Cutting out devices in a digital world.. living slow in the tropics


So here we are a few weeks in and you might be wondering how we’ve been going with this whole digital detox with the kids.

As you know we left the iPad behind this time because it really annoyed me seeing Cam wanting to be on it all the time.  We also used to have a small portable dvd player here but its broken so we’ve been going cold turkey.  And so traveling with kids , especially this kind of slow travel where we are not out at adventure activities every day has been kinda challenging. Turns out its just the same crap in a different location.

But if you have kids I guess you probably already knew that..despite the pretty pics on my instagram feed.

They went ok at first, Willow is happy to colour and play and C was working on colouring and homework books too. I thought oh this is the way it should be, feeling all like some kind of parent of the year.

But as soon as C discovered that some of his soccer games had downloaded to my phone through ‘the ‘Cloud’ he has pretty much made it his mission to try and steal my phone as much as possible. Sneaking in stealth like to swipe the phone before it locked if i put it down.   And becoming intolerable at dinners with boredom so that we have to hand it over to get some peace.  Or trying to bargain with me ..anything he does is a negotiation in potential exchange for time on my phone.  So I’ve totally had to resist this kind of manipulation just to prove a point but wow its challenging.  Or in a less polite tone..annoying, painful, making me feel like I want to poke my eyes out ..yeah that may sum it up better.

Of course I have my laptop too and I’ve limited that to around W’s nap time or in the evening before bed.  C likes to watch people playing on youtube which I think seems more valuable than his previous love of watching other people play video games.   I mean he’s taught himself some pretty good soccer skills through watching coach youtube.

I do take him daily up to the local indoor Futsul Stadium here in Canggu, where we practices goal kicking or play with friends while they are here. Now started to invite himself into games with some of the locals.  That’s what is one good thing about him being out here with no one else his age..over these years he has learnt to become confident in going up to strangers and making friends. It totally helped when we picked up last year and started a new school, new house.. he knew how good he was at making friends and I always remind him.  And ask how many people say no they don’t want to play..FYI its none so its a pretty good strike rate to give him confidence.

So anyway back to the games… I guess I do have the option to just delete all the games from my phone. I never had any on there before for this very reason.  He was in bed sick before we came away so he was allowed to get some new games and thats how they ended up on my phone.  I deleted most but not all… WHY?  He won’t want it if there are none on there.

Maybe I like to have that back up.

Like an insurance policy if it does get too annoying.

It drives me crazy that he uses it and then I try to get on there to ‘work’ and its nearly out of charge.

It’s made me see that I need to schedule and fit more work into work time. I try to show him what I’m doing on my phone so he knows it’s work, ( to make me feel less guilty) but he doesn’t care. He just sees us on our phones. Cutting their screen time just made it more obvious how much my husband and I were on ours.

The simple truth really is that it’s us.

It’s us that are finding it hard to cut out the devices.

We are guilty.

Parenting has changed..we are expected to watch and entertain our kids 24/7.

We want a moment to chat, a moment to ourselves, a moment where we don’t have to entertain.

And I don’t think that’s asking too much.

But I don’t have the answer either..


Let me know what your thoughts are..


My Life- Home and Travel

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Living Slow in the Tropics..

Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids
Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids
Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids

So its Winter and here we are..back in Bali, back in our little house in Canggu and this year I’m working on some some changes while I’m here  to life and also to the business.

The kids have grown so can see our family photoshoot from last year here

If there is ever a place to try out slow living then this is it.  We have no TV, I actually bought along a know like a story ..not a work related one, we left the iPad at home and we like to just hang out as if we live here all the time.

No rushing off to all the tourist sites.. driving here and there and everywhere getting stuck in the terrible Bali traffic and the kids spending half the day in the car.

Just sleeping, yoga, local markets, eating, reading, napping, swimming, taking cam to play sport, surf, eat again… and yes I will be working a bit as I said.  But anyone who works from home knows that to work without kids around knows its a little luxury to have some space to yourself to work on your own project. Work technically yes.. but enjoyable all the same.

Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids

It might sound kind of boring to pretty much stay in your own neighbourhood but I guess it all depends on why you travel.

I want to know what it feels like to live somewhere else. I’ve lived abroad at various times in my early twenties and we’ve moved around a bit at home but generally I’ve found that this feeds my need to be somewhere else.  You know that feeling that life may be different or better somewhere else?? Well I know that it’s not better anywhere else..just different.  We’ve created a life we love but that doesn’t mean we all don’t crave some change to the routine.

By coming back to the familiar, same people, same places I love the feeling that we have a little home away from home… another place in the world where the shop keeper remembers you, your neighbours do too.  You note how things have changed each year, you lament it but all the same you know that life is always changing and the best way to cope with that is to go along for the ride.

Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids
Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids
Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids
Bali slow in the tropics, travelling with kids

You may like to check out our Bali house here

My Life- Home and Travel

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Newborn Photography Trend- Floral

Newborn Baby Photography Trend - Floral

I love to stay on the look out for great newborn baby photo ideas for you and I’ve noticed a beautiful trend in newborn baby photography…the use of flowers and other natural elements particularly in  floral crowns and rings.

I thought I’d share some here and as always I have plenty of inspiration as well as the sources on my pinterest boards HERE
Newborn Baby Photography Trend - Floral

Whites and natural textures backgrounds are perfect for a serene baby image with a boho edge.
Newborn Baby Photography Trend - Floral

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Newborn Photo Ideas, Trend Watch

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How to become a brand rep..

brand rep tips for the baby brand industry

Are you keen to be a brand rep?

We love to see beautiful photography of your babies and little people with our baby blankets and bedlinen. Most brands love this and many choose brand reps to help them to gather more imagery and content to share on their websites and social media channels.

Want to know what a brand looks for when looking for reps?? 

Primarily what most brands look for in a rep is someone who loves their product and is keen to share it with the world and their friends.   It might be great to get some free product but to keep the relationship going with your brand it’s easier if you are an actual fan or even already are a customer. And are you able to provide back regular feedback and images to help them promote the product?

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Newborn Photo Ideas, Trend Watch

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Sapling Child x Alphabet Monkey Baby Giveaway

We are excited to join up with leading organic baby wear brand Sapling Child to offer one of our Instagram followers an amazing prize worth $250


Get yourself on instagram because we have teamed up to offer a lucky winner a $100 Sapling Child voucher and one of our Vintage Modern quilts..either Charlotte or George.

This is a prize that any new mother or expectant mother will LOVE!!!!

I can personally guarantee you will love their beautiful organic baby wear.  Look at these images I found of Willow that I posted when she was little in her Sapling gear.

OMG she is so small Willow is in these pictures…

I found them so well made, they wash so well and I got so much wear out of them with Willow.  I found their sizing so generous as some baby jumpsuits seem to have short legs..have you noticed?? And Willow was a long baby. So I got a lot more wear out of them than some other designer brands.

The nice thing was that I was able to pass them on as they held up so well. I think we may even still squeeze into some of the bubble suits when we go to Bali next month.

Oh and did I mention the celebs love Sapling too.. well not that we really care about the celebs but i mean if it’s good enough for the royal babies…well you know I’m just saying 😛

So tell your friends with babies to get on and enter now..

All they have to do is

follow both brands on instagram

  • Follow both @alphabetmonkey1 and @saplingchild on Insta
  • Then tag a many as you like as every comment is an entry.
  • Ends Sunday 8pm EST or 10am Monday 10am AEST
  • Open winner pays postage.

Alphabet Monkey Loves..

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Birth Announcement Cuties 2

This months birth announcement idea has a bit of an American edge with the baseball and all but  you could use this idea with other objects.

And don’t know about you but I’m loving the new iPhone with its portrait would allow you to take something like this at home.  It automatically blurs the background ..its super easy and it makes you look like a bit of a pro.

I’m obsessed with using it on my personal Insta account..I know you will love it.

Newborn Photo Ideas

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What a mum really wants..

Canggu Bali Family photo session

With Mothers Day I was thinking about what kind of gifts a mother could want..other than a good night sleep. Then I saw my friends Instagram post ( @jetsetmama) this morning about her baby daughter and it moved me to tears.

Speaking of sensing  her child, although still a baby  already in the process of leaving her. At the end in reference to her daughter she says

” Because through it all I will never forget, her tiny body, her tiny face, her smell, and the way it made me feel. And one day when I am old and my body unable to heal,

She will hold me.

And have her face pressed to mine.

And this big whole life,

was but a beautiful moment in time. ”

Claire is certainly a clever girl when it comes to writing and expressing emotions and after I brushed away the tears.. I thought its really those memories of moments in time that we can hold onto the most.

So I believe that the best present you can give your mum or yourself is to capture it all and not to forget to include yourself in it too.

And on that note I want to share with you some family pics we had done last year in the fields outside Villa Nanas , our villa in Canggu Bali.

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My Life- Home and Travel

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Trend- The future of the Monochrome Nursery Trend

Monochrome nursery trend, mountain baby blanket, black and white nursery

The monochrome nursery trend continues to be strong but where is it headed.

Before decorating for your baby check out where this nursery trend is headed.

With the launch of our black and white Nordic Winter Baby Blanket and Quilt Range we thought it would be a great time to think about it.

Monochrome nursery trend, mountain baby blanket, black and white nursery

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Alphabet Monkey Ranges, Nurseries and Kids Interiors, Trend Watch

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Top 10 Nursery Trends for 2017

Lets talk nursery trends for 2017……

The year has gotten away but lets look at what’s trending in children’s interiors this year and beyond.

1. Metallics and Rose Gold.  Expect to see a lot more particularly on larger items like cots. Our latest range Modern vintage was photographed on this Incy Interiors cot and it looks just divine.

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Nurseries and Kids Interiors, Trend Watch

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