Peninsula Kids Summer 2021/22

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SUMMER 2021/22

FREE Raising

Bilingual Children

Planning to renovate your family


journey i nto


Rough& TumblePlay


2 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

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Cover Photo Cover Model: Olivia Location: Danielle B Photography studio

Melissa McCullough

Hello from the summer edition of Peninsula Kids magazine. As if 2020 was not strange enough, along came 2021, (or 2020’s ugly stepsister as I like to call it), wreaking havoc on the ‘normal’ life we thought we had ahead of us at the close of last year. It is difficult to believe that another entire year has passed. Editor and Publisher Melissa McCullough

My kids and I find ourselves saying, “Remember last year when…” only to catch ourselves and realise that the things we remember were from the year BEFORE 2020. Over the past couple of years this family, which usually does loads of good stuff, has done pretty much nothing. We had a small glimmer of hope when we booked a mid-year trip to Queensland, but yeah, nah – that did not happen.

Design Sam Loverso Advertising Miriam Doe 0421 085 974

Among the things that did happen? An earthquake. Oh, and the mother of all windstorms which knocked out power to most parts of the peninsula, some areas for up to three days! Are we on The Truman Show?

General Enquiries

And still, there was plenty of memory making in the middle of these chaotic times. I cannot imagine my nine-year-old will ever forget the day we made toast over the open fire during the post-storm blackout. He thought that was ‘super cool.’ Or my 12-year-old’s early dismissal from school that same day. That, like, never happens. Though we cannot replace things they have missed such as school camp or basketball finals like for like, 2021 has still created events that we will surely remember. What a wild ride it has been!

All material is copyright, and may not be reproduced without the express permission of Mornington Peninsula News Group, or the original copyright holder in the case of contributions. Copyright of contributed material rests with the contributor. Disclaimer: The authors and publisher do not assume any liability to any party for any loss, damage, or disruption caused by errors or omissions, whether such errors or omissions result from negligence, accident, or any other cause. This publication is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians. The reader should regularly consult a physician in matters relating to health and particularly with respect to any symptoms that may require diagnosis or medical attention.

Now, emerging on the other side, I look forward to getting back outside to explore our amazing Mornington Peninsula. There is so much to do and tons to look forward to in 2022. Have a flip through these gorgeous, glossy pages for inspiration.

Peninsula Kids is produced quarterly. 15,000 copies distributed between Mordialloc and Portsea. Registered address: 63 Watt Road, Mornington 3931

Proudly published by


Miriam Doe

Thanks to Kidz Shed in Hastings ( for the awesome prizes for our winners in the last colouring in competition and get your textas ready for the Enchanted Maze Garden colouring-in on page 99 of this edition. Merry Christmas and happy new year from the team at MPK! And to the very team I mention above – thank you; I simply could not do this without you! "In case I don't see ya, good afternoon, good evening and goodnight."

4 Peninsula Kids – Spring 2021


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6 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22







Spotlight 10 Raising Bilingual Children The founder of the Centre of Italian Studies, Elio Guarnuccio, believes that teaching kids another language at a young age is actually one of the best gifts a parent can give their child. 12 Four Ways to Get More Done in Less Time These four strategies could help you sleep better and have more time for things that matter to you. 16 Planning to Renovate Your Family Home? Here’s how to set a budget and stick to it. 20 Rough & Tumble Play Rough & tumble play has been shown to help children manage their emotions, display fewer negative behaviours, and to become more popular with their friends. 22 Seven Tips For Holidays on a Budget Follow these tips for holidays on a budget to avoid coming home to a nasty debt pile.

26 Kiss Goodbye to ‘Debt Shame’ and Detox Your Credit It’s time to shift our thinking and understand how we can make friends with debt. 30 A Chat With Andy Griffiths The newest installment of Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton's beloved Treehouse series, The 143-Storey Treehouse, is available to pop under the tree for Christmas! 32 How You and Your Kids Can Give Back This Holiday Season Volunteering teaches empathy and helps children identify need in their community and shows them how even small actions and a little kindness can have a lasting positive impact.




REGULAR CONTRIBUTORS Special thanks go to the gorgeous and talented group of contributors who breathe life into every issue by sharing their best with us.










Contents Celebrate


29 Days to Celebrate

78 30 Mindfulness Activities for Kids & Teens

34 Star Sign Kids’ Parties

Education 50 Body Safety and Consent Tips 52 The Future of Plugged-in Parenting

80 Fussy Eaters


84 Ask the Experts


Pregnancy & Baby 86 The Journey to Matrescence

57 Focus on Education

90 Snap, Cracke, POP..There Goes My Womanhood

65 The Importance of Letting Your Child Struggle

94 Granny’s Guide: Making Enough Milk



68 ‘Simply Swap’ Recipes with Linda Martinucci

98 Under the Sea Art Booklet



In Every


38 Party Planning 42 Things We Love 66 Book Reviews 99 Colouring Competition





YVETTE O’DOWD SouthernNaturalParentingNetwork

8 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22


Raising Bilingual Children B

ilingualism can be broken down into two subcategories balanced bilingualism (complete fluency in both languages) and semilingualism - some deficiencies across both languages.

Some parents are hesitant on teaching their child a second language due to a number of factors - including the way our society lays preference on English, and unfounded concerns that speaking two languages will confuse their little ones, when in fact it’s inherently natural to have a dominant language. However, the Founder of the Centre of Italian Studies (CIS), Elio Guarnuccio, believes that teaching kids another language at a young age is actually one of the best gifts a parent can give their child.

Elio, who is an innovator in creative immersive language programs to support different learning styles, advocates strongly for both approaches, but has some clear expectations when it comes to integrating a multilingual household.

These include: • Natural acceptance of a dominant language with each authoritative figure (for example- Italian with Dad and Nonno, English with Mum and siblings) • A dominant language spoken at home with both parents, even if it differs to that at school, and insistence that despite the fact it can take some getting used to and persistence, this pays off in the long run.

• Contextual application of second languages - i.e., English spoken He believes that exposing children to different languages at an early age not only connects them to different cultures, but also can help them at home, but foods are discussed in both languages - i.e., Italian and English. to understand that everyone has their own unique identities, stories and appearances - something that can help form acceptance and • Incidental exposure to two languages - for example - music in tolerance at a young age, which is extremely important for children Italian growing up in multicultural societies. “We often hear concerns about developmental speech delays in children, and whilst it may be that complete fluency can take a little longer, these delays are only temporary. Remember that most bilingual The simultaneous learning of two languages is generally impacted by kids can speak their first words by the time they are one year old, and the following key factors: • Parents being multilingual, and the spoken language at home being by the age of two they can use double-word phrases, and whilst they might mix grammatical rules, or use words from both languages in a different to the external milieu (prominent in the case of immigrants) sentence, it’s only temporary, and normal in the pursuit of bilinguality.” • Parental application and use of language (i.e. communal language to be spoken by two parents who may have various native tongues or “At CIS, we have seen an increase of interest from parents who were not raised as bilingual,butwant their culture to be closely connected backgrounds) with their children, or future children, and so they are returning to roots, • Languages spoken with other family members (i.e. local language and learning a language so they can raise bilingual kids. We are also amongst siblings vs native tongue with parents and grandparents who seeing parents returning to classes in order to help their children with don't speak the localised language as a first tongue) homework, especially so in the case of communities that are unified • Language used in the community/social spheres. through language or heritage (i.e. Reservoir in Melbourne, where a diasporic community of Italians are now third generation) will go In contrast, successive skills happen when there is an established to a local school where Italian is taught and parents who were not language learnt before learning a second language - i.e. - in brought up as bilingual, or have disconnected from applications of preschool onwards. This sequential process is generally after the age language want to learn to inspire an easier quest for fluency in their of three, which is why it is said it is easiest to adopt bilinguality before own children,” he said. the age of three.

10 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Elio’s top tips for raising bilingual children: • Play games with your children in both languages to make learning fun and engaging. • Encourage your extended family to speak their language with your child. • Enrol them into a language school early on. The Centre of Italian Studies has classes for children aged 6-months to 15-years-old. • Find a community of other families who are bilingual and regularly connect with them via play dates or social media. • Dedicate time to speaking both languages equally at home. • Weave films, books, and music in your native tongue to their everyday lives.

About the Centre of Italian Studies CIS (Centre of Italian Studies) is the largest Italian school outside Italy. Established in 1979, CIS has been committed to providing students of all ages with quality Italian language and culture courses. Since 2020 it has offered online courses, special classes, and events to students from all over Australia, America and Europe and provided the best teachers with a timetable of over 70 classes a week. Sign up for an Italian Class at CIS and soak up Italian art, tradition, and history through one of the most charming languages!

For more information visit:


ways to get more done ......

in les time!

By Lisa Stephenson


e live in a world where being ‘busy’ is rewarded, and having a full diary is linked with high performance.

Skipping lunch is a reflection of how in demand your time is, and late-night emails reflect your commitment. How did this happen? There is a general consensus in the corporate world that we’ve got this wrong, but little momentum around changing this ongoing challenge. Terms like ‘work-life balance’ and ‘time poor’ get thrown around daily without the proper attention being paid to the consequences of us always trying to get more done, with longer working hours often the result. We seem consumed with the desire to be fast paced in all that we do. Organisations have models for efficiency and effectiveness, and individuals have multiple strategies to manage what they squeeze into their day. It’s well documented that most of us can only be truly focused for 90-minute sessions, and that to return to our optimum performance, we need to stop and rejuvenate for 30 minutes. 12 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

So why do we ignore what our bodies and brains tell us? Rest and disconnecting from everything for short periods is what we need and, by doing so, we can be more effective and sometimes work less. There are no short-cuts or life hacks when it comes to managing time. There are 24 hours in the day today, tomorrow and beyond. We can’t actually manage time. It’s what we consciously choose to do with our hours that’s important. So scrap the time management workshops and change how you think about where you’re investing your energy and focus during your day. Here is the good news. These four strategies I share below could help you sleep better and have more time for things that matter to you. If you are one of those people who works really hard all day and feels like you don’t know where your time went, this might change everything. If only you had time to read this entire article! Hang on in here with me.

continued next page...

1. The bottom line is this: the secret is in getting more done, in less time. Mostly I find my clients think that when they are under pressure they need to work harder and longer. The opposite is true. Work in a focused manner, be strategic and deliberate in how you map your day. As Dan Pink – author of When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing – puts it: by structuring tasks around your natural daily physiological rhythms, you can do the right work at the right time, which boosts both productivity and creativity. I told you there was good news!

2. For everything you say ‘yes’ to, you are saying ‘no’ to something else. In the coaching world we talk about the opportunity cost. Every commitment you make has a financial, emotional, social, physical and/ or time cost attached to it. For example, when you say yes to a meeting, it’s going to cost you 60 minutes of your time, which means you are saying no to getting home to dinner with your family or finishing that report. Sometimes we just need to do what’s required, but whenever you can manage it, say yes to what will help you get more done according to what is high priority for you. Are you consciously saying yes to the right tasks and invitations?

3. Run and then rest. Your body and brain need periods of time to disconnect, with studies showing that mental breaks alone can boost productivity, replenish attention and motivation stores, solidify memories and encourage creativity. Go hard for a 90-minute session and then disconnect. Do not confuse this with multi-tasking. Don’t go from one task straight onto another or work hard on multiple things within the 90-minute block. When your brain is focused on a task and then has to switch to another, it has to slow down to process all the different requests you are making of it. The following ‘rest’ period can be as simple as walking a lap of the office floor and making a tea. You will find that if, rather than resting, you go straight into email, you won’t have the opportunity to reset and rejuvenate. For years, athletes have shown us the importance of resting after high performance activity. Plan out your day following this thinking and see what’s different.

14 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

4. Make yourself your most important project. Investing in you is the most important investment you will ever make. You will never have today again. Successful people think strategically about how they are living, working and getting things done. They set deadlines and consult experts who will support their success. They identify blockers and review their progress. Working more hours is unlikely to make you more successful or productive. Do an audit on what is and isn’t working for you now in terms of your daily productivity. Pay attention to what’s consuming most of your time and head space. Seek out a mentor who can provide you with some wisdom on ‘getting there’ without compromising your wellbeing. Here’s to you setting your pace and having a hugely productive week.

Lisa Stephenson, founder of The Coach Place Global, is a globally recognised highimpact coach, consultant, keynote speaker and author. You will find her behind the scenes with C-Suite executives, entrepreneurs and high profile individuals in fastpaced environments, where absolute trust is non-negotiable and the stakes are high. Become a Coach Place Member to gain instant access to insightful articles, thought provoking masterclasses, inspiring interviews and more to accelerate your personal growth at:


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Planning to renovate your family By Carl & Jo Violetta


ver the past (almost) two years, many Victorians have spent more time at home than ever before. Spending so much time within our four walls will inevitably make us crave a change. You might start thinking about home improvements to turn your space into a sanctuary. More and more of our clients are looking to either move house or renovate their existing home. When it comes to renovating your family home, it’s important to sort out your budget before you so much as lift a hammer. Your budget sets realistic boundaries for your project and will guide every decision you make when it comes to your renovation.

There are five steps to creating and running a budget for your reno: 1. Understand how much cash you’ll have access to 2. Get clear on exactly what you want to do 3. Estimate costs 4. Create your buffer 5. Track and review

Step 1: Understand how much cash you’ll have access to There are a few ways you could fund the project. Here are some of the most common methods people use: Access your savings If you have savings, you may want to use them to fund your renovation. The benefit here is that you avoid paying interest and amassing more debt. Refinance your home loan Another option is to refinance your mortgage. Interest rates are exceptionally low at the moment. By refinancing your mortgage to a lower interest rate, your monthly repayments decrease. Then you can put those savings towards the renovation. Be aware though that refinancing can sometimes attract fees, such as exit fees. Access your home’s equity Equity is the difference between the bank’s valuation of your house and the amount you still owe on your mortgage. Your bank may allow you to borrow up to 80% of the value of the home. If you access your equity, you’re essentially increasing your mortgage. That means your repayments will increase and it could take even longer to pay off the mortgage. 16 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

continued next page...

Here's how to set a budget... (& stick to it)


But your mortgage broker may be able to help you access • Supplier details your equity and, at the same time, refinance your home • Notes loan to a lower interest rate. If that happens, it may actually • Difference (between the estimated and actual cost) reduce your repayments. List everything you’ll need for the project, including trades, products Use your redraw facility and materials. Be as specific and detailed as possible. Try to think of If you have a home loan redraw facility set up, you could use the extra everything you’ll need to change or update, all the way down to the payments you’ve made on your home loan to fund your reno. There doorknobs and kitchen cabinet handles. may be a limit on how much you can withdraw though. We recommend you seek professional advice to decide how to best fund your renovation.

Step 2: Get clear on exactly what you want to do Next, you’ll need to estimate how much the project is likely to cost. You can use either an Excel spreadsheet or a Google Sheet for this. These are the columns we recommend including on your spreadsheet. • Product/trade/material • Estimated cost • Actual cost

Step 3: Estimate costs

Next, start researching costs. Get quotes for trades and shop around for products. If the total estimated cost is more than the funds you have available, you’ll need to review your budget. Check if there’s anything you can safely DIY instead of hiring a tradie and see if there are any items you can upcycle or repurpose rather than replace. For example, we recently did a cosmetic renovation on our home. The kitchen cabinetry was looking dated so we had the cabinetry resurfaced. The result was stunning and it cost a fraction of what we would’ve paid to replace the cabinetry altogether.

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Step 4: Create your budget buffer When it comes to home renovations there are almost always going to be things you won’t have anticipated. Sometimes things go wrong. You may discover termites. There might be pre-existing faulty plumbing. Timber prices could increase. You need to plan for any (almost inevitable) unforeseen circumstances by building a buffer into your budget. Once you’ve tallied your estimated costs, add a 10-20% buffer on top.

Step 5: Review and track So, you’ve organised your funds and set up your initial budget (with your buffer built in). Now it’s time for the fun part - starting the actual renovation! Don’t throw out the budget yet though. Your spreadsheet will be your trusty companion and guiding light throughout the renovation process. It will also be a living document you’ll use to track your expenses and constantly review.

Keep a running tally of what you’ve spent and compare the actual cost to the estimated cost. If you notice the actual costs are starting to exceed the estimate, it’s time to review your budget and make some changes. Stick to this plan and you’ll have beautiful renovations and the sanctuary you dreamed of without the nasty shock of overspending.

Jo and Carl Violeta are self-confessed numbers nerds, parents of two, and cofounders of the award-winning business, Violeta Finance. They’re a husband and wife team who are passionate about empowering their community with financial education, love the odd glass of wine, and get a kick out of helping families achieve their homeownership and financial dreams.






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Rough& Tumble Play ARM TO ARM By David Hawkins


ne of the easiest ways to give your kids a head start in life is simply to play with them. Luckily, that’s what dads do best! Rough & tumble play has been shown to help children manage their emotions, display fewer negative behaviours, and to become more popular with their friends. Let’s take a look at another simple and super fun game that you might like to try out with your kids.

20 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

The best part of summer is getting down to the beaches that carve out the coastline of our amazing peninsula. Swimming, sunbathing, sand-castling. Actually, the sand is a great place to get your ‘dad’ on and have some super summer fun with your kids. And this play idea works really well with your older kids. Arm to Arm is a game of balance, strength, and strategy. To play this game, Dad and child stand on one leg in front of each other, then grab the other’s arms. The aim is to be the last one standing. There are different strategies to use in Arm to Arm. You can try pulling your opponent over by using your strength. You can attempt to push the challenger over by leaning your weight against them. You could work toward unbalancing your opposition by wiggling, wobbling, and rocking from side to side. Having all of these different approaches means that this game can be scaled to work with different ages of children. For young kids, make it silly and fun with lots of wobbling, letting them tumble you over when they replicate this. With your primary aged children, a mixture of silly movements and leaning your weight onto them will give them a fun challenge. And with your high school aged kids, it becomes a battle of strength and a chance to feel like they can finally defeat their father. For real. I love this game. And my boys do too. Arm to Arm has a brilliant mix of challenge and silliness, switching between my children focusing on trying to use their strength to knock me down and then giggling incessantly as they aim to shake me off my foot.

