent and teacher can work together to ensure that activities are done in a way that suits that particular child. • Manages parental expectations When parents are able to view the way other children function at school, they have a better idea of appropriate expectations for their own child. It can be useful for parents to see their child in such a context.


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• Encourages helicopter parenting When a parent turns up in their child’s classroom, a child may feel controlled and/or crowded which can hinder their development and reduce their experience of learning. A child may be made to feel incompetent due to parental over-involvement. • Provides a distraction A child may become distracted watching their parent work with other students instead of focusing on their own learning. • Creates competition It can add to the competitiveness of some parents, who may put additional pressure on their child to perform at the level they have seen other students working at. 
 • Provides access A plethora of parents have access to the class. Have they been police checked? Do they have the right manner, approach and knowledge to be dealing with children? • Reduces the quality of education Parents may interfere with the methods used by the teacher to teach. Parents are not trained teachers, so this may dilute the quality of education the children receive. • Creates difference A child may feel negative about their learning if their parents are not able to assist with helping in the classroom. It can separate a child from their peers and create insecurity. • Inhibits creativity Children may become too focused on pleasing their parents rather than being creative and innovative in their learning. Children are already trying to please their teachers in the school setting, so adding their parents into the mix can create additional pressure and strain. |

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OUTSIDE THE CLASSROOM But what if you can’t or choose not to participate in your child’s school day?

HOW TO SUPPORT YOUR CHILD’S LEARNING IN OTHER WAYS Can’t make it into the classroom? Jenny Atkinson, teacher and education specialist at Sparks Education Australia, shares her 10 ten ways to support your child’s learning in other ways: 1.  Be positive: Show a positive attitude and give positive comments about your child’s learning/homework/progress/ efforts/teachers/school. 2.  Read: Listen to and read to your child. 3. C  ontribute in other ways: Do you have a talent you can put to use at home that could benefit the class? For example, if you are good at calligraphy you could make beautiful nametags for each child’s desk. 4. S  pend time with your child: Do activities together. Ask their opinion. Talk about what they love to talk about. Raise hypotheticals. Discuss what’s happening at school. Ask about the highs and lows of their day. It will strengthen your connection. 5. Be aware: Take note of dates for special days like mufti days and excursions, so that your child gets to participate in all the school activities. 6. Foster resilience: Help your child to develop resilience and independence – this will go a long way to contributing to their success as a student, enhancing their learning. 7.  Encourage your child to rise to a challenge: Teach your child the power of determination and patience. Let them attempt a task before you step in to do it for them and they will develop a ‘give it a go’ attitude. 8.  Praise your child’s efforts, not just their achievement: Help your little one make the link between effort and results. 9. Involve yourself with other school events: Some school events may work better for your schedule, so consider involving yourself in these. 10. Keep the lines of communication open: Communicate regularly with your child’s teacher and school to foster a good symbiotic relationship where you share your child’s best interests.


JAN/FEB 2016

“It’s important for parents to know that if they are unable or don’t want to help in the classroom, they should not feel guilty or think that their child will be at a disadvantage,” says Jenny. “What parents do at home on a daily basis to support their child with their education is far more important than helping out at school. Every day children pick up on their parents’ attitudes and beliefs around school, and learn through their parent’s comments and expectations, how their parents follow through on school rules and issues that arise at school, how they talk about the teachers, and how they ask about their child’s learning or advocate for their child. These ALL have an impact.” “Parents should feel empowered that they can contribute to their child’s education and success in their own way and in their own time,” adds Clare. “It doesn’t have to be about helping in the classroom. It can simply mean being there, playing, listening and engaging in day-to-day life together.”

WHAT PARENTS SAY “I helped with my son’s class, and it was great to make a difference and to get to know the other kids and parents/grandparents. Then, I started assisting in my daughter’s class, and I ended up concerned at how many parents were assisting and teaching incorrectly, especially with important things like reading.” ~ Belinda Brill – Mum to Connor (10) and Sofia (8) “I help whenever I can! Molly loves it when I come, but can get upset if she doesn't get to be in my group (although the teachers are usually right onto this and facilitate where possible). The majority of the time, I listen to children read, interpret text, make sentences from spelling words, or very occasionally undertake numeracy rotations. I enjoy having a rapport with the kids in my daughter’s class, and she's a little bit proud of me (it could be just because of my red lipstick, but I'll take it!) Giving up just 20 minutes of my day means the kids get a bit more individual help, and that can only be a good thing.” ~ Ellen Griffith – Mum to Molly (6), Joe (4) and Harry (3)

WHAT SCHOOLS SAY “When parents are partners in education, everyone wins.” ~ Marianne Connolly, Director of St Paul’s Junior School, Brisbane

FINAL WORD “It is possible for parents today to be far more involved in their child’s learning experiences (either at home or at school) than ever before,” says senior clinical child psychologist Toula Gordillo. “A physical presence in the classroom is not the key issue anymore. Rather, it is the parents’ desire and knowledge to learn how to deliver, research and interpret information that will help their child the most. Research has consistently indicated that a warm and involved parenting style results in enhanced flourishing in our youth.” |

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The practical skills teens need to fend for themselves by KIM LAHEY

YOU’VE BEEN RIGHT THERE AT THEIR SIDE FOR THE WHOLE OF THEIR YOUNG LIVES. SO HOW WILL THEY MANAGE WHEN THEY LEAVE YOUR NURTURING NEST? Home is the hatching-pot for the practical hands-on skills your teenagers will need to unpack as they move out into the world. As parents we want them to have the know-how to navigate life without being reliant on others. But do we underestimate what our children’s practical capabilities are, right from their early years? Our parental instinct to smooth the path for our kids thwarts their independence, says father-of-three Matt, whose daughter Lily moved out of home last year to start university, aged 17. “Naturally we do things for them because we love them so much, but we create a trap for ourselves,” he says.

