Saturday, 29 December 2012

Happy New Year and My Favourite Posts for 2012

On Thursday 7th of June this year, I sat around my house and debated taking the plunge in to the blogging world. After much deliberation I set up and created Utterly Organised with the hope that I might have one or two people read and follow my page. I am absolutely blown away that after 6 months that I have just over 2000 faces on my Facebook page and following my adventures.
 
2012 has been an amazing year, not only did I start my own blog, but I also started up my little Event Hire and Styling business which has been also amazing and so much fun. These two new ventures though have only paled in comparison to the other new adventure that started this year - motherhood.
 
 
I wanted to thank each and every single one of you that have supported and followed my blogging journey to date, and I really do look forward to sharing 2013 with you all. The blog has been a really amazing way to connect with so many different people, which was something that I had missed leaving an office environment and starting maternity leave.
 
I have plenty of exciting things in store for 2013, but thought that I would end the year by sharing some of my favourite blog posts of the year just in case you missed out first time around...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I truly do love hearing from you and receiving ideas, inspiration and requests for things to be featured on the blog. So please anytime feel free to comment on my Facebook Page, send me an email at utterlyorganised@gmail.com or simply comment under my blog posts.
 
Wishing you all a wonderful 2013 and may all your dreams come true in the New Year!!

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Getting Organised for Christmas 2013... You Cannot be Serious!!

All that lead up to Christmas (especially with the retailers spreading Christmas fever as early as October) and in one very short, crazy and manic 24 hour period it is all over for another year.
 
Or is it?!
 
Even though the last thing we may want to think about is pudding recipes, ways to decorate your tree and buy anymore wrapping paper, there really is no better time than NOW, yes now, to get ready for next year.
 
So what can you do to get in front for Christmas 2013?
 
 
The post Christmas Sales are a perfect time to stock up on Christmas Decorations for next year, with most retailers discounting by 50 - 70% post Christmas. So if you love some of the gorgeous (yet expensive) decorations at certain retailers, then wait til post Christmas to nab them at far more affordable prices - I always do!!
 
I try and add one major piece to my collection each year in the post Christmas sales. This year I had my heart set on this Advent Calendar with draws for hiding treats or messages for each day of the festive season. Unfortunately I couldn't bring myself to pay $70 for it, but at 50% it was far more wallet friendly and it is getting packed away for next year!!
 
 
Now is also a perfect opportunity to also stock up on gift wrap, cards and bows for next year because quite frankly these don't date from one year to the next. Pop these away in storage with your other Christmas goodies and relish in how organised you are that you already have these ready to go when December rolls around.
 
If you always struggle for ideas and inspiration come Christmas time, why not put together a little inspiration folder for the festive season and add to it over the year.
 
I always love to pop some ideas in my folder post Christmas after I have seen so many wonderful ideas on Facebook, Pinterest and the Internet. So if you saw a red and silver theme that you want to replicate next year, or a brown rice salad recipe that would be perfect on your Christmas table, why not write down the recipes, ideas and inspiration that you would like to give a go next year in your 'folder'. That way when Chrissie does roll around, you will have made a head start on the planning.
 
 
 
I also keep a similar folder for my ideas for Easter and other general festive/party ideas. These are the same folders and way of organising my recipes as featured here.
 
Before you recycle all of your Christmas cards from this year, why not write yourself a note or save a spreadsheet with a list of who sent you Christmas cards over the year so that you can ensure that you don't miss them out next year.
 
I must admit I was very slack again this year and didn't post a single card, but there is always next year to reedeem myself isn't there?!
 
So there you have it, just a couple of my little tips to stay ahead for Christmas next year. What about you? Do you like to get organised for Christmas well in advance? Or can you not bare the thought of anything Christmasy at least for a full 11.5 months?!

Friday, 21 December 2012

Quick, Easy & Delicious Chocolate Mousse Recipe...

Is it just me or is the 'traditional' chocolate mousse a bit tricky to master? I have always found it a little bit hard for some reason, give me any other dessert recipe and I don't have a problem!! 
 
So if you like me struggle a bit, I hope that you will enjoy this chocolate mousse recipe that is just so simple, quick, easy and most importantly delicious to make.
 
I use this recipe to fill up my mini chocolate mousse pots for events and parties, but you can serve up in any bowls or containers that you like!



Chocolate Mousse Recipe

This recipe has been adapted from Taste.com.au

You'll Need:

  • 250g good quality dark cooking chocolate broken up (I actually oped for Cadbury Milk Cooking Chocolate instead)
  • 600ml Thick Custard (I used the Dairy Farmers Thick Custard, or you can make this yourself)
  • 300ml Thickened Cream (be sure to use Full Fat, the Low Fat just doesn't work!)

Method:

  1. Place custard and chocolate (which should be broken up in to pieces) in to a heatproof bowl and place over a saucepan of simmering water.
  2. Use a spoon and stir mixture until chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth
  3. Set aside mixture to cool for approx 15 - 20 minutes
  4. Use an electric beater/Thermomix/Kitchen Aid to whisk cream in a bowl, just until soft peaks form
  5. Add cream to the chocolate mixture and fold until combined (do not over-mix)
  6. Spoon in to serving glasses or pots and cover with cling film
  7. Place in fridge for approx 2 hours until set (fine to leave overnight)
  8. Sprinkle with cream, shaved white chocolate or anything your heart desires when serving!!

