Plant Based Mum Blog

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Look Who’s Walkin’ - Part Two: Our Top Family Beach-Side Walks in Melbourne

With summer on our doorstep, Melbourne is calling you for seaside walks and sand-filled play. Here are some of our favourite beach-side adventures:

St Kilda 

Not many can resist the fun of Luna Park in St Kilda. If your little ones are just that bit too little then there is a fantastic park to be found at Neptune Street. Sister of Soul is the place to visit for a yummy juice or smoothie to sip on as you stroll along the pier with bubba.

Hampton 

The beach-side suburb of Hampton provides lots of entertainment for families, with it’s parks and swimming beaches. Thomas Street South Reserve has a great wooden playground for the little ones to explore. With plenty of outdoor seating, Cornerstone and Co. Cafe makes a good spot to stop for lunch.

Elwood 

There is a beautiful walk in store for you along the Ormond Esplanade. Be sure to bring your hats, apply that sunscreen and pop on the sunglasses as it gets quite hot and glarey. For lunch, Little Sunflower Cafe is not far up Glen Huntley/Ormond Road. They serve the best buddha bowls in town and there is seating out the front for parents with prams. 

Chelsea 

Chelsea beach is a nice spot to visit. The Bicentennial playground is the perfect place for your little ones to run wild and Soul Press in nearby Edithvale will cure your smoothie craving. 

Frankston Foreshore  

Frankston Beach is a plesant spot to spend the afternoon. Nature Cafe makes a good choice for lunch with plenty of vegetarian and vegan options on the menu. Frankston Foreshore playground is lots of fun for the little ones, or there is the bright and bold Bellam Park further inland on Cranbourne Road.

Mornington Pier   

A nice walk around Mornington Pier is always lots of fun. There is a fantastic playground and reserve for the little ones to run around at Mornington Park. Soul Press is the place to go when hunger strikes with their nourishing açaí bowls and delicious smoothies, or you can try Thanks Albert with a yummy selection of vegetarian burgers to choose from. If you need to do some shopping while you are out and about Natural Balance along the main street has a big range of organic goodies. 

Remember to always be sun-safe on your walks! Visit www.sunsmart.com.au for more sun-safety tips.

Enjoy your summer! 

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Melbourne with Kids - Best Kid Friendly Cafes and Adventures in Melbourne

Melbourne has so much to offer families it’s hard to know where to begin, so let us help you start your journey by sharing some of our top picks for meal time, kid friendly fun activities and adventures. 

Top Picks for Child Friendly, Plant Friendly Cafes in Melbourne (and surrounds):

Top picks for fun family activities in Melbourne (and surrounds):

  • Visit the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV)

  • Explore the Melbourne Museum

  • Experience the Melbourne Sealife Aquarium

  • Partake in ArtPlay by the Yarra

  • Check out the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI)

  • Visit the Melbourne Zoo

  • Experience Collingwood Children’s Farm

  • Check out Scienceworks

Top picks for free family adventures in Melbourne:

  • Walk through the Royal Botanic Gardens

  • Jog around the tan with the pram

  • Stroll down Anzac Avenue (St Kilda Road)

  • Pay a visit to the Melbourne City Library

  • Walk along St Kilda pier with baby in the carrier

  • Explore Melbourne’s CBD by foot

Top playground picks in Melbourne (and surrounds):

  • Ian Potter Foundation Children’s Garden at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne

  • Ron Barassi Snr Park on Docklands Drive, Docklands

  • Royal Park Nature Play in Parkville (right near the Royal Children’s Hospital)

  • Middle Park Community Playground on Canterbury Road, Middle Park (Albert Park)

  • McNish Reserve on Court Street in Yarraville

  • Coburg Lake Reserve on Murray Road in Coburg North

  • Skinners Adventure Playground in Dorcas Street, South Melbourne

  • St Kilda Adventure Playground in Neptune Street, St Kilda

Want more cafes to choose from in Melbourne? Read about them here.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy our beautiful city! 

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What’s In My Nappy Bag - Part Two

With two little ones to call my own (the eldest still in nappies, being almost two), I thought I’d share what’s in my nappy bag for two bubbas.