SOWING THE SEEDS OF INDEPENDENCE You may have seen the quote floating around on social media: ‘Having kids is like cleaning up after a huge party you didn’t attend’. Dave – father of two boys aged 13 and 15 – says it really does feel like that sometimes. “It’s the small things, like not picking up after themselves,” he says. “I notice their friends are far more independent – I put that down to the fact we did way too much for ours early on.” Lately that’s changed, says Dave. “We’ve had to put our foot down and say, look, we’re all here together, get involved, sort a load of washing, rinse the bottles for the rubbish, whatever.” Matt sees how easy it is for kids to fall back into their comfort zone and not feel the need to cook or clean up at home because they see mum and dad covering it. “But when fronted with the responsibility, it will certainly happen,” he says. “I found it was a drip feed, bit by bit. I had to back off.” We can sow the seeds of independence by encouraging simple self-help skills from early on. Then responsibility for chores – like making basic meals – can grow as our kids do. That way, as they shed their school-skins and burst into their futures, they’ll be able to cook something that didn’t originate in a box. It was the basics like “grocery shopping with specific meals in mind” that Matt says was the initial challenge for his daughter Lily, now 18, when she moved out of home last year. “She had to learn how to plan ahead, get into a system – so she knew what she was going to cook, take for lunch, which train to catch. Organisation was a biggie.”


JAN/FEB 2016 |




1. Budget your money realistically, keeping in mind what things really cost. Do the family’s grocery shopping each week within a certain budget and see how much it all adds up to. Think about other costs like power, transport and your mobile. How long can you handle a cold shower for if you haven’t paid the hot water bill?

Aside from the invaluable behavioural insights that emerge from living in a shared house, the benefits include splitting the cost of rent and electricity, building friendships (mostly) and the security of having others around. But negatives can rear their ugly head over cleanliness, bills and lifestyle differences.

2. L earn to cook more than 2 Minute noodles – you can get sick of them pretty quickly! How about cooking dinner for the family a few nights a week and learning to cook your favourite food. Takeaway is nice, but can you afford it every day? Even McDonalds can get a bit boring.

Setting clear ground rules with housemates at the outset about shared costs and shared responsibility for household chores, and knowing everyone’s view on noise, visitors and parties will save trouble down the track. Householders who are clear about their role within the group will feel part of the set-up, rather than just a passenger along for the ride.

3. L earn how to negotiate with people without unnecessary conflict. Think proactively now, so when you share with others you’re used to negotiation. Think about things like doing a cleaning roster, discussing when it ‘s okay to have the music loud in the house and when it is not because someone is studying.

University of Queensland manager of student living and life skills Yonna Cowan sees hundreds of kids who have moved out of home each year. She shares some key ‘know-how’ that will smooth the transition from living at home to living in independent or shared households.

4.  Be aware of your rights and responsibilities as a tenant before you sign anything, so you don’t get yourself into trouble, or let yourself be taken advantage of. Check the lease conditions and your responsibilities with the Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA).


5. K  eep written records of correspondence you have with landlords, real estate agents, property owners, phone companies etc. Get savvy with keeping pieces of paper and emails.

Yes, it can be bit of a shock to find that landlords, bosses, police and lecturers are not as friendly or pliable as parents. Yes, there’ll be challenging situations and challenging people. Yonna says it helps to think of all situations – good and bad – as learning experiences. “We don’t live in a perfect world so when you come out the other side of a tough situation, think about what could’ve been done differently and try an alternative if something like that pops up in the future,” she says. It also helps to be as proactive as you can in everyday situations, Yonna explains. “Think beyond now to do a bit of planning – it will take you a long way in the future.” We can all face up to challenges and turn them into opportunities, says Stacey Copus, author of How To Be Resilient – The Blueprint For Getting Results When Things Don't Go To Plan. Stacey became a quadriplegic after an accident when she was 12, and is now a keynote speaker, author and resilience consultant. She is training to qualify for the 100m at the 2016 Rio Paralympics. The ability to turn challenge and change into results is – more than ever – a competitive advantage, she explains. “A person who embraces change will leave behind those who are still talking about how hard done by they are.” No one is immune to adversity, and the best way to cope with it is to take action by aiming for results. Even just baby steps to begin with. First, you need to be responsible for your actions and take control of your life, Stacey says. “Self-blame can get to the best of us, but by pinning the blame on others you relinquish your control of the situation.”

6.  Know how to fix it. If the light bulb blows, the smoke detector won’t stop beeping, the remote for the TV won’t work … you’ll need to fix it! Learn the basics for all those ‘little’ things before you leave home, otherwise you’ll be stuck listening to a beeping noise, sitting in the dark and having to get up off the couch to change the channel. For emergency repairs for the likes of a burst hot water system, gas leak or blocked toilet, ask the landlord/ agent what you should do if these happen, and keep the relevant contact details handy. 7.  Keep in touch with home. They helped get you to where you are and you never know when you’ll need them for little and big things that come up. 8.  Check the mailbox. You never know when an important notice from a power or phone company, local council or landlord may end up in your mailbox. You can also find bargains in some junk mail catalogues. 9. T  hink about responsibility, especially in a share-house. What happens when you run out of something? Organise who’s responsible for what. It’s one thing to run out of milk and another to run out of toilet paper! 10. Remember, everything you drop will stay there until you clean it up! |

JAN/FEB 2016




ENLISTING HELP Leaving home for the first time invites responsibility. But that doesn’t mean tackling everything on your own. “Don’t be afraid to ask questions and ask others for help,” Yonna says. There are people around with more experience and it is okay to ask if you’re not sure, right from what kind of washing powder to use to bigger life choices. Emotions happen too. “It’s okay to have days where you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed and need someone to chat to, and sometimes you might just want to have a good cry,” Yonna says. “Don’t hide yourself away in a room or away from other people who want to help – chat to someone you trust.” Even if they don’t have an answer, it often makes you feel a bit better to chat to someone about a situation, she explains. There’s also plenty of places online to find backup, like Kids Helpline or the ‘Get out there’ survival guide for young adults. The guide is loaded with useful tips on a wide range of topics including renting and sharing a house as well as budgeting, shopping, managing stress, staying healthy, alcohol and your body, safe sex and sexual health, sun safety, voting and paying fines.

PROTECTING YOURSELF AND YOUR BELONGINGS ( Fire: By law every house must have at least one working smoke alarm. You can’t smell smoke when you’re asleep so a working smoke alarm could save your life. Landlords are only responsible for fitting the alarm; it’s the tenants’ responsibility to maintain them – which includes testing the alarm, changing the batteries and keeping it clean. Electricity: A safety switch is one of the most important safety items in your home. It’s designed to cut off the power if there’s a fault in equipment or wiring. Safety switch instalment is the owner’s responsibility, but you need to check your switchboard has one – and test it every few months. Pressing the button (labelled ‘test’) will cut power to protected circuits – if it doesn’t, contact your landlord/agent. Right up to the point where your young adult child will stand at the front door and say goodbye, we won’t be sure they’ll have it covered. “But, you reach that stage of your life and theirs where you know you’ve done the best you can,” says Matt. As parents the most loving thing we can do is prepare them for adulthood by building the habits and skills that will resonate throughout their lives. For those are the best farewell gifts we could possibly give.