 
Christmas and Chocolate go hand in hand, so this is the perfect Chrissie Day dessert to sit alongside your traditional pudding and a fresh summer fruit salad - enjoy!!

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Festive Fizz - Punch Recipe for Christmas and New Years Celebrations!

For as long as I can remember, no Christmas Day has been complete without the addition of a bit of punch. Year after year, my Mum would (and still does) wheel out her punch bowl that she received as an engagement gift all those years ago, ready to serve up punch for Christmas Day.
 
This love of punch has definitely been passed down to me, because not only am I partial to punch at Christmas time, but I will whip up a batch for birthday parties, BBQ's, trips to the races - any occasion really! I am often given the honour of 'chief punch maker' at peoples events and often asked for my recipe. So here it is, it is so simple and you can make it as boozy... or not.... as your heart desires.... I will leave that to you!
 
You'll Need:
  • 2 Litres of Lemonade
  • 1.25 Litres Dry Ginger Ale
  • 1 Litre of Fruit Juice - I love the Golden Circle tinned stuff
Optional but highly recommended:
  • A generous splash of vodka
  • 1-2 Cups of sliced fruit - I love fresh pineapple and strawberries
 
Method:
 
Simply mix everything together and serve!!
 
 
 
Serving Tip:
 
If you don't have a punch bowl, then don't go to the expense of an expensive punch set.
 
I love and use the Ikea Trygg bowls, which are a steal at $2.99 and a perfect size for a punch bowl.
Source: Ikea Australia
It works well to have two bowls, and make one boozy and one not - just make sure you label them and don't get the two confused after a few too many glasses of punch!
 
Just add a cheap soup ladle and you are done - hope you enjoy it as much as I do!!

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Spinach Dip Recipe - Festive Season Food!!

Well with Mr B's birthday done and dusted, it is time to turn my attention on to Christmas, and with that comes one of my all time favourite things about the festive season - festive food of course!!
 
Over the course of the next week, I am going to share some super easy and super yummy recipes that you might like to whip up over the silly season.
 
To kick things off, I have the lovely Liv from Thermomix Oz joining us as a guest blogger with one amazing sounding dip that I know I'll be whipping up for sure. If you are a fellow Thermomix fan, you will love the Thermomix Oz blog and Facebook page, both are full of recipes and tips from Liv using this amazing appliance.

Hi I'm Liv - a wife and mum to two gorgeous little girls and with a passion for yummy, wholesome food. Although I'm very new the world of blogging, I'm slowing catching on! I love sharing tried and tested recipes in the hope that we can all save time and money that's better spent with our family!
 
One of the things I found most challenging before we got a Thermomix was finding enough time to set aside in order to make nutritious and healthy food, especially at Christmas! It's so convenient to choose ready made and pre-packaged food and although it's not always unhealthy - it does usually come along with a few extra preservatives or additives that are often best avoided.
 
Dip was one of the things I used to grab pre-made and ready to eat - I never entertained the idea of making it at home. Now, I have no excuse not to make it! It would take me longer to get into my car to go buy a dip from my local supermarket, than it would to whip this up in my Thermomix! It's light, healthy, tastes fabulous and costs a fraction of the pre-packaged kind!
 
In place of the regular cream cheese, this recipe uses lighter sour cream and mayonnaise and gets plenty of flavour from yummy grated parmesan cheese. It's a perfect summer dip - a great partner for both veggies and crackers alike. This did not last long at our place!
 
Creamy Spinach Dip
 
Ingredients
285g Spinach, cooked and finely chopped, cooled
1/2 Cup Light Sour Cream
5 Tablespoons Light Mayonnaise
1/3 Cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
1/4 Cup Shallots, finely chopped

Directions
Cook spinach and cool. Squeeze out excess moisture and set aside. **I used thawed frozen spinach to save time, cooked in the microwave and it was already finely chopped. You may use fresh spinach, go with whatever is easiest for you!
 
Roughly chop parmesan cheese into cubes and place into your Thermomix bowl. Grate for 10 Seconds, Speed 8.

Chop shallots and add to parmesan in bowl, along with cooled spinach, sour cream and mayonnaise.
 
Mix for 10 - 20 Seconds, Speed 8. Scrape down sides of bowl and mix for a further 10 Seconds if necessary, Speed 6 - 8.
 
Serve with fresh vegetables and/or savoury crackers. If you need to make this a day in advance, remove from refrigerator about 30 minutes before serving. Enjoy!http://thermomixoz.blogspot.com.au/
 
 
 
Thanks again for joining us Liv, if you are after more Christmas recipes for your Thermomix be sure to check out the Thermomix Oz blog, there is an amazing Oreo Truffle recipe on there that would be perfect as a gift for loved ones or just with coffee post Christmas Day lunch!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Make Christmas Easy Planner Giveaway!