Step 1: Take turns at winning.

The most important part of rough & tumble play is giving your children a chance to feel what it is like to topple a giant. Make sure that they win just as much as you do.

Step 4: Praise them!

Step 2: Keep it fun.

Every playtime is an opportunity to make your children feel good about themselves. We don’t always remember to let our kids know that we think they are amazing. Tell them that they did a great job when they win and when they lose. Point out when they choose a good strategy. Tell them that you love them.

Step 3: Think strategy.

Rough & tumble play doesn’t have to be a BIG event all of the time. In fact, research shows that children benefit from little bits of play, on a regular basis. Take advantage of this summer weather and head down to the beach with your children for some Arm to Arm fun in the sand.

Even when you are challenging your older kids, it is important to focus on the fun aspect of play rather than the competition. If it gets a little serious, start wiggling or tickling them. Let laughter take over and perhaps you’ll end in a tie. Arm to Arm is the perfect game to help your children learn to find different solutions to a problem. Prompt the kids to mix up their approach and see if they can find your weakness.

David Hawkins is a Peninsula-based stay-at-home-dad who realised that he needed to improve his Dadding. So he set himself the simple task of being an Awesome Dad. He now challenges all dads to be awesome dads, by doing something out-of-the ordinary with their kids.


By Helen Baker


22 22 Peninsula Peninsula Kids – Kids Summer – Summer 2021/22 2021/22

1. PLAN AHEAD It’s always a good idea to plan ahead. But in COVID times, planning takes on new importance. As we’ve seen, the situation can change quickly with restrictions and border closures. Consider: • Not just where you want to go, but where can you go?

• Do you have a back-up destination in mind?


• Which places are most popular? (You can stretch your budget further and support local businesses by going somewhere quieter)

This is another why reason planning is so valuable – you can book ahead and lock in cheaper rates. Even a 5% discount saves you $250 on a $5,000 holiday! Can a travel manager assist you with itinerary savings?

• Do you need to quarantine at your destination or on your return? Or both? Or get stuck in a “bubble” change? (If so, that adds to your costs and the amount of leave you will need) Planning ahead could save you a small fortune and help avoid your relaxing getaway becoming a stressful nightmare.

Comparison sites are useful but try contacting operators too – they may offer better prices or free upgrades for booking with them directly. continued next page...


Also, booking ahead means you should miss out on disappointments. For example, camper vans and caravans are hugely popular right now, and demand is outstripping supply.

Use them where you can get the most value. For instance, many schemes offer better value if you spend points on goods or services instead of redeeming them for cash.


Does a family member, colleague or friend have travel bank credits that are about to expire that they are not going to use? Can you do a deal to use them at a discount rather than they lose the credit completely?

Explore what you can do to safeguard your travel budget in case things go wrong, including COVID outbreaks, general sickness, accidents, and natural disasters. Ensure that you can cancel or alter bookings without incurring extra charges. This goes for any flights, accommodation, vehicle rentals, equipment hire, tours and so on. Also consider getting travel insurance. But read the fine print carefully; are COVID/public health restrictions covered by the policy? What costs are and are not insured? Is every member of your family covered? Is there a cap on how much can be claimed? Hopefully you won’t need to use these, but you’ll be really thankful for having them if you do!

4. SPEND POINTS NOT CASH All that shopping online while in lockdown and paying with cards instead of cash means those credit card points will have accumulated quickly! You could redeem those points to pay for part or all of your trip. The same goes with any unused frequent flyer points from previous holidays or work jaunts.

5. CLAIM COVID INCENTIVES This year, most state and territory governments are offering incentives to support local hospitality and tourism businesses. Why not take advantage of these and holiday close to home! It’s essentially free money, and every little bit that doesn’t come out of your pocket is a welcome relief, especially at Christmas time. Check the eligibility criteria to see where they are valid. And don’t forget to claim for everyone – some incentives are available to each adult within your household.

6. TAKE WHAT YOU NEED It may be quite a while since you last enjoyed a holiday away, so don’t forget that everything is more expensive in holiday destinations! Wherever possible, take everything you need with you to minimise your spending while you’re away. That includes clothes for all occasions, toiletries, incidentals like sunscreen and insect repellent, as well as any sporting gear you may need.

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If you have space consider taking food too for picnic lunches and breakfasts on the go.

7. HAVE YOUR KIDS EARN SPENDING MONEY Let’s face it – you’ll be paying for your kids’ holiday adventures anyway. But you can teach them the value of money by having them earn their spending money beforehand. Weight the value of jobs against their degree of difficulty. Have them start now to save those dollars over time, rather than a mad dash just days before you leave. Not only does it help you spread the cost of your holiday over several months, but you also get some odd jobs around the house done for you!

Helen Baker is a licensed Australian financial adviser and author of the new book, On Your Own Two Feet: The Essential Guide to Financial Independence for all Women (Ventura Press, $32.99). Helen is among the 1% of financial planners who hold a master’s degree in the field. Proceeds from book sales are donated to charities supporting disadvantaged women and children. Find out more at Note any advice or information in this article is of a general nature only and has not taken into account your personal objectives, financial situation, and needs. Because of that, before acting on the advice, you should consider its appropriateness to you, having regard to your personal objectives, financial situation, and needs. Opinions constitute judgement at the time of issue and are subject to change.


Kiss Goodbye to debt-shame and detox your credit By Phoebe Blamey


ebt is always made out to be the evil villain of the money world. There are countless books about getting out of debt, becoming mortgage free, paying out those credit cards and the evils of buy now pay later. Like it or not, debt is a real part of life. There is nothing wrong with holding a bit of debt. It’s time to shift our thinking and understand how we can make friends with debt.

Say goodbye to ‘debt-shame’ and start to get a real understanding of how debt can serve you well. Good debt versus bad debt There are many reasons you will hold debt in your lifetime. You shouldn’t be afraid of being in debt, but you need to understand the types of debt. You may have heard about good debt versus bad debt. Most financial planners or tax advisers call good debt any tax-deductible debt. Good debt is considered as any debt you take on to improve your life, such as home renovation, buying a better car that is not falling apart or taking a holiday. Whereas, bad debt is considered anything you are unable to deduct like credit cards but also your home loan (which is actually building you an asset, so I think this is partially true). I think of bad debt as debt that has become out of control or unaffordable; think credit cards at their limits that you can only make minimum payments on.

26 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Get to the bottom of your debt To get started on your debt detox, it is important to look closely at the debt you are currently holding. How much of your borrowings are sitting at their limit accruing interest and causing you stress? How much of your debt is something you are taking for granted as part of everyday life? I bet you don’t mind paying off your home loan as much as you mind paying your credit card bill, particularly if you are on a minimum payment cycle. Accept your debts and gain control of Your money No-one wants to admit to being in debt. I am no exception to this. Years ago, I found myself in a position with $35,000 of credit card debt. As a single mother with a daughter at a private school, I was trying hard to keep up appearances. I wanted my daughter to have it all, and if I am honest, I wanted to look like I had it all. I knew this wasn’t sustainable if I wanted a bright future for us both without more money worries ahead. It was time to take control of my money situation. Gaining control over your money is not a big revelation – it is a few very small, simple moves in the right direction. I managed to break my debt cycle by using these simple technique. continued next page...


Check your rates

Remove the temptation

If you have a home loan, you will know the big plan is always to pay it off before you retire – but let’s see if you can free up a bit of cash now.

First things first, you need to take your bank cards out of your wallet and iwallet. This immediately removes the temptation to use them every day - and every time you pay them down by $1000 you should reduce the limit.

Go onto your banking and check your rates. Are you paying a higher rate than your lender is advertising? This is often the case. I have a client who is paying 3.36% when their lenders advertised a variable rate of 2.4%. This client freed up $300 a month. A lot of lenders do this so ask the question. If you don’t ask, you don’t get. Imagine how much money lenders make if their clients are not checking their rates. If you don’t have a home loan you can use the same technique with your phone, electricity or streaming services, there will always be something you can renegotiate to save a few dollars. Once you free up this cash, you need to use it to pay extra on one of your cards. I chose the highest rate card but others may prefer the lowest balance. If you pay one card with a little bit extra each month, you will significantly cut down both card and interest payments.

Try and give yourself a limit that is the equivalent to a month’s net household income. If you have after pay, it’s recommended that you use the same technique.

Be Patient – It takes time The worst thing about this sort of debt is that you can probably barely remember what you bought with it. I took years to pay off my large credit card debt but I learned quickly that there is no point dwelling on it or feeling bad. Just think about dealing with it and changing your habits for the future.

Whimsy & wonderment will wash over the kids as they set sail across the big blue, looking for dolphins and creating treasured memories the family will never forget.

Family day out on the ferry starting from $44 28 Peninsula Kids – Spring 2021

Plan ahead

A small move but it's liberating !

Once you have all of this I place, you can comfortably go back to using your credit card for the fun stuff, like a post Covid holiday (we all need one of these!)To do this you will need to start to plan how you will use your debt.

Knowing what is going on with your debt when you use it gives you control over it. Give it a go for yourself and see how easy it is to detox your credit lifestyle.

For example, work out how much you want for your holiday, home renovation or new car. Instead of just buying it and hoping for the best, work out how much you can pay off it, and how long it will take. Use a calculator to work out how much you need to pay to meet that deadline. For example, paying $300 a month on a $3000 card debt at 25% interest will take a year to pay off and accrue $398 of interest. Sounds good, doesn’t it? That calculation takes a few minutes but now rather than receiving your bill every month like it’s a big surprise, you will actually know.

Phoebe Blamey who is the author of the Happy Money Journey - a guide to helping women become unshakeable with their money! It is a friendly, fearless personal advice to help make good money decisions and live life on your own terms. I think your audience would love her! The Happy Money Journey was born from Phoebe’s years of experience in learning about money and seeing how different people approach it. She also lived through her own happy money journey, from being drowned in credit card debt to now owning her own business and spreading her amazing energy and knowledge.

to celebrate


December 12 Gingerbread House Day This unofficial holiday celebrates the tradition of making houses and architectural models out of gingerbread cookies. The tradition can be traced back to the 1600s. Did You Know…

January 3 Fruitcake Toss Day Fruitcake Toss Day is an annual holiday that celebrates fruitcakes - the gift that keeps on giving - by tossing them in an empty space. Did You Know…

….that according the Guinness Book …that fruitcakes that contain alcohol of World Records, the world’s have a long shelf life? Because largest gingerbread house was of this, the fruitcake was the made in 2013 by the Traditions Club snack of choice for travellers and in Bryan, Texas, United States? The winter dwellers in the days of no house was 18.28m long, 12.8m refrigeration. wide and 3.07m tall!

January 31 Backwards Day

February 27 International Polar Bear Day International Polar Bear Day is an unofficial holiday created by Polar Bear International (PBI). It raises awareness of the impact of global warming on polar bears.

Bored with doing the same thing in and out? On this day take a break from the rut by doing everything backwards, because it is Backwards Day. Celebrating Backwards Day is Did You Know… easy—do everything backwards or … that polar bears are black and not sdrawkcab! white? Their fur is transparent while their skin is black. The transparent Did You Know… fur reflects sunlight such that it looks …that penguins cannot walk white to human eyes. backwards?


A chat with Andy Griffths By Kennedy & TJ McCullough (lovers of all things Treehouse!)


he newest installment of Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton's beloved Treehouse series, The 143-Storey Treehouse, is available to pop under the tree for Christmas! Our junior writer was fortunate to have the opportunity to pick the brain of one part of the dynamic duo.

Thank you for taking the time to answer a few of our questions, Andy!

5. How long have you been writing for?

Since I was six years old. I learned to touch type when I was in primary school and I used to put out a regular joke magazine which I’d sell to the other students for three cents a copy. 6. How many books have you written?

Well over 30 books now, most of them with Terry. 1. How did you think up the new levels in the 1 4 3 Storey Treehouse?

I keep an exercise book handy at all times and whenever I have a random idea for a level I write it down. Ideas come from reading books, watching television, listening to music, talking to people, joking with Jill and Terry, day-dreaming, reader suggestions and, sometimes, they are suggested by something that happens in the previous treehouse book. I generate many more ideas than I can use so that I can pick the most interesting/useful/entertaining ones that will help me tell the next story. 2. What inspired you to start writing books?

I always loved reading funny books and as soon as I was old enough I loved writing silly things that made me—and other people—laugh. In the early days it was just for family and friends but in my late twenties I became a high school English teacher and started writing things to make my students laugh and help them to discover the fun of reading— and writing for themselves. It soon led to me sending collections of my stories to publishers … and after ten years I found a publisher—and an illustrator—who got my humour. 3. What is your favourite book that you have written?

Tough question, I mean, I love them all for different reasons, but if you forced me to choose it’s probably always going to be the book I’ve just written because I try to get each book sillier, funnier and more original than any of the books that have gone before it. So my favourite book WAS The 130-Storey Treehouse because I’ve always loved the idea of flying eyeballs … but now it’s The 143-Storey Treehouse because I’ve always loved camping. 4. Who is your favourite character in the treehouse books?

I love Jill. Not just because we’re married in real life, but her character in the book is so independent, brave and caring. I love that she follows her own star. As the series has developed she’s become an increasingly important—and much loved—character for many readers. 30 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

7. Does your connection with Terry Denton affect your writing?

TOTALLY! We’ve been working together for so long I actually can’t imagine writing books without him. When we started with the JUST series, he used to just draw random nonsense in the margins, but I was always interested in getting him into the spotlight and figuring out how to get the illustrations to become as important as the words in telling the story. His illustrations; while being funny, charming and original in their own right, save me from having to do an enormous amount of description— which makes the books much easier to read and more accessible to a very wide range of readers. I love setting him challenges (like drawing a neverending staircase) and watching him rise to the challenge. In turn this inspires me to come up with even sillier stuff.

8. How much of the books you write is based on real life?

In real life we really do have a book to write every year, and I’m a little more focused on the deadline and Terry’s a little more random in his approach but we don’t have a publisher who yells at us, we don’t whack each other with giant bananas and we don’t live in a treehouse. We take a tiny bit of real life and then change and exaggerate and make up whatever we need to in order to make it the most entertaining story possible. 9. Growing up, what books did you read that made you want to become an author?

Enid Blyton’s fantasy adventure books, ‘The Adventures of the Wishing Chair’ and ‘The Folk of the Faraway Tree’. She knew how to get a story started fast by plunging the children into a world of unpredictable imaginative adventure—sometimes funny, sometimes scary and always fascinating. 10. Do you have any advice for kids who want to start writing?

Read as much as you can to fill your mind with ideas and models of how to tell stories. And write as often as you can. I recommend a cheap exercise book where you collect thoughts, observations, dreams, nightmares, ideas, jokes, cartoons—anything that takes your interest. Like anything, really, you get better at writing the more you practice. Oh yeah, and HAVE FUN!


The keyring each Lighthouse Keeper receives alongside their monthly donation.



eaching your kids about giving back is key to raising socially conscious children. Volunteering teaches empathy and helps children identify need in their community and shows them how even small actions and a little kindness can have a lasting positive impact.

The good thing is that there’s no right amount of time you need to donate and no gesture that is too small - spending just a few minutes of your time to help someone in need can be of equal value to a regular commitment to a charity. Volunteering time, lending your talents, making monetary donations, or supplying direct goods are all ways to engage your children in giving back. When looking for ways to help those in need, there are some key things to consider – make it relevant, enjoy what you do, keep it simple and do it together. If you can get the formula right, not only will giving back make you feel great, but it will also become something you want to do regularly. 32 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

FIND SOMETHING THAT FITS To get the most out of your experience and form a lasting memory with your children, choose a cause that fifits ts with your family values, interests, and passions. Charitable giving feels good when you understand the impact of your actions and when you believe in the cause you’re supporting. Be sure to talk to your children and explain how their actions will make a difference to the charity you have selected.

MAKE IT FUN Giving should feel good and bring you joy. Find an activity that you will enjoy doing together. Whether it’s raising sponsorship money by accepting a physical challenge, learning a tik tok dance, hosting a coffee morning for friends or organising an art show, raising money through an activity or event that you have a passion for will help you get the most out of giving back.



If organising events or raising money makes you feel overwhelmed, remember that giving back can be as simple as offering to walk a friend’s dog once a week, picking up groceries for someone while you’re already out at the shops, or pulling a neighbor’s rubbish bins off the street. Small gestures are just as important as big gestures and will help you grow a community.

Contact your local non-profit organisations and ask how you can help. If you know who you’d like to give your time or money to but don’t know how, reaching out directly to your charity of choice is the best option.

DO IT TOGETHER Whether you’re walking the neighborhood stuffing letter boxes for a charity or creating holiday cards and wrapping gifts for families in need, doing it together can open up conversations with your family. Donating your time is as much about doing something for someone in need as it is about spending time together.

GIVE A FEEL-GOOD, DO-GOOD GIFT If you don’t have time to volunteer, you can always buy a gift that gives back for you. Make a donation or buy a gift on behalf of a loved one. Monthly memberships can provide organisations with much needed funds throughout the year. For example, through the Lighthouse Foundation, from just $2 a month you can nominate a loved one to be a ‘Lighthouse Keeper’ and support the Lighthouse Foundation, an organisation that provides homes and therapeutic care for homeless young people and children.