PRACTICAL TOOLS AND INFORMATION TO HELP YOUNG ADULTS MOVING OUT OF HOME The ‘Get out there’ survival guide: Kids Helpline counsellors are available by phone (1800 55 1800), email or online: The Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) outlines rights and responsibilities as a tenant:

Goodbye and good luck!


JAN/FEB 2016 |

Study with us at our Sunshine Coast Campus. Call 07 5443 7172

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WHAT IS YOUR PASSION? What do you see yourself doing in 5 years time? Community Training Australia’s (CTA) Sunshine Coast Campus gives people the opportunity to reach their goals. We would love to assist you in studying the course that will help you to fulfil your dreams. You will have our full support and guidance throughout your course. That’s the difference when you study with CTA, we are here to help you succeed!

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You will enjoy our fun, flexible and friendly courses. Study one day a week face to face with us at Maroochydore or Gympie. We offer nationally accredited courses in Counselling, Youth Work, Child Care, Community Services, Alcohol, Other Drugs & Mental Health and Relationship Counselling.

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PREPARING SCHOOL LUNCH BOXES THAT ARE HEALTHY AND NUTRITIOUS AND WILL KEEP YOUR LITTLE ONE FUELLED FOR THE WHOLE DAY CAN BE A DAUNTING TASK. AND SENDING A REGULAR SCHOOL LUNCH CAN FEEL ENOUGH OF A CHORE WITHOUT ADDING ALLERGIES AND INTOLERANCES TO THE TABLE. Keeping food simple and colourful is the first step in preparing a lunch box for your child. Don't feel you need to create a different lunch every day … parents are under so much pressure already, so aim to keep it real and keep it simple. We need to remind ourselves to take things back to basics with meat, vegetables, fruit and some nuts or seeds – nothing fancy, nothing flash. Children will soon tell you when they are bored with the same food every day. Breaking the sandwich routine is a process, but with a little planning and by being more organised with preparation, you can put together lunch boxes filled with wholesome foods that will satisfy your child for the whole school day. Leftovers from dinner the night before offer a tasty alternative to a sandwich and are a great budget and timesaving option. Cook extra pasta, rice or vegetables when preparing dinner to use for lunch the next day. Extra rice can be turned into sushi or rice balls.

Try different fruit and vegetables each day. Great options include carrot, cucumber, beans, snow peas, capsicum, cherry tomatoes, grapes and berries. Try to eat fruit and vegetables that are in season and grown as locally as possible. Buy from local farmers markets to support the local economy and get children involved in helping pick which fruit and vegetables they would like for the week. This is a great way for them to learn that their favourite grapes or strawberries are not always available or affordable. While it is sometimes a challenge, involving children in making healthy food choices in younger childhood years will lead to positive food choices later in life.

Here is a selection of lunches to try through the week…

MONDAY SESAME CHICKEN KEBABS WITH COCONUT CHIPS, VEGETABLES AND FRUIT Chop a chicken breast in equal sized pieces, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Cook the chicken in a frying pan for 10 minutes or bake in the oven at 160 °C for 20 minutes. Once cooked, thread a wooden skewer through the chicken pieces with diced cucumber and cherry tomatoes. Coconut chips offer a yummy snack – sprinkle with cinnamon for a tasty treat. (Free from grains, dairy, eggs and nuts)


JAN/FEB 2016 |


TIPS FOR HEALTHY, LITTERFREE LUNCH BOXES Keep it simple – children like no fuss. Add as much colour as you can.

TUESDAY Roast chicken legs and wings for a tasty lunch. It’s a good idea to buy chicken pieces in bulk to batch cook to keep costs down. Include a few different vegetables, either raw or lightly steamed with a bit of crunch.

Involve children with deciding what they would like in their lunch boxes and putting them together each day – they’re more likely to eat everything if they have a say in what they have to eat.

The nut- and dairy-free pesto is perfect for school lunch boxes and adds some extra flavour to the chicken and vegetables. Basil can be bought in large bunches from farmers markets and dried mushrooms are available from Asian supermarkets.

Finger food is easier for kids to eat. Some children are grazers and like picking bits at a time.

Sulphur-free raisins or sultanas combined with sunflower kernels and pumpkin seeds provide a sweet treat.


Don't overfill the lunch box! You will soon learn how much food your child needs by seeing if they bring any food home. Don’t worry … they won’t starve in one afternoon.


Use a bento style lunch box.

• 2 large handfuls of fresh basil

Prepare as much as you can in advance. Chop and cook food for the week and store in airtight containers in the fridge.


• 3 large garlic cloves • 2 large handfuls of dried mushrooms • 3 tablespoons of olive oil • 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt Method: Place all ingredients in a food processor and turn on high for roughly 2 minutes until all ingredients are ground together. If the pesto is too thick, add a little more olive oil. Store any leftovers in the fridge for up to one week. (Free from grains, dairy, eggs and nuts) |

Stainless steel lunchboxes are a great option as they stay cooler for longer, especially if you make lunches the night before and take the lunch boxes out of the fridge cold and ready to go in the morning. Lunch boxes can be kept cool in an insulated lunch bag with an ice brick.

JAN/FEB 2016



BANANA BREAD Ingredients: • 4 ripe bananas • 6 organic eggs • 6 dates (dried or fresh) • 1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon • 2 teaspoons of gluten-free baking powder • 2 teaspoons of organic vanilla extract • 1/2 cup of organic coconut flour • 1/4 cup of chia seeds Method: 1. Heat the oven to 170 °C. 2. Lightly oil a bread tin, brownie pan or muffin tray. 3. Add bananas, eggs, dates, cinnamon, baking powder and vanilla to a food processor and whisk until smooth. Transfer mixture to a bowl and set aside. 4. Add coconut flour and chia seeds to the wet mixture and combine well.