In case you missed out on yesterday's post, the fabulous Marissa from Beautifully Organised has covered all (and I mean all) bases when it comes to helping you get organised for Christmas. Her Make Christmas Easy Planner, does just that, and you can read about it here.
 

 
I am fortunate to be able to make one lucky readers Christmas a bit more Organised this year, because one lucky reader is going to receive a copy of the planner to get cracking on organising this years festive season.
 
Because Chrissie really is just around the corner, this giveaway really is short and sweet, so pop your entry in now and good luck!! 
  • Utterly Organised in conjunction with Beautifully Organised are giving one lucky reader the chance to win a Christmas Made Easy Planner valued at $29.95
  • The Giveaway will be hosted on the Utterly Organised blog and is open to all of my very lovely readers!
  • Readers may only enter the competition once, multiple entries will not be accepted
  • The Giveaway will commence at 8:00am AEDST on Wednesday 12th December 2012, and conclude at 08:00am AEDST on Friday 14th December 2012
  • The winner/s will be drawn by random.org
  • The announcement of the lucky winner/s will be published via the Utterly Organised blog
  • The lucky winner/s will have 2 days to contact Utterly Organised and claim their prize
  • Failure to claim the prize within this period will result in another winner/s being drawn by random.org
  • To enter you must like the Utterly Organised Facebook Page
  • Reader must enter directly under this blog post by leaving a comment with your full name to enter
  • Please ensure that your entry contains your full name (first and last name) in order to be accepted in this draw
  • Any questions on the competition can be directed to utterlyorganised@gmail.com
 
Good luck!!!!!!

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Organised for Christmas? This post might just save you!!

Organised for Christmas? If your reaction is more a shriek of horror rather than a confident nod, then don't despair as Marissa from Beautifully Organised might just be able to save you with her fabulous Make Christmas Easy Christmas Planner. I have asked Marissa to pop over and tell us all about the Planner for any of you that might need a little helping hand...
 
Q. Thanks for being here Marissa! Please tell us what made you decide to create a Christmas Planner?
 
A. Over the past couple of years I noticed a pattern with my friends and clients who are mums - more and more of them were getting stressed about Christmas simply because they felt like they didn't have enough time to get ready for it! We're already so busy juggling work, family, housework and social commitments - adding Christmas on top of all that was leaving a lot of mums overwhelmed and feeling like no matter how hard they worked or how late they stayed up every night, they just couldn't get on top of it all!
 
Christmas was feeling more like hard work than a time of peace and happiness..
 
Q. How does the Make Christmas Easy Planner work?
 
A. It's a downloadable file, so you just print it out from your computer at home, pop it into an A4 folder, and fill it out. It covers everything - Christmas card and gift lists, meal planning and grocery lists, even fun things like filling in your favourite Christmas traditions so you don't forget to do them.
 
 
The idea of the planner is to make your Christmas as easy as possible by not forgetting anything you need to do - it's all written down in one place, so it's easy to refer to and you can do your Christmas preparation step by step in the weeks leading up to Christmas Day.
 
You can either work through it at your own pace, picking out the checklists most important to you, or you can follow along with the weekly Christmas planning prompts at MakeChristmasEasyPlanner.com and do the whole thing with my support as you go.
 
Q. We're only a couple of weeks away from Christmas now - have we left it too late to organise Christmas this year?
 
A. It's never too late to get organised for Christmas! The beauty of the planner is that it's simple, but effective - you can complete each step in around a half hour. So even if you're just starting now, it won't take you long to catch up and get everything on track. Even if you only had a few days left till Christmas, using a planner would still help you get more done in that time than not having a tool to guide you at all. The planner helps you remember what you have already done and what's left to do, so you don't waste time trying to figure out what you are up to with your Christmas preparation.
 
Special Price? Please!!!
 
Thanks for that Marissa!! So there you have it, with the help of the planner you might just have this Christmas malarkey down pat for this year!!
 
If you are interested in purchasing the Christmas Planner, Marrissa is kindly offering my readers a 50% discount to purchase by entering the code word MERRYCHRISTMAS in to the checkout field. To purchase simply head over to the website.
 
What about a freebie? Pretty, pretty please!!!
 
Yes one lucky reader is going to be lucky enough to be receiving this for FREE as part of a giveaway on the blog.
 
Now I realise that with Chrissie less than 2 weeks away (gulp), that you want to get moving on this ASAP, so this competition will be short and sweet and entry is right here on the blog for 48 hours only, it will kick off tomorrow first thing and will run until 0900am AEDST on Friday 14th December, so the lucky winner will have all weekend to plan Christmas out!
 
See you back here for entry tomorrow!!!

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Free Christmas Printable Set Giveaway!

So you love the freebie chocolate bar wrappers created by the fabulous Be Design Solutions?!

Well you are going to LOVE the rest of the set too, and for one very lucky reader this set is going to be all yours and personalised for you, for Christmas time!!
 