Around the holidays there are all sorts of ways that organisations may need your support: • Gift a boxed toy or new clothes to a wishing tree • Fill a hamper for your local food bank • Host a small event to raise funds • Make items that you can sell – holiday cards, art works, jewellery, potted plants – with the proceeds going to charity • Volunteer to supply gift wrapping and wrap gifts • Donate good quality unwanted items to charity • Stuff your free street library with books

Susan Barton AM is the founder of Lighthouse Foundation which provides a safe home and community for homeless kids to belong, heal and thrive. Susan and some of Lighthouse’s children.



Star sign kids' parties How to throw the best kids’ party

strologer Patsy Bennett, author of Sun Sign Secrets (Rockpool Publishing $34.99), provides a guide to the perfect party for little ones based on their stars.

By Patsy Bennett


High-energy Aries will appreciate outdoors activities such as running around in children’s playgrounds or a beach party. Being competitive, they’ll enjoy races such as sprints, and hitting piñatas. And, if weather is an issue, consider booking a party at an indoor playground with plenty of diverse activities on offer to keep these active toddlers busy. Ideal themes:

Outdoor activities such as a beach or pool party, indoor bouncy castles and soft landings for active Aries.

34 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22



Activities that engage the senses will appeal to your earthy Taurean. A nature-themed party and keeping hands busy with sand castles or making art will appeal. A treasure hunt or ramble in nature will entertain them and, for the younger Taureans, a large playground with plenty of room to enjoy nature will suit. Ideal themes: Treasure island/pirate themes; nature trails, playing with clay or sand, music and dance.


Indulge your little Twin’s mischievous side. Games that involve their quick wit, such as pin the tail on the donkey and musical charts will appeal, but most of all a sense of fun and light-heartedness will suit. Games that encourage interactions will be a hit too, such as two-legged races. Consider hiring a fun entertainer or face painter if it’s in your budget. Ideal themes: Interactive party games in pairs, and entertainment such as a juggler or magician and circus themes.

Cancer Cancerians love a good story so toddlers will enjoy a trip to the movies with their friends or a visit with a storyteller. Base themes around your child’s favourite book or movie to bring the main characters alive. Dress ups with fairy or angel themes, magical and fictional characters will be popular. Ideal themes: A storybook character dress-up; a visit from a children’s favourite book author or fictional (dress-up) character.

continued next page...





Virgos like everything to be just right, and so themed party food and presentation will hold the key to a happy party. Invest in some special trimmings with your child’s input as to the colour theme, for example. Sporty and earthy Virgos love the outdoors and meticulous little Virgos will prefer a perfect table setting with all the trimmings as the base of operations.

Little Librans love luxury: large bows, ribbons and balloons all spell party time! Tie party themes to a centrepiece cake, gift bags and party rewards. A ‘best dressed’ theme, such as a flower or hat theme, and dress-ups to match characters Librans love to love will remind them they’re admired too. Consider the idea of a photographer at the party to offer portraits to the guests.

Ideal themes:

Ideal themes: The outdoors and nature: games and races in the garden or playground and, for choosy Virgos, a beautiful table and well-timed activities.

Ideal themes:

Little Leos love to shine, so they’ll love sparkly, flamboyant themes. They love drama too, so the chance to act or sing via karaoke for example will appeal, as would a visit to a live theatre play or a circus with their friends. A dress-up party with a celebrity angle will appeal, with their favourite movie or TV characters a theme in the cake, decorations and outfits. Performance, theatre and acting, with a favourite movie or TV character as a theme. A sing-along for musical toddlers.


Scorpios enjoy a little theatre and drama, passion and fun, so they’ll love to marvel at life’s wonders and to experience something special. A visit to a wildlife park, a mini golf course or an upbeat theatre play, dramatic games such as ‘cops and robbers’ will also appeal to their sense of play and competitiveness. Ideal themes: Role-playing or dramatic themes, such as magic or wildlife themes; a visit to a theatre, bowling alley or zoo visit with friends.

36 36 Peninsula Peninsula Kids – Kids Summer – Summer 2021/22 2021/22

Luxury, ‘best-dressed’, lush colours or materials, characters they admire, photography, music.


An outdoor theme is a must, even if the weather spells indoors. Animal themes, such as ‘the outback’ or ‘owls and pussycats’ will appeal. Ask guests to come prepared for walking and dancing. Competitive activities such as egg and spoon races, sack races and musical chairs will engage little Sagittarians and their friends in friendly games.


An earthy atmosphere will appeal, such as a marquee in the garden or flower decorations. Glitz and glamour are a must on the day too, so add shiny balloons or a sparkly table setting. Traditional games like pass-the-parcel with a luxurious feel in the layers will add to the special occasion. Capricorn children like to be rewarded so add prizes for the activities.

Ideal themes:

Ideal themes:

Wildlife, animals, outdoors, picnics, competitive games.

A traditional event with family; an earthy theme; an ideal dream, glitz and glamour.


Bright-spark Aquarians adore funky outfits and fun activities. Add another dimension by asking parents to dress up too; or hire a professional fairy or clown. Go carts and music, dancing and fun-fair themes will appeal. Go with the flow with little Aquarians; let the decorations, fuss and music take them where it will on the day! Ideal themes: Funky outfits, fun-fair themes such as bumper cars/go-carts, slides, swing sets, clowns and music and delights will all appeal.


Pisces love sea-based and fantasy themes such as ‘Mermaids’ and ‘Sea creatures’ and fantastical characters like pixies and wizards. A party by the beach or a river would be ideal. Little Pisces love dreamy surroundings, so blue and green decorations and mystical lighting will appeal, plus light-hearted activities such as bobbing for apples. Ideal themes: Sea and water-based activities, such as a picnic on the beach, a paddling pool or boating on a lake, imaginative role-playing games and arts and crafts.




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Our huge range of balloon designs, garlands, party décor and chair hire incorporating themes such as unicorns, gaming, rainbows, tropical. Let us set up the detail so you can sit back and enjoy. Our range of props will delight everyone of all ages, from cup cake cut outs to sparkling sequined backdrops. Email: - or call to discuss your occasion 0405 700 679

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If you need help you can speak to one of our Fun Specialists

Call 1300 669 067 Call Miriam on 0421 085 974 38 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22




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Acro Kids Parties

Celebrate with Acro Kids! Acro, Parkour and Ninja Parties for all occasions. Enquire today! M: 0477 079 970 W:

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The Science Shed

The Science Shed comes to your home for your next birthday party! Children can dress up in real lab coats and safety glasses and experience their own hands on experiments. Science, slime and much more. E: M: 0419 882 765 W:

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Book Book your your next next kids kids themed themed party party with with us! us! Amazing Amazing packages packages including including use use of of the the party party room, room, hot hot & & cold cold food, food, host, host, invites invites & & more. more. Venue Venue also also available available for for private private hire. hire. A: A: 222 222 Marine Marine pde pde Hastings Hastings P: 5906 5900 E: M: 0409 875 944 E: P: 5906 5900 M: 0409 875 944

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SUMMER SAILING Sailing clubs invite the community to ‘Have a Go’ at sailing this summer! Clubs across the peninsula are inviting the local community to ‘Have a Go’ with Learn to Sail programs and Discover Sailing experiences this sailing season. Australian Sailing’s ‘Have A Go’ campaign encourages newcomers to try sailing at their local sailing club to find out how fun, safe, accessible and affordable sailing can be. People can attend by themselves, or with a partner, 40 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

friends or family to get a taste of what sailing is all about. Simply visit your local sailing club’s website to explore all upcoming opportunities to ‘Have a Go’ at sailing. There are courses for young and old, aspiring sailors and experienced sailors. The whole family can get involved – kids as young as seven can join in with Tackers. Tackers is a fun introductory, games-based sailing program designed for kids aged 7-12 years-old. Kids don’t need to have any sailing experience or club membership to participate. Kids older than 12 years? Then the OutThere Sailing program is perfect for teenagers! OutThere Sailing

Above left: The OutThere Sailing program where teens can escape, leaving homework onshore! Above right: Kids learn to sail, ‘Tackers’ program in action

is a program that has been specifically designed for teenagers from 12 to 17 years old. OutThere Sailing is perfect for teens who want to try sailing in a noncompetitive, social and fun setting. The program mainly involves sailing on dinghies and small sailing boats with one, two or three participants on board. Some locations also include keelboats (up to 10m long sailing boats), windsurfing, stand up paddle boarding (SUP) and powerboating experiences too. Adults are welcome to join in on the club’s Discover Sailing courses; they may like to ‘Have a Go’ at “big boat sailing” in keelboats or get a little wet with the off the beach sailing in dinghies. All the instructors,

boats and safety equipment are provided. All you have to do is come along prepared for a good time with a spare set of clothes, a hat and some sunscreen. Proudly supported by VIC Health

For more information about sailing and different types of courses available, visit:


143-Storey Treehouse Andy and Terry's treehouse now has 13 new storeys, including a word-o-matic (it knows every word in the whole world!); a recycling depot; a wrecking ball; a complaining room; a spooky graveyard (where it's always midnight, even in the middle of the day); a toffee-apple orchard guarded by a kind scarecrow; and a camping ground where you can have a nice, relaxing camping holiday - unless you get caught by hobyahs, put in a bag and poked with a stick, that is . . . Well, what are you waiting for? Come on up! RRP: $14.99


as m t s i r Ch Pictionary The original party game since 1985. Famous for quick sketches and hilarious guesses. Classic family game of choice as it rewards imperfect drawings with shared family laughter – you don't have to be an artist to have fun – in fact, if you ‘can't draw’ the game can be even funnier. Available at BIG W, Target, Kmart and independent game specialists across Australia. RRP: $39.99

V-tech Play & Chase Puppy Get playtime on a roll with the interactive Play & Chase Puppy with three ways to play. Learn about numbers and counting with floor play, then get up and dance with this encouraging puppy that turns and rolls along on its hoverboard. Keep the giggles and gross motor skills growing with a game of ‘Follow the Leader’. Motion sensors let the puppy avoid obstacles and keep it moving forward when someone is following it. Ready to rest? Pick up the pup, and it knows it’s time to slow down. Explore two learning buttons, a light-up heart and an interactive paw button to learn about numbers, counting, music and feelings, and to hear encouraging phrases. More than 65 songs, melodies, sounds and phrases help children learn vocabulary words along with lively tunes. Three, two, one, it’s time to have some fun! Play & Chase Puppy is suitable for infants/toddlers from 12 months to 3 years, and available at Target, Myer, good toy stores and online retailers. RRP: $49.95

V-tech Switch & Go Dino Smash & Crash Crew

Learn & Groove Thumpin' Numbers Drum

Stomp into the cool, crazy world of prehistoric creatures that turn into vehicles with the Smash & Crash Crew! Crash the Switch & Go Dinos into another one to see them explode with smash-and-crash light effects. Transform the dino easily into an awesome vehicle. Dino and vehicle sound effects bring your Switch & Go world to life. Pit the Smash & Crash Crew against the other Switch & Go Dinos for a fearsome match-up. Who is most powerful? Fastest? Toughest? Smartest? Start your engine. Here we go! Additional Switch & Go dinosaurs sold separately. Switch & Go Dinos Smash & Crash Crew is suitable for pre-schoolers from 3 to 8 years, and available from November from Kmart, good toy stores and online retailers. RRP: $34.95

Count to the beat of your own drum with the Learn & Groove Thumpin’ Numbers Drum. Tap the top of the drum and it will light-up to match the numbered tags' colours while teaching colour names. Choose English or Spanish modes to learn about colours and numbers in either language. Drum up your own beat in Drum Solo mode to add to reggae, pop and Latin music styles. In Music mode, jam along to 12 children’s melodies. This plush drum is designed with textured fabric, colourful, numbered tags that add to sensory development and encourage touch. Take the show on the road using the easy-grab fabric handle for on-thego play. For Babies from 6 months, the Learn & Groove Thumpin’ Numbers Drum is available from Target, good toy stores and online retailers. RRP: $29.95

42 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Sun Sign Secrets Do you want to know what 2022 holds for you? In the book, Sun Sign Secrets, Australia’s leading astrologer, Patsy Bennett, provides a ground-breaking astrology guide for those looking to make the most of your true potential and become in sync with solar and lunar phases. Much more than a sun sign book that simply explains your personality traits, Sun Sign Secrets includes tables with new moons, full moons and eclipses until 2050 and helps you understand when you’re the most energetic, charming and attractive, ensuring you shine now and in the future. Rockpool Publishing, RRP: $34.99

Musical Rainbow Tea Party Deluxe Invite friends to a magical tea party with the Musical Rainbow Tea Party Deluxe. This 25-piece set includes everything needed for a tea party for four including a teapot, teacups, forks, plates, cake and cupcakes. Choose a tea flavour and pretend to pour while the teapot magically empties. Press the heart button to brew a new pot of tea and explore colours, counting and sharing. Introduces manners and sharing with friends, plus a range of learning activities featuring colours, counting and fruit. For Infants/Toddlers from 12 months, the Musical Rainbow Tea Party Deluxe is available now from Target, good toy stores and online retailers. RRP: $59.99

Monster Jam® Freestyle Force! Introducing the official Monster Jam Grave Digger Freestyle Force™ RC! This powerful 1:15 scale remote control Monster Jam truck is the only RC that can perform front and rear wheelies while driving! Master 12 total stunts to be the Monster Jam champ! Available at Big W, Target, and all independent toy retailers. RRP: $119.99

Little Big Chats book series The 'Little BIG Chats' series has been written by awardwinning author, educator and advocate, Jayneen Sanders, to assist parents, caregivers and educators in having open and age-appropriate conversations with young children around crucial, and yet at times, 'tough' topics. And what better way than using children's picture books! Suitable for young children aged 2-6 years. The text is written in a child-friendly age-appropriate way. Some pages include interactive questions designed to bring a child’s own experiences and understandings into the topic. There are discussion questions on the inside back cover of each book for parents, caregivers and educators, and free to download lesson plans for each book. The Little BIG Chats series is valued at $69.95 and is available from

Enchanted Hedwig My Emotions book series This new series equips children (and their associated grownups) with valuable skills to navigate their way through life’s ups and downs – from grieving and anxiety to self-esteem and empathy. The Grief Wave and Little Big Bully are the first two titles in this ground-breaking new series. The My Emotions series explores the layers of emotions that come along with the process of an experience or event. It offers well-researched techniques to help children develop valuable coping skills and build resilience – so that when the experience inevitably happens, your child is better prepared and has more confidence to self-regulate their emotions. Each book in the My Emotions series is valued at $20.99 each – total value of $41.98 (for both The Grief Wave and Little Big Bully) and are available from Booktopia.

One of your favorite owls, Hedwig can now be your loyal companion and help you recreate your favorite Harry Potter film scenes. The magic begins when Hedwig comes to life with realistic features, movements and sounds. Featuring intuitive ruffle detection, she can distinguish the direction of petting -she doesn’t like to be pet the wrong way! Hedwig will also recognize and respond to the tone of your voice. If you speak lovingly, she will respond with happy coos. What would a Wizarding World owl be without their letter? Enchanting Hedwig™ comes with a Hogwarts envelope that she holds in her beak. Only friends with the secret combination of interactions will be able to get Hedwig to release the letter. Available at major retailers nationally. RRP: $69.99



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Wahu Surfer Dudes Classic Surfer Dudes are the world’s first selfrighting, self-surfing toy! Toss your dudes into the surf. They''ll catch and shred the waves, throwing down rippin' tricks all the way back to you! Surfer Dudes feature an internal ballast system, hydro-boomerang technology, and unsinkable foam board with gnarly graphics! There are 12 Surfer Dudes to collect including Newcastle Nat, Torquay Todd, Wollongong Will, Cottesloe Col, Gold Coast Gabi, and Mooloolaba Mav. Look our for a new series launching next summer! Age: 6+ Players: 1 Available at all leading retailers. RRP: $29.99

Hape Monster Math Scale Introducing the Monster Math Scale, a cute, fun and interactive way to get your little one playing and learning about basic mathematics, weights and balance. Hape Monster Math Scale has 22 pieces including 9 large and 11 smaller, soft weights. Place the monster weights on the scales and join the funny monster family to start developing basic mathematic principles of simple addition and subtraction skills. Enjoy three difficulty levels of play and hours of entertainment as children test the weights and start weighing items around the house as well. Hape Monster Math Scale is ideal for pre-schoolers three years old and up. Available from Big W, The Iconic, Kidstuff, MYER, Catch, David Jones, The Nile, Amazon and all good toy retailers. RRP: $54.95

Wahu Pool Pets Croc Kids will love these awesome new inflatable pool racers in bright, funky Wahu colours. Perfect for balancing on or racing up and down the pool against your mate, the possibilities are endless. Measuring in at 90cm, these little Aussie Pool Pets will be a hit all summer long! Age: 6+ Players: 1 Available at all leading retailers. RRP: 24.99

Wahu Hole in Won (Single Pack)

Wahu Mega Slide

Round up your mates for an ultimate game of Wahu Hole in Won! This inflatable game set includes 1 Hole in Won game board plus 4 sandbags. The waterproof PVC base floats and moves in the water for an added challenge. The Wahu Hole in Won can also be filled with water in its' base to play on land too! Ideal for up to 4 Players. Age: 6+ Players: 2+ Available at all leading retailers. RRP: $24.95

Kids will love racing each other down this massive 7.5m Super Slide. The continuous water spray means you'll be zooming down the slide and into the splash bumper in no time! This is the ultimate backyard toy! Age: 6+ Players: 4 Available at all leading retailers RRP: $59.99

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Blue’s Clues and You! 2-Sided Handy Dandy Notebook

Kangaroo Beach

This adorable Handy Dandy Notebook is just like the one Josh uses in the show. Kids can draw their clues on the front of the notebook with the magnetic pen. Move the sliding tab up and down to erase and draw the next clue. You just got an email! Turn the notebook over to use as a smartphone and press the button to activate phrases from the show. Blue’s Clues and You! Toys are available at Target, Coles, Big W, Kmart and all good independent toy stores for kids aged 3 and up. RRP: $19.99