WEDNESDAY PALEO SAUSAGES WITH EGG, BANANA BREAD MUFFINS, VEGETABLES AND FRUIT Paleo sausages are available to buy in supermarkets and some butchers and taste great with hardboiled egg. My kids love my banana bread – being grain, dairy and nut free, it’s a paleo and allergy-friendly school lunch box snack. The recipe for the banana bread is to make a loaf but is easily adapted by cooking it in muffin tins. (Free from grains, dairy and nuts)

THURSDAY CHEESE SANDWICH KEBABS WITH VEGETABLES, FRUIT AND JAM TART These kebabs are fun and great to try something a little different if your little one still wants a sandwich. Lightly toast some sourdough and cut it into squares. Slice cheese, tomato and cucumber and place the tomato on kitchen roll to absorb all the juice and prevent the bread from going soggy. Good old-fashioned jam tarts, made from my gran’s old recipe, make for a special treat. Children will love helping and cutting different shapes for the top.


JAN/FEB 2016 |

5. Leave to rest for 30–60 minutes. 6. Spoon into the baking pan and bake for 30 minutes. 7. To check if it’s cooked thoroughly, push a toothpick or skewer into the middle of the bread – if it comes out clean it’s cooked, if it still has batter on it, then cook for another 10 minutes.


MINTY CACAO BLISS BALL Ingredients: • 1 cup of dried dates (preservative free) • 1 cup of raisins (preservative free) • 1/2 cup of sunflower seeds • 1/4 cup of tahini • 1 tablespoon of organic cacao • 1/2 tea-spoon of organic pepper mint extract • desiccated coconut for coating Method: 1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse on high for around 2 minutes until combined well. 2. Remove from the bowl and shape into round balls. 3. Roll in the coconut.


4. Eat straight away or store in the fridge in an airtight container.

PALEO SUSHI WITH BLISS BALLS, VEGETABLES AND FRUIT JAM TARTS Ingredients: • 250 grams of plain sifted flour • 125 grams of butter, diced into cubes • 4 tablespoons of lukewarm water • Strawberry or blackberry jam Method: 1. Pre- heat the oven to 160 °C and prepare a muffin tray by greasing the sides. 2. Into a mixing bowl add the flour and butter and rub together until it looks like fine bread crumbs. 3. Slowly add the water, needing the flour and butter mixture together to make a ball. 4. Roll out onto a floured work surface and use a circle cookie cutter to cut out the tart base. 5. Spoon in a tablespoon of jam. 6. With the remaining leftover pastry cut out shapes to place on the top of the tarts. 7. Bake for 15 minutes. 8. Allow to cool before serving. Store in an airtight container. (Free from eggs and nuts)

Sushi is a great way to use up the excess rice you have cooked for dinner. Leftover vegetables such as beans and carrot can be used for the sushi filling for a meat-free day. To make the sushi rolls, use a simple rolling mat which can be purchased from supermarkets. When laying out the rice the trick is to place the filling in the middle of the mat rather than near the top. You can always use a non-grain alternative and make cauliflower sushi. Simply pulse up half a cauliflower in the food processor and fry it quickly in a little sesame seed oil and garlic with salt and pepper. It cooks very fast and is a great alternative to rice. Cauliflower rice can become a little wet so for the best result, place the cauliflower in a small mesh sieve and try to drain out any excess fluid. Victoria Forry from Litter Free Easy Lunches is a Sunshine Coast mum of four children, each with very different food tastes and very different needs. Victoria’s family started their litter-free journey 2 years ago when her child’s litter-free kindy inspired her to creating healthy, packet-free lunches for all her children. The biggest challenge when preparing her children's lunch boxes is accommodating her 10-year-old son’s intolerances to eggs, dairy, wheat, spelt, whey and pinto beans. At the same time, her preppie only wants quick no-mess options so he can go and play quicker, Miss 12 likes to have leftovers, while Miss 2 is at day care and will eat anything. Victoria now supports families in creating healthy lunch and meal ideas, and she is the official Sunshine Coast stockist for LunchBots stainless steel lunch boxes. For more lunch box and family meal ideas and to browse her online store, visit ENTER THE SPECIAL DISCOUNT CODE KOTC FOR A 15% DISCOUNT ON ONLINE STORE ORDERS UNTIL FEBRUARY 15, 2016. COLLECTION IS AVAILABLE ON THE SUNSHINE COAST. Email for more details. |

JAN/FEB 2016





Children with erratic bedtimes are more likely to have behavioural problems than those who have a consistent sleep routine, according to recent research. Sleep is regulated by our circadian rhythm, or body clock, which is slow to respond to change, thus a stable sleep schedule is important for children’s healthy daytime functioning. A regular bedtime routine promotes good sleep habits and results in better behaviour during the day. Paediatric sleep research psychologist Dr Sarah Biggs advises that scheduling a regular bedtime is just as important, if not more important, than how much sleep children get. Dr Biggs, who is affiliated with the Hudson Institute of Medical Research in Victoria, conducted a study of children’s sleep duration and scheduling of bedtimes. The study found that children who have irregular bedtimes are more likely to exhibit hyperactive behaviours than those who sleep less than the recommended amount. The greater the discrepancy in bedtimes, the poorer the daytime outcomes. Children with an irregular bedtime of up to one hour across the week are three times as likely to show hyperactive behaviours as those who have regular bedtimes, advises Dr Biggs. This could be, for example, going to bed at 8pm one night and going to


JAN/FEB 2016

bed at 9pm the next night. When there is a two-hour difference in bedtimes, such as between midweek and weekend bedtimes, children are six times as likely to exhibit hyperactive behaviours.

SLEEP HEALTH The three main factors that work together for healthy sleep are sleep duration, sleep scheduling and quality of sleep, advises Dr Biggs. Poor sleep results in a range of daytime outcomes, including behavioural issues, poor attention and memory, and a decline in academic performance. After a good night’s sleep, children are more likely to wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day. Dr Biggs says we have to understand how important sleep is, and try to work that into a healthy lifestyle. “It’s really about taking sleep as seriously as diet and exercise,” she says. “We often don’t see sleep as an active process and so it’s one of the first things to get sacrificed.” The Sleep Health Foundation ( states that more than a third of school-aged children may have a sleep problem that makes it hard for them to function well during the day. The problem may be behavioural or it may be caused by a condition such as sleep apnoea or asthma. Talk to your family doctor or health care professional if your child has a sleep issue. |


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come and see days every Wednesday Join the fun of Come and See Days to learn more about NCC early learners. Your kids will love playing while you meet with the teachers. Visit the NCC early learners website to register or call (07) 5451 3330.