In addition to the chocolate bar wrappers that we all know and love (if you are yet to discover them, please check out my posts here and here), this set also includes:

- Party Circles - perfect for cupcake toppers, gift tags or stickers for some DIY Christmas crackers perhaps?!
- Reindeer Food Folded Tag
- Cookie Bag Toppers
- Toblerone Wrapper
- Cookie Bag and Reindeer Noses Bag Toppers



And you can choose from Silver Grey/Red, The Aqua/Red (my personal favourite as you can tell!) or the Green/Red version.
 
The prize includes each of these files emailed to you, for you to print to your hearts content (not for re-sale or commercial purposes).


 
A BIG thank you to Be Design Solutions for generously donating this little giveaway.
 
If you are interested in purchasing the entire range to make your Christmas festivities beautifully co-ordinated and chic this year, then the range is available to purchase for a mere $25.00 per set. Contact Be Design Solutions to order or for more information.

Good luck and please see below terms and conditions for this giveaway.


a Rafflecopter giveaway
Terms & Conditions- The giveaway will be hosted by Rafflecopter and is open to every single one of my readers - yay!!!
- The announcement of the lucky winner will be made right here on the Utterly Organised blog
- The lucky winner will have 5 days to contact Utterly Organised and claim their prize
- Failure to claim prize within designated period will result in another winner being drawn
- Entrants must like both the Utterly Organised and Be Design Solutions Facebook Pages
- Any questions on the competition can be directed to utterlyorganised@gmail.com

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Impulse Buyers Rejoice - Swappa is here!!!!

Since having a baby, I am a complete and utter impulse buyer - actually maybe I always had it in me.... But in my defence, these days rather than battle the change rooms with a pram and an 11 month old baby who just wants to pull everything off the hanger, I end up picking impulsive items from the shelf such as 67 dresses, 29 tops and 34 skirts with the intention of taking them all home to 'try' on at home and end up returning the ones that I don't like. Am I alone here?!
 
My impulsive behaviour continues online where I have been sucked in one too many times by a good deal on a deal site (you know the ones - Scoopon, Spreets, Deal of the Day - need I go on?!) for a $49 colour, cut and blow-wave or $29 for a 3 course meal for two both in locations that quite frankly I know that I am never going to be able to get to in this lifetime. Sound familiar?
 
Well if you are anything like me, then you are going to love the genius nature of a new website in the Australian market called Swappa.
 
 
 
Swappa is an online marketplace that allows you to offload your unwanted, unused or nearly expired daily deals so they don't sit there wasted and you can get some of your hard earned back in your pocket - hooray!!
 
It is also the place to head if you have missed out on a deal of a lifetime, as you might just find the deal being sold that you missed out on originally and probably at an even better price that the deal was in the first place - bonus!!
 
So how do you find deals that you might want to sell?
 
Super easy, simply head to the Swappa website and paste the word“Voucher” in your email search area, and look for any daily deals you may have forgotten about, or can’t use anymore. When you find one, simply email it to sell@swappa.com.auand Swappa will sell it for you. It’s that simple!
 
Is it easy to sell?
 
It really is, all you need to do is forward your daily deal confirmation through to sell@swappa.com.au, enter the sale price in the subject field and the folk at Swappa will do the rest!
 
The Swappa website is super easy to navigate and Swappa also has a Facebook page that you can join if you want to keep tabs on some of the great offers as they pop up. More information on how it all works and any fees can be found right here.
 
Now if only Swappa allowed you to swap your dodgy unwanted gifts that you know you'll be getting from at least one family member this Christmas time....
 
Disclaimer: This post has been sponsored by Swappa, the post and its' contents have been prepared for release by Utterly Organised.
 
 

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Hamptons Style and Teddy Treasures Blog Giveaway Winners....

Thank you to my two amazing sponsors - Teddy Treasures and Hamptons Style for their very generous participation in the recent giveaways.
 
The lucky winner of the $100 Teddy Treasures gift voucher is:
 
And the lucky winner of the stunning Hamptons Style print is:
 
Congratulations Lilian and Sarah-Jane, I really hope that you enjoy your prizes, please contact me at utterlyorganised@gmail.com so that we can arrange for these to get to you asap.
 
Thank you to everyone that entered, the next giveaway is never too far away if you missed out this time.....

Monday, 3 December 2012

Tips, Tricks & Instructions for the Freebie Chocolate Bar Wrappers

Well the Christmas tree is up - yay - and I am in Christmas mode now and it seems so are many of my readers. I am so pleased that so many of you love the free chocolate bar wrappers kindly provided by Be Design Solutions as much as I do!


As promised here is a little bit of a step by step guide for putting these together, it really is so simple:
 
1. Download Files
 
Files can be found on my original post here
 
2. Print Files
 
When printing ensure that no scaling is applied to the print job, otherwise your wrappers won't be printing the right size
 
3. Trim Files


Either trim by hand with your trusty pair of scissors or use a paper trimmer - I LOVE my paper trimmer which I picked up a tidy sum of $10 or there abouts from Aldi.
 