Beloved ABC Kids TV show, Kangaroo Beach explores the sun-soaked adventures of Pounce, Gemma, Neville and Frizzy with the release of four brand new children’s titles.. The four young animal friends spend their summer at the beach, training as junior cadets under the tutelage of their grownup lifeguard heroes, Bondi, Sandy (voiced by comedian Kitty Flanagan) and Big Trev. The friends’ action-packed adventures mean they are never far from fun (or danger!) and as Pounce, Gemma, Neville and Frizzy learn about water-safety, rescue equipment and protecting the beach, so do young fans. The Kangaroo Beach books are the perfect Christmas present for youngsters around 3-7 years old. KANGAROO BEACH Brave in the Waves Board Book/Frizzy's Treasure Hunt Board Book RRP: $14. 99 KANGAROO BEACH Fun in the Sun: A sticker activit y book/Beach Buddies: A colouring book RRP: $5.99

Rolling Zoobles™ Transformations! Meet the Zoobles Z-Girlz, the sweet and sassy BFFs of Zoobles Animals. The Zoobles Z-Girlz and Happitat 1-Pack includes one trendy Zoobles Z-Girlz character, a matching Happitat and a checklist to keep track of your collection. Each Zoobles Z-Girlz starts out as a colourful ball and opens up into a super-cute animal when rolled onto their Happitat. With 12 to collect, they’re available at Big W and Target nationally. RRP: $17.99

Hape Adventure Van

Save Adventure City Mayor Humdinger’s spectacular launch celebration for Adventure City is in trouble, and it’s up to the Paw Patrol to rescue the city in Paw Patrol The Movie: The Adventure City Lookout Game. Play as Marshall, Rubble, Chase, Rocky, Zuma, or Skye as you search Adventure City for your mission tokens. Use the special red-reveal technology in Ryder’s Control Centre Console to magically reveal the 4 unique tokens assigned to your pup’s mission and see what items to find around the city. Travel through Adventure City, turning over tokens to find the ones you need. But watch out! Find a lonely pup, and he’ll be sent to obedience school. If you can find your 4 mission tokens before all 6 lonely pups get sent to obedience school, you’ll save Adventure City and win the game. No city too big, no pup too small to save them all! RRP: $24.99

The all-in-one camper van with dolls, accessories and activities is perfect for children three years and up and encourages social, family play and communication skills, as well as getting kids excited about the great outdoors and exploring the world around them. The developmental toy has 23 pieces, including the camper van with wooden panels and wheels, dolls, a campfire, a picnic set for two, navigation cards, surfboards, a hang-glider and cooking accessories. On top of the van is a tent which can be removed for the dolls to sleep in, and the roof of the van can be opened and doubles as a wave for the dolls to surf on. Children can take their dolls on a perfect seaside getaway with their adventure van and let their imagination and creativity shine. Use navigation cards to tell where they’re going, cook their own BBQ with the campfire, cooking accessories and pretend fish. The holidays look like they are going to be lots of fun! Available from Big W, The Iconic, Kidstuff, MYER, Catch, David Jones, The Nile, Amazon and all good toy retailers. RRP: $69.95



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PAW Patrol® Live! “The Great Pirate Adventure” PAW Patrol Live! “The Great Pirate Adventure” Presented by Paramount+ features the beloved characters from the animated series and will begin touring Australia in April 2022. Tickets to see the pups embark on this piratethemed voyage are available through Ticketek. Fans can visit for PAW Patrol Live! “The Great Pirate Adventure” Presented by Paramount+ for tour schedule, ticket sale information.

Disney Junior Minnie Mouse Ring Me Rotary Phone

CoComelon My First Learning Phone JJ is always on call to get little learners thinking with the CoComelon JJ’s First Learning Phone. This interactive toy phone features over 50 different learning phrases, songs, and sounds to help teach letters, numbers, colours, shapes, weather, feelings, and more. The phone showcases an adorable, oversized JJ and depicts recognizable characters from the series on each of the buttons. The buttons even light up and the phone plays “The Wheels on the Bus” and “BINGO” to sing and dance along with! The My First Learning Phone comes in a chunky design ideal for little hands. CoComelon Learning toys, suitable for toddlers aged 18 months and up, are available from Big W, Kmart, and all good independent toy stores. RRP: $19.99

This vibrant pink phone has a glitter bow and is inspired by the phone Minnie Mouse uses in the Disney Junior Minnie’s Bow-Toons shorts! Featuring adorable Minnie Mouse phrases, realistic telephone sounds and fun light up effects, your little one will love recreating her favourite scenes from the show! Disney Junior Minnie Mouse toys are available from Big W, Myer and all good independent toy stores for kids aged 3 and up. RRP: $24.99

Disney Doorables Puffables Discover this fun unboxing experience which includes a 10-inch squishable Stitch, Frozen or Mickey Mouse plush hidden inside a tiny house. Kids will love guessing which character is hidden inside. These adorable plush characters feature signature Doorables stylised detailing and sparkly glitter eyes. Disney Doorables are available from Big W and all good independent toy stores for kids aged 5 and up. For more info, visit www. disney-doorables/, and join the fun on Instagram: @disneydoorables RRP: $20.00

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Natural Patch Co. Give pesky mozzies and common insects the flick with Natural Patch Co's range of chemical-free insect repellent patches; BuzzPatch, and bite-relief patches; MagicPatch. The dynamic duo has become a favourite in households, offering safe and effective prevention and relief to families who once avoided time spent outdoors in fear of insect bites. The range can be used by all ages and is even suitable for adults - simply increase the sticker application to provide greater protection to a larger surface area. Shop now via:

Merry Matcha Christmas gift box For the lovers of the world-famous coffee liqueur, treat them to its brand new creamy liqueur with a delicious Japanese twist - Tia Maria Matcha Cream. Uniquely fresh and indulgent, with the distinctive flavours of Japanese green Matcha, Tia Maria Matcha will be available in a stunning gift pack by The Little Gift Loft which includes a Koko Black Matcha Chocolate Bar, 2 x Coupe Cocktail Glasses and Matcha Green Powder to garnish your Matcha-Tini. Perfect for enjoying with friends and family at Christmas, include it in cocktails or just pour it over ice and enjoy! RRP: $108.00

Ickle Bubba This all-terrain Stomp v3 pram is perfect no matter where your next adventure takes you. The deluxe, puncture-proof foam wheels ensure a smoother ride for baby while the front and rear suspension make it easier for you to control on a wide range of terrains. The Stomp All-in-One bundle is the full package, taking you from birth to toddler with an all-in-one Bassinet and seat liner that will keep your little one cosy as they grow - this then adapts to a toddler seat. Available at Myer Online + Harvey Norman RRP: $799.00

Hot Wheels Action Championship Track set Kids face-off with friends with the Champion Track set assortment for ultimate performance-based racing, drifting, and stunting action! Kids can test their skills in 3 challenges that include a drift circuit, a drag race, and a daring hill climb. Available in Australia nationwide at Big W, Target, Kmart, Myer and independent toy specialists RRP: 22.99

Skullcandy Dime Skullcandy Dime’s are the new wireless earbuds taking the market by storm. Packing a punch with sound and attitude for a fraction of the price of airpods. With two brand new colourways in Orange and Red, but the same portable and sleek design, Dime’s make for an amazing stocking filler. These are the earbuds you didn’t know you needed, but soon can’t live without. RRP: $69.95


Disney Phone Case Collection Luxury leather accessories brand MAISON de SABRÉ has launched an exclusive personalised phone case collection in partnership with Disney. The brand-new limited edition collaboration features the beloved ‘Sensational Six’ Disney characters, available on MAISON de SABRÉ’s signature monogrammed phone cases. Redefining the art of personalised leather accessories, MAISON de SABRÉ is no stranger to collaborations, having previously partnered with award-winning artist Amber Vittoria and leading leather manufacturer ECCO Leather. The new Disney collaboration, however, is MAISON de SABRÉ’s biggest yet and features the classic Disney favourites including Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy and Pluto. Each character will have special edition phone cases released across iPhone 13, 12 and 11. Just in time for Christmas, these phone cases make the perfect gift. The iPhone 13 cases are made from sustainable DriTan™ leather and retail for $99, while the iPhone 12 and 11 cases are made from premium top-grain pebbled leather and retail for $89.

Antipoda Co Finding genuinely sustainable furniture pieces to incorporate into stylish, yet affordable, daily living is something a growing number of consumers are looking for at Antipoda Co - one of Australia’s premier sustainable children’s interior specialists. The company supports independent designers and boutique brands that are committed to making quality products with great respect for human beings and the environment. Mini Kyomo features retro inspired timepieces that support adventure and play, with a Japanese movement and a mineral glass, the watches are waterproof and have machine washable bands. Mini Kyomo strives to create products that are friendly to our environment, using only sustainable materials, for their products as well as their packaging. RRP: $134.00

Traeger Grills BBQ Rubs The secret to any perfect BBQ is a great rub. Traeger has an extensive range of versatile rubs suited for all different cuts of meat. Get an extra kick of flavour for half the work, these rubs will have you rising to the status of BBQ King this Christmas. With flavours that pack spice, zest, or sweetness, you’re sure to find your favourite from the below: 1x Pork and Poultry Rub 1x Chicken Rub RRP: $24.95 each

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Portable North Pole (PNP) This is the global no. 1 Santa App that literally allows parents to get Santa on speed dial to deliver personalised videos and calls to their children – FREE. PNP brings the magic of Christmas to the palm of your hand. Parents can watch their children’s faces light up with personalised video messages and phone calls from Santa, in just a few clicks. For bonus content, upgrade to the Magic Pass RRP: $19.99. What’s great is that 5% of online sales are donated back to hospitals globally including The Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead and more. Start your FREE trial experience by visiting the Portable North Pole (PNP) website or mobile app and

The Day My Vagina Broke

PersonallyPicked Allowing people to curate the perfect gift for their friends, colleagues and family, PersonallyPicked has over 160 incredible gift options, from fabulous to fun! From teas, sweet treats, alcoholic beverages, candles, puzzles, bath salt, socks and more, you can create a personally curated box based on what your recipient loves! PersonallyPicked offers a range of bright, colourful and unique packaging options that stand out from the crowd. The best part, each gift box is personalised with the recipient's name for the ultimate personalised experience. The team has also launched experience gift boxes so people can give the gift of fun experiences like cocktail making or a Pamper Time Gift Box. Perfect for a secret Santa or a gift to let someone know you’re thinking of them over the festive season. RRP: from $55

The Day My Vagina Broke is a private exploration into bravery and healing when the impacts of trauma are lifelong and permanent. It makes the case for moving away from a one-size-fits-many approach to how we inform mothers during the antenatal period and shift towards a model of individualised assessment and care. RRP: $29.95

Edible Beauty’s Natural Soy Wax Candle Something to ignite the senses and re-instill a sense of calm once the holiday season runs its course, Edible Beauty’s natural soy candles are the conscious item of indulgence your humble abode deserves. Using natural fragrances, hand poured here in Australia, the vanilla coconut paradise, blue lotus dreaming, and citrus rhapsody revitalise make for a wonderful gift, bringing the scents of summer to you. RRP: $39.00

Spoonie Society Wrap Around Heat Pack Founders Helene and Dominique launched The Spoonie Society to empower people living with chronic illness, raise awareness, enable open dialogue and breakdown barriers. Inspired by their own Endometriosis diagnosis, the duo built a brand that would spread the message of strength and support to those living with similar conditions. And so, they set out to make a change in the Spoonie community by designing a range of signature products to warm, comfort, and alleviate pain including: My-grain masks, Wrap around Heat Pack, Neck Heat Pack, Hand Warmers, Rectangle Heat Pack, Diary and Symptom Tracker and more in stunning prints. RRP: $49.95 - $54.95



fiodyflafety and Consentips 1 7 By Jayneen Sanders

1. From the earliest of years, encourage your child to talk about their feelings. This way they will learn from a young age how to express, manage and understand their emotions. Allow time for them to tell you exactly how they are feeling, and listen with empathy and intent. Provide a ready bank of ‘feelings’ words beyond ‘happy’ and ‘sad’. (See for free posters on feelings.)


2. Talk about feeling ‘safe’ and ‘unsafe’. Children find it hard to distinguish between the two. It is important they understand what it is to feel ‘unsafe’, so if ever they are feeling this way at any time, they can talk to you or another trusted adult straightaway. Explain that our body is amazing and when it feels ‘unsafe’ it always lets us know, for example, we might feel sick in the stomach or our heart might beat really fast. Tell your child that these are called their Early Warning Signs. (See for free poster on Early Warning Signs.) Reiterate that if your child does feel any of their Early Warning Signs, they need to tell a trusted adult straightaway. Draw a body shape with your child and label their Early Warning Signs and discuss.

7. From day one, call your child’s genitals by their correct names. Ensure you child knows that their private parts (including the mouth) are private. Explain that private means ‘just for you’. Tell you child that if anyone touches their private parts, asked them to touch their private parts or shows them pictures of private parts, they need to tell a trusted adult straightaway! They also have the right to say ‘No!’ or ‘Stop’ before alerting an adult on their Safety Network. At this point, talk about ‘public’ and ‘private’ places, for example, the kitchen is a public space but the bathroom is a private space. Ensure your child knows the difference. Let them know that it is perfectly okay for them to touch their own private parts in a private place such as their bedroom.



3. Allocate time for your child to choose three to five trusted adults that they could tell anything to, and they would be believed. These people are part of their Safety Network. One should not be a family member and all should be easily accessible by your child. Draw a large outline of a hand and have your child draw a picture of each person on their Safety Network. Add labels and phone numbers. Note: ensure you talk to these adults and let them know your child has chosen them and it is an honour.


4. Explain to your child that everyone has a body boundary. This is an invisible space around their body. No one should come inside their body boundary without them saying it’s okay (consent). Your child has the right to say ‘No’ to kisses and hugs if they want to. They can always give a hi-five or blow a kiss instead. Have your child outline their body boundary.


5. Teach your child to respect another person’s body boundary also, and that they need to ask for consent before entering it. That means, for example, if they want to hold another child’s hand, they need to ask permission. And if that child says ‘No’, they need to respect and accept that child’s wishes. Explain also that just because a person may say ‘Yes’ to handholding or a hug, consent can be withdrawn at any time.


6. Have your child practise the empowering ‘pirate stance’, that is, hands on hips, legs slightly apart, shoulders thrown back and head held high. This is a very empowering stance and should be practised regularly. Once in the stance, your child can also practise saying ‘No’ or ‘Stop! I don’t like that!’ Both these phrases are useful in bullying situations and also if anyone does try to touch their private parts. If your child can do this at 4 or 5 years old, then there is a good chance they will be able to do this at 13 or 14, and into adulthood. 50 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

8. Talk about the difference between secrets and surprises, that is, secrets can be asked to be kept for a long time, whereas surprises will always be told and are only kept for a short time. Discourage the keeping of secrets in your family. Explain that your family has ‘happy surprises’ instead of secrets because happy surprises will always be told. Explain that if someone does ask them to keep a secret, they should tell that person that they don’t keep secrets. Reinforce that if someone does ask your child to keep a secret that makes them feel unsafe or uncomfortable, they must tell an adult on their Safety Network straightaway!

A few final hints! 1. Decide on a ‘family word’, for example, ‘pickles’ so if your child is somewhere without you, and they feel unsafe, they can ring and say ‘pickles’ which will alert you to the fact that they feel unsafe and need to be collected immediately. 2. Educate yourself (and encourage other parents to do the same) in Body Safety; this includes signs of child sexual abuse and the grooming process. 3. Encourage your child’s school to teach body safety and consent!

Jayneen Sanders is an author, teacher, mother of three and an advocate for the empowerment of children. Her books on Body Safety, consent, gender equality, and emotional and social intelligence can be found at www. Jayneen also has many free resources including ‘My Body Safety Rules’ poster available in 17 languages.


The future of

Plugged in parenting By Dr Kristy Goodwin


hile the digital world has long been a part of family life, the pandemic launched us into a completely new world in terms of what we were doing online on a daily basis. All of a sudden we were shopping, studying, working, watching movies and catching up with friends and family - all online. Whilst many parents have long worried about screen time, the pandemic forced many parents to consider the positive and powerful impact it can have in children’s lives. It has also nudged parents to closely consider the role that technology plays in their family’s life and develop some healthy digital habits. Research conducted by the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne identified time spent on screens and digital media as the most frequently reported change in children’s lifestyle during the pandemic .

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The research found that 51% of children, according to their families, have spent more time on screens for entertainment during the pandemic, excluding time required for learning and remote education. A pleasing finding from the study and one echoed by many parents, is that they felt their child’s digital media use was overall a positive experience during the pandemic, as 76% of parents in the Child Health Poll indicated that their technology habits were positive. Furthermore 75% of parents reported that digital devices facilitated remote learning and were a critical tool in allowing children to connect with their family and friends. Pleasingly, 67% of parents suggested that their child had developed new digital skills during the pandemic. This data confirms that, when used appropriately and in intentional ways, digital media can support children’s learning and development. continued next page...


The pandemic prompted many families to use digital technologies together. This is referred to as ‘joint media engagement’ and the research indicates that children learn far more from digital devices when interacting and engaging with others (be that a parent, sibling, or peer). Another pandemic trend is that digital experiences can be a catalyst to connect. Families have used extended time spent at home, to game together, share digital books, and take photos together.

In Applaydu children can bring toys to life in their physical, analogue world using the augmented reality feature. There are also ‘family moments’ built into each activity within the Applaydu app designed to encourage families to play together. Many families have incorporated gaming apps and gamification into their daily routines since the pandemic. Gamification can facilitate bonding between children and parents and also amongst siblings, as the technology can be the conduit for play and interactions. Gamification can also inject some fun into mundane and repetitive tasks like daily routines. This is something that many families needed, to get through the pandemic and extended lockdowns.