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Some children need more sleep than others to function well during the day. This can vary, so parents need to be guided by the child’s daytime behaviour. The Sleep Health Foundation recommends the following: • Toddlers (1–2 years): 11 to 14 hours of sleep • Preschoolers (3–5 years): 10 to 13 hours of sleep • School-aged children (6–13 years): 9 to 11 hours of sleep • Teenagers (14–17 years): 8 to 10 hours of sleep Parents often ask for a magic number for their child, says Dr Biggs, but sleep researchers have found there is a wide range of hours of sleep required that varies from individual to individual. She advises that the three-hour range recommended by the Sleep Health Foundation takes away the fear that children aren’t sleeping enough and allows parents to make an informed decision about the amount of sleep their child needs. “One preschooler might get 10 hours and be perfectly fine and another preschooler might need 13 hours to make sure that they are performing to their best the next day,” she says. Dr Biggs advises parents to check if their child is overly emotional or sensitive, is throwing tantrums over a small issue, is overactive or distracted. If the child doesn’t have behavioural issues and can pay attention, then they are probably getting enough sleep.

An evening routine which includes 30 to 60 minutes of quiet time before bed is recommended. This helps children wind down so they can settle more easily when it’s time for bed. Relaxing activities may include reading, listening to quiet music or doing creative visualisation exercises. Switch off the television and electronic devices one hour before bedtime. Also make sure kids have plenty of exercise during the day. Lights out will depend on how much sleep the child needs. For example, if the child needs about 11 hours of sleep and has to wake up at 7am, then lights out should be at 8pm. If your school-aged child has difficulty settling at bedtime or wakes during the night, this can indicate a behavioural sleep problem. The child may delay bedtime by calling out for a drink, getting up to go to the toilet or coming into your room. Keep calm and stick to the rules, ensuring the child returns to bed. Focus on success and find a way of encouraging positive behaviours. For young children, a star chart is a simple way of rewarding the child for getting into bed and staying there. Most children fall asleep within 20 minutes of going to bed, according to the Raising Children Network. During the night, children cycle between light and deep sleep, however, it’s important for them to learn to self-settle so they can return to sleep after a brief waking episode.




• Establish a regular bedtime • Have a consistent bedtime routine • Make sure the bedroom is quiet and comfortable • Remove electronic devices from the bedroom • A snack before bed may help • Avoid caffeine and other stimulants • Encourage daily exercise and time outside • Work with your doctor Source: Sleep Health Foundation


JAN/FEB 2016

Another factor that has emerged in recent research is the importance of going to bed early. This may be more significant for children than having a long sleep, according to the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute after analysing the results of the Growing Up in Australia study of 3600 Australian children. Research from the institute indicates that children who get to sleep early have better health and quality of life – and their mothers have improved mental health – compared with children who go to sleep late. Circadian rhythms, or body clocks, are changing in adolescence, thus teenagers tend to go to bed later at night and wake up later in the morning. Teens need less sleep than younger children, however, like younger children, they need good sleep habits in order to function well during the day. Older children who go to sleep late and wake up late have a higher body mass index, or BMI, and are more likely to be obese than those who go to bed early, according to research by University of South Australia Professor Timothy Olds. However, a higher BMI in teens could also be linked to unhealthy habits, such as poor diet, increased screen time and a sedentary lifestyle. An erratic sleep pattern with inconsistent bedtimes and wake times forces a shift in teenagers’ circadian rhythm, which affects their health and well-being in a similar way to jetlag. Signs of poor sleep can include mood changes, irritability, fatigue and difficulties at school. Parents can help by encouraging a regular early bedtime, thus enabling children to have plenty of sleep. A consistent sleep routine and set bedtime improves the quality of children’s sleep and is essential for their good health. |

1. Identification of the asset pool. This includes identifying the asset pool available for distribution. The assets minus the liabilities of the relationship equal We look forward to sharing your the net asset pool. This includes real property, bank accounts, motor vehicles, businesses, shares,learning superannuation and personal possessions child’s journey withregardless you of whether they are in sole or joint names. 2. Assessment of financial and non-financial contributions. • Government funded Kindergarten Programs The court will • Ages 3-6 of years 2016 Enrolments Available consider the financial contributions both parties including initial contributions Dance and Drama Program upon cohabitation, lump• sum contributions and all other contributions from • Sport Program both parties. • Educational Shows

• Centre contributions, Excursion When assessing the non-financial the court looks at the parenting, • Daily meals provided housework and other duties required in the relationship and will assess each Opening Hours: 7.30am - 5.30pm party’s contribution to this.

3. Future needs factors. In this step, the court considers each party’s future and whether any adjustments should be made due to factors including health, earning capacity, dependents, study requirements and any other factors relevant to each party’s financial future. 4. Just and equity factors. In this step, the court is required to ensure that any property distribution is fair and equitable to both parties.

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Property Settlement When a court considers a property settlement, it looks at four steps and characterises them according to your unique situation.

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1. Identification of the asset pool. This includes identifying the asset pool available for distribution. The assets minus the liabilities of the relationship equal the net asset pool. This includes real property, bank accounts, motor vehicles, businesses, shares, superannuation and personal possessions regardless of whether they are in sole or joint names.

FOCUS FAMILY LAW understands that every case is unique, and we advise you and tailor the options and recommendations to suit your priorities.

2. Assessment of financial and non-financial contributions. The court will consider the financial contributions of both parties including initial contributions upon cohabitation, lump sum contributions and all other contributions from both parties.

We can assist with all aspects of Family Law, including: • Divorce • Property Settlements • Children’s Living Arrangements • Consent Orders • Domestic Violence matters

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3. Future needs factors. In this step, the court considers each party’s future and whether any adjustments should be made due to factors including health, earning capacity, dependents, study requirements and any other factors relevant to each party’s financial future.

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In addition to a property settlement, you may also be liable to pay or entitled to receive spousal maintenance. It is important to know that time limits apply to bring a court application for property settlement and/or spousal maintenance. We recommend you obtain legal advice to determine what this means for you in your situation. |

JAN/FEB 2016




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Hello from your new digital editor! Over the next few months, I am going to be moving and shaking your Kids on the Coast and Kids in the City online world with an awesome explosion of stories, news, recipes, inspiration and general radness, so if you haven’t yet visited our sassy online space, make sure you head on over!