4. Remove Wrappers



Remove the original paper wrappers oh so carefully so that you keep the foil nice and neat and in tact!
 
5. Ready to Go!


Once your file has been trimmed down, line up the image at the front


Then simply fold the two ends one over the top of one side and stick using glue or double sided tape
 
5. You're done!!
 
That's it, sit back and marvel at home clever you were to put these together!!
 
What Paper?
 
A few readers have contacted me to ask what paper to use. I personally find that the best paper to use is a 150gsm gloss paper that is readily available through Officeworks or other similar retailers.
 
If you don't want to buy a whole ream of the stuff, I find that the staff at the Print station at Officeworks are only too happy to sell you a few sheets of the paper you need for around 15 or 20c a page.
 
Or you can take these files to a printer such as Officeworks or Kwik Copy etc and have them do it for you too.
 
Don't forget to send me some pictures of your finished chocolate bars to utterlyorganised@gmail.com or share them on my Facebook wall, I would love to see them in action!

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Free Printable Christmas Chocolate Bar Wrappers

Well today being the first day in December, it is about time we got our Christmas Craft on don't you think?!!

Firstly a very BIG thank you to Karen from Be Design Solutions for offering up the Chocolate Bar Wrappers from her amazing Christmas printable range for free.

The entire gorgeous printable range by Be Design Solutions
The chocolate bars really do make the most amazing little gifts for teachers, friends and family members without breaking the budget. You can also arrange to have these personalised (for a small fee) with your family name, kids name or even business, by Karen and I am sure that your recipients will be all the more impressed.
 
I personally love the idea of using these as little placecards to place on the dinner table for Christmas Day. You could create simple name tags and and wrap around each one with some bakers twine. So many uses for these and I am sure that you will come up with many more (which I'd love to hear about of course!).
 
There are two sizes available to download and us, the first is suitable for a 100g Cadbury Chocolate Bar and the second is a smaller size suitable for the Aldi Choceur 40g Chocolates (available in a 5 pack and pictured below).


The wrapper also comes in two colour variations - the Aqua/Blue and the Red variation.

Cadbury Chocolate Bar Wrappers

Click here to access the Aqua/Blue Cadbury Design

Click here to access the Red Cadbury Design

Aldi Choceur 40g Chocolate Wrappers

And here is the finished product - pretty amazing looking for something you whipped up yourself isn't it?!

Remember if you want to match these in with the rest of the range, be sure to head over to Be Design Solutions where you can purchase the entire set of personalised PDF files for a mere $25.00. To order, or for more information please email Karen at karen@bedesignsolutions.com.au.

If you need instructions on putting these together, please pop back again tomorrow and I will share a step by step guide and a few of my tips to make this a cinch.
 
I would love to see your pictures, so please feel free to post on my Facebook Page or email them to me at utterlyorganised@gmail.com
 
Thanks again Be Design Solutions and I hope you all enjoy! 
 

Thursday, 29 November 2012

A look at the Inner-B Mum Organiser and a Special Offer to Buy!

As most of my regular readers will know, I was absolutely thrilled to be sent an Inner-B 2013 Mum Organiser, after practically wishing away the current year just so that I could use one!! As so many of my readers are just so keen to purchase one, but a bit unsure about purchasing it as they haven't been able to see or touch it, I thought that I would answer all of your burning questions and give you a bit of an overview....
 
How does the Inner-B Organiser compare to other diaries?
 
I used to use a Filofax, but this year I have just struggled with it and found that it simply wasn't capable of housing all of the information, appointments and activities for both Mr B and I. For example I would find that if I have a birthday entered in a date, that this would leave me no further room to add any appointments etc in that space.
 
The Inner-B layout is very appointment/activity/event friendly and has loads of room for pencilling in not only your appointments, but those of other family members as well. It is not just a diary, it is a complete life organiser and I have never seen a product that covers 'everything' like this does.
 
What does the page view of the diary look like?
 
 The Inner-B Organiser has a fabulous layout, as you can see below.


There is a section to include your focus/goals for the week and each day is divided in to am, noon and pm sections, making it easy to see at a glance what you have on at the various times of the day.
 
There is also a section for birthdays and anniversaries.
 
 
At the bottom of each page (as you can see above), there are a generous blank 4 sections that can  be used to enter in activities/appointments/tasks for each of your children (and your hubby if he needs it!).

Or if you wanted to, you could use this space to pencil in your weekly meal plan, your exercise or eating diary, information on a project or work or simply information on your well being.
 
What size is the Organiser?
 
The organiser is roughly 17cm x 23cm in height.
 
What colours does the organiser come in?
 
Trust me the hardest part about buying one of these is picking the colour!!

 
The organiser comes in the 6 beautiful colours pictured above- fuchsia, lime green, blue, orange, purple and yellow.
 
I am using a blue one for 2013.
 
How is the Organiser set out?
 
The front of the diary has important information such as school holiday and public holiday dates for the year, year to view calendars, a forward planner for 2014, useful measurements and conversions (such as inches to cm etc).

