Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Are we reliving the 1980s? 

Zombies have become part of pop culture once again, taking many of us back to our youth. Whether in the #1-rated The Walking Dead TV series, Resident Evil movie franchise, or Minecraft game craze, zombies are everywhere. The brain-hungry mythological creatures often represent grotesque violence. As a parent, I shield my children from such content. When my youngest asked to play, I presumed it would be no different than other zombie games. Alas, I was wrong. is a legitimately kid-friendly zombie game. There is no blood, as the game’s graphics consist of simple, 2D geometric shapes. Monsters are green or grey circles, and they look anything but realistic. The gameplay will challenge kids and adults of all ages, requiring strategy and persistence to succeed. Dare I say it— can be downright educational.

Learning to Build
Nothing comes easy in this game. Right from the start, players will learn the value of hard work. Resources are required to build walls, doors, and towers. Much like farmers, players must harvest items from the earth. They can gather wood from trees and stone from giant boulders. Harvesting is simple—simply click and hold to hack with a pickaxe. But, gathering resources takes time. Patient, dedicated players will accumulate enough resources to build a safe base.

Each gamer’s base is based around a stash of gold (pun intended). Every night, a pack of zombies will come to steal that gold. In order to outlast the monsters, each player must secure their base. If your children have played tower defense games, then they’re already familiar with this concept. The objective is not to go on the offensive and actively attack others. Instead, you build as many defenses as possible to protect your home. has arrow towers and bomb towers, among others. Arrows strike far and fast, while slow-launching bombs are good for knocking out large zombie groups.

The Value of Currency
There is an entire ecosystem within If you’ve ever been asked to buy items for your kids’ mobile games, don’t worry—there are no real-world purchases in Instead, players spend virtual gold on all sorts of new items. There are many types of goods available in the shop, which brings up the topic of money management. Spending gold wisely is one of the best ways to succeed in By buying the right items at the right times, players can advance much more easily.

When your young ones play on, they might ask for your help. Surprisingly, we can teach the values of budgeting (in a zombie game!). If your child’s fortress isn’t strong enough, it might need an extra layer of inexpensive walls. When a player has a solid base and lot of gold, then it might be time to upgrade everything. Stronger weapons, armor, and pets pave a much easier road to success.

Overall is a zombie game without harsh violence. During these darker times, it’s a refreshingly bright and educational take on a pop culture phenomenon.

Monday, 22 May 2017

Important Things to Know Before Investing in a Mutual Fund


When we are told that we can grow our money without worrying too much, the question we ask is how we could sign up for it right away. Of course, anything that involves money is not going to be too simple, albeit, there are ways in which you could earn with less the stress. It is called mutual funds investment, and more and more people are dabbling into it. 

Investing, in general, is one of the best ways to grow your money. There are different ways to do it, too, and you can choose based on your preferences and how much you are willing to risk. Naturally, investing is a risk, just like opening a business. That hesitation and fear you are feeling are understandable, and it is actually part of the investing journey. But there are ways to avoid being at risk, and the first step is knowing what mutual fund investment is. 

This article will explain how mutual funds work and how it can benefit you when you start investing.
What are mutual funds?

Mutual funds is an investment that is made up of a pool of money, and yours will be collected to take part in it. The money can come from individuals or organisations. The type of mutual funds that will be chosen for your pool will highly depend on your financial goals. There are long-term growth investments, and there are short-term growth investments where each involves a certain level of risk.
Before you start putting money in a mutual fund, you should speak with an adviser. Your bank probably offers mutual funds, and you can directly invest in your bank if you choose to do so. But if you want to have different options, you can look for official investment associations or organisations whose job is to look at investment lists. In any case, you should have a financial adviser or an investment coach to help you decide based on your goals and needs.

Closed-end funds vs. Open-end funds
Mutual fund investment is further divided into two:

A closed-end fund is when there is only a specific number of shares offered to the public. These are traded on the open market and are influenced by the laws of supply and demand. Investors will not be able to redeem their shares nor will they be issued new ones.

An open-end fund is the opposite; there is no specific number of shares offered to the public. The majority of mutual funds fall under the open-end funds. As an investor, you can be issued new shared based on the current net asset value, and you will be able to redeem shares if you decide to sell. 
Open-end funds are subdivided into two:

Load means there is a sales commission involved on top of the net asset value of the fund's shares. 
No-load is when there are lower expenses and a much higher return on investment.

Benefits of mutual fund investment
The main feature of mutual fund investment is its accessibility. You do not need to have a huge amount of money to start. Additionally, there is a dedicated fund manager who will devote their time focusing on your investment portfolio, all you need to do is to monitor its performance every now and then. Of course, this does not mean you should not collaborate with your managers, but the burden of responsibility will not fall on your shoulders. 