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TALK Parents

Some of the best-loved parenting bloggers in South East Queensland join Kids on the Coast and Kids in the City to discuss the topics that matter to you.

‘What age do you think is appropriate to give a child a mobile phone and why?’

HOLLY CONNORS Simplify Create Inspire There is no doubt we live in a highly connected society these days and as such, we are seeing kids as young as two or three being able to navigate mobile phones better than some adults. Scary thought! But because they can doesn’t mean they need their own mobile phone yet. Kids shouldn’t be given mobile phones until there is a real need for it. If your child is old enough to start spending time away from home, such as attending events or social situations with friends, or doing after school and weekend sport or hobby activities, and may need to reach you, that’s when it’s time to consider. For most kids, this won’t be until early high school at least and even then you may consider giving it to them only while they are out. It should be at an age when your child can show responsibility with their mobile phone, not blowing all their credit chatting with friends, but having it for when they need to be reachable or reach someone else. Not because all their friends have one already!



Mrs BC’s House of Chaos

The Multitasking Woman

This is such a loaded question, and I’m tempted to say (excuse me while I put on my cranky old lady pants) that kids today get enough screen time! They don’t need a phone thrown into the mix! They should be out in the fresh air, kicking a ball, playing with their friends! Well, I do believe that’s kind of true, but times have changed and we have to change with them. Put your hand up if you spend too much time hunched over your own mobile phone? I’ll be the first to raise my hand, guilty as charged. I’m probably not talking to anyone on an actual phone call. I'm probably texting or checking Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.

As a mother to an almost four-year-old one thing I can say is that I am very concerned for this young generation who have been born into the world of smartphones and I will not be giving my son one until there is a definite need.

The reasonable argument is to say that a child should have a mobile phone when they need one. For my eldest, this meant toward the end of primary school when I was in full time work and she was getting a bus to after school care. We were worried that she might need to contact us and wouldn’t be able to, so we got her a very basic phone and it was the answer we all needed, however this was back in the dark ages before smartphones. My youngest two already have access to the internet via a variety of devices and are picked up from school by at least one parent every day, so the need for a phone isn’t so great. Maybe if I go back to work that might change, but with most children having some sort of internet enabling device these days, is making a phone call even needed?

My thought on the matter is that if you are dropping your child off at school and picking them up again or if they catch a bus to school and then home again, there should be no reason for them to have a phone; you know where they are – either at school, on the bus or with you. As they get older though and are allowed to go out with their friends to the movies without you or when they get their car licence, yes, of course, they should have a mobile phone but not a smartphone, at least until they can pay for it themselves. Give them a phone that’s basic, one that makes out calls only and to a few selected numbers. Isn’t the point of giving a child a phone to get in contact with you, the parent? I may be a bit old school, but I didn’t get a mobile phone until I was in grade 12 when I got my driver’s licence and I did just fine. It was a brick of a phone, no smartphones back then, but that’s all I needed and before getting the phone, I was fine using pay phones. Mum and dad had a reverse charges number set up just in case we didn’t have the 40 cents we needed to make a call. So in answer to the question, I think when your child is old enough to start going out on their own, that’s when it’s appropriate to give them a phone. But do them and yourself a favour, don’t let it be a smartphone!

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country by KERRYN ANKER

WHAT BETTER WAY TO IMMERSE THE KIDS IN NATURE, ENCOURAGING THEM TO PUT DOWN THE TELEVISION REMOTE AND GET INTO THE GREAT OUTDOORS THAN A FAMILY FARMSTAY – WHERE THEY CAN RUN, JUMP AND EXPLORE AS FAR AS THE EYE CAN SEE WHILE BREATHING IN THE FRESH COUNTRY AIR. From the wide-open spaces, rich green pastures and quaint country towns nearby, the tranquillity and rural lifestyle of a farmstay are not only beneficial for adults wanting to escape the daily grind, but can also be a great educational experience for children.

From milking the cows, collecting eggs and even having a ride on the tractor, it’s a great way to introduce the rural lifestyle to children as well as encouraging them to have an appreciation of where the food in the supermarket actually comes from.

Farmstays are becoming increasing popular for families, allowing people to disconnect from the hustle and bustle, while offering a unique and interactive holiday experience. Waking up to the farm rooster at dawn may be an adjustment at first, but it definitely beats the sound of traffic and car horns.

Aside from the farmyard animals, other activities can include taking a leisurely bush walk in the wilderness, horse riding and even a good old campfire sing along, toasting marshmallows and eating homemade damper.

We are very blessed in South East Queensland to have so many beautiful country towns on our doorstep, with friendly folk ready and willing to welcome you into their home, some sharing their 100-year-old farming legacy. Depending on how close to nature you want to get or how interactive you want your holiday to be, there are farmstays to suit each individual family’s needs and requirements. From toddlers to teenagers, it can be a weekend away that is enjoyed and appreciated by all. It’s a great excuse for the kids and parents to get their hands dirty. It’s all part of the fun and experience of your farmstay holiday.


JAN/FEB 2016

It can be a real adventure for young and old, stepping off the beaten track, embracing the serene, pristine environment that surrounds you. Being outdoors in this setting also allows the kids to understand about being kind and respectful to nature and the animals that live there. With everyone living such hectic lives, it’s important to take the time as a family to spend quality time together, without any distractions. Once the sun slips from the sky, all that’s left on your farmstay is the twinkling stars, being outdoors enjoying each other’s company, while making lifelong memories together. |

Image courtesy Tourism and Events Queensland



Here are some of the top farm stays in South East Queensland:



One of the oldest farmstays in Queensland, Lillydale offers an award-winning holiday for families wanting to escape the hectic pace of day-to-day life. Situated in Mount Barney in the picturesque Scenic Rim Region, your hosts Doug and Pam Hardgrave pride themselves on offering a genuine country experience, sharing their little slice of heaven with families. Whether you try your hand at horse or pony rides or some bush tucker tasting, the Hardgraves promise their guests a unique and fun holiday experience. Mt Barney

5544 3131

BUNYIP SPRINGS FARMSTAY Situated on 300 acres of farmland and pristine rainforest in the Sunshine Coast hinterland, Wittacork is a modern working dairy farm that overlooks the beautiful Lake Baroon. Featuring four selfcontained cottages, families can milk the cows, collect eggs for breakfast and feed the goats or splash around the mud with Pumba and Boris the pigs. There are also walking tracks to explore the rainforest as well as viewing areas to marvel at the waterfall. Maleny