 
 
 
The diary then has tabs that easily allow you to locate the months. The front of each month has an overall snapshot calendar and a space to write your reminders for the month. I am going to use this little section to set out my monthly goals and blogging schedule for the month in 2013.
 
The back section is a very comprehensive 50 page resource section which covers everything (and I mean everything) from emergency contacts, to my favourite websites and passwords, to items borrowed and lent (such a brilliant idea), immunisation schedule to one of my favourites - an entertaining checklist!!!
 
Can I buy this from a store?
 
You sure can, a list of on-line and physical retail stores can be found here under 'Where to Buy'.
 
Do you have a special offer for me to buy one? Pretty please!!

 
 
I sure do!! From today -Thursday 29 November 2012 until Thursday 13 December 2012, Inner B are giving my lovely readers a very generous $10.00 off any order over $50.00 made online on the Inner-B website. This is the perfect time to pick up an Organiser and why not also pick up a notepad too to take advantage of the offer.
There are so many fabulous notepads in the Inner-B range such as the Weekly Menu Planner, the Babysitters Notepad, the My Sleeps Countdown (which is pictured above and perfect for the Christmas countdown) and so many more that will see you head in to 2013 utterly organised!

Simply enter the code UOC01 in to the checkout code area of the website to reedem.
 
Hope that this covers all of your questions, if it doesn't please leave a comment below or send me an email at utterlyorganised@gmail.com and I will be happy to answer you. These truly would make an amazing gift for yourself or for your girlfriends who you think could do with organising their lives - in style!
 

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Hamptons Style Summer Print Giveaway!!!!

I love summer - I just love everything about it. I love the long days, warm nights, frozen cocktails, trips to the beach, ice cream - gee I even don't mind sand in the car!! The only thing I don't love about it, is knowing that eventually after 3 short months, it has to come to an end.
 
I guess that is why I just adore the Hamptons Style online store and blog so much. As every time I browse it, I get lost in happy thoughts and summery feelings all year round and can even dream about a summer escape in the Hamptons.
 
If you too love summer and the Hamptons Style of decorating your home -  casual, yet stylish with a little beach rustic thrown in - then you are going to go bananas if you haven't discovered the online delights of Hamptons Style. They have the most amazing pieces in their collection which has absolutely everything from lamps to prints, linen, home wears and the most divine furniture that will leave your home looking - much like the home you wished you owned in the Hamptons!!
 
Some of the amazing range over at Hamptons Style
 
Donna, the face behind Hamptons Style, is one of the loveliest people that I have come across in the on line retailers world and if you are hunting for something not on her site, she offer a free (yes you heard me right) sourcing service to help you find what you are looking for.
 
I was absolutely thrilled when Donna contacted me about offering up on of her amazing prints from her collection to one very, very lucky reader. With summer here only next week, this little print is going to arrive to one lucky readers doorstep just in time to get your home a bit more 'summerfied' (is that even a word? If not it should be!) for the best season of the year.
 
 
The print up for grabs is the Beach Rules Print Trellis Golden Sand which is exclusive to Hamptons Style. The prize is for the print only, but I am told that this little number is a perfect fit for the uber cheap Ribba frames from Ikea.
 
 
Entry to this amazing giveaway is via Rafflecopter, please note the conditions of entry below. 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
 
Terms & Conditions

- The giveaway will be hosted by Rafflecopter and is only open to Australian Readers
- The announcement of the lucky winner will be made right here on the Utterly Organised blog
- The lucky winner will have 5 days to contact Utterly Organised and claim their prize
- Failure to claim prize within designated period will result in another winner being drawn
- Entrants must like both the Utterly Organised and Hamptons Style Facebook Pages
- Any questions on the competition can be directed to utterlyorganised@gmail.com
 
Thanks again to Hamptons Style and good luck!!  

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Teddy Treasures $100 Gift Voucher Giveaway...

In case you missed it yesterday, Teddy Treasures are an amazing new sponsor to the blog and I am so excited to have them on board as we just love Teddies and Soft Toys in our place at the moment!! You can read all about Teddy Treasures and see what I am loving from the huge and fabulous range in my previous post here.
 
I am even more excited that Teddy Treasures have kindly agreed to give one very, very lucky reader the chance to win a whopping $100 Shopping Spree Gift voucher to spend over at the Teddy Treasures online store. With the Teddy Treasures prices so reasonable, this is bound to go very far and just in time for Christmas too!
 
 
 
Entry to this amazing competition is by Rafflecopter below and please note the conditions of entry below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms & Conditions
- The giveaway will be hosted by Rafflecopter and is only open to Australian Readers
- The announcement of the lucky winner will be made right here on the Utterly Organised blog
- The lucky winner will have 5 days to contact Utterly Organised and claim their prize
- Failure to claim prize within designated period will result in another winner being drawn
- Entrants must like both the Utterly Organised and Teddy Treasures Facebook Pages
- Any questions on the competition can be directed to utterlyorganised@gmail.com

Good luck!!!

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Do you Love Teddies as much as Mr B?!

As you can see I have one little boy that just ADORES his teddies, in particular his Peter Rabbit who he will NOT sleep without at night. He also loves to take Peter with him around the house during the day.
 