The Bag

First things first, a good quality nappy bag is a must. I knew I needed a bag that was durable enough to be plonked down in the tanbark at a playground, or thrown into the car at a moments notice. This time around I also wanted something functional and it was important to me that it still be stylish enough to double as my own bag - something that wasn’t your obvious logo embossed nappy bag. Being budget conscious I also didn’t want to spend a fortune, but wanted something that would last. With all that in mind, I opted for the Witchery ‘Harry Nylon’ tote and it has been fantastic.

Functionality

As a busy Mum of two, I need to be able to access certain items quickly - especially when I am out and about. This is where bag inserts came in handy. I use these from Target as they are water proof (not very sustainable, but very inexpensive and practical!), or you can purchase more of an insert style such as this one from amazon.

All The Essentials

I always keep my nappy bag pre stocked and ready to go, as you’ll never know when you will have to head out. I simply fill one of my bag inserts with snacks and a couple of medicinal needs (such as panodol and teething gel) and the other with all the nappy change essentials (think spare nappies, wipes, nappy disposal bags, nappy rash cream, disposable gloves for change time, change mats and hand sanitizer).

Speaking of essentials here are a few other items we always carry with us:

Small Toys

It is a good option to throw a few small toys in to keep the little ones amused when out and about. If you have a teething baby a good teething toy is a must.

Bibs

Our all time fave bibs are from My Little Love Heart Bibs. These are handmade bamboo bibs, made in Australia.

The bibs are amazing and are the only kind I like using on my babies. Our eldest had quite bad eczema, particularly from the age of three to six months, and these were some of the only bibs that didn’t flare up her super sensitive skin. She still experiences tiny flair ups of eczema now and then, especially in the heat or if someone with strong fragrance cuddles her. I am praying that our youngest does not have to go through the pain and discomfort of eczema but time will tell.

I continue to use these bibs all the time, especially for my youngest who is just three months as he is still at that posseting stage - and in a few months time he will be starting solids too.

Change of Clothes

This is vital! All mums live in fear of a ill-timed nappy mishap so it is essential to carry a change of outfit for your little ones. We pack a whole outfit for our youngest and a change of pants for our eldest. You never know when they will be needed!

Thanks for reading!

Recipe of the Quarter - Creamy Green Pasta 

It is such an exciting time in our household, as my husband and I recently announced to friends and family that we are pregnant with our second child! We are beyond thrilled!! I love researching and trying out new recipes for dinner, and now that I am pregnant again it is extra important to ensure I am getting a good amount of nutrients and protein into each meal. Healthy protein is so important for the development of baby’s cells, tissues and muscles and a range of vitamins also assist in baby’s overall growth and development. This creamy pasta dish offers a range of nutrients, and is one of my new favourites. 

Creamy Green Pasta 

Ingredients: 

  • 250g-350g buckwheat or spelt pasta

  • 1 punnet organic mushrooms, washed well

  • 2 large handfuls washed organic baby spinach

  • 1 cup washed organic broccoli

  • 1 cup frozen peas

  • 1 bunch of organic asparagus, washed and chopped

  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese

  • 1 cup vegetable broth

  • 1 cup non-dairy milk of choice

  • 1 clove minced garlic

  • Pinch of salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil

  • Zest and juice of 1/2 lemon

Method:  

  • Add vegetable broth, non-dairy milk and pinch of salt to saucepan and bring to boil

  • Boil pasta in saucepan according to packet directions

  • Meanwhile, heat 1/2 teaspoon olive oil in large fry pan. Add garlic, frozen peas, mushrooms, asparagus and broccoli and stir until cooked (you can par-boil broccoli and frozen peas beforehand if you prefer)

  • Add cooked pasta to pan

  • At the last minute add baby spinach to pan and remove from heat, stir to combine ingredients

  • Add parmasen, lemon juice to taste, serve and enjoy.

Bon Appetit!  

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Family Getaways - Road Trip to Mornington

The bustling beach side town of Mornington is only an hours drive from Melbourne’s CBD. With plenty on offer for the family, it makes for a great destination for your next road trip. 

The playground at Mornington Park is the star attraction for families, offering little ones the chance to be a pirate for the day on a big wooden pirate ship. The large reserve nearby is the perfect place for a game of lawn soccer or a nice picnic. 

If picnics aren’t your style then the Burgers at Thanks Albert hit the spot for lunch - especially the aptly titled ‘No I Wasn’t Vegan - and YOMG do a delicious salted caramel frozen yoghurt that makes for a special treat for dessert. 

Mornington is a fun day out for the family filled with laughter, sunshine and fresh sea air.  