If you want to try out investing, a mutual fund is a good place to start. Remember to do your research and ask your financial adviser lots of questions. This will give you a much clearer idea of what happens to your money once the investment starts.

Friday, 19 May 2017

Dog's Birthday's and the Lily's Kitchen Birthday Surprise Box

Dalmatian Puppy

Having a puppy has quite honestly been one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life, but equally it has also been one of the most rewarding, did I think it was going to be quite so challenging? Nope. Even after all of the breed research I did, was I mentally and physically prepared for all that having a dog really meant? 

Honestly... Nope.

On the 9th June, Lux turns One year old. The little puppy I brought home back on the 6th August is substantially bigger, stronger and more head strong than ever before, and you certainly know that you have him.

In the 9 months since we brought him home (It's only 9 months!? Wow it definitely feels like longer) he has caused some real mischief. He's chewed up shoes, pants, socks, doormats, toys, and oh yeah... He also ate a hole in my vinyl floor. 

Thanks pup.Dally Smile
This is just what goes on in the house... Outside the house he has never managed to nail the 'walking to heal', he does however do a great impersonation of a freight train, maybe you have seen us fly past you at speed in the street, and by fly I mean that I have been hanging on for dear life behind him like one of those parachutes on the boats you find abroad. 

Let's just say, there is never a dull moment. 


It was just over this weekend that I was told by someone that they have never seen a dog who is so excited by the world. Lux literally loves to experience everything. Other dogs, people, children, you name it, Lux wants to be involved. This can make walking him an experience no matter how you choose to look at it. 

He doesn't have an aggressive bone in his body, but his sheer size combined with his energy can make some people understandably feel uneasy.

Dalmatian Lily's Kitchen Birthday Surprise Box

With Lux turning One, Leo has insisted that he has his own Birthday treat. Leo loves Birthday's and apparently his puppy's is no different. There was talk of me getting into the kitchen and baking a dog friendly Birthday Cake. No kidding... Leo meant every word. 

Turns out that Leo is not the only one who wants to celebrate his canine friends special day, 75% of pet owners celebrate their pup's birthday's! This is why Lily's Kitchen have responded to the growing demand with the launch of their Birthday Surprise Gift Box.

Dalmatian Lily's Kitchen Birthday Surprise Box

The Birthday Surprise Gift box is gorgeous, it is hand illustrated in golden Yellow and Red. Of course it has been Inspired by a steak frites dinner, it means your dog can enjoy real steak with potatoes, broccoli and herbs. It’s the kind of birthday cake every dog really wants on their birthday – nourishing, wholesome and tail-waggingly delicious!

Lux was lucky enough to be sent his very own sample to taste, and from the above photos you can see just how happy he was to take part. He automatically knew this feast was for him and his tail was wagging even more than usual.

Lily's Kitchen Birthday Surprise Box

Lily's Kitchen Birthday Surprise Box

What’s inside the gift box:
400g Steak Dinner with organic potatoes and broccoli
50g Organic Cheese & Apple Treats with apple and farmhouse cheddar
A birthday card all about your wonderful dog
Lily's Kitchen Birthday Surprise Box

Lily's Kitchen only use the best ingredients, it's proper food that’s easy to digest and deliciously nourishing so you don't need to worry about any nasties being included in your dog's diet. The Lily's Kitchen recipes never include overly processed ingredients, added fillers, artificial flavourings, preservatives or sweeteners, and never any meat derivatives or meat meal.

What To Do With Expensive Old Jewellery

Image by iceyice2011 via Flickr

Has your great-aunt of beloved grandmother left you with beautiful pieces of expensive gold jewellery that you really have no use for? Fortunately, there are a few options for you.

1. Keep It
Maybe your mother and grandfather really do want you to look after the keepsakes for your own children. Perhaps they are meant as family heirlooms. If that is the case, put everything in a safety deposit box and save it for when your daughter turns eighteen and you can pass it on to her.

2. Wear It 
Maybe you do love the keepsakes and they suit your style. That’s great! Then, have them professionally cleaned and start wearing them. Alternatively, take them to a jeweller and have them updated with stones or metal you love and keep them at the top of your jewellery box to wear regularly. 

3. Get Them Out and Sell Them 
If you really have no use for the pieces and could do with the cash instead, consider selling the items to get cash for gold on the spot. Perhaps you really cannot stand clip-on earrings or you are allergic to yellow gold. That’s okay, with the money you make on grandma’s expensive items, you can update your jewellery box with pieces you really do love. 

4. Alter Things Just a Little 
Let’s say you have an old diamond wedding ring from great aunt Margaret and it’s pretty, but not quite your style. The good news is that you can remove the diamonds and make something completely new and unique. Use the diamond in a new pendant or ring that you will enjoy wearing and you will still be able to remember aunt Margaret and your love for her through the piece. 