 
If you have little ones that love teddies just as much as my Mr B, then you are going to LOVE my newest sponsor - Teddy Treasures.
 
Teddy Treasures is an online retailer that not only sell the most divine range of teddies and soft toys, but have an amazing and diverse range that extends to dolls, ride on toys, puppets and even costumes to name a few things on offer. There are also some Asthma and Eco friendly products in the mix too.
 
Everything is so reasonably priced, and if you need to get a hurry on with your Chrissie shopping - then a visit to the Teddy Treasures website is going to much easier to navigate than a visit to your local shopping centre at this time of the year!!
 
I know one little boy that would absolutely love this Large version of his very best friend (aside from his Mummy of course!).
 
Some of my other favourites from the range include this giant ride on Pony that has over 20 activities to amuse the little ones for hours (so you might actually be able to get dinner or the washing on!).
 
And for Christmas I just adore the Magic Message elf that records wish lists and plays them back to Santa Claus, such a cute idea that will be loved Christmas after Christmas!!
 
And just in time for Christmas Teddy Treasures are offering my readers the chance to win one $100.00 shopping spree voucher. I don't know about you, but this would be a dream come true for me with the purse strings a little tighter this time of the year with all of the Christmas gifts (and birthday gifts) that are on my 'to buy' list.
 
If this would be a dream come true for you too, please pop back to the blog to enter tomorrow!

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Tips to Make Christmas Shopping a Cinch - Yes really!!

Well this time in just 5 short weeks we will be celebrating Christmas - yikes!! So with the date looming closer and closer by the day, I thought that it was timely to share this guest blog post by the fabulous Linda Anderson, founder of  Mums on the Go and principal coach of a2a Coaching.
 
Thank you so much for sharing your amazing tips Linda, I think we could all do with tips to surviving the Christmas Shopping silly season stress free....
 
 
How to make Christmas shopping a cinch

Christmas is but five weeks away. With my third baby having arrived in August, I’ve been determined to get organised early with gift buying this year. Not to mention the fact I have to buy for 13 children, with two loads of presents set to be shipped to UK and interstate relatives. I missed the Sea Mail cut off once and I will never do it again. Not after discovering the cost of Airmail for a big parcel.

Here are my tips for making Christmas shopping easier: 

Tips to make Christmas shopping easier:

Create a plan – I create a list of the children and adults I need to shop for at Christmas. As I mentioned, that includes 13 children. I write down gift ideas, so the shopping process itself is more efficient. Often these are just ideas rather than specific items.

 
Determine a budget – I generally spend about the same for each person, give or take a few dollars. This allows me to see how much I’ll be spending before I launch into shopping mode.

 
Watch for the catalogues – Christmas is one time of the year I’m OK with receiving junk mail in my letterbox. Catalogue browsing can save mums a lot of time and a lot of headaches if shopping with children in tow is unavoidable. While wandering the streets browsing for gifts can be thoroughly enjoyable, getting in and out quickly with kids and babies is preferred here.

 
Shop online – Much of my shopping will be done online this year, as I juggle a new baby in the house. The cost of postage is well worth the time saved driving, parking and the sanity of not taking small kids out shopping. I visited one of the big toy sales online this year, which worked well in whittling down my list. A good tip is to buy as many gifts from one site as you can to minimise postage costs.

 
Not every tip on my list will work for everyone, but if you’re looking to minimise the work involved in gift buying, it’s worth looking at them as an option.

 
Do you have any other tips to share to make Christmas shopping easier?
Thank you so much Linda for being a guest over at Utterly Organised. For more tips and resources, be sure to check out the Mums on the Go website, Facebook Page or follow on Twitter.

Monday, 19 November 2012

Inner-B 2013 Mum Organiser Winner Is....

Thank you to all of you that entered this competition and to Inner-B for allowing me the opportunity to make one very lucky reader happy!!
 
According to the Rafflecopter Widget on the original entry page, that winner is:
 
Entry #088 Christy H!
 
Congrats Christy H, if you can please email me at utterlyorganised@gmail.com with your address and which colour you'd like - Blue or Purple - I will get this on the way to you!!
 
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Because unfortunately there can only be one winner, and I know that so many of you are dying to get organised with a Mum Organiser in 2013, Inner-B are offering my lovely readers a very special offer.
 
Simply enter the code: UOC01 in to the checkout field of the Inner-B website and score yourself FREE shipping and a bonus Babysitter notepad, total saving of $12.45!
But be quick as this offer is only valid until 12:01am on Monday 26 November 2012.
 
We will also have another giveaway kicking off this week - stay tuned!!!

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Free Christmas Printable... by Vote!!

Well it is getting to the pointy end of the year where Christmas and the year 2013 are almost upon us. I am a bit scared about just how fast the year has gone, but also excited as I am viewing this as our first 'real' Christmas with Mr B. You see throughout my whole pregnancy last year I was given a due date of - you guessed it - December 25 of all dates in the year. This was much to peoples amusement, but I don't think anyone forgot my due date!