5494 4369

CEDAR GLEN FARMSTAY This 100-year-old cattle farm has a rich history in the region, situated at the foothills of the iconic Lost World, part of Lamington National Park. With four historic cottages to choose from, there is the option for families to relax and unwind, enjoying the serenity of their surroundings, or to get involved in the diverse range of activities from horse riding, swimming and tennis to feeding and caring for the animals. Darlington

5544 8170


Offering a tranquil rural farmstay experience, Bunyip Springs in the quaint country town of Maidenwell is just 23km from the top of the renowned Bunya Mountains National Park. With the property bordering two creeks, there are endless opportunities for bushwalking and bird watching for families and to get your hands dirty with the farmyard activities. Maidenwell

4164 6175

BESTBROOK MOUNTAIN RESORT Bestbrook Mountain Resort in Maryvale encompasses what a family farmstay should be all about. From learning the art of whip cracking to milking the cows and riding a hose through the beautiful countryside, this family-owned farm offers a range of accommodation types to suit your requirements and budget. Just a 25-minute drive from Warwick CBD, Bestbrook offers old-fashioned hospitality and an authentic country holiday experience with a smorgasbord of natural flora and fauna on your doorstep as well as the World Heritage Listed Main Range National Park. Maryvale

Discover the magic of the South Burnett region with the family owned and operated Lee Farmstay and Cottages, situated on the outskirts of Kingaroy township. Surrounded by award-winning wineries, Lee Farmstay allows you to either relax on your private balcony or immerse yourself in the daily farm happenings with miniature ponies, sheep and cows grazing just outside your doorstep. Kingaroy

4162 5103

4666 1282


JAN/FEB 2016



Tara Colegrave A MUM, SCHOOL TEACHER AND CHILDREN’S TELEVISION PRESENTER – KIDS ARE A HUGE PART OF TARA COLEGRAVE’S WORLD. Brisbane mum Tara is a vibrant and engaging television and radio presenter, best known for her role on the popular BBC children’s channel CBeebies, aired daily in Australia on FOXTEL. Tara is passionate about education, social issues and the arts, and she shares these passions with her class in her role as a primary school teacher. Tara joins us to share an insight into family life with her husband James and 4-year-old daughter Olive and more of her busy professional life, juggling full time school teaching in Brisbane with recording for cBeebies in Sydney. Tell us about the work you do as a media presenter and as an educator. What inspired you to go into both these fields? I have been a presenter for BBC Worldwide kids channel CBeebies for seven years and a school teacher for 10 years. With my role on CBeebies I’m involved in the scriptwriting (using the Early Years Curriculum), filming little links that go between the shows, doing live performances, voice overs, some magazine editorial and, of course, meeting the kids! This year I have a grade three class that I just adore. Teaching is one of the hardest yet rewarding professions I’ve ever been involved in. I want to inspire my children to think, question, debate and solve problems on a global scale. Finding current resources to do this, while maintaining general school rigour in a class of 30 definitely keeps you on your toes! But we have a lot of fun, and I’m always trying to be as creative as possible. This is my world … making people smile and think – pretty awesome.


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How did your role with cBeebies come about? Timing is everything they say. I had moved to London with big stars in my eyes and for two years I worked for Ministry of Sound radio while teaching and carried a list of agents around with me. One day I decided to email them all with a small bio and a clip from another children’s television show I did in Australia called Y?. I held my breath and only one responded. The following week we met and as luck would have it, the BBC had just sent him an email searching for an Australian children’s television presenter to host a new channel launching in Australia. What?!! Neither of us could believe it! The casting was in the next few days and they squeezed me in. I got a phone call two days later for a callback interview and I got the job. I started three weeks later at the BBC in Shepherd’s Bush. Quite mind blowing really and it all happened in one month. Serendipity, hey? How do you juggle your work as a television presenter with being a mum and a school teacher? Like every working mother, it is always a challenge, and I couldn’t do it without the incredible support of my husband and parents. There have been some tough times juggling it all – even a little zombie like teaching the day after filming. But we all get through somehow with a laugh. It’s easier now as I just film during school holidays. Fortunately, James has been studying for his Masters for the last 18 months while running his own leather craft business ( so he looks after Olive, does the kindy run, all the laundry and most of the cooking. I know … pretty awesome! |


What other presenting work have you been doing? Currently my workload is full but I am dabbling in blogging and always scrawling new ideas on bits of paper to put together on the holidays. I have done some voice overs for commercials and MC’d a few events for friends but most of my presenting is to my daughter and my class. They think I’m bonkers, but love it! What do you love about being a media presenter? What I love about being a presenter is the production ‘family’ on set, knowing what I’m creating is entertaining and brings joy to so many children. Meeting the kids and parents and hearing their gratitude for what we do is just the best. I also love the craft of making television. It’s very interesting how much goes into making 30 seconds of television gold! What do you love about being an educator of primary-aged children? I love teaching! Getting children to think, challenging their perceptions and helping them create solutions on a global scale to make the world a better place is exhausting but highly rewarding. I truly believe in education. It is the key to making the future generations amazing and the world a better place to live. I also try to make my class laugh every day – and I’m pretty sure they enjoy ‘the show’ as much as I enjoy giving it. Where do you see your work focus heading in the future? I am a passionate person and constantly thinking and creating ideas for television content, blogs and podcasts. I’m a big environmentalist and we live a pretty sustainable simple life as a family, so I’m thinking about how people can join me dancing with the green! Watch this space. What is the most fun memory you have of your work as a media presenter? And as a teacher? Oh, there are so many fun memories. Most are on set when things go wrong or when we play little practical jokes on each other. Oh, but dressing up is fun and once I dressed up for my grade two class and role played I was a queen all morning for a history lesson – they thought it was hilarious! What has been the most rewarding part of your work? The light bulb moments in my classroom are the best, when you see and hear children joining the dots of their concepts and applying it. For CBeebies I was visiting sick children in hospital and one of the mothers shared with me how much their toddler looked forward to seeing me every day and how happy I made them and how that joy made them smile through some of the darkest days. It made me cry and we hugged. What do you do to relax? Ha! What’s that? J I love to dance … all the time. That definitely unwinds me. In the holidays I go camping, sew, do yoga. I try to read a couple of books and go to the beach at least for one swim. What has been your most life-defining moment? I guess my most life-defining moment was the day I chose to move to London to live. I was 28, I had just finished uni, I didn’t have a boyfriend and thought I would take my television and radio