Increased family connectedness can be facilitated by well-designed digital tools that support joint media engagement. The Applaydu app is a prime example of an app that encourages kids and parents to interact together.





Focus on WHAT your child is doing on digital devices, rather than HOW MUCH TIME they’re spending online. Look for quality, ageappropriate content, games and apps that support play and/or learning and encourage joint-media engagement. Seek educational activities that involve active participation, rather than passive consumption.

Play and engage WITH your kids. Kids learn far more when they use technology with an adult or caregiver (sibling or peer even). Look for opportunities to use digital media with your kids.

Balance their SCREEN TIME with ‘GREEN TIME’. Time outdoors is vital for their physical health and psychological wellbeing. Research confirms that kids need at least 2 hours/day in natural sunlight to help with their eye health (to offset myopic progression) and to support their sleep hygiene (sunlight helps to regulate their circadian rhythm).

54 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Establish DIGITAL RULES and EXPECTATIONS WITH (not ON) your kids. Clearly determine what, when, where, how, how long and with whom your kids can use technology. Clearly articulating your digital borders and boundaries can help avoid kids having dreaded ‘techno-tantrums’ as the limits and expectations are clearly defined.


Use screen time as a SPRINGBOARD for off-screen, analogue experiences. Can the characters from an online book be re-created as a puppet show or in an artwork? Can you gamify your morning or evening routine?

Technology plays a pivotal role in our kids’ lives and will continue to do so in the future. As parents, we need to find healthy and helpful ways for them to use technology. Doing so will not only support their development and learning, but will help them to establish healthy and sustainable digital habits and behaviours that will last a lifetime.

Dr. Goodwin is an award-winning researcher, speaker, author, and mum on a mission to help parents and educators raise happy, healthy children who thrive online and offline. She recently teamed up with Kinder to celebrate the launch of its free edutainment app, Applaydu and offer advice for families navigating digital wellbeing.

Sanctuary of Early Learning

With over 20 years experience, we are committed to continuous quality care and to ensure a full balanced development for each child in our expansive natural learning environment.

Curiosity and wonder lead to a natural desire to learn

Now offering 3 and 4 year old Kindergarten for 2022 Your most precious people are our priority

Frankston House Sanctuary of Early Learning 1-3 Vera Street Frankston E P 9783 1117 W

Mt Eliza House Sanctuary of Early Learning 41 Baden Powell Place Mt Eliza E P 9787 0788 W

Brand new Seaford centre NOW OPEN and taking enrolment. Seaford House Sanctuary of Early Learning 6-10 Govan Street, Seaford E P 8796 3000 W





Project Enlighten is a specialised K - Year 2 program which focuses on expanding the experiences of our young learners through a breadth of opportunities that will form their foundation of understanding.

EARLY LEARNING TO YEAR 12 Old Mornington Road, Mount Eliza | | +61 3 9788 7200

S U M M E R 2 0 2 1 E D U CAT I O N F E AT U R E F E AT U R E D I N T H I S I S S U E



Performing Arts continues to thrive at Balcombe Grammar At Balcombe Grammar School, we are proud that during the period of lockdowns, our Performing Arts Program has continued to creatively flourish and grow. Coaxed on by our talented teachers, our programs have found new and innovative ways to cultivate creative expression from our students while working online, allowing for a positive return to the classroom in all year levels. Over the last two years, many schools have struggled to maintain a thriving Performing Arts Program due to the restrictions of online learning. Teaching and learning music, drama and media studies can be a challenge when students can only work within the parameters of a 2D screen. In the Performing Arts classroom, students learn to work by experimenting with performance together with their peers. Teachers of the Performing Arts take special care to formulate a culture of creativity and expression in a unique space where students can share ideas and express their work without fear of disdain. But how do you maintain this atmosphere when you are in a virtual space, and not together to work with such collaboration and support?

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389 Nepean Hwy, Mount Martha VIC 3934

Our Instrumental Music Program continued to deliver specialised music lessons online to our students. Our dedicated Instrumental staff ensured that music continued to flow from many homes and that students mastered well-known tunes. In August, Balcombe families celebrated the worldwide event called ‘Play Music on the Porch Day’ and students shared photos of whole families enjoying playing musical instruments together at home on the ‘porch’. The determination of each Drama teacher to change and develop our programs allowed expression to continue and thrive at home. Our Junior and Senior performance programs saw online plays acted and filmed. This was a meticulous process whereby each student filmed their role at home and all footage was then edited together to present a full play to their parents in a special online presentation event. Students found new and innovative ways to develop their film making skills in the Media department. Many films were devised and edited online using current technology and applications to allow for further student expression. One Year 9 Media student created an evocative account of an

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environmental dystopia using three different types of drawn animation, earning her a finalist place in a State-wide student film competition this year. In August this year we lost a true advocate for Arts education, Sir Ken Robinson. Sir Ken always advocated that creativity is everything it is innate and, when allowed to flourish, society reaps the rewards. He said “Creativity draws from many powers that we all have by virtue of being human. Creativity is possible in all areas of human life and like many human capacities, our creative powers can be cultivated and refined”. Soon Balcombe Grammar students will audition for our exciting 2022 Musical ‘Mamma Mia’. Along with our annual Year 6 Shakespearean Play, the Balcombe community is so excited to present this spectacular musical event next year. It seems that no matter what tries to stand in the way, the power of artistic expression cannot be stopped at Balcombe. In the spirit of Sir Ken Robinson, these are the opportunities that we strive for throughout the rich Performing Arts Program at Balcombe.


A vibrant learning community John Paul College is a coeducational Catholic Secondary School in Frankston, with a commitment to maintaining an environment and culture where all members of the College community experience a sense of belonging and are recognised as unique. At the heart of the College is the desire for each student to flourish across religious, physical, cognitive, emotional and social domains. Students enjoy coming to school as their personal narrative is known, respected and valued. A diverse and rich curriculum is provided in all year levels to ensure interests, talents and aspirations are catered for and nurtured. We aim to challenge students; to inspire them to achieve, to explore, to understand different ways of thinking and to take advantage of the many opportunities that are available to them. An array of extracurricular activities are on offer at John Paul College, including sports, debating, public speaking, community service, youth ministry, social justice, chess club and performing arts.

John Paul College offers students the opportunity to experience community life in a faith-filled environment. Each student is invited to develop their personal faith through sacramental celebration, prayer, liturgy, year level retreats, social justice initiatives, fundraising efforts and optional immersion programs to the Philippines, East Timor and India. The College grounds are large and beautifully landscaped, providing plenty of space for students to learn and socialise. The state-ofthe-art facilities include a modern and well-appointed Resource Centre, sporting grounds and courts, Individual Learning Centre, VCAL dedicated classrooms and fully equipped Science laboratories. The Ngargee Centre for Performing and Visual Arts is a wonderfully appointed space; comprising of modern facilities for music, drama, dance, media and fine arts. Involvement in the Arts provides students with the platform to develop their creativity and confidence.

161 McMahons Rd,Road, 73-93 Old Mornington Frankston VIC 3199 Mount Eliza, VIC 3930

9784 9788 0200 7200

Investing in the future of our students, the College has developed a Masterplan after extensive consultation with staff, students, parents and the College Board. The plan outlines the continued development to facilities, ensuring our 14 hectare grounds and buildings meet the demands of an advancing curriculum. The Stage 1 Building Works of the College Masterplan have commenced onsite and will conclude in 2022. Developments include a new double storey Learning Hub and a new Food Technology Building. Sporting opportunities are wide and varied for students at all year levels in both individual and team competitions. Students of all skill levels are encouraged to participate through the House Swimming, Athletics and Crosscountry carnivals and those who excel are supported to go on to higher level competitions at regional, state and national levels. To discover what makes John Paul College a place to learn, grow and thrive, visit:



Register now for 2022 Kindergarten program Mt Eliza House, Frankston House and Seaford House Sanctuary of Early Learning are all privately-owned. We provide a long day care facility and government registered Kindergarten.

Our educators acknowledge the diverse ways in which individuals learn in our ever-changing world, and support and nurture each child’s learning journey.

Learning environments are provided to assist young ones to become curious, confident and caring decision makers. We invite you to visit and take a tour of our facilities today.

Our commitment at Mt Eliza House is to provide a homelike environment where each individual child can thrive. All children have the right to grow and learn in their own way, at their own pace, allowing them to gently unfold to reach their full potential. With large natural outdoor play spaces, the children spend their days exploring their world, creating positive friendships and developing empathy and respect. Our curriculum reinforces connections with nature and encourages self-reliance, problem solving and creativity.

60 Peninsula Kids

Mt Eliza, 41 Baden Powell Place Mt Eliza VIC 3199

9787 9787 0788 0788

Frankston, 1-3 1-3 Vera Vera Street Street Frankston Frankston VIC VIC 3930 3930

9783 9783 1117 1117

Seaford, 6-10 6-10 Govan Govan Street, Street, Seaford Seaford VIC VIC 3198 3198

8796 8796 3000 3000


Curious, compassionate and connected. learning opportunities that will form •Language and Cultural Appreciation: Mandarin and their foundation of understanding. Library Project Enlighten is influenced by •Health and Wellbeing: Physical the principles and practices of Education, PMP, Mindfulness and Reggio Emilia, in which children Nutrition are recognised as capable and We provide a nurturing and Highly regarded across the resourceful. Every day, children engaging co-educational Mornington Peninsula, Toorak in our Early Learning program environment. Our range of learning College offers a range of are filled with excitement as they experiences promote social, programs to suit every child and explore environments that are emotional and academic growth every family. Offering inclusive varied and engaging, with an and allow children to actively and in-depth Kindergarten and emphasis on creativity and playengage with each other and Pre-Prep programs for young based learning. their teachers in purposeful and children, Toorak College is meaningful ways. Integrated into Project Enlighten is passionate about developing a the explicit teaching of literacy and “To enlighten is to give someone community of creative, curious and numeracy. Skills and talents come greater knowledge or compassionate learners. from many different areas so we understanding. When a young We welcome you to join our complement our program with a person enters our Early Learning Director of Early Learning, Ms Pat diverse range of specialist classes Centre, they develop their sense of Barbieri, for a tour of our Early that assist in developing each self, understanding of others and Learning Centre. To register your child’s academic and personal find their connection to the world interest contact us on growth. These classes are taught by around them”, says Miss Melissa (03) 9788 7200 or visit specialist teachers and include: Schoorman, Head of Wardle House and Deputy Principal of •STEM-X programs: Science, Toorak College. Robotics, Construction and Technology Our tailored Early Learning program, Project Enlighten, focuses •Creative Arts: Visual Art, on this significant period of growth Movement and Out and About for a young learner by expanding the experiences of 3 and 4 year •Performing Arts: Music, Drama old children through a breadth of and Dance Toorak College offers comprehensive ELC learning programs for Kindergarten and Pre-Prep children located in and around the Mornington Peninsula.

73-93 Old Mornington Rd, Mount Eliza VIC 3930

9788 7200



A New Year 7-8 Centre at Padua Mornington Padua College is delighted to announce plans for a brand new Year 7-8 Centre at its Mornington Campus with construction due to start in 2022 and completion forecast for mid-2023. Following extensive consultation with education professionals, staff, parent and student communities (including students in Grade 6 at its Catholic feeder schools), the College Leadership Team has prioritised the planning and construction of a purpose-built Year 7-8 Centre within a new 2021 Mornington Campus Masterplan. Designed by Baldasso Cortese Architects, the 3,600sqm facility will provide the perfect environment for 550 junior students to begin their secondary school education at Padua’s Mornington Campus. Environmental design considerations ensure the inclusion of ample green spaces within the junior precinct and the incorporation of a loggia to offer

62 Peninsula Kids

spacious sheltered areas for play. Modern classrooms have been designed to open up to central areas and adjoining classrooms to allow for flexible learning spaces. “When combined with a reduction in maximum class sizes to 25, this facility allows our talented staff to teach in an environment that facilitates the delivery of optimal educational outcomes,” explains Business Director David Lawn. An architectural atrium at the heart of the building will form a central gathering space from which three axes extend. The ground floor will be occupied by a standalone administration centre, sick bay, Junior Campus leadership offices, staff work and lounge areas, a Learning Enhancement Hub, junior Science and STEM rooms, seminar rooms, student kitchenettes and facilities, with student lockers, House Co-ordinator offices and 18 classrooms appointed on the floor above.

“Our buildings must keep pace with modern teaching pedagogy and support our new Learning and Teaching Framework,” says Principal Anthony Banks. “This Centre will be a wonderful way to mark Padua College’s significant 125th Anniversary in providing a comprehensive and inclusive curriculum, characterised by excellent teaching, where every student is encouraged to utilise their God-given talents, to make a positive impact on the world and to be the best they can be.” Padua is hosting a series of Discovery tours in 2022 and you’re invited to come and learn more about what the College can offer your child. Visit www.padua.vic. to book a tour. T: 5978 2700 E: W:

62 Oakbank Road, Mornington VIC 3931

5976 0100

2 Inglewood Crescent, Rosebud VIC 3939

5982 9500

1585 Frankston - Flinders Road, Tyabb VIC 3913

5978 2700


MINDS are curious and considered. They question and challenge, creating new connections and meaning.


M O R N I N G TO N P E N I N S U L A • E A R LY C H I L D H O O D TO Y E A R 12

5971 6100



heT Importance of Leting ur Yo Child Strugle By Melissa Schoorman, Naomi Linssen and Pat Barbieri


he importance of facing challenges head on is a fundamental theme in our children’s learning journey, particularly from Kindergarten to Year 4. As educators and parents we need to allow for teachable moments which provide opportunities for our children to navigate these pivotal experiences and lessons. Positive mental health hinges on the balance of protective actions such as providing a stable environment and modelling healthy coping mechanisms vs. risk factors which encourage adversity. Our natural response as parents is to help and protect our children. However, if our children are always saved from dealing with challenging situations or emotions they won’t develop the skills they need to adapt and survive difficulties in later life.

Here are 5 reasons why allowing our children to struggle is important:

1. Intellectual growth and development - neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to adapt 2. Independence - enhances and promotes their problem solving skills 3. Confidence - allows them to attempt new challenges with an open mind and without fear of failure 4. Growth mindset - encourages them to embrace struggle instead of fearing it. 5. Emotional resilience and perseverance - teaches them not to create unrealistic expectations or the illusion that success is standard and comes easily and without effort Children are naturally very capable, resilient and adaptable and they will surprise you with their ability to cope with stress if they are given an opportunity to experience and grow through it. Resilient children do not fear failing, think they will get things on the first go or assume tasks will be easy. They learn that with success comes effort, determination and practice. Pat Barbieri, Director of Toorak College’s Early Learning Centre says, “We encourage parents to celebrate the small wins when a child shows improvement and growth in a certain area. It is this learning process that encourages children to keep trying after they have experienced failure as they grow to understand that success takes time.” Deputy Head of Wardle House, Naomi Linssen adds, “frustration is a critical life skill which helps us to handle hard things, resolve conflict and achieve anything we want to.” Learning how to accept feelings without judgement, label emotions and embrace uncomfortable situations are all skills that help build a healthy mindset. When your child is experiencing a difficult emotion, show empathy, but refrain from offering a choice of withdrawal from the experience. You want to aim to build tolerance so they go into coping mode rather than meltdown mode. “If we know how to regulate and manage our emotions, we can afford to sit in periods of discomfort and attempt new tasks or engage in new experiences”, says Melissa Schoorman, Head of Wardle House and Deputy Principal of Toorak College. She adds, “children learn from mistakes as well as from success”. Avoiding negative experiences or emotions can exacerbate anxiety and heighten emotions. Our natural response is often to take time away from the task or event that is causing this discomfort. However, this strategy can result in a fear of failure which is disproportionate to the experience. Melissa Schoorman says, “We all need to get comfortable with being uncomfortable to allow our children to develop healthy life-long coping skills, however, emotions should not become overwhelming or crippling so please ensure you engage external support if needed.”


Book Reviews PRE-SCHOOL





3+yrs, Scholastic, h/b, $17.99 Anton Pig likes his life to be in perfect order - just like his perfect side-part. But what happens when his PERFECT party plans twist and tumble into a terrible tangle?!



3+yrs, Scholastic h/b $17.99 There were pirates in the paperbacks, a bear in fantasy. Then I saw a smiling cat, staring straight at me. Why are all these books characters on the loose? They need to get back in their books!


BY LAURA BUNTING 4+yrs, Scholastic h/b, $19.99 There are magical seeds to plant in the garden, and new friends to make. But when Coco meets a bee, and then a boy called Max, Coco realises that things aren’t always what you think they might be. In this third tail, oops, tale, Coco’s world expands as she makes new friends, learns how to grow strawberries, and finds out that nature, and people, can surprise in delightful, and delightfully sweet ways.




3+yrs, Scholastic h/b, $17.99 This is CHATTERPUSS. And this is GLENN. One’s a noisy cat. One’s a quiet hen. Although they’re different, they’re BEST FRIENDS... but even friends can drive you round the bend! A joyful new picture book about friendship (and non-stop blabbering) by awardwinning singer/songwriter, Josh Pyke.





3+yrs, Scholastic h/b, $19.99 Papa Hare, Dot, Pip and Pat, and Baby Cottontail live together in a very small and crowded burrow. Then one day, Papa Hare comes up with a brilliant plan … An enchanting and heartwarming story that celebrates the true joys of family and home.





4+yrs, Scholastic h/b, $19.99 Lizzy LOVES the Internet! But the Wi-Fi has... disappeared! What is Lizzy to do? With the help of a new friend and a curious kitty, Lizzy discovers the greatest app of all. From writer and Oscar-nominated film-maker Josh Lawson comes a story about the power of imagination.



