Dear Ladies,

Today we are in the presence of movement, dance and theatre greatness, with Lisa Minett, former Head of Movement and Dance for NIDA, who now runs an amazing studio in Seddon. Combining the best of barre, pilates, yoga and dance to help women stay strong and healthy, Lisa is a powerhouse of inspiration and energy.

I wish my mama had told me about this before!




Tell us about your business – when did you start it and what is it all about?

My Mama Said opened doors on July 13, 2015. I’ve spent my life as an actor, dancer and choreographer. I’ve seen the benefits that having a strong connection to your physical presence can do for people professionally and personally. Unfortunately, most of the training out there cares little about your progress and is uncertain about how to nurture the unique beauty that lies in each of us. I wanted to offer a safe group fitness alternative where you can train in all styles of mind/body workouts.

What inspired you to start your business?

I had been working with actors as a University lecturer for the past 6 years and was tired, burnout and frustrated. I wanted to share all that I knew about movement with people in an environment that was more fun and friendly. I grew up in Williamstown and have always wanted to return and open up my own studios so i can share all of my knowledge with the people in my community.

What was the best piece of business advice you were given when you were starting off?

Focus in on the product – which for me was to deliver quality classes.


What was the most difficult part about starting your business?

Finding out I was 8 weeks pregnant a week before I opened!!!! Probably keeping it small to start. Not trying to do the bigger plan stright off. Let the business build.

Can you name the biggest lesson you’ve learned about running your business?

There are so many extra little costs that you simply forget about. Also, people will ask what seems like ridiculous requests to you. If you can accommodate them, then just do it. You are providing a service to them, not to yourself.

What has been the biggest sacrifice you’ve made in starting your business?

My husband and two year old daughter. I work a lot at night and that means less dinner and down time with them.

What is one thing you wish you had of known before you started your business?

That it will all work out in the end and you will never stop working to drum up business.


What has been your biggest success so far?

The clients who have been with me since day one are inspiring and gorgeous human beings and i would never have met them if I didn’t open the studio. Watching them grow and glow is so rewarding.

After a long day/night/week what do you do to unwind?

I have a massage whenever I can. I’m also partial to a little flutter on a Saturday!

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Still helping people discover the amazing abilities that lie within the mind and body.

Wet Wipes – Bernice Thompson


They seem like such a good idea at the time. Conveniently wet on demand, in a carry pack with a lid; disposable. But the problem is, these handy little wipes are often not biodegradable, yet people often throw them down the toilet, and if not, people often pop them into small plastic bags and throw in the bin. Often.

Ok, so in the scheme of things that we do wrong to the environment, it may not make the biggest impact on our footprint, but it is a teeny tiny thing that we can actually change, without having to put much effort in. And that seems to be the key – the less effort we have to put in to change our negative impacts on the world the more likely we are to make the commitment and change our behaviour. (Side note: some of the most difficult easy ways to reduce our environmental footprint include stop eating meat, stop having pets, stop flying on aeroplanes, and surprisingly, stop using glow sticks… I’ll admit I partake in three of these four activities, I’ll leave it up to you to form your own conclusions ;)).

Anyway, back to the things that we can easily do without changing our philosophies on life too much, and wet wipes. A disturbing picture that hit the viral current slipstream not long ago was a one tonne “fatberg” made up from mainly wet wipes blocking, clogging and blowing out sewer systems which, according to this article, around 80 per cent of sewer blockages resulting from people flushing wet wipes down the toilet. Part ignorant convenience, part irresponsible tissue manufacturers claiming wipes are flushable (and the definition of flushable does not mean “put them in the toilet and hit the button”, but that the tissue can break down/dissolve into leafy sea dragons or even just broken up tissue fragments), you cannot flush them down the toilet.

So not flushing them down the toilet is one thing, but limiting to your use of them altogether is also something I’m into. Plus, they also often have chemicals and alcohol in them, which can be harmful to the sensitive bottoms of growing Dictators. Plus, they’re just not necessary. Our children do not need to be sterilised to be clean and hygienic.


“How on earth can a parent in this world survive without wet wipes??!!!” I hear you exclaim. Lean in, things are about to get all kinds of crazy right now….

  1. A water bottle with water and a teaspoon of olive oil, shaken, not stirred
  2. A flannel/cloth
  3. A bucket with cold water and vinegar for soaking*
  4. A washing machine*

I don’t think I need to write out the method. You’re all smart people. Oh, just remember to pop a plastic bag in your bag to transport it all home… otherwise it’s all gonna get too real! 😉

*keep these items in your home, transportation can be troublesome.


Berns xx

Do You Wish You Had a Red Tent? – Caitlin Fitzpatrick


Dear Ladies,

As the full moon kicks in this week – well, actually a Blue Moon – holistic health specialist Caitlin Fitzpatrick talks to us about the importance of focusing inwards on our bodies and our menstrual flow. It is a time to reflect, reminisce and re-evaluate, to meditate, pray and nourish your body as it performs its natural cycle.