experience to London and see what happened. Lucky I did as I met my husband in the offices at Ministry of Sound in London. I got married there and I ended up working for the BBC on CBeebies. I guess you could say my life changed from that moment. What general advice has had the biggest impact on you? My first producer on the television show Y? gave me the best advice that I have used over and over – never criticise something unless you can present some solutions. I have used this in teaching, television and even in friendships. It’s a good one. What parenting advice has had the biggest impact on you? I think the slowing down aspect of parenting is important. Savour the long days and don’t rush children to fit in with your life. Fit in with theirs. And don’t involve them in adult issues/talk. Let them be children. There is plenty of time to be adult. How has having children changed your life? I struggled a lot when Olive was born in defining who I was. I have always been very ambitious, career driven and probably a bit of a workaholic. Olive has helped me slow down and be more present, not put so much pressure on myself and relax a bit. She has made me a better person. What life message do you most want your children to learn? Be kind: to yourself, others and the planet. Would you like your children to follow in your career footsteps? Knowing Olive as I do, she is not built for the television industry – well, not in front of the camera – but she does tell me that she would like to be a teacher like me, and I think that is just super! Is there anything else you would like to share? Don’t be afraid to pick up rubbish in public – it’s okay, you can wash your hands! And not only will the animals love the help, many small eyes are watching and you are an AMAZING role model. TURN TO FOXTEL CHANNEL 705 TO WATCH TARA ON CBEEBIES EVERY DAY. YOU CAN ALSO FOLLOW HER ON INSTAGRAM @TARACOLEGRAVE. |

JAN/FEB 2016



For our personal reviews of these titles and many others we are sure you will love, head to

Book reviews by Rebecca Teaupa from The Little Reading Room



Vicki Wood, Kelly Elsom and Bec Winnel. Unclebearskin Productions. RRP $45.00 Sunny and her magical dragon named Sippy flew to Byron Bay to help their friend Rory save a beached whale. With Sippy’s help, the whale was returned to the ocean and back to his family. The illustrations by Bec Winnel are simply breathtaking and portray a magical world where a dragon with soft, pink fur roars gold and silver butterflies. The book also portrays beautiful imagery of the Byron Hinterland, beach and ocean, morphing imagined and natural magic. Each book comes with a white feather dipped in gold glitter, so children can read along and feel as though they themselves have a piece of the wonder that is Sippy & Sunny.

Julie Farrell and Becky Kemp. Birdie Books. RRP $20.00 Birdie climbs into bed and dreams of being a rockstar, a superhero and even a mermaid swimming under the sea. Becky Kemp’s monochrome illustrations are simplistic yet striking as they depict Birdie jumping on clouds, flying with her own set of wings and riding a unicorn. In the book’s closure, a stunning double page spread reveals the items from Birdie’s dream cleverly placed among items in her bedroom, bringing Birdie’s dreams into her reality. Dreamer is a beautiful bedtime story for children that inspires and dares one to dream, because ‘to live the life of your dreams is the biggest adventure you can take’.


Dr Karl Kruszelnicki. Pan Macmillan Australia. RRP $18.99 Dr Karl’s Big Book of Science Stuff (and Nonsense) is an activity book, intertwined with facts about dinosaurs, the solar system and the human body. The facts and concepts are presented through age-appropriate activities, with temperature, for example, being demonstrated by a comparison between hot and cold foods. Humour is also present throughout, with drawings of things that give you brain freeze and a selfie page, making the learning experience even more enjoyable. Recommended for readers aged 9 to 12 years, who will be occupied and entertained for hours while also being educated.

Movies apps

JAN/FEB 2016

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST In cinemas February 20 – 21. Rating: G


In cinemas March 5 – 6. Rating: G


In cinemas March 12 – 13. Rating: PG



Tickets $8* each (*online booking fee applies).


(iPhone, iPad) $1.49 Explore a world of limitless possibility as you build your own personal eden and unleash your creative and adventurous spirit! The bestselling game Eden lets you do awesome things with blocks and enables artistic expression in a new way. The game engine enables crazy sandbox fun. Build, destroy and explore your way through endless worlds. Fun for all ages!

February 20 to March 13 Exclusively at Event Cinemas, BCC Cinemas, Greater Union and Village Cinemas.

In cinemas February 27 – 28. Rating: G


READ MORE reviews


In cinemas January 14. Rating: TBC Upset about moving from the big city to a small town, teenager Zach Cooper finds a silver lining when he meets Hannah, the beautiful girl living right next door, and makes a quick friend in Champ. But every silver lining has a cloud, and Zach’s comes when he learns that Hannah’s mysterious dad is in fact R.L. Stine, the author of the best selling Goosebumps series. As Zach starts learning about the strange family next door, he soon discovers that Stine holds a dangerous secret: the creatures that his stories made famous are real, and Stine protects his readers by keeping them locked up in their books. |

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 Tests are fun for children

The test takes approximately 15 minutes

 All staff hold a current blue card  Looking Smart Optometrists bulk bill

all eye examinations provided the patient has a Medicare or DVA card

 Easy parking

Did you know... 30% of children have some type of eye condition that affects vision? In most cases if the eye condition is detected early enough, exercises can be given to avoid it developing into a vision problem at school. In some cases vision problems exhibit themselves in children who have short attention spans but often are undetected by the parents or carers. At Looking Smart Optometrists we recommend a vision test for every child who is 6 months of age or older. We bulk bill all eye tests so it costs you nothing to have it done, and you can feel secure that you are looking after your child’s eyesight.

Phone: 5439 7844 Between Coles and Woolworths at the Pelican Waters Shopping Village, Pelican Waters Blvd, Pelican Waters.



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Sunshine Coast

Kids on the Coast Magazine - Sunshine Coast - Issue 72. January/February 2016.  

Kids on the Coast Magazine Sunshine Coast. Issue 72. January/February 2016. Back to school. Starting school. Parents in the classroom. Thing...

Kids on the Coast Magazine - Sunshine Coast - Issue 72. January/February 2016.  

Kids on the Coast Magazine Sunshine Coast. Issue 72. January/February 2016. Back to school. Starting school. Parents in the classroom. Thing...