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ethical + sustainable - a series // the loved by community of ziraffe store.

July 1, 2017

When it comes to clothing, as a family, we are very careful of the brands we choose and what they stand for. Ethics and the environmental policies of a brand are looked at carefully before we invest. In a time when there are 52 seasons in a fashion year and a society that buys and ditches often, it is such a relief to find timeless and beautiful clothing for kids. 
One shop stocking ethical and stylish kids clothes with a minimalistic approach to consumption is Ziraffe. Their brands are simple in approach and create designs that grow with your child. Their new platform, LovedBy_Community is totally inspiring. In a nutshell:


  • Builds communities around buying and selling thoughtfully designed, ethnically made goods for our children
  • Supports sustainability and discourages throwaway culture when something is outgrown
  • Allows sellers to select a charity to support and do social and environmental good
  • Picks-up and delivers items door-to-door so busy families don't need to go to the post office
The community is easy to navigate and has some really amazing sellers. Like here and here.
The clothing the girls are wearing in these photos feature from both the shop and the LovedBy _Community. Poppy wears size 5/6 and is usually a 4, we sized up so she can get a few seasons from them. Piper wears size 7/8 but also shares the 5/6 with her sister. Being able to love ethical items and then pass them on to be used again and again, a modern take on fashion. Waste not.

All clothing for this post provided by Ziraffe Store, all thoughts and opinions my own. x

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It's by Your Side I Make My Home.

February 11, 2017

As Ella crooned, with the tiny hands we created squeezing mine, I walked the winding makeshift aisle to you. All along you were the one. You always will be. My beginning and my ending. 
We are better together. x

photos: by the amazing Tom @ Driftwood Photography.

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2017 // Our year of slow.

December 24, 2016

This year has ended with a thump and a bang. Spinning we are emerging from health scares, financial worries and the realisation we won't be growing our family, something that weighs heavy on my heart.
We take so much for granted in today's busy world. The landscape is created for us to compete. Who has a longer to do list and more on their plate. Bags under eyes worn as a testament to a life more fully lived.
Sitting back a lot (mostly out of medical necessity) I have carefully watched time ticking and how we spend so much of the day. My kids run in and out of the picture, often begging for attention while I try and juggle it all. It's exhausting and overwhelming.
2017 we will slow down. Which is ironic as I am returning to work more than I have since miss six was born. But the rest of life is my focus. Less rush and more time spent. Less screens and more paper pages. Less convenient and more dirty hands and hearts.
If you have followed this blog for long enough (2017 marks ten years with blogger) you will know that I have changed and grown (and often not) so next year will be no different.
I will be using this space to document ways to slow down, consume less and create more. 
I hope you stay on this journey with us. It's a bumpy one but full of ups after the downs that sparkle like fairy lights.
See you on the other side.

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An Ethical Gift Guide // Gender Neutral Gifts for Kids.

December 1, 2016

I had quite a few requests for a more gender neutral gift guide and I loved looking around for this. My big girl doesn't have a penchant for pretty or glitter and prefers to run free and come home muddy and exhausted from her adventures. Here are some lovely and timeless gifts for boys and girls of many ages.

1. Fanny + Alexander are a very cool small business creating high quality keepsake toys. This adorable satchel would be perfect for the many adventures of childhood.

2. The original A frame tent, The Natural Wonder Tent is the perfect hideaway for quiet play or stealthy adventures. Made by one of our favourite Australian brands, Such Great Heights.

3. This apron set, made in the USA by Oddette Williams lets little people help in the kitchen or create mud cakes outside. Find it at the creative and cool shop, Mercimilo.

4. Sustainably made and educational, these wooden scales aim to please big and little people. From Shorties.

5. Answering the question, "What lies beneath", this beautiful story adventures into the world below the surface. Find it at Flora and Henri.

6. BOBO. BOBO. BOBO. Y'all know how deep my love runs for this brand. This pink and mustard jumper is perfect post beach in summer and to cosy up in winter.

7. Perfect tea party kit. Shorties.

8. A bug hotel to create a home to study and observe the movements of incredible insects. Found at Fawn Shoppe.

9. Unisex sandals. Classic, timeless and well made. From Tiny People Shop.

10. A beuatifully crafted kit of child sized tools from French toymaker Moulin Roty. Find them at Flora and Henri. There is a smaller version at HoneyBee Toys.

11. A star sleep suit from Aussie brand Thread Store. Swoon.

12. A Jess Brown Doll. We have three of these rag dolls and I have restitched parts and made them clothing for many adventures. Piper has a boy doll on her list this year.

13. This treehouse is buildable and sustainably made. So open ended it can be used as a fairy home, a pirate's ship, a medieval castle, an animal shelter...the list is endless. A toy that would last for many generations to come. Clever Santa! Find it at the amazing HoneyBee Toys.

One more to come, for those with a penchant for glitter!

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An Ethical Gift Guide // 5-7 year old.

November 29, 2016


I LOVE getting my Christmas on. From choosing gifts to advent activities (hello hot cocoas at sunset on the beach!) this really is a magical time of year. Last year I created a much loved gift guide for both my girls and thought it would be nice to share some more inspirations in case Santa is a bit stumped. Do enjoy!

BEST: The PolkaDotClub Classic Bear. Made by a second generation toy maker this heirloom bear is sure to be cherished on many adventures and passed on to your grandchildren one day. The lavender is divine.

1: A wheely basket for storing and pulling treasures around by Olli and Ella.

2: Maileg Mum and Dad Mice from Wild and Whimsical Things. Hands down the current most treasured toys in our home for both my girls.

3: The BonBon porcelain jar for hiding tiny treasures from KidoStore.

4: Mabo MaryJane Clogs handmade in Sweden.

5: Nailmatic Lipbalm and Polish 97% natural and made in France (oh la la) from Wild and Whimsical Things.

6: A linen apron dress from Yoli & Otis. Timeless and beautiful and coveting it hard.

7: Summer and Storm Calming crystal necklace.

8: Acorn Willow Hat from My Messy Room.

9: The George Truck from Such Great Heights. Piper loves driving her little toys around the house, away on caravan holidays and tucking them into sleep in the back of the pickup. This beautifully handmade truck should cover all the bases.

10: Jumper no15 in Flame, organic wool and handmade by BabaĆ£.

11: Sunnies by Sons & Daughters. Swoon.

12: Grimms Fairydoor. Help the fairies find a way to visit your sleeping babes. From Honeybee Toys.

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get outside // family sunday.

October 11, 2016

Trying to find that elusive work/life balance has been tricky. With a house reno (constant), and other grown up jobs it can be hard to find time for time. 
So we made a promise to spend Sunday together. Sometimes this may be that we have to go to a birthday party or other "function" but mostly just exploring our beautiful "backyard." 
This past Sunday was a huge beach walk/hike, fish and chips on the river and a round of mini golf (not recommended for Happy Gilmore behaviour prone 3 year olds though!)
x ashley 
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