4+yrs, Scholastic h/b $17.99 When Francis writes a letter to his parents in India, it results in the most surprising, wonderful Christmas gift–a lion cub called Singh. The cub and Francis become the closest of friends, exploring the city, searching the sky for stars, snuggling down to sleep – and learning to ROAR! A true story of friendship, loyalty and love.


Prize pack of the reviewed books, go to;

66 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22










3+yrs, Scholastic, h/b, $17.99 With a BING! and BOOM! and BAM! and BLAST! Each trick was more dazzling than the last… “We haven’t got one single trick. Teach us, Wizard, teach us, QUICK!” Three little wizards are in a hurry to learn all of the Wise Old Wizard’s magic tricks... but everybody has to start at ONE.



Book Reviews SCHOOL AGE



9+yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $17.99 Jaxxon has accidentally been elected to rule as the first ever KID PRESIDENT. He has big ideas: free ice-cream in every school, homework to be made illegal, and all national parks to become skate parks. But not everyone is happy about the new changes. And they are willing to do just about anything to kick him out of office. Can Jaxxon keep his presidency and show everyone he totally rules?




7+yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $15.99 School holidays are here, Lola's super-fun Aunt Helen is coming to babysit and water parks, waffles and epic challenges for Lola's vlog are on the menu! Sounds awesome, right? WRONG! Because when Aunt Helen arrives, she is heartbroken aka. no fun at all. Lola and her friends have cooked up the perfect plan! Could love be the special ingredient to turn these holidays around?






6+yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $17.99 Hi! I'm Paris. I write in my travel journal as I explore the world! Paris is 10 years old and is off to visit her favourite city, PARIS! While she is there, she meets a girl named Amelie who has lost her dog, Eclair. Can Paris help Amelie trace her steps through the landmarks of the city to find the lost pup?


5+yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $7.99 Ella finds a spotty puppy in the park. But who does it belong to? And what happens when it follows Ella home?



8-12yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $17.99 At home, Maggie is the odd one out. Her parents are preoccupied with the new baby they're expecting, and her younger brothers are twins and always in their own world. Maggie thinks a new puppy is the answer, but when she goes to select one on her birthday, she breaks out in hives and rashes. She's severely allergic to anything with fur! Can Maggie outsmart her allergies and find the perfect pet?





5+yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $7.99 Miss King has gone on holiday. And Ella’s new teacher just isn’t the same. She doesn’t smile or say good morning. And she calls Ella ‘Bella’!






$ 99

$ 99



8+yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $15.99 I’m not good at CAMP. In fact, CAMP involves a gazillion horrible things I’m bad at or scared of. But trying to explain why I’m scared of CAMP is impossible. People don’t understand what it’s like to have a fizzy, jumpy, ‘what if’ brain like mine. I’m going to need a whole new list of CAMP worries.





6+yrs, Scholastic, p/b, $15.99 Finn the Shark and his buddies are excited about their school trip to Iceberg Primary in Antarctica! But there’s a mysterious magic at this new school-an ice crystal with strong but unknown powers. Will it fall into the wrong hands and cause a disaster? Or can Finn, Philippa, Shelley and Humphrey get it back before it’s too late? With ice castles, action-packed Ice Smash games, and a new gang of bullies to keep an eye on, there’s never a dull moment in this school of fish! You’ll be hooked!






indulge yourself and feel great too! Key features of Simply Swap Foods:

* No GM ingredients

* Low carb

* Plant based sweeteners used

* Keto friendly

* Pet friendly (no xylitol used)

* Diabetic friendly

* Super easy to prepare at home

* Premium ingredients to support our health

* Great taste

* Nothing artificial

* Made with love on the Mornington Peninsula


ooking for a special gift for someone following a sugar-free, low-carb/keto eating style? Or maybe you’d like to have some decadent guilt-free options for guests at parties or celebrations? Simply Swap Foods has the answer with their range of guilt-free, super easy to make premix products. Check out the ‘Cheeky Chocolate Cupcakes’ and ‘Voluptuous Vanilla Cupcakes’ which can be included in gifts or made into celebration cakes, perfect for sharing.

Their newly released ‘Hug in a Mug’ chocolate and vanilla mug cakes are the perfect addition to an indulgent gift basket or to add to presents and share some love with family and friends. All products are low-carb/ sugar-free/keto, made of only real food premium ingredients, and best of all taste amazing! Simply Swap Foods products will help you on your journey to a healthier eating style with nothing artificial and just nutritious ingredients that are good for you. Order online at or visit Linda at local markets - Bonbeach Farmers market (2nd Sunday), Mt Eliza Farmers market (4th Sunday) and others will be listed on website.

HUG IN A MUG – VANILLA MUG CAKE MIX Containing premium ground vanilla beans, and Australian almond meal, these are simple to prepare and ready in 60 seconds. The perfect indulgence on their own or delicious topped with berries, cream or ice cream. Each pack makes two large mug cakes and there’s instructions on the pack for how to make this into a delicious lemon/berry version.

68 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

HUG IN A MUG – CHOCOLATE MUG CAKE MIX Containing pure organic cacao full of antioxidants, these are a decadent dessert treat that satisfy all chocolate cravings. Delicious alongside fresh berries and whipped cream, each pack makes two large mug cakes and the optional addition of nut butter and choc chips makes this even more indulgent. Check out the full product range at and follow Linda on her Facebook and Instagram pages for regular recipes and information. And don’t forget to download your free recipe eBook containing 16 favourite sugar-free/low-carb recipes.

After experiencing health problems three years ago, Linda changed to a low-sugar real food diet and was amazed at the results. Over a six month period, she easily lost 15kg of stubborn weight that she’d struggled with for decades, her energy levels improved to an all time high and her mental clarity returned in abundance. Her husband joined her in this mission and also lost 20kg easily in six months and felt fantastic. One of the keys to their success was not feeling deprived of their favourite foods, especially cupcakes and porridge. Linda launched her business “Simply Swap Foods” in November 2020 to help others on their journey to a healthier way of life. She loves sharing her recipes, story and knowledge about the benefits of reducing sugar and just eating real food. All Linda has done – with time and research – is ‘simply swapped’ some foods in her diet and she hopes to show others just how easy it can be and how fantastic you can feel. You really can indulge yourself and feel great too!

Linda's Homemade Blender Mayo 10 PREP




(approx 250ml jar)



After years of wasting time (and eggs) trying to make homemade mayo, I have finally perfected a recipe that works every time! This tastes so good, you’ll never want to go back to store-bought again, plus it’s so much more affordable and full of healthy fat. Use this as a base in all your summer salads and you can add other ingredients to mix it up a little eg. balsamic vinegar, sugar free sweet chilli sauce etc. You will need a good high speed blender with the ability to pour in liquid while it’s running (eg. Vitamix blender) and ensure you use a light tasting oil for this recipe or it will overpower the flavour.


1 large egg (70g), must be room temperature 3 tsp Australian mustard (or any preferred mustard) ½ tablespoon apple cider vinegar ¼ teaspoon salt flakes 2/3 cup light flavoured oil (MCT oil or light taste olive oil works well)


1. Add egg, mustard, vinegar and salt into blender and process on low speed until smooth, around 30 seconds. Scrape down sides of bowl if mustard or other ingredients remain. 2. Measure out the oil and put in a jug or small squeezy bottle. 3. Start blender again on low/medium speed and very slowly add the oil in a thin stream to previously blended ingredients. This step requires patience and the mixture will look very thin until you’ve added over half the oil. After that time it will start to thicken and you can add the oil slightly faster and increase the speed slightly (but don’t add too fast as it still could separate, just a slow thin stream). 4. Once all the oil has been added, your mayo should be beautifully rich and thick. 5. Spoon into a glass jar and keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.



Black Forest Celebration Cake 30 COOK





This cake is perfect for festive celebrations and you can vary the amount of berry jam and cream to your taste. Cherries are higher in sugar/carbs than other fruits so if you’re watching your macros closely, they could be replaced with strawberries/raspberries but you're only really eating about 2 cherries per slice.


1 x pack Simply Swap Foods Cheeky Chocolate Cupcake Mix ½ cup salted butter, melted (or coconut oil) (125g) 3 large eggs 2/3 cup preferred milk 1/3 cup (approx) sugar-free strawberry jam eg. Natvia brand (or make your own, recipe on my website) 24 pitted morello cherries 500ml pure cream (cold) 1 tblsp natvia sugar-free sweetener (or similar sweetener) 9 fresh cherries for decorating 2 squares Lindt dark chocolate (min 70% cocoa) for decorating

70 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Preheat oven to 170°C f/forced and grease and line 20cm round cake pan. 1. Pour entire dry mix contents into a large bowl and stir to mix well. 2. In a separate bowl, whisk together melted butter, eggs and milk. 3. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and fold together gently. 4. Pour mixture into lined cake pan and bake for 35-40 mins or until cake spring back when lightly touched in centre (or a skewer inserted into centre of cake comes out clean). 5. Leave cake in pan for 15 minutes before removing to cool on wire rack. 6. Once completely cold, slice in half horizontally with a large serrated knife. 7. Spread strawberry jam on bottom layer then scatter morello cherries over jam. 8. Make whipped cream by placing cold cream and Natvia in a bowl and use a hand beater to beat until thickened. Spoon generous amounts of cream over bottom layer in centre of cake. 9. Place the top cake layer on and gently press down to push cream to edges. Spread another layer of cream on top (to desired thickness). 10. Grate some dark chocolate over top of cream and decorate with fresh cherries. Enjoy!

Easy Vege Fritters






These are so easy to prepare especially when you grab a bag of pre-chopped coleslaw mix from the supermarket. We love these for breakfast or lunch and they’re delicious when partnered with bacon, avocado and home-made mayonnaise. Mingle all-purpose seasoning is available online and at supermarkets and adds a delicious element to these fritters but it’s not essential if you don’t have any, just add a little more salt/pepper.


200g grated cabbage/carrot (or Macro organic coleslaw mix works perfectly!) 3 large eggs, beaten 1 cup tasty cheese, grated ½ tblsp Mingle all purpose seasoning 3 tblsp almond meal flour Pinch salt/pepper Shortening of preference for frying – butter, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, ghee, lard


1. Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and combine well. 2. Heat frypan with preferred shortening and spoon rounds into pan. 3. Cook until browned and firm on one side then flip and continue to cook other side until golden brown. 4. Remove from heat and serve.



Children are supported to freely immerse themselves in a variety of art & craf t activities. Unique programs allow children to imagine,explore, see things different ly and experiment with new ways of doing. Build self - esteem, grow confidence and discover and value their own creative worth. AF T ER SCHOOL & HOME-ED P ROGRAMS P RIVAT E CLASSES BOOKINGS ESSENT IAL

- Spaces Limited

72 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

0404 848 226

Croquet The next big hit!

FUN! Bring a mate, have a game Join the young players who are pressing to dominate croquet across the world!

RNB Croquet Club

Based at Truemans Rd Reserve your nearest AFind mobile/pop-up club workingclub with See community groups on the Mornington Peninsula Visit E:Email P: 0421486 890



When you live on the worlds largest island, swimming lessons shouldn’t be a consideration. They’re a necessity!

LEARN FROM THE SURVIVAL SPECIALISTS Paul Sadler Swimland Carrum Downs 149 Hall Rd Carrum Downs (03) 9782 9444

Don’t forget to register!


Mixed and Girls only Hey girls! Why not try something new? COME AND TRY GUIDES Sunday 6 February, 2022 10 – 4pm, Mornington $25/girl – bring a friend & take $5 off Save your place, simply register using QR Code

Queries; email Samantha Bourke: or call Heather Barton: 0418 974 994

Nurturing creativity, confidence and community, through local youth performing arts. For 12 years, Dreamhouse has been inspiring young people on the Mornington Peninsula, through performance, workshops and community arts projects. We offer a year round, inclusive program for 5-21 year olds, led by professional teaching artists. Get in touch! E: FB: dreamhousetheatrecompany victoria

8 WEEKS OF FUN Program includes kit bag, Spinneroos shirt with your name, bat and balls. FUN, FRIENDSHIPS, MOTOR SKILL DEVELOPMENT. To register and more information

Table Tennis, the Non- Contact indoor Olympics, Paralympics and Commonwealth Games sport the whole family can play Starts Term 1, 2022.




Encouraging females of any age and ability in a non judgemental and friendly environment. Includes 3 free lessons, all equipment supplied


AGES Ages 3+ Ages 3+3+


ALL IN ONE ALL IN ONE IN ONE First two weeksALL FREE to come and try Ages 3+ Starts 2022* First two weeks FREE to andand try try First two weeks FREE come to come



ALL IN ONE * Subject to covid restrictions at the time. Starts 2022^ First two weeks FREE to come and try Starts 2022^

Unit 1/42-46 Peninsula Blvd, Seaford Unit 1/ 42-46 Peninsula Blvd, Seaford

Starts 2022^

^subject to COVID-19 restrictions at the time 1/ 42-46 Peninsula Blvd, Seaford

^subject to COVID-19 restrictions at the time

74 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

^subject to COVID-19 restrictions at the time

M: 0498 003 788 E: W:

Unit 1/ 42-46 Peninsula Blvd, Seaford



Acrobatics & parkour classes Holiday programs Parties Private coaching NDIS

with over 32 years experience






Acro Kids offers fun, non-competitive gymnastics and parkour programs for 1 yrs and up. Designed to help develop your child’s fitness, coordination, agility, strength and confidence!


SET SETSAIL SAIL THIS THIS SUMMER! SUMMER! Broadway Broadway Academy Academy presents... presents...

Theatre TheatreHoliday HolidayProgram Program Jan Jan17th 17th- -21st, 21st,Mt MtMartha Martha - 5-full 5 full days, days, Monday MondaytotoFriday Friday - Singing, - Singing, dance, dance, acting, acting,art art&&craft, craft,sport sportand andgames games - Grade - Grade 1– 1– YrYr 99 - Age-specific - Age-specific groupingsand andsessions sessions groupings - Experienced, caringteachers teachers - Experienced, caring - Full performance stageon onthe thefinal finalday day - Full performance ononstage - 9:00am – 3:30pm daily - 9:00am – 3:30pm daily - FREE extended hourscare careavailable, available,8am-5pm. 8am-5pm. - FREE extended hours

Music Music and Lyrics and Lyrics by Opetaia by Opetaia Foa'i,Foa'i, MarkMark Mancina, Mancina, Lin-Manuel Lin-Manuel Miranda Miranda JR. Script JR. Script Adaptation Adaptation by Susan by Susan SoonSoon He Stanton He Stanton JR. Score JR. Score Adaptation Adaptation and Arrangements and Arrangements & Orchestrations & Orchestrations by Ian by Weinberger Ian Weinberger



Be inspired to discover your creativity Our studio is a fun and friendly space for people who would like to explore their creativity, no matter their age or skill level! We will guide you to discover your unique creative self. Pre-Primary and Primary Kids classes A comprehensive timetable of School Holiday Classes Adult Art and Creative classes Family Workshops

Make changing room dramas a thing of the past! Clover Kids wearable towels are lightweight, absorbent and fully accessible, making fast and discrete changes easy. 100% Melbourne made, Clover is the perfect solution and space saver in every school or sports backpack! Watch our demo and get yours on

Mini Maestros are passionate about providing music education for children aged 5 months to 5 years. Specific age groups with small classes provide the best opportunity for your child to learn and develop social connections. Sing, dance and play in our nurturing environment which will foster a love of music for a life time. Mt Eliza • Frankston • Langwarrin

76 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Group classes and Private lessons (NDIS compliant) Online and in-store Art and craft supplies Custom workshops

location: 6 High Street Hastings VIC 3915 website: email: | phone: 0425 867 919 facebook/melscreativemakes | instagram/_creativemakes_

PARC has your ultimate family fun day sorted! The kids will be entertained for hours with our range of fun activities, including: • Our award winning AquaPlay Aquatic Playground, • Leisure pools for all ages, including a toddler pool, • The interactive Python raft waterslide, • Our awesome 114-metre Constrictor waterslide, and • A delicious Café with options for the kids, and coffee for mum and dad! Learn more

School Holiday fun at PARC

Be sure to check out our website and social media for information on our Summer School Holiday Program. Check out


30 Health

Mindfulness 30 Activities for Kids &Teens

By Kim Norton


indfulness is simply the act of being in the moment and as such, practising mindfulness activities can be a fun, engaging way to help our kids and teens stay in the moment and, not worry about what is going to happen next.

Using these techniques will help our children to self-regulate and manage any problems and worries that will arise over the course of the day. Outbursts of anger, meltdowns, panic attacks, general anxiety, emotion control, self-restraint, poor sleep quality and focus and concentration can all be improved using mindfulness activities like those listed below. Please note that these activities are not designed to simply dismiss our children’s concerns but are designed to bring them back to a state of peace so as they can return to addressing their problems and worries in a calm rational way. Some popular examples include:

4. Grounding Activity Look around and name 5 things you can see, 4 things you can feel (or touch), 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can taste and 1 thing you can smell.

5. Progressive Muscle Relaxation Take a deep breath in and then, breathe out. Repeat this several times if needed to centre and calm yourself. On your next breath in, squeeze your feet muscles as tight as you can and as you breathe out, release the muscles in your feet and release the tension. Breathe in and breathe out. With your next breath in, squeeze your calf muscles tight and as you breathe out, release the calf muscles, and release the tension. Breathe in and breathe out. Continue up the body finishing at the head, squeezing, and releasing as you go.

1. One Minute Meditation Just concentrate on your breath. Every time your mind wanders just bring it back to your breath. Breathe in and breathe out. One minute is all it takes to reset the mind and calm the body. You should get about 16 breaths in one minute for a healthy adult or about 25 breaths in a primary school aged child so just count your breaths. Breathe in, one, breathe out. Breathe in, two, breathe out and continue for one minute.