Mr B ended up taking us by surprise and arriving early (something I think he will be grateful of in years to come!), but I was only out of the hospital for a few hazy and crazy days last year before Christmas rolled around, so it was such a non event. This year I plan to treat it as our first 'proper' Christmas, though in a million years I will never forget last year.

The amazing Karen at Be Design Solutions has created the most divine print it yourself Christmas range this year. I am a little bit in love with this set because it matches the colour scheme that I am 'doing' this year for Chrissie - Aqua and Blue.
 
 

For those after a more traditional colour pallette you also have these amazing options to choose from.
 
The red and green:

 
 
Or the Silver & Red:
 
 
 
Each set is only $25.00 which is an absolute bargain, please feel free to contact Be Design Solutions for more information or to place an order ahead of the Christmas rush.

I recently helped a reader out with a customised chocolate bar wrapper in this range through Be Design Solutions, that my reader is planning to give out to her children's teachers and friends at Christmas time. It is such an inexpensive, yet gorgeous little gift idea and let's face it who doesn't like receiving chocolate?!
 
The fantastic news is that Be Design Solutions have very kindly agreed to provide one of the items from the set to my lovely readers to print off and use - for free no less!!
 
We were having a little debate over on Facebook recently and it is has come down to these two contenders..... 
 
 

So would you like the chocolate bar wrappers which would make amazing gifts for your friends and family, or just look very stylish on your Christmas dessert table?

Or would you like the fun of the Reindeer noses? Simply purchase some little celo bags and fill with jaffas or anything else that takes your fancy and attach this to seal the bag with.
 
Take your vote by commenting below and the printable will be available for free very, very soon!! 

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Work it Baby!!! Cheap & Cheerful Workwear Finds

Well she is at it again, the very fabulous Chelsea from I Heart Bargains has agreed to come back at the request of some lovely readers to feature some divine Workwear steals for you all for this weeks Cheap & Cheerful Tuesday. There are some amazing pieces here that she has selected to show off, I hope that you enjoy....
WORK IT BABY
If I had a dollar for every woman that says to me, ‘oh, I need more work clothes but they’re so expensive, can you find some bargain corporate wear for me?’  I’d be a desperate housewife of Australia.
It seems that us ladies love to look the part each day but don’t want to spend the big biccies on a corporate wardrobe. And fair enough. A good quality suit can cost into the hundreds.
I understand your predicament because I’ve been working in offices of all sorts for 10 years now. The staples are important. Black pants. White shirt. A pointed black pair of heels. The occasional dressy top.
Are you asleep yet?
A corporate wardrobe doesn’t have to be this boring. It can be spritely and edgy and make you feel really good. And if it’s at bargain prices, even better!
So here’s the low down on some individual pieces that you work in with your current wardrobe and hopefully NEVER get bored of!
THE JACKET
This collarless Riverisland jacket is a step away from black but a step in the classy direction. The grey ‘n’ black works perfectly over a plain dress. And if you choose the pants option go something relatively fitted and shaped to your bottom…we don’t want too much fabric.
THE DRESS
Or dresses. I couldn’t choose between these three. And I’ve staggered the price points so there’s something there for all of you.
Country Road has this look-at-me-now tangerine number for $99.95. It’s fresh and delicious. The twisted look across the front will be flattering and so is the arm length. Place some black or nude patents on your feet.
And for something a little less fitted, be comfortable and set for a serious meeting in this Riverisland shift with edgy side design. High heels, girlfriends. Flats won’t cut it.
This is sharp looking for a big day at your desk. Try and book in a lunch because this black and white number from Target deserves to be wined and dined. It’s striking but understated. Add a belt if you feel the need. I would wear just as it is.
THE TOP
Barkins is doing us proud. You can pick up this pussy bow, striped top for $12 and thrown on with up-hair-do and black pants or navy.
And I just couldn’t resist telling you about this gorgeous little secret. A kimono can be dressed up for day and down for weekends. This one from ids is in sync with the florals and good for those ‘I have nothing to wear over this dress’ moment.
THE PANTS
White. Black. Nude. Any one of these colours would go perfectly. A statement pair of Feathers pants is a fantastic option if you need something cool to put with your white shirt.
THE SKIRT
Stripey. In season. And ridiculously cheap. This $20 Target skirt is a cheeky alternative to the all black or pinstripe skirt you’ve worn non-stop
If that’s way too casual for your hoity toity office then maybe get down to Bardot and try on this totally dominating skirt with quartz print. I know you’re nodding. It’s very cool, isn’t it?
THE ACCESSORY
I like a pearl earring. I love a pearl earring with a difference. And this is it. Can’t beat Diva for your every day jewels.
THE HEELS
Nude with a touch of pink. You know you can do it, IF you do it right. Betts is selling them for $60. The vanilla-rey type colour goes with everything.
Thank you so much Chelsea for sharing some more fabulous bargains with us, these are perfect for summer workwear that is not only on trend but on budget too. Make sure you check out the I Heart Bargains Facebook Page and Website for more amazing buys!
© Utterly Organised. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.