Does It Matter? 
It really doesn’t matter if you are changing up old expensive jewellery or selling it for cash. What matters is that you get use – one way or another – out of the items. Whatever you use the cash for, if you sell the jewellery, it will still be a memento of your beloved family member or of special times. 

You may also want to consider recycling old jewellery with gemstones. Let’s say you have a necklace that has real emeralds, or even sapphire earrings. These items will fetch a good price if you want to sell them for cash, and if you send them to someone who is able to remanufacture them or even sell them as is, you at least know that the gemstones will go to someone who will appreciate them more and get better use out of them.

Don’t forget to take the metal into consideration. Silver, platinum, and gold can all be recycled and you can make good money when doing so. The precious metals tend to have a high market value and can be melted down for new jewellery to be created. 

Whether you decide to keep your jewellery, have it updated, or sell it, you can be sure that you are doing what is right for you.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Body Shaming - It comes in all shapes and sizes

Body Shaming - Skinny Shaming

I am a supporter and I like to help build people up. If someone asks me for help or advice then I will take the time to talk to them about what it is that they want to do. I believe in raising people up and watching them fly, call me crazy but I like watching people succeed. It is for this reason that I just cannot get my head around anybody promoting anything less than that. I cannot understand body shaming no matter which perspective that I look at it from. 

Body shaming is everywhere.

Body shaming is anything negative that is said about ANY person, and body shaming is not just directed at women, it is directed at the entire human race. Body shaming is pointing out specific qualities on a person and viewing them as a negative, body shaming is using the qualities about what makes them who they are, against them. 

I have been targeted in the past for being 'skinny', and the ironic thing is that the people who have made comments about me, have never once considered that what they say is exactly the same as comments that are made about larger people. Of course when people say horrible things about bigger framed ladies, this is rude and is referred to as fat shaming, but those same comments targeted at smaller framed girls are equally as damaging, and should be seen in the same light.

Body Shaming - Skinny Shaming

One of the main points directed at me is my small chest. I have small boobs, and do you know what? That's ok. As a teenager I felt very self conscious about this fact, I willed them to grow but not even with all the wishing power sent their way did they ever really blossom past a B cup. It's taken me well into my late 20's to really accept them and realise that even though they aren't as big as I once wished them to be, they are still part of who I am and that makes them beautiful.

I finally realised that I am in proportion, I am slim and so are my boobs, and I am happy in the skin that I am in.

Lady Gaga Fat Shamed

You only have to look to the tabloids to see body shaming in it's finest form, whether Victoria Beckham is being ripped apart for her slender physique or if Lady Gaga's incredible voice takes a back seat as fans go into a frenzy over her supposed 'flabby tummy', the everyday likes of you and I are surely in for serious trouble!

We have to ask ourselves what gives us the right to comment? What gives us the right to an opinion on the way that somebody looks? No matter how hard I press myself to think about it I just cannot come up with an answer that would validate the comments and the hate that body shaming generates. 

Fat Shaming

We live in a generation that puts girl on girl, boy on girl, boy on boy and girl on boy, there is an expectation to how we are supposed to look, an expectation on having the 'perfect body', but what even is a perfect body? Does such a thing even exist? Surely if you are happy in the skin you are in  then it does not matter how everyone else around you looks, all that matters is that they too are happy in their own bodies, and we provide the support and guidance in order to help the rising generations feel accepted and loved for exactly who they are.

I can only imagine the damage that today's judgement and hate for one another will have on our children.

As a Mother I am raising Leo to understand that people come in all shapes, colours and sizes, it's what makes us all so unique and so different from one another, and that's ok. Can you imagine if we all looked the same? How boring would that be. We are diverse and not one person is the same, whether we have birthmarks, different skin colours, one leg, we're big, we're small, one eye, no eyes, big hair, flat hair, big boobs, little boobs or ANYTHING that makes us stand out from the crowd, they are things that we should be promoting and CELEBRATING!

They are the things that make us who we are, and the things that make us beautiful.

Laci Green Quote

Body shaming is pointing out specific qualities on a person and viewing them as a negative, body shaming is using the qualities about what makes them who they are, against them. 

I put myself in the public eye, I share my fitness journey, and I accept that I won't be everybody's cup of tea. The reason that I share my fitness journey is not about vanity, it is not about putting myself in the limelight. It is to showcase that anybody can make a change if they so desire. I get messages everyday asking for advice on how people can live a healthier life, and I love that I get to try and help so many different people from my own personal experiences, but then equally I get my share of negative comments...