2. Journaling You can write, draw, use point form, doodle, or write in length, whatever suits you at the time. The idea is to get those thoughts out of your head and onto the paper. Once released to paper, our written thoughts take on a different energy and meaning, turning into actions and goals, selfawareness, insight, and inspiration. No longer swirling aimlessly in our heads creating stress, anxiety, and confusion.

3. Box Breathing Breathe in for the count of 4, hold for the count of 4, breathe out for the count of 4. Repeat 3 more times. For our older teens and adults try 4-78 breathing: inhale in for the count of 4, hold for the count of 7 and then exhale for the count of 8. 78 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Other examples include: 6. Blow bubbles

19. Make a calm down bottle

7. Play “noughts & crosses”

20. L isten to a guided meditation

8. Chew gum 9. Listen to music 10. Blow up a balloon 11. Practise belly breathing 12. Play “hangman” 13. Suck on a lollipop

21. Five finger breathing 22. Play “Simon says” 23. Colouring in 24. Blindfold taste test 25. Yoga or exercise

14. Heartbeat exercise

26. N ame "5 things you are grateful for"

15. Blow on a party blower

27. Draw a mandala

16. Read a book

28. Draw your breath

17. Play “eye spy”

29. Play “who am I?”

18. Blow on a pinwheel

30. Go on a nature walk

Sit down with your child and produce a list of activities that they can refer to when needed. Mix it up with a variety of indoor and outdoor activities and ones that can performed independently, with minimal supervision and with other family members. With a list of ideas close by, your child now has a valuable stress management tool that will enable them to regulate their emotions in a natural holistic way.

Kim x Kim is the founder of Rainbow Light Therapies and is a Holistic Counsellor specialising in stress and anxiety management for kids, teens, and adults. Kim provides a unique, intuitive, and individualised therapy approach through individual, small group and family counselling sessions both online and at her studio in Langwarrin. Also working with special needs kids, Kim runs sessions and workshops for people of all abilities on various topics throughout the year. Please see for more information.


By Justin Coulson


appy Families Parenting Expert Dr Justin Coulson’s Guide to tackling fussy eating and improving family meal time

Finding meals that satisfy the whole family can be a tough job. Academic research suggests somewhere around 50% of kids go through a fussy eating stage. In fact, new research from HelloFresh found that 71% of parents have a fussy eater on their hands. Australia’s leading parenting expert, Happy Families’ Dr Justin Coulson is an author and father of six daughters who is passionate about family relationships – and has shared his top tips to tackle fussy eating and improve family meal time.

Cook meals the whole family will enjoy As parents, we all want our kids to be fed delicious, healthy meals they’ll enjoy eating, but for families with fussy eaters, this isn’t an easy challenge. It’s often tempting to swap out ingredients from the main meal, or even cook a separate meal altogether, to avoid the dinnertime drama. Our job as parents is to go the extra mile for our kids, but rather than spending more time, money and effort double handling in the kitchen, it’s best to find a bank of meals and recipes you know the whole family will enjoy sharing together. I have partnered with HelloFresh to launch the first ever ‘Family Favourites Awards’ to help improve dinnertime with a winning selection of HelloFresh’s triedand-tested recipes the whole family will enjoy.

80 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Cook together as a family Getting the kids in the kitchen and involved in the meal selection and preparation process is one of the best things you can do to establish healthy behaviours. Not only is it a fun way to spend time together, but it helps tackle fussy eating by giving kids a behind-the-scenes taste of the finished meal. Introducing them to fresh, healthy food first-hand shows how different foods look and where they come from, and importantly, kids are more likely to try food they’ve helped cook. Australian families recently crowned HelloFresh’s Caribbean Pork Rissoles & Wedges the Best Recipe to Cook with Kids because the dish allowed the kids to get their hands dirty by mixing and rolling out the rissoles, making dinner a fun activity for the whole family.

Make veggies tasty The age-old question of how to get kids to eat their greens is one every parent has asked. It has also resulted in us getting crafty in the kitchen, with more than half (54%) of Aussie parents admitting to hiding veggies in a meal, while nearly a third (30%) have tried serving them in a fun shape to make them more appealing. Instead of resorting to these sneaky tactics, try adding veggies to meals and flavours your kids already know and love. It’s also important to change up the typical vegetables you usually serve, or try serving them in a different way, to build familiarity and help your children become more comfortable with them.

Add variety! For picky eaters, it’s all about variety. Serving a range of foods on a regular basis helps expose your kids to different foods frequently and expand their tastes. This can often be quite challenging for parents who struggle to find a variety of meals their children will enjoy (66%), and end up recycling the same three to four recipes every week (33%). Meal-kit services like HelloFresh are a great place to start, as they offer a wide variety of customisable weekly recipes with a selection of meals and flavours that can satisfy a family’s unique tastes and dietary preferences. Another great way to add variety is by encouraging your kids to eat colourful plate of food - the more colourful, the more nutritious it will be.

continued next page...

• Providing Specialist Orthodontic Services to the Mornington Peninsula with three locations in Rosebud, Mount Eliza and Hastings. • The very best in Orthodontic care and technology - clear braces, Invisalign, lingual (hidden) braces. • Treatment provided in a relaxed environment. • Highest quality care provided by our Orthodontist.



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Ending family food fights:

Dr Peter Scott and Associates are specialist orthodontists offering orthodontic care for children, teens and adults alike in both the Mornington Peninsula and inner Melbourne.

How Aussie parents can conquer midweek meals

Dr Peter Scott is also a consultant at the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Specialist Orthodontists Creating Beautiful Smiles on the Peninsula for over 30 years Expertise In Child And Adult Orthodontics

A new national survey from Australia’s leading meal kit delivery service, HelloFresh, reveals dinnertime is a challenge for many Aussie families, particularly those with fussy eaters.

A young generation of fussy eaters: • The majority (71%) of Aussie parents admit their children are fussy eaters

Early Assessment Of Dental Development And Facial Growth Ideal Age Of Initial Assessment 7-9 Years

• Four in five (81%) parents have experienced their kids refusing to eat dinner • Most parents (74%) struggle to find nutritious meals their children will enjoy

Aussie parents are doing their best:

Early Intervention Where Appropriate For Best Outcome

• Aussie parents have tried a number of methods to get their kids to eat their dinner, including bribing them (52%) and threatening to remove privileges (49%)

No Referral Necessary

• Parents are also getting creative to get their children to eat more vegetables, including trying to hide veggies in a meal (54%) or adding veggies to their kids’ favourite meals (53%)

Interest free payment plans available

• Nearly one third (30%) of Aussie parents admit to serving veggies in a fun shape in attempt to make them more appealing to their kids • The majority (89%) of parents involve their children in the meal selection and preparation process, asking them what they want to eat and cooking with them

13 Beach St Frankston

Ph: 9783 4511 82 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

But it’s not always an easy job: • M ost parents (62%) have opted not to cook a certain meal because they knew it would be too difficult to get their children to eat it • C hildren refusing to eat can take an emotional toll on Aussie parents, with many getting frustrated about food waste (35%), or feeling upset after spending time and effort preparing a nice meal (31%)


• One third (33%) of Aussie parents admit to recycling the same three to four recipes for dinnertime




DENTAL CARE • While three in five (66%) parents struggle to find a variety of meals their children will enjoy

Fussy eaters can also cost parents time and money: • The majority (68%) of Aussie parents admit to cooking separate meals or alternating the main family meal with different ingredients, with one quarter (25%) admitting they often do this to satisfy their children • Most parents (77%) admit they spend up to 45 minutes extra each night cooking and alternating meals for their kids • While 72% are also forking out up to $75 more on their weekly shop to cater to their fussy eaters

What do Aussie kids enjoy? • Pasta is the all time favourite meal for the vast majority of Aussie kids (83%), followed by burgers (68%) and tacos (59%) • More than half (55%) of children also love schnitzel, while nearly one third (31%) love their curries

About the research: Commissioned by HelloFresh in conjunction with Pure Profile, the research was conducted online in September 2021. Findings are based on a nationally representative sample of over 1,000 Australian parents with children aged 5-14 years old.


597 5 9334 Dr James Lucas Dr Caroline Howarth Dr Giselle D’Mello and introducing Dr Sara Shayegan

lucas dental care proudly sponsors polyglot theatre


Ask The

Experts! When should my child have braces?

What is stuttering?

Every child is unique. Children have varied personalities, aspirations and individual needs. Your child’s teeth are no different. Variation in facial shapes, growth patterns, dental and jaw alignment means each child requires an individually tailored plan for orthodontic treatment. There is no such thing as “one-size-fits-all” in orthodontics. Seeking a qualified opinion from a Specialist Orthodontist and discussing individual treatment options for your child is the first step in your child’s orthodontic journey. Whether your child will benefit from early interceptive treatment or treatment at a later date, an early diagnosis is the key to a successful treatment. Having a plan to be implemented at the appropriate time will allow for an optimum outcome. With few exceptions it is ideal to see the patient prior to the loss of the last of the baby teeth. It is also helpful in many cases to treat our younger patients while they are actively growing.

Stuttering is a speech disorder that stops the natural rhythm or flow of speech. While most toddlers outgrow stuttering without treatment, any stutter that continues should be treated by a speech pathologist as this significantly reduces the risk of stuttering continuing. Stuttering (also called stammering) is a pattern of speech that involves hesitations, repetitions or silent blocks (when the child tries to speak but no sound comes out). People who stutter know what they want to say, but have difficulty saying it. Stuttering can have a strong and negative effect on the stutterer’s view of themselves and their social and work relationships. It is common for children between the ages of 2 to 5 to go through periods of stuttering. It might start overnight or build up slowly. Some children stutter occasionally, others all the time. It can vary depending on the situation, and might stop for a while and then start again. For around 70 to 75% of children, this is part of learning to speak, and it gets better on its own. It is rare for adults to begin stuttering.

Dr Doug Lee BDSc, MDSc (Melb) Specialist Orthodontist Peninsula Orthodontics 134 Tanti Avenue, Mornington

How important is iron in pregnancy? Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency state in Australia, with 34 per cent of women of childbearing age having iron deficiency. Pregnant women are more at risk, with daily iron needs increasing almost eight-fold throughout the pregnancy. Low iron can result in impaired brain development in babies and impact the mother’s physical and mental wellbeing. Common symptoms of iron deficiency include tiredness and fatigue, dizziness, headaches and a pale complexion. Due to the broad range of non-specific symptoms, these may be mistaken as a normal part of pregnancy and the early signs of iron deficiency may not be identified before anaemia develops. 84 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22


The new practice owner of Peninsula Orthodontics, Dr Doug Lee completed his dental degree at the University of Melbourne in 1991 and then his Master’s degree in Orthodontics at the University of Melbourne in 1995. He has over 25 years of experience as a specialist orthodontist, having run a highly successful practice in the Eastern suburbs of Melbourne for many years. He has also worked as a clinical demonstrator at The University of Melbourne Dental School. Doug has lived on the Mornington Peninsula for 13 years and as such, he is relishing the opportunity to increase his time working on the Peninsula and in the coming months will transition to full time as a practice owner. Outside of work hours, Doug enjoys building custom furniture at home in Red Hill, and loves spending time with his wife Julia (a local dentist on the Peninsula) and their two children.

Peninsula Orthodontics loves working with families. Our experienced team will provide you with an individual treatment plan to deliver only exceptional results Capture that perfect smile you will always treasure. No referral required.

Specialist Orthodontists Dr Doug Lee Dr Andrew Pepicelli Dr Andrea Phatouros Dr Daniel Sable

5975 5166

134 Tanti Ave Mornington



journey i nto

Matrescence By Stefanie Poole


f you’ve never heard the term matrescence you’re not alone. It’s a word, and concept, I wish I knew before my son was born. Becoming a mother was the most significant transformation of my life.

When I became a mother everything changed; physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. I struggled with my identity, expectations vs. reality, and feeling isolated and alone. Eight months into my motherhood journey I developed postnatal depression, anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder. At the time, I thought I was the only one experiencing the overwhelm and ambivalence around motherhood. What I know now is that the process has many ups and downs and that it is normal to feel a variety of emotions. We need to be gentle with ourselves. It takes time to adjust to our new role and build a relationship with our babies. Understanding matrescence provides us with more information and insight into this rite of passage allowing birthing people to feel understood, less alone, and more empowered. What is a Matrescence? “The process of becoming a mother, coined by Dana Raphael, Ph.D (1973), is a developmental passage where a woman transitions through pre-conception, pregnancy and birth, surrogacy or adoption, to the postnatal period and beyond. The exact length of matrescence is individual, recurs with each child, and may arguably last a lifetime.” (Aurelie Athan, PH.D).

86 86 Peninsula Peninsula Kids – Kids Summer – Summer 2021/22 2021/22

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We are all familiar with adolescence; a transition in which hormones shift and our bodies and minds undergo major changes. Matrescence is a similar experience in which the birthing person is learning to adapt to these changes. Matrescence also helps to normalise emotions and feelings that can be pathologized as perinatal mental health issues. It is important to differentiate feelings of discomfort and distress that are common during this phase of matrescence versus more serious ongoing mental and emotional distress (i.e. perinatal depression or anxiety) that may need further assessment. In our society, much of the focus is on the baby with less time spent focusing on celebrating and honouring the birthing person. Many times, we do not allow the time, space, communication and support to assist the birthing person to adapt to their new identity. Matrescence helps the birthing person understand that they are developing a new relationship with their bodies, minds and their babies. Some tips for preparing yourself to enter matrescence; • Create time for self-care: Self-care is not selfish! Nourishing yourself is so important to ensuring you can care for your baby and maintain aspects of your identity pre-motherhood. • Share your birth story: Creating space to talk or write about your birth story (both the challenges and the joys) can be a powerful, healing way to honour the transition into motherhood.

After 20 years of serving the visual needs of our patients and friends on The Mornington Peninsula, it’s time to celebrate our Birthday. However, it’s our turn to say thankyou, so we’re the ones handing out the presents. Buy any 2 pairs from our quality spectacle range with the same prescription and receive a 3-night accommodation package# at various locations within Australia, valued at ~ $750*, including; GOLD COAST, CAIRNS, SYDNEY, REGIONAL VICTORIA & CANBERRA. This offer is available whether you book a thorough Visual Assessment with us, though also if you bring in your own valid spectacle prescription from elsewhere.


continued next page...

161 MAIN ST MORNINGTON I 5973 5520 * Terms and Conditions apply – Including pay only govt. taxes. # While voucher supplies last.


• Seek out and be willing to receive support: It can be hard to ask for and accept support but it is crucial as you transition into motherhood. It can be useful to think about the support you will need prior to birth and postpartum. Developing a postpartum plan can help you explore your needs and the resources you will require. • Explore your expectations: Be aware of the emotions and changes you may encounter and explore your expectations versus reality. • Accept this time in your life: Know that motherhood is ever changing with moments that come and go. When you face challenging times think about them as lessons to be learned and an opportunity to explore your ideas, beliefs and values. • Celebrate the birth of becoming a mother: Create meaningful ways of honouring your transition into motherhood.

I encourage you to start using the word matrescence with your friends and family. By changing our language we can help birthing people feel less stigmatized, alone and misunderstood. When we begin to share stories of motherhood that encompass the rewards AND the challenges we begin to reduce guilt and shame and normalise the experience.

Stefanie Poole is a Mental Health Doula™ who combines her many years of experience within the mental health field to bring birthing families innovative, holistic support with a specialised focus on mental and emotional health and wellbeing. She is the founder of Birth Education for a Healthy Heart & Mind ™ and Mumma Bees ™, Peer Support and Training for Birthing Families. She lives on the Mornington Peninsula with her husband, son, and fur babies. You can connect with Stefanie here: Instagram: @the_stefanie_poole @mumma_bees







A humorous story, told through animations, contraptions, robotics and flying objects.

Alison Lester AM’s classic book comes to life on stage in a wonderful world of text, song, light, shadow and movement.

Book at or 03 9784 1060

Book at or 03 9784 1060

Wednesday 19 January 11am & 2pm | Cube 37 Tickets: $23 -$25 (Family of 4 $95)

88 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Tuesday 25 January 12pm Tickets: $23 -$25 (Family of 4 $95)

Maternity care

your way

Pregnancy and birth are exciting and challenging events for a family. At Peninsula Private Hospital, we understand this and deliver the ultimate boutique private maternity experience. Combining kindness, care, and expertise, we support you from pregnancy, birth and beyond. Want to learn more about having your baby at Peninsula Private Hospital? Scan the QR code to download a free Maternity Information Pack.

Find us on Instagram @peninsulaprivatematernity


Snap, Crackle, …there goes my womanhood By Stephanie Thompson


or those of us who know this famous breakfast cereal tagline, chances are you’ll be one of the 50% of women affected by POP. Yep, you read that right 1 in 2 of us!

My mission is to ensure that no other women live in silence. Ladies, it’s time to talk openly about what was once considered secret women’s business.

It’s not the fun, yummy rice bubble kind. Far from it in fact.

There are many causes that can contribute to the development of this condition, including pregnancy, vaginal birth, constipation, hormone changes, weight gain and more.

POP stands for Pelvic Organ Prolapse. A pro-what? What’s that? How do I fix that? These were my immediate words when I was told by my doctor that this is what I had. POP is a medical condition when a woman’s pelvic organs, such as the bladder, uterus and/or bowel, are no longer able to stay in the hammock shaped space called the pelvic floor. Instead, some or all, these pelvic organs slide out of place, with some descending so much they rest outside the vaginal opening. If, like me, you thought this was something that older women suffer from…I’m sorry to be the bad news bear but think again. How the hell is something so common, yet I had no clue? I felt stupid that I knew nothing about my own body. I was ashamed to talk about it with anyone. So, I went on pretending like nothing was wrong.

