Tag Archive for Teenagers

Homegrown Mom Review – This Mom’s off to give an honest review of Under 18’s

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homegrown mom reviewHomegrown Mom Review

This Mom’s off to Jim Beam Homegrown to give an honest review of what it’s like for our Teenagers in the Under 18’s crowd (15-18 years)!

48 Bands & Artists, 6 stages, spread across 1.2 kms of Wellington’s Waterfront this Saturday.  New Zealand’s hottest, and best kept secrets of the NZ homegrown music industry.

I’m going to be rocking it with 17,000 people…1700 Under 18’s and my 15-year-old will be for the first time somewhere amongst it all.

The Jim Beam Homegrown event has been circled wildly on my Teens Calendar forever and she tells me “it will be the absolute highlight of her year”. She has a list as long as her arm of artists that she is “so excited about that she can hardly breathe” (her words).

Are you going?
Do you have young Teens going to Homegrown?

From everything I had read on the Homegrown website, the team has built over the years a truly epic Music Festival unlike any other. The lineup of artists they host is mammoth, the way they reportedly run the event seems well-respected, and the buzz they create is tangibly in the air in the lead up.

My 15-year-old teen was eagerly ‘hoping’ to watch as many of the artists in your line up as possible this year, as she is finally old enough to attend as an ‘under 18’.


homegrown mom review

As a Mom, before I can say yes (or no) to an event or something of this mammoth dimension I need to really understand it myself and thoroughly do my research. I try really hard to keep an open mind and a balanced view, but do a tonne of research, ask other parents, check out the credentials, look at last year’s photos and reviews of the events etc… to try and make a fair decision of if I think it’s suitable for her to go (or not).

But as a parent, what I really-really want and am looking for is to hear another Mom’s opinion of ‘what the event is really like’ from their own experience and how their teen really found it, to read a Homegrown Mom Review. On talking with other parents they are also all looking for that real validation of “yeah the organisers say all the right things, but what’s it really like in the mosh-pit, and do they really truly follow through on their drugs and alcohol policies?’’.

The only way I felt comfortable this year with Miss15 attending, is if I attended Homegrown at the same time this year to really check it out myself and be able to visually and verbally check in with her frequently throughout the event. Yeah, I know, I’m ‘that’ Mom.

So this year, I have partnered with Jim Beam Homegrown 2016 to be their Mom Blogger and provide a “Mom’s review of what Homegrown is really like for your under-age teen”.

Are you a Mom or Dad going along too?
Are you taking younger kids or Teens with you?

My review will be more of the angle of ‘What Homegrown was really like from a Mom’s perspective for your under-age teen’ (& hopefully just how fun it was!). Also getting Miss15’s perspective after the event as to how she found it, safety, tone, appropriateness, tips she would give for other under 18’s etc…or honest information to give their parents.

I’m not there to embarrass my Teen, I hope she has the most amazing long anticipated time and Dances and Sings her little heart out.  She will need to check in and respond whenever I call or ask her to meet.  But other than that I plan to keep a pretty low profile, thoroughly enjoy my day, check out as many bands as possible and Dance and Sing my own little heart out while scoping out what it’s really like from a “Mom” view.

My reviews are always completely honest, un-biased and as I see it and experience it. But I’m leading with high-hopes that Homegrown is a really well run, well-rehearsed event, whom have covered many eventualities and follow through and do what they have said they will :-) … but we will see.

Homegrown have done a great job so far in provided lots of starter info on their Homegrown Under 18’s info page on their website.

…”All people under 18 who buy a ticket to Homegrown will need to pre-register on a special ‘Under 18 database’. If you don’t register and we don’t have your details you won’t be allowed into the festival. Read more here about Homegrown for Under 18’s here.”…

As it’s an event that serves alcohol, everyone who enters the gates will be checked for ID and given a wrist band of Over 18 or Under 18.  As above all Under 18’s are also entered on a Database.

I’m hopeful everything goes well, but I am also realistic as to what lengths Teens will go to gain Alcohol, Pre-Load beforehand, get access to Drugs and Stimulants.  There is the own choices your Teen makes, as well as those friends around them and the ones of those they ‘run into’ or didn’t plan to meet.  I remember my own Teen years well!

So yeah, um…it you are going to Homegrown…let me know you are coming or that you are there.  Connect with me via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

#HomegrownMomReview #hg16

I also think I’m going play around a bit and have my first foray into the world of !!! Snapchat !!!

…I don’t know what I’m doing…but we will see if I can make it go.

Who should I follow?

What shouldn’t I post?  I’ll avoid snapping my #MomShoes to help my feet last the day.

There is loads of great info by the minute info on their Homegrown Official Facebook page also that you can keep up to date with there.

Tickets are $119 (+$5.99 booking fee) through here at Homegrown Dash Tickets or through the link on their website Homegrown Tickets.