Eat well & hide out in your tent!



Do You Wish You Had a Red Tent? – Caitlin Fitzpatrick

In ancient times as a woman approached the dark moon in time with her cycle, she would go to the red tent where she would menstruate with other women. It was an honorable, beautiful and highly respected time.  Women would often leave their communities and families to go to the red tent for answers. They would return with wisdom and insight to share.

In the lead up to the new moon is a very beautiful time, yet so often in our modern society, many women don’t know how, and have never been taught to embrace the profound and divine experience.

I have now have marked in my diary the dark moon and the full moon in each month. I try to not book big events on the new moon, to allow myself this sacred time and space. When it’s a full moon, I plan new projects, make decisions and get creative. And while I don’t have a red tent to go to monthly,  I create my own sacred space.

 (But I sometimes really wish I did have a red tent to go to).

Do you wish you have a red tent too?

Blessings beautiful women,



Post original appeared here.

Raw Kale Pesto

AYLA-Maternity-Blog-Kale-Pesto-Dip-Made Final

Dear Ladies,

The other week, I was lucky enough to attend the opening of a new store in Port Melbourne – About Life. It is jam packed with a range of healthy, organic, locally made food, and we were able to sample lots of their pre-made food, including this amazing Raw Kale Pesto. I use it as a dip, but you can add it to salads, pasta, rice, whatever you like – just add more or less water to suit.




Raw Kale Pesto


What you need:

  • 1 cup of raw cashews
  • 1 cup of filtered water (or more if you like it more runny)
  • 1 clove garlic (peeled)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Himalayan salt (or whatever one you have!)
  • 1 pinch of black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup fresh kale leaves
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

What you do:

  • Chop kale into strips, removing stalks.
  • Soak chopped kale in apple cider vinegar and a little bit of warm water for 5 minutes.
  • Drain kale and add to blender with the rest of ingredients.
  • Blitz it until it is smooth.
  • Serve with crackers, vegetables or whatever you like!



Dear Ladies,


Well, it has finally come  – the last of our yoga series and the last pose that will help you get through your pregnancy – and perhaps the most simple of all. Just sit, breathe in, and count to six before you breathe out again! (Or head to our friends at Bikram Yoga, Yarraville if you need some extra help)



Pose 20 – Blowing in Firm Pose

Sit on your knees, facing forward, with your hips balanced, your spine straight & your shoulders relaxed.
Bring your palms together to rest at your heart-centre, then begin breathing. Count to six as your breathe in, then exhale for a count of six. Repeat as many times as you need until you feel your body & mind completely release.

This pose is great for:

  • improving oxygenation to the body
  • ridding the body of toxins (did you know that you actually breathe out fat?!)
  • energising and revitalising the body
  • helping bring mental clarity and alertness
  • preventing post-natal depression – breathing exercises are vital for the control of your energy or prana

But be mindful of:

  • avoiding strain on your abdomen muscles – if in doubt, breath out!

DIY Dishwashing Liquid


Dear Ladies,

Now, I will admit it, I do like to clean. But about a year or so ago I realised that I was using too much liquid soap after I drank out of a glass that hadn’t been rinsed properly, and ruined a glass of good wine with a frothy head. Even though I was using the ‘environmentally-friendly’ dishwashing liquid that doesn’t cost that much, it also got me thinking that there had to be a better way – using less soap and also less plastic. So here goes!




What you need:

  • 6 tablespoons of castille soap
  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable glycerin
  • empty glass bottle (I actually threw out the bottle too and started using a spray to use less soap – it coats the dirt evenly rather than your hands in the water!)
  • 2 cups of cold water (I add a little more when I use it in the spray bottle)
  • 5 drops of your favourite essential oil – optional, but oh-so-lovely!

How to make it:

  • Combine all ingredients in bottle.
  • Shake to mix, then pump and use!

DIY Toothpaste


Dear Ladies,

This is perhaps the easiest and cheapest recipe of all the ones I use, and also the first I started with on my zero waste journey – toothpaste. It has only two ingredients, two steps, and will replace about $2 worth of spending every week…which is an extra 25 coffees a year.

Save that money and your health and make your own! You don’t need all those other ingredients and packaging to look after your teeth.



What you need:

  • bi-carb soda – a couple of tablespoons will be enough
  • a dash of water – to make a paste
  • an empty glass container – wide enough to fit your toothbrush

How to make it:

  • Place all ingredients in container.
  • Shake or stir together with your toothbrush and use twice daily!
  • A little note: after many years of eating ‘minty’ toothpaste, you will no doubt be used to this taste and the sweetness manufacturers add – if the plain bicarb taste is too much to handle at first, add a couple of drops of peppermint DoTerra essential oil (or any other edible brand) or any other flavour you like and munch away! After a while, you probably won’t bother.