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iBlog Friday: The perfect place to hide Christmas presents & the family holiday you should avoid

What kind of week are you having?

iBlog Friday is our weekly roundup of Aussie bloggers. These Aussie writers will take us through all the highlights and lowlights of their parenting adventure this past week, including more than one Christmas freakout, a new anniversary called 'The Monthiversary', making sense of dinnertime, a serious struggle to breastfeed, a mum who escapes to drink cocktails, car trips with kids, a longing for community and the retro home where books used to live - the library.

The winning blog will be posted on Monday. Until then, happy reading.

 One Woman Circus

Susan Taylor of One Woman Circus gets her mumma on by completely reforming her cumbersome deciding-what-to-cook-for-dinner routine in her post Dagnammit - mumma's gonna get s**t done.

A know a guy who grew up with the same weekly dinner menu his entire childhood. Monday was spaghetti, Tuesday was steak and veg... you get the idea. Sounds mental, but man I bet his mum had some serious spare time up her sneaky sleeves. I did do a meal planner for a while but it dropped off for some reason, so it's time to bring it back. Don't think I can do a set weekly menu for life though, I'll stick to planning each week out on the Sunday night prior. Takes 5 minutes and saves so much time in deciding what to cook, cuts down on trips to the shops, saves money and reduces food waste. Booyah! I'm sure there are a heap of other things I can get more organised about too, like saving online grocery lists instead of doing new ones from scratch each time, and deciding what to wear to an important function in advance.

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Money Mummy

Shelley Marsh of Money Mummy was shocked when her daughter picked up tinsel while grocery shopping. Is it that time already? Read her tips on preparing for Christmas in her post How to save on your children's Christmas presents.

Can you believe it?  Christmas time is creeping up!  I was stunned when on a trip to my local Woolies, my daughter picked up pink tinsel and put it in the trolley.  Really?  Christmas stuff already?   After a bit of debate, mainly consisting of me saying the words “put it back”, she insisted it was on my shopping list.  I told her that despite wearing glasses, I was sure I could see the list clearly and that I was sure that pink tinsel was not on the list.  Oats, yes, milk, yes, eggs, yes and even bread but pink tinsel, no it was definitely not there.  Welcome to Christmas!

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Mel-o-Drama

Melanie Dimmit of Mel-o-Drama invents a new anniversary for couples to celebrate (like we're not busy enough). Still, it's nice to dream as you read her post The Monthiversary.

Today marks 18 months since my partner and I started dating. We are celebrating tonight in style - the much loved, ridiculously expensive french restaurant is booked, and the red wine and sweet nothings shall no doubt flow (he's going to kill me for this...) Today also marks my longest relationship, ever. Of this I am quite proud, and ever-so grateful to said partner for tolerating the border-line insane likes of me for a full year and a half.

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The Mother Load

Sophie Lyall of The Mother Load discusses her decision to give up on breastfeeding, which was a difficult choice but a necessary one, in her post Confessions Of A Failed Feeder - When 'Breast Is Best' Just Isn't.

Another thing I'm finally comfortable admitting after ten years as a Mum, is that I'm a total dud when it comes to breastfeeding.  In all seriousness, this is a pretty big admission for me as I spent so much time exhausting myself trying firstly to get it right, then frantically trying to cover up my failure to those around me. Now as I look back, I feel incredibly sad that this failure upset me so much and induced such unnecessary feelings of guilt. Let it be said that (in theory) I support the breast is best argument and I wanted so badly to get this part of motherhood right. For a grand total of ten weeks for each child I attended professional assistance appointments religiously, I wore cold packs and cabbage leaves and I latched a baby onto nipples that bled so much I could have donated to the Red Cross en masse. Both times, I refused to give up until things got so bad that I had a multitude of hideous infections and had to go on antibiotics that were simply too powerful for a baby to induce.

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Mummy Wife Me

Renee Wilson of Mummy Wife Me savours the sweet sweet freedom of a night away from the kids and a couple of drinks with friends (and we may even go back home before sunrise) in her post Sometimes you just need to get a little drunk.

Earlier this year though, a friend of mine brought to my attention my lack of social interaction. It’s something that I haven’t stopped thinking about since and something that I have wanted to change.

This doesn’t mean I’m going to go out and drink two bottles of wine, a stein of beer, and pass out on the couch by 7pm every weekend, but it does mean I’m not going to let myself forget again how important it is, how therapeutic it is, how fun, and insanely good it is to spend time with my other loved ones – my friends. (This goes for Dave too of course, who got up to his own antics the weekend before. Hopefully sometime soon we’ll go out together!)

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Katzrambles

Kathryn Boyde of Katzrambles tells of her efforts to keep Santa under wraps in her post The sin all good parents commit. Those clever kids!

Upon entering the garage, I noticed a wooden table with plenty of room beneath it and an old single mattress leaning up against it. “That’s it,” I thought. “The perfect spot.” I then proceeded to unpack all the boxes, place them neatly underneath the table and stand up the mattress so it was blocking the presents.

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Very proud of my efforts, I continued up the stairs and made myself a well-earned cup of tea.

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Seeing the Lighter Side of Parenting

Rebecca Bowyer of Seeing the Lighter Side of Parenting goes on a road trip with a really positive person and two children - a recipe for disaster - in her post Halls Gap Holiday from Hell.

Unfortunately, due to the driving rain, it also came with an intricate system of newly formed rivers and lakes coursing around the circular driveway and most of the yard. I noted, with a passing interest, that the trampoline in the front yard was lashed to two trees with thick rope and weighed down by a heavy log hanging underneath.

We raced around unpacking and putting sheets on beds so we could get onto more holiday fun.

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Stuff From The Heart

Gauri Maini of Stuff From The Heart reveals in the sense of community her parents enjoy and the increasing disconnect of our generation in her post Getting Social.

And why am I sharing this? It is because I am constantly wondering and grateful that my parents, who live in Vadodara with both their daughters 14-24 flying hours away seem to be surrounded by people who come and help them and fix their things at the drop of a hat. I am grateful for that.

More than that, I am grateful for having grown up observing and contemplating many such acts over and over again.

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Distractions of a Busy Mother

Caylie Jefferey of Distractions of a Busy Mother skips down memory lane straight into a library in her post Why Library?

We share so much of our space with so many people in our busy lives that rarely are we able to locate a place where we can achieve a sense of peace. Somewhere where we can slow down and walk softly, ensconcing ourselves in the silence and solitude we need to regroup.

The word library always comes to me in a whisper. I know that wherever I am in the world, there is a place I can go in order to ignite my senses, open my mind and rest my soul.

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Are you are mummy blogger? We want to meet you. Send us your favourite post each week by midday on Thursday at [email protected] We'll showcase your work and you could even win publication and a fab prize.

Goodluck!