Meet Happy Go Ducky – Quality Toys and Gifts

Welcome to another blog, I love to introduce our followers to new brands we love, especially when people aren’t familiar with a brand and haven’t touched or felt the quality with their own hands.

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I prefer Piper to have quality over quantity that’s why we love Happy Go Ducky Toys  quality keepsake toys and gifts made in the Czech Republic, it’s now one of only a few countries that are still producing handmade traditional wooden, tin and crochet toys using only the best sustainably sourced materials, traditional tools, machinery and designs, which date back as far as 120 years ago. Beautiful, quality pieces with simple, durable designs that are loved and will be for generations.

So Happy Birthday Happy Go Ducky and welcome to the blog.

 

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Happy Go Ducky turns 1!

Everyone says it, but oh how it’s true! How quickly time passes! 1 YEAR OLD…Yes, in February Happy Go Ducky will turn 1…seems like a good time to look back, reflect and hope that we have a learnt a thing or two!

As I said, time flies but I can’t say it’s all been fun. If you want a challenge, try opening a new business importing something (anything!) while you have a baby on the way. In many ways, it is like having two babies…only with less nappies I guess!

So what have we learnt? There is no clock off time. You really do only get out what you put in. It’s nearly impossible to work with a toddler! When you think you have it figured out and kind of know what your doing, something else will pop up and throw you off the horse when you least expect it. Thankfully a year on, we’re still getting back on that horse and are even more determined than ever to make that beast our friend!

What keeps us going? For me, it’s our son (um, just everything about him!) and as cheesy as it sounds, seeing our toys go to good homes. Simple, possibly boring, but very true.

With all the work that goes on behind the scenes, in finding our suppliers, building a relationship with them (from 15,000km away), getting all our toys here safely (which takes months of hard work in itself), to then find out that people love them just as much we do, well that just makes me do a little happy dance!

12 months ago we took a HUGE chance and although it’s been difficult, we’ve built something special with toys and brands that we trust, love and are incredibly passionate about. I think people can see and feel that when they visit our store and I’ve found more and more that people are searching for quality over quantity. They want something special that they can keep that’s well made, beautiful to look at and most importantly, safe for their children to play with.

So we finish 2016 and our first year feeling grateful. Grateful that we survived. For all the support that’s surrounded us and kept us going, and full of excitement and motivation for what 2017 will bring and all the amazing and exciting new things we have to share with you.

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Thank you to everyone who has shopped with us, told a friend or loved one about us, followed us on Facebook and Instagram, shared their pictures with us or taken the time to send us an email to say that they love our toys and will shop with us again. You have made our first year even more wonderful than we ever could have hoped for!

Pop on over and find out why everyone is loving Happy Go Ducky

 



Salad in a Jar – Mason Jar Salads Tips and Recipes

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Mason jar salads

Tasty and Easy to  make, plus they make for a stylish way to impress your guests.

Storing the salad in glass (mason) jar keeps it fresh for 5-7 days.

A big tick from me is prepping your meal ahead of time.

You can use any ingredients you like, just follow the special technique to the salad assembly to keep all the contents fresh – The vegetables and protein need to be layered in a particular way so it doesn’t go soggy.

Layer 1 – Dressing – 1-2 tablespoons.
Layer 2 – Hard vegetables – carrot, capsicum, red onion, cucumber
Layer 3 – Pasta or rice or quinoa
Layer 4 – Soft vegetables – avocado, tomato
Layer 5 – Protein – chicken, egg and cheese
Layer 6 – Salad greens – lettuce or baby spinach

Making these salads is really easy. Just complete any cooking or chopping tasks and let every thing cool before assembly.

 

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These are the Steps and ingredients that went into the ones pictured but be creative and mix it up with what you  like.

  • Poached or shred BBQ chicken
  • Cook pasta, following packet directions
  • Cook rice, following packet directions
  • Cook quinoa, following packet directions
  • Boil eggs
  • Wash vegetables
  • Chop vegetables and dry
Ingredients
  • 1-2 tablespoons of you favourite store or homemade dressing
  • Cucumber, cubed
  • Carrot, grated
  • Capsicum, diced
  • red onion, finely sliced
  • Corn kernels
  • Cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • Pasta or rice or quinoa
  •  bbq Chicken
  • Egg, boiled
  • grated cheese
  • Lettuce, finely sliced

 

  • Place all ingredients in the order listed above into a clean mason jar
  • Seal tightly, refrigerate and use within 7 days.

 

Be sure to let us know what you think?

Enjoy Love Kerry and Piper xoxo

 

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Family Friendly accommodation-Novotel Brisbane School Holiday Saver

“Mum, Dad, are we there yet?” If these are the words causing you ‘car anxiety’ every time you pack the kids into the car, then simply avoid the question by making your next family vacation closer to home.

http://www.accorhotels.com/1749

This Easter break we enjoyed some Novotel Brisbane hospitality and had a staycation in our home town, road testing the ‘School Holiday Saver’ which includes free buffet breakfast for 2 adults and 2 children, free carparking and late checkout* for the family (2 x adults and 2 x children)

My own approach when choosing accommodation for our family is to lean towards venues that make an extra effort to cater to families with children.  At all Novotel hotels around the world, your children are important guests and accommodation and breakfast are free for two children under 16 years. Plus the rooms have every thing you need including ipod docking stations, internet access and in room movies.

