real life

iBlog Friday - Our weekly roundup of Aussie Bloggers

At iVillage we’re passionate about supporting Australian bloggers. That’s why we’ve created iBlog Friday.

It's a chance for bloggers introduce their favourite post of the week to iVillage readers and for our community to read what Aussie writers are up to.

Here are the bloggers who have sent their submissions this week to Happy reading!


Stephanie Rogers of She Said What? shares a special family moment remembering a lost loved one and her encounter with haunted vodka in her post, Excuse me, there's a ghost in my vodka.

We were looking through the cupboard where alcohol is kept. All the shiny new bottles at the front were wine and Jim Beam and various other not-vodka items. We moved all these aside and found a few very old, very dusty bottles. We blew off the dust, sneezed and coughed, and then examined our find. It was two bottles of my late grandfather’s home brew vodka. At least 10 years old. We had no idea what was in it. One bottle contained strange fermented orange bits, perhaps orange peels? Perhaps some kind of 10 year old fermented mould?

Read the rest of Stephanie's post here.

Erin Patel of Coffee talk with Erin: Bookgirloz talks about moments of sadness in an otherwise happy life and how she deals with them in her post Life can be's how you deal with it that counts.


It can be hard as a mum. Do you let your children see you feeling sad?

It is my belief that it is important to let your children see how you deal with all of the emotions, including sadness in limited quantities. I would like for them to see that sadness or being down is normal and that they are entitled to those feelings. I would like for them to see how I deal with being sad. That I will feel better soon.

Read the rest of Erin's post here.

Katrina Wood of The (mildly) Opinionated Manager explains her top 5 motivators to succeed in her post Top 5 Professional Influences.

I’ve been challenged to think of a Top Five, and whilst the initial brief was more along the lines of personal favourites, in keeping with the theme of this blog I have chosen to reflect on my professional life, and in particular the big influences on my behaviour as a leader and a manager.  And if you are more interested in the fave songs/movies types of lists, scroll to the bottom of the post as I couldn’t really resist the chance to share just a little bit more of the not-at-work me!

Read the rest of Katrina's post here.

Joanna Hill of Love, Life & Beauty Therapy explains what's standing between you and good skin in her post The top 3 skincare mistakes we all make.


Professional skin care ranges often don’t have the same exposure as the products that come from department stores or chemists but they are developed by smaller skin care companies who have a real passion for what they do. These companies prefer to spend the money on the best quality ingredients and scientific research rather than on the fancy packaging or marketing campaigns. In other words, when it comes to skincare you want to date the science geek NOT the handsome liar!

Read the rest of Joanna's post here.

Caylie Jeffery of Distractions of a busy mother describes confronting but necessary conversations she has with her elderly parents in her post Shall we listen to the Walrus…

In truth, we haven't extended the house for our children. Nor have we done it for ourselves, directly. We made a decision to pave the way for our parents to come and live with us when they can no longer care for themselves. When we worked on the plans for the bathroom, we made it accessible for a wheelchair. When we put the kitchen and living area downstairs, we made sure the 'spare bedroom' was right nearby, so we could keep a close eye on its future occupants.

Read the rest of Caylie's post here.

Louisa Simmonds of My Midlife Mayhem shares her experience at a Bill Gates fundraiser and her reaction to his pledge to donate his wealth to charity in her post What is a true philanthropist?
It was interesting to watch the old man’s reaction to Gates’ explanation of his philanthropy on Tuesday night. To witness the sheer incredulity on his face as he learnt that the Gates’ will ultimately donate ninety percent of their earnings via the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to fund scientific research, education and vaccination programmes around the world. I could see his brain ticking over, contemplating this concept, a concept that is difficult to digest when you are still struggling to pay off debt to keep a roof over your head. Nevertheless, I sat praying that some of Gates’ idealism might actually rub off on him.
Read the rest of Louisa's post here.

Josefa Pete of Always Josefa confesses to developing a bad parent-habit during her son's swimming lessons in her post Why it its OK to crush candy and kill zombies.

Last week, I caved in. I tried so hard to pass yet another level on Candy Crush Saga that I forgot to watch every single stroke and wildly flag thumbs up. At the end of the lesson, out came two very wet and happy little boys. One had achieved a certificate in the next level and one had been bumped up into the next progressive class. That is when it dawned on me. The ability of my boys to have fun and learn at their swimming lessons has nothing to do with me watching them or not.

Read the rest of Josefa's post here.

Carly Findlay of the blog Carly Findlay shares her memories of living with an alcoholic in her touching post Need.

The bottle's lid has got his teeth marks in it – from when he opened it for me. It was the bottle he bought me after he drank most of the first one I bought for myself. He drank about three quarters of it straight, after around 15 bottles of beer. Well that's how many I counted when I put them in the recycling the next afternoon, right before he started on 10 more bottles. That Frangelico was from the last time since. Since everything. It carries too many memories for me. I never get that nostalgic when I have a glass of Frangelico, lemonade and lime at the pub.

Read the rest of Carly's post here.

Katrina Hindley of Waltzing Matilda and me talks about finding out what controlled crying is really all about in her post Controlled Crying.

Before I had a baby I knew as much about “controlled crying” as I did about mining in the Amazon. To me, they both seemed unnecessary and did more damage than good. My impression of “controlled crying” was putting your child into its cot and letting your little darling cry for any given period of time until they either went to sleep or threw up, in which case you would change the sheets and start again. I had heard people say, “the first week is the worst but it gets easier once the child gets use to it”. “Gets use to it?” I thought to myself, “who gets use to crying?”, then I remembered, me.

Read the rest of Katrina's post here.

Bianca Slade from Wholefood Simply continues to impress us with her healthy versions of our favourite treats, this time it's Paleo Coconut Slice.
This time next year I will have spent as much of my life with my Mother close by as I have without her around. You would think I would be use to the distance by now. I am not. I miss her every day; especially when I make treats I know she would love! Remember the golden wrapper, the red writing, ‘Nestle Golden Rough’. This slice reminds me of those, and they remind me of my beautiful Mum. We had many good times over coconut roughs and mint patties, I only hope Mum finds my version equally as good, maybe even better.
Read the rest of Bianca's post here.
The winner will be published on Tuesday this week due to the long weekend (normally on Monday) and that blogger will win a copy of the soundtrack to Baz Luhrmann's film The Great Gatsby, out now. To enter iBlog Friday send us your entry every week by midday on Thursday at

Produced by Jay-Z, the soundtrack includes songs by Beyonce, Florence + The Machine, Gotye, Lana Del Rey and Bryan Ferry.