Where is your top pick for a quick family road trip?  

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Family Travel - New Zealand with Baby

In February we embarked on a family holiday to New Zealand - and this was baby’s first time on a plane, and her first time overseas. 

We share our top recommendations for family friendly travel in New Zealand’s South Island... 

Our Top Travel Tips for Travel with Baby 

  • If it is baby’s first time overseas, organise the passport well in advance - and make sure all family members passports are still current!

  • Breastfeed your baby on takeoff and desend - it helps with the pressure in their ears, it worked for us so much so that our bubba fell asleep! Offering a bottle of formula (or some water if your baby is old enough) would work in the exact same way - fed and sleeping baby for the flight is a win win!

  • Pack hand sanitizer and antiseptic wipes for the flight so you can wipe the area down and clean little hands before they eat - the last thing you want to deal with on your fun family holiday is illness

  • Bring on board a change of clothes and spare bibs for baby and a fresh top for yourself

  • Carry a couple of small books and small toys on the flight if you have the room, they are great for distractions

  • Pack one of baby’s comfort items to ease the transition to napping and sleeping in a different cot and unfamiliar environment

  • Try to plan activities and sightseeing around your baby’s routine if a routine is what they are used to

  • For Mum and Dad, invest in a local pre paid SIM card to pop in your phone, this will come in very handy in the event you get separated from a family member, experience an emergency when out and about or you need to access WiFi to find details of a local doctor. And don’t forget to pack your charger and an international power adapter or two!

Our top picks for baby friendly cafes in South Island NZ

  • Joe’s Garage in Christchurch

  • Water Drop in Christchurch

  • Fergburger in Queenstown

  • Bespoke Kitchen in Queenstown

  • The Spice Room in Wanaka

  • Maggie's Kitchen in Greymouth

Our top picks for family activities in South Island NZ

  • Hop on the gondola, stroll the bontanical parks or visit the fascinating Orana Wildlife Park or the Antarctic Centre in Christchurch

  • Stroll around historical Arrowtown, taking a visit to the Lakes District Museum, Dorothy Brown’s Cinema and the famous Remarkable Sweet Lolly Shop

  • Visit the Kiwi Bird Wildlife Park, take a Jurassic Safari of the Highlands or embark on a scenic family cruise in Queenstown

  • Stop by the Shantytown Heritage Park in Greymouth

  • Take in the view of the beautiful Lake Tekapo and visit nearby Mount Cook

  • Walk around the stunning lake Wanaka with baby in the ergo carrier or pram

  • Visit the UNESCO world heritage listed Fiordland National Park

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Close by - check, stunning scenery - check, plenty of family friendly fun - check...New Zealand certainly is the perfect family friendly destination - especially for those travelling from Australia with baby for the first time! 

Lovely Spring - Part One

Spring is one of our favourite times of the year. The sun comes out to shine, the sky starts to clear, and of course it means summer is near. But, the best part of all is the lovely flowers that pop up everywhere. Just so pretty! 

Mummy Green and Itty Bitty Green took the opportunity to explore Alowyn Gardens on a gorgeous sunny day. Situated in Victoria's Yarra Valley region, the Alowyn Gardens makes for a great morning (or afternoon!) outing.

Open seven days a week (10am - 5pm), and at just $10 to enter, a visit to the gardens is a great choice for your next family adventure. The paths are pram friendly and little ones who are old enough to wander will love exploring the gardens' many twists and turns. Allow at least 45 minutes to fully enjoy all the gardens have to offer. A large nursery awaits you on exiting, where you may be inspired to buy your own beautiful plants. There is even a little cafe to enjoy a refreshment after you've explored.   

Welcome

Welcome to Plant Based Mum - another mummy blog, with a focus on organic living for the whole family. We blog about our adventures. We also share where to head for healthy, family approved, allergy friendly cafes across Victoria, Australia. We provide information on local markets & food stores, and share our favourite organic and allergy friendly baby wear, plus give our tips on fun sustainable family activities and more!

Who Am I?

Mummy Green

I am Mummy Green - wife, an eco-beauty fanatic, a lover of tea, a plant-based eater, and - most importantly - Mummy to a gorgeous baby girl (Itty Bitty Green). I created the Plant Based Mum site as I wanted to find, and share, suitable lifestyle options and activities to help my family stay healthy and happy! 

Blog coming soon...