POP affects women of all ages in various ways. The severity of POP in individuals can vary dramatically and be graded from Stage 1 through to Stage 4. Generally, women who are considered Stage 1 or 2 might feel little difference in their daily life. However, some women with Stages 3 and 4, feel their life, as they know it, is changed forever. What organs and how much they slide out of place all depends on the grading you receive at diagnosis. This very notion of a diagnosis can be problematic in itself though.

I lived in silence and went to every doctor's appointment I could to find answers and treatment. I went to physiotherapy three times a week, did special pelvic exercises at home while pumping breast milk.

You see, there are many factors to consider such as who is giving the diagnosis (physiotherapist, surgeon or urogynecologist), what time of day it is, if you’re standing or lying down, where you are up to in your menstrual cycle or even how long you've been on your feet before the appointment. Technically speaking there are 4 grades or stages with grade 4 being the organ descending past the vaginal opening and hanging out.

After about nine months nothing seemed to be working; there was no improvement. My sadness went to anger. I was so angry that this could have been prevented; it wasn’t and there was nothing I could do about it now. I visited surgeons to try to have an operation; this also has a high failure rate.

Symptoms can be hard to describe. Some words used to describe symptoms include; pelvic pain, tensing, dragging, heaviness, back pain, painful sex, pain to walk, inability to toilet…it’s hard work and demoralising.

I had no idea of the severity or just how many women go through this.

90 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

The mental and emotional toll it takes on the individual, family and friends are significant

These feelings never have a day off; it’s day in and day out, 365 days a year. Over the years I’ve heard other POP sufferers utter the words ‘I just can’t live like this anymore’. Sounds intense but this is reality. The mental and emotional toll it takes on the individual, family and friends are significant. When you are told by medical professionals that what you are feeling is all in your head (yes that happens ALL THE TIME), or when you’re told it’s normal, it leaves you feeling very alone. You can start to feel like you failed at something. Did I not birth right? Did I not look after my pelvic floor enough? You also feel like it’s only you. You are the only person who must be going through this because you’ve never heard anyone around you talk about it. To me, one thing was clear, I had POP following the traumatic birth of my beautiful girl. The use of forceps tore the pelvic floor muscle away from the bone, leaving my bladder, uterus and vaginal wall no longer able to stay in place and protrude out the opening of my vagina. continued next page...

It was only when I had 4D imaging to see what actually was going on inside me that it was confirmed that I had a ‘significant three compartment prolapse, with bilateral avulsions’ (which just means muscle torn off the bone) and no amount of pelvic floor Kegel exercises were ever going to ‘fix’ my prolapses. So, I had to learn to live with it whether I liked it or not.

I wrote a book about it, created an online community for other women with POP and have since produced a short film and launched a podcast. I’m looking at every avenue to communicate this important message that we need to be learning more about our own health.

While there is no known cure or treatment currently available as such, typically, women are offered a non-surgical solution called a pessary.

While I might not be able to fully control what happens in my girl’s life, I can live by my new favourite saying by Dr. Maya Angelou: ‘When we know better, we can do better’.

This is a medical grade silicone device that comes in many shapes and sizes.

Health literacy is the only way we can really look at preventing this from happening to our girls.

Pessaries generally are hard to ‘stay in’. Believe me, I’ve tried seven different types and was professionally fitted at three different clinics. Pessary designs have not changed in decades. However there is a change in the FemTech space to start creating 3D printed pessaries and new designs.This day cannot come soon enough for women with POP. Most of the literature for upcoming medical professionals is also outdated. POP is talked about as a common and almost ‘normal’ part of being a woman. The true effects are not documented and therefore not understood. By this I’m referring to being told by a male Dr that POP ‘wasn’t that bad’ and to just get on with life. What he failed to see was - me. And how I had to live this modified life everyday just to survive each day in this body. I did the only thing I could do, and that was to ensure this never happens to my little girl. I was on a mission to try and educate everyone I could about POP and the things to be mindful of.

92 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

Stephanie Thompson is the author of The Day My Vagina Broke and chief Bravemumma. In 2015, Stephanie suffered a traumatic childbirth injury that changed her body and life forever. Stephanie is now on a mission to share her story and start conversations about how we view childbirth. She wants to do everything that she can to stop anything like this from happening to her daughter, Elsie. FB: Insta: Podcast: Web:


RED HILL SHOW 9 ALL RID D 4 t h ES th Saturday 12 March 2022 | H F LL R I ra E c L E w 02 h i th ent02 L 2 S SH 22 ry! | | H O O W W 94



Labour Day Weekend









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Mornington Peninsula Paddock - New Horticultural Stage & Activities - Cider & Mead Show - Woodchop Australian Mountainboarders - Exhibits - Animals galore from the smallest rats to heavy horses Sheep Shearing - Working Dogs - Pottery Workshops - Gumboot Throw - Tractors - Local Live Music diC e Art & Craft Stalls - Food Trucks - Kids sports games- Face painting - Carnival Rides and much more... r eM & ellams a d ohS star ts w5pm Red Hill Show Grounds - Arthurs Seat Rd, Red Hill | 8.30 ooW vaeh ot srotcarT r d c h po sroh y coL Tickets go on sale mid January (pre-ticketed event) via our website: vin se viL la sediR la Proudly supported by our major sponsors: Mornington Peninsula Shire, Hillview Quarries, MPe News Group, M dna m cisuand Swan 3MP Easy Listening, Balnarring Bendigo Bank, Hastings Mowers, Mornington Toyota St Sales u | ll c h 8 . 3 om -0 hs

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Granny’s Guide

Making enough milk By Yvette O’Dowd


reastfeeding isn't always easy. In fact, most parents experience challenges in establishing breastfeeding and some struggle maintaining it.

Many breastfeeding advocates play down the difficulties as they fear putting people off trying. Which might be true for some people, but most parents want to breastfeed their baby. It's not really breastfeeding which is overwhelming, but the environment women learn this natural technique in. Without the support of experienced role models in their family they rely on midwives, child health nurses, lactation consultants and breastfeeding counsellors to guide them. And dedicated as these all are, none can be with the mother and baby 24/7. That role often falls to a partner, friend or family member who likely has less knowledge of how breastfeeding works. Society's expectations of breastfeeding mothers can be unrealistic. Discharged from hospital with little experience of putting their baby to their breast, often on a regime of pumping and topping up with formula, mothers are set up for failure. Delays in support, waiting lists and financial barriers in accessing IBCLC lactation consultants and general worries about milk supply, attachment and infant sleep lead to many parents ending breastfeeding. When you understand how breasts make milk and how babies work with the breast to maintain milk supply, you can work with your breasts and baby to maximise milk production.

continued next page...

94 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22



We are holding our 3rd Annual - Open Weekend on the 19th he growing popularity of owning backyard hens has largely been due to families wanting to become more self-sustainable. & 20th of March 2022 from 10am to 4pm. It’s a great chance to visit the farm and see what keeping backyard chickens is all So why is keeping backyard hens so good for your family?

about. There will be a range of fun activities for the kids such as a petting zoo, face painting, craft activities, presentation on backyard hens and more!

Well, hens make for fantastic pets! Our breed of hens are Hy-line Browns which are extremely friendly and placid. They love company and like nothing more than to spend time interacting with their owners. We hear lots of entertaining stories from our customers such as their hens going on school runs, on swings with the kids and happily jumping up onto their laps.

Come visit us!

Good egg-laying breeds like our Hy-Line also quickly pay for themselves by providing your family with highly nutritious and delicious eggs throughout the year. Their eggs are high in protein and minerals but low in calories. You also have peace of mind knowing exactly how your hens are treated and what food they have eaten.

3590 Frankston-Flinders Road, Merricks Call Jason: 0406 691 231 OPEN Thu to Mon 10am - 4pm ( Closed Tue & Wed)

Of course, you can’t get more “local” food than what you get from your own backyard! When combined with a vegetable garden, your family becomes far more self-sufficient and able to live more sustainably. If you really had to avoid social contact, your hens and vegetables could keep your household well fed over the long-term. Hen ownership also teaches children some important, practical lessons about life. Not only do they need to be responsible for feeding and providing water for their hens but they must collect eggs daily and keep the coop clean and safe. Excess eggs can also be sold or given away to friends and neighbours which is a great way of benefiting others in your local community.

Looking for backyard hens but unsure where to start? Talking Hens is a family business that enjoys backyard hens. We specialise in friendly, egg laying hens with quality products to keep them happy and healthy. OPEN There’s nothing like the friendship and entertainment that you receive from our laying hens - a pleasure to be shared!

Talking Hens 3590 Frankston-Flinders Rd Merricks, Vic 3916

WEEKEND 19th & 20th 2 March 202

Opening Hours: Thursday to Monday 10am to 4pm Closed: Tuesday and Wednesday

For enquiries call Jason 0406 691 231 Email: Visit:


Responsive feeding.

Cluster Feeding: Normal, Natural and Hard Work.

Back in the day, we had to tell the midwives in hospital that we wanted to 'Demand Feed'. Otherwise, they would presume our babies were on a feeding schedule: three hourly feeds until a certain weight, then 4 hourly feeds.

Ah, it's that time of day! That time when your baby latches on to the boob around sunset and only comes off to swap sides ... again. Quick nappy change and ... back on the boob. Into the baby carrier and ... boob. More boob while you prep dinner, more while you eat dinner. Boob in front of the TV ... boob in bed while you scroll on your phone. Asleep! Ninja roll out from beside them to dash to the loo and ... okay, more boob!

Demand in this context was later reframed as 'Feeding According to Need'. Demand came with some negative connotations and put too much responsibility onto babies who might be too sleepy to demand very much at all!

And this is entirely normal!

Later again we talked about 'Cue-based Feeding' which is now also referred to as 'Responsive Feeding'. Which is what was being talked about all along; it just took several decades to get the language right!

Is it lots of feeds or one never-ending one? ... Does it matter?

Mothers and their breasts respond to behaviour in the baby signalling that they need to breastfeed. Generally, this signalling begins as they come to the end of a sleep cycle and are in a light sleep stage. Presuming baby is in the natural state against their mother’s upper body, they will begin to "nuzzle" and seek the nipple. If it is right by their mouth, they can attach quickly and often without audible sound. This is most likely when they are being held skin to skin or breastsleeping alongside the maternal body. The more distance between mouth and breast, the more effort required to find it. Initially the head will make small sweeping movements, expecting to brush against the nipple. The hands will become active, and the baby might suck on them during the search. As they continue seeking the nipple, the head movements will cover a wider area and they might even twist or turn the body. The mouth will open and close in gaping motions and sucking on the hands increase in intensity. As the baby begins to sense the breast is not where it should be, they will move from soft cooing noises to louder grunts and sounds before crying begins. Keeping baby close means they can go to the breast before the crying stage.

In the days before electric or even gas or oil lamps, when candles were expensive, and bed was warmer anyway ... snuggling up with your baby in the first few hours of night must have been quite nice. Then a few solid hours sleep before a few more feeds overnight and then up with the dawn. Our babies aren't broken. Our society and lifestyles are! If you are up too late at night because you want some adult time (Netflix and Instagram!), need to prepare for the workday ahead, or catch up on housework ... you are going to find the evening cluster feeding frustrating. If you have other children, a partner who isn't supportive, or you are juggling work and study with parenting - this will be hard. But your baby is behaving typically. Frequently removing milk works with your fluctuating hormones which peak in the early hours of the morning but dip naturally in the late afternoon and early evening. The breastfeeding season is intense. It is hard to get the balance right with modern lives. But adults can adapt and change; babies and toddlers cannot.

Breast storage and feed frequency. Breastfeeding works by supply and demand: take milk out, make more milk. Leave milk in, make less milk. This feedback loop between baby and breasts works around the clock, reliably keeping production running.

96 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

But there is another factor at play which you might not be aware of. It explains why breastfeeding frequency can vary so much between mothers.

Breastfeeding is not really something you do to your child. It is something the baby does with the breast. Your thinking brain just gets in the way. Babies only need us to facilitate access to the boob.

We are all unique.

Our society has damaged breastfeeding knowledge so badly that we live in anticipation of it failing. We look for signs it is not working and view nearly all behaviour as indicators of breastfeeding going wrong. We don't trust our breasts and we don't trust our babies.

And this uniqueness includes what goes on inside our breasts. While we focus a lot on the size, shape, and appearance of breasts we really don't think about how they function. Breasts produce and store breastmilk. But while the amount we produce gets all the attention during breastfeeding the amount we can store is rarely discussed. And the variation between individuals is dramatic. When your storage space is compact ... say you have a tiny pantry in your kitchen, you need to shop little and often. But if you have extensive pantry with ample room, you can shop in bulk and do so less often. You still consume the same amount of food each day, but your shopping habits are different because of your storage availability. This is how it works with breastfeeding. If your milk storage space within the breast is compact, your baby shops (feeds) little and often and your breasts restock frequently. But if you have extensive storage capacity, your baby can shop (feed) less often, and your breasts restock less often. This is not related to breast size but how they work. A very small breast might have huge storage capacity and a large one very little. Or the opposite. Babies simply feed as often as they need to meet their needs around the clock. It works perfectly - unless interfered with by clocks, schedules, charts and measurements.

Breastfeeding has had some bad PR since formula marketing began. The advertising industry knows exactly which buttons to press and anxiety about supply is top of the list for breastfeeding parents. Lack of confidence is much more common than lack of milk. But one of the major causes of low supply is lack of breastfeeding! The goal of maximising the time between breastfeeds is the biggest barrier to milk production. Offering the breast first is the best course of action, whatever may have woken or disturbed the baby in the first place. It doesn't matter what the problem is when you have a universal solution always available. You can expect a typical day to include 8-12 breastfeeds and periods of increased growth and development will mean increased frequency and duration of time at the breast. Breastfeed as often as they take it and you will make enough, they will take enough, and you can trust it. Just as human mothers have for millennia.

Feed frequently to make milk. There are times when it's just not worth moving the boob away from the baby. Periods of increased breastfeeding signal to the breast to increase production because the infant has some big stuff going on. You literally need to go with the flow. You can invest a lot of thinking into the 'Why' of the increased feeding but looking at it as a problem to be solved is considering it from entirely the wrong perspective. Because you are observing a problem being solved.

Yvette O’Dowd is not your typical grandmother! This mother of three and 'Granny' of three has been a breastfeeding counsellor since 1992. In 2014, Yvette established the Southern Natural Parenting Network, incorporating South Eastern Babywearing Group. With 11,000 members world-wide, the group supports parents interested in breastfeeding, babywearing, co-sleeping, baby-led weaning and modern cloth nappies and other aspects of gentle, natural parenting. SouthernNaturalParentingNetwork


Under the Sea Art Booklet


The weather is warming up, and some beach days will be on the agenda for most families this Summer. Choosing art projects based on relatable and relevant subjects/experience is a meaningful motivator for children to get creative. That’s why this little Under the Sea Art booklet is a perfect arty-noon session to do at this time of year after a day at the beach. Folded art booklets are a gorgeous format to showcase your child’s drawing, painting and collage skills, while also resulting in a beautiful masterpiece that can take centre stage on your mantle piece, dinning room table or as a gift. This project also works well for any theme; flower gardens, woodland or winter wonderland with a Santa’s sleigh. Set your little artist up with these supplies and get started!

You’ll need: Thick A3 Art Paper, watercolour paper or cardstock Medium Round Brush

Oil Pastels

Watercolour Paints

Crayons and Markers


Glue Stick

How to do it: 1 For the background fold then cut your A3 paper in half vertically. On one piece of paper draw coral, seaweed, rocks with oil pastels. Also add blue and yellow wiggly lines to indicate the ocean and sand. 2 Painting: Use watercolour paints to add colour to the underwater scene. Leave to dry. 3

Drawing & Colouring Now its time to have some fun drawing sea creatures and beachy objects. Use your remaining art paper and a black marker to fill the page with simple outlines of fish, star fish, beach box, beach umbrella,

maybe a rowboat? Once your page is full add colour and patterns with markers and crayons, then cut out. 4 Fold: For this art booklet to stand upright fold the background paper into four equal sections. Stand it on your table to test it! 5 Arrange: You’re now ready to arrange your beachy drawings onto your background. Place each drawing and then glue each drawing in place to complete your artwork. Make sure you don’t glue your drawings over a fold.

Georgie Doherty is a qualified art teacher, educator and mum based on the Mornington Peninsula. She is the founder of Art With Georgie, an Online Art Club helping families foster creativity in their home through fun, engaging online art lessons for kids. Art With Georgie also offers children’s school holiday art camps, term art classes and creative activities for birthday parties. Georgie is also mum to Eve, a one in a million baby who was born with a rare genetic condition called Interstitial Lung Disease and severe Pulmonary Hypertension. She is an advocate for lung research and awareness, hoping to inspire others with her story and journey into motherhood. 98 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

COLOUR ME IN FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN ENCHANTED ADVENTURE GARDEN FAMILY PASSES. 1ST PRIZE – Family annual general membership (2 adults, 2 children) unlimited general admission access for 12 months. Value $300 2ND PRIZE – 2 adults and 2 children general admission tickets. Value $120 Email entries to or PM your artwork to Winner chosen 14/02/2022. Prizes must be collected from Peninsula Kids offices, 63 Watt Road Mornington (during office hours, 9am-5pm)

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Mornington Enrol Now for 2022


At Aurrum Kids our vision is to provide the best childcare education and environment.

Mornington Aurrum Kids is a high-quality centre featuring large windows to capture sunlight and warmth in the classrooms that open onto the playground featuring all weather surfaces and covered decks. 3 and 4 year old Kinder available in 2022. 2022 enrolments filling fast, contact us for a tour and availability now

75 Mornington-Tyabb Rd, Mornington, VIC 3931 Call 1300 287 786

Email 100 Peninsula Kids – Summer 2021/22

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