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Since we were staying at Easter we were also able to partake in all the special activities the hotel had happening over the holiday period like the scavenger hunt to help find the Easter bunnies lost eggs.

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Plus we enjoyed some much needed relaxation while the kids visited the games room with an array of Xbox games and consoles plus they coloured the day away doing the Easter colouring in pages while mum and dad enjoyed the Easter cocktails, mocktails and snacks in the newly renovated Gourmet bar.

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Kids rooms are always bonus.

For dinner we decided to stay in and enjoy the family meal deal in the pantry restaurant on the ground floor. It was a really relaxed and casual it made for a nice change to just head downstairs and not have to push a pram and drag tired children around the city plus the kids ate free which is always a bonus, while we enjoyed a 2 course dinner with a glass of beer or wine for only $65.00 which was delish and excellent value.

Plus it’s always great to wake refreshed to a good hotel buffet breakfast and this didn’t disappoint relaxed, simple, fresh and tasty and something for every one is always a winner in our family.

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Best way to start the day.

Nestled in the heart of the Brisbane CBD, Novotel is a great location, it’s a short walk to shops, cafes and all the best Brisbane has to offer, it’s spacious and welcoming and the Novotel family room is designed to accommodate 2 adults and 2 children in the greatest comfort.

It’s the perfect place to stay where you can experience and share precious moments.

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Always at home in a hotel.

Just a few of the benefits that families that chose to stay at Novotel Brisbane City will benefit from:

    • Sofa bed
    • Baby cot
    • Non-smoking rooms
    • Children’s television channel
    • Dedicated play areas
    • Balanced meals
    • Children’s menus
    • Bottle-warmers and high chairs at your disposal
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Checking out her social channels on the free wifi.

When your next in Brisbane and looking for family friendly accommodation you must check out Novotel Brisbane at www.novotelbrisbane.com.au they always have some great special happening, current specials include Kids Stay and Eat Free, check website for terms and conditions. the perfect place to base yourself for all the best Brisbane has to offer.

Novotel Brisbane – 200 Creek Street Brisbane Queensland 07 3309 3309

 



A fun day for the family – Tangalooma Whale Watch Cruise Moreton Island

Today we had the perfect start to a perfect day, starting with a leisurely cruise from Brisbane across Moreton Bay, we then boarded our whale watching vessel a smooth sailing, comfortable catamaran so well designed you have great views from all over the boat of the blissful blue waters and it’s the perfect opportunity to be close to whales in their natural environment.

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It’s something your kids – and you – will never forget.

It was a friendly and welcoming experience with informative commentary and lots of cooperative whales. We saw numerous pods of mamma and baby whales making their migration back home.

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It was the perfect chance to get up close and personal with these wonderful creatures plus if your lucky you may get the chance to see dugongs, turtles, dolphins and a number of sea birds as part of the cruise, along with the amazing coastal scenery.

There is nothing more thrilling than seeing a whale breach from the water in all its majesty. It’s even better if a baby calf is nearby and you can see the huge beasts up close.

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These massive creatures spend summers in Antarctica and in spring travel up the Australian coast to get to the sub-tropics. Whales appear off the south coast of Australia in winter but the humpback pass up and down the entire coast twice – once on their way to have their babies and the second time around to bring the calves back to icy Antarctica.

Tangalooma operates daily whale watching cruises from June through until the end of October with departures available from Brisbane and Tangalooma.

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If you get the chance you must board the largest dedicated whale watching vessel in Australia and see these majestic humpback whales in their natural environment as part of an awe-inspiring day tour.

The cruise includes a yummy light lunch onboard as well an extensive educational commentary by an Eco Ranger from Tangalooma‘s Marine Education and Conservation Centre its a must do for families our kids can not stop talking about it!

What an amazing experience we’ll all never forget.

We were also very honoured to be involved in one of the best whale-watching season to date, Tangalooma Island Resort held a special ceremony on Friday to bid an official farewell to the magnificent marine giants and donate $6000 to kids cancer research.

The 2016 whale watching season has been extraordinary and very special with $5 per whale spotted on board Australia’s largest vessel dedicated to whale watching, being donated to The Kids’ Cancer Project, a charity that holds a very special place on the island. The ceremony welcomed some of the amazing patients and families set to benefit from the generous donation from the resort to The Kids’ Cancer Project.

If you have any question just drop us a line here or on any of our social channels, as we would love to chat.

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For more information on Tangalooma Island Resort, please visit www.tangalooma.com and for more information on The Kids’ Cancer Project, please visit www.thekidscancerproject.org.au.

Love Kerry and Miss Piper xoxo