I have thick skin, and I am very proud of that thick skin. I can read the negative comments about myself and smile. I can laugh it off, but then I think about it.... Not everybody is as thick skinned as I am. Why should they have to feel inferior about comments that are made about them in public? The answer is that they shouldn't. 

The internet gives everybody a voice, and they use that voice to say things to people that they would ordinarily never say to somebody's face. The internet provides a comfortable setting for people to literally say whatever pops into their heads, and I don't really think that these people give much thought into what they say.

The time has come for people to stop and think, because the things they say will have repercussions, maybe not directly on themselves but almost certainly to the people that they address them to.

It's time to remember that kindness has the power to make you the most beautiful person in the world, no matter what you look like.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Homecooked meals

I spend a lot of time in my kitchen, I think it is fair to assume that most people do, because after all the kitchen really is the heart of the home. 

I love cooking, and I can only really say that this is a hobby that has come around in recent years because of my passion for health and fitness. I discovered that by cooking from scratch, I could eat tasty food that I enjoyed, and also know the exactly ingredients of what went into the recipes, and in turn this helped me to achieve my personal fitness goals. 

I think the beauty of preparing your own home cooked meals is that you can be that little more adventurous, you can spiralize some zucchini noodles to throw into some home made pesto or you can cook up a lasagna using butternut squash slices in replacement of the pasta sheets. The possibilities really are endless, and it puts you in complete control of what goes into your body.

As I cook up to 3 times a day, and it has to be said that I'm not the neatest chef in the world, I am prone to dropping things all over my freshly cleaned stove or splashing sauce up the back of the cooker and inevitably the wall behind it, and this does not sit very well with my inner neat freak. I have been looking at getting some acrylic  kitchen splash-backs from Simply Plastics to sit behind my stove, so that I can easily wipe away the daily mess that may land there (thus saving my magnolia wall).

It was only a few years ago that I was ordering ample takeaways each week, and I thought preparing my own food meant grabbing a shop bought jar of pasta sauce and boiling some spaghetti in a pan. Somewhere along the way I found a love in cooking healthy wholesome food that now feeds the whole family, and none of us have looked back.

Takeaways are a rarity these days as I much prefer to cook a healthier curry at home, where you get all the taste of a takeout, but none of the bad bits. I realised that you don't have to compensate on taste when you eat healthily, but you can cut all of the bad bits out and still enjoy your meal. 

Being Diagnosed With Temporomandibular Joint Disorder

Image by kaye blegvad via Flickr

If you have recently been diagnosed with Temporomandibular Joint Disorder and are still unsure of what it means, you can find plenty of information on the subject such as on the website. The condition is treatable and taking medication along with potentially changing your diet can help to treat the symptoms that you suffer.  

The Temporomandibular Joint 

The Temporomandibular Joint is the joint where the lower jaw connects to the skull and is located just in front of the ear on each side of your head. It is a hinge joint and extremely flexible allowing the jaw to move smoothly in many different directions. The range of movement allowed to the jaw means that you can move it up and down allowing you to eat and talk, as well as move it from side to side, enabling you to grind food in your mouth. When you do not have the full range of motion available in your jaw, it can lead to discomfort and frustration.

The Causes

Medical opinion is not entirely sure as to the exact cause of this condition, and the problem arises when there are issues with the muscles controlling the jaw, or even with the joint itself. If you have suffered a blow to the head, whiplash, an injury to the jaw, or the muscles around the neck, you can develop the symptoms of Temporomandibular Joint Disorder.

Grinding your teeth and stress can also lead to the condition, as well as Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis, toothache and gum disease can also lead to suffering. If you are suffering any problems with your jaw after a recent accident, then you should look for a trusted dentist in North Sydney or in your local area to take a look at your injuries and check if you have this condition. 

The Symptoms

There are multiple symptoms that you can experience when suffering from this condition that can cause you some extreme discomfort. You may experience pain when you chew or open your mouth wide, or your range of movement can be limited. You can experience a clicking sound in your jaw when you eat, or you may suffer pain around the jaw, neck, and shoulders areas almost continuously. You can also experience an overbite where your two sets of teeth no longer fit together properly, or you may experience a swelling to the side of your face. The symptoms are varied and manifest in different ways with different people. You may experience one or all of the symptoms described, depending on how severe the case is.

The Treatment

Various treatments are available to help relieve the symptoms of the condition, and before trying any of them, you should make sure that you visit your local dentist first. There are medications that you can be prescribed to help treat the condition, and applying a hot or cold pack can also offer some relief. Eating soft foods will also contribute to preventing the discomfort felt when eating, and you can also have a splint made to fit over your teeth which you wear when you are sleeping. Although there is no cure for Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, it is a condition that can be treated. You and your dentist just need to find what works best for you!