Here’s the lineup:

Who do you want to see?

* Shapeshifter  * Kora  * David Dallas  * The Black Seeds  * Katchafire  * Sons of Zion  * AHoriBuzz  * Sunshine Soundsystem  * DJ Sir-Vere

* Devilskin  * Blacklistt  * I Am Giant  * Villainy  * The Feelers  * The Datsuns
* Beastwars  * City of Souls

* Stan Walker  * Savage  * Avalanche City  * Ladi6  * Homebrew
* P Money  * Jamie McDell  * Maala  * Emergency DJ Clint  * Marek

* Jason Kerrison  * Anika Moa ft. Tiki  * Sola Rosa Sound System  * Beau Monga  * Team Dynamite  * Donell Lewis ft. Wrd Up  * Average Rap Band

* State of Mind  * Trei ft. Tali, Tiki & Thomas Oliver  * The Peacekeepers vs K+Lab  * The Beat Mafia  * Dick Johnson  * Dan Aux  * Cymbol 303 & This Pale Fire

* BT & The Vibes  * Troy Kingi  * Lord Echo  * The Toblerone Sessions  * Dug Trio  * Tyson Smith  * Lady Fruit


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When your mad at someone until they ask if you want food…& more stuff that makes me smile

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When your mad at someone until they ask if you want food…& more stuff that makes me smile from around the interwebs 😃

 Weekend Epic Plans:

Relationship moto: 


Miss 15 to a tee, everytime:


My Saturday morning: 


Death by Foot Cramp:



Surgery by Cats:


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Welcoming Teenagers into your home – Kiwi Families

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Welcoming teenagers into your home – with Kiwi Families.

My Mother’s Day started with 9 Teenagers scattered all around the lounge fast asleep after a late night of events, movies, music, singing, dancing and talking into the wee-wee small hours of the morning.

8 of which were not mine!  :-)

I don’t mind at all though, as they are all great kids (teens) and are lots of fun.

Do you host Sleepovers at your house?

What have you learnt that works well?

Here’s a link to an article I wrote recently about ‘Welcoming Teenagers into your Home‘ (Sleepovers) for the fab website that I write a little bit for kiwifamilies.co.nz

Pop over and have a read and let me know what your thoughts are?


welcoming-teenagers-into-your-home-kiwi-familiesscreenshot image via kiwifamilies.co.nz

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Today this is Single Parenting

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Today this is ParentingI stood in the shower staring up at the ceiling letting the water wash over me until it ran cold.

Averting my eyes from the floor as I knew the stainless steel needed a good scrub and pretending it wasn’t there.

Today this is Single Parenting.

Reaching out to turn the faucet off many times, but hesitating as I didn’t want to leave this comfort, this cocoon of warmth, this moment of respite.

In the mornings in our house, our Showers need to be quick as our Apartment Hot Water tank isn’t the biggest.
So come the weekends (when we are not rushing out to early morning sport, friends or events) I love having long leisurely showers when it isn’t about getting up and ready for the day, it’s just about enjoying the shower.  Today’s shower featured really-really late in my day.

A shower always makes me feel better, even if only a tiny bit, it’s a refresh, a washing away, a re-gathering of thoughts and a small respite from what ever is happening in your life.

I always get a tonne of thinking, planning, decision-making and day dreaming done in my shower.

Today’s shower though…saw me second guessing all the decisions I make for my daughter and I and trying to figure out if I’m just royally messing it all totally up.

You see, my daughter hasn’t spoken to me for most of the day…and I’ve kept my distance purposely to give her some space.

I had made the decision to say no to something she wanted to do and had to tell her that earlier.  I’m more than comfortable with my decision and know this one is right, but it doesn’t make being on the other end of the silent treatment any easier and having my daughter not talk to me still does hurt nonetheless.

But hey, if I was her, I probably would have done the same thing to my Mother, thinking that by me not talking to her that this was going to send her a clear message that she was wrong and that she would change her mind.  Or that this will just show you how much I really don’t like her at the moment.
I’m sure I did this many-many times throughout my teenage years – sorry Mom!

In my shower today I wasn’t second guessing my decision to say no to her request, as I was still confident about that.

I was second guessing if I was “Doing it right”, this “Parenting thing”, this “Single Parenting” thing.




Things Like:

I’m confident that setting boundaries and having consequences for actions is the right thing.
…But second guess the level at which I set those things and if they are ‘right’.

I’m confident that I love my daughter whole heartedly and try to find ways to show her this daily so that she knows she can always rely on that.
…But I second guess if she will pull on this when she needs it most in the future.

I’m confident that spending the quality time with her, alongside her, being an involved parent, cheering her on throughout her up bringing has been such a huge part in building strong foundations in who she is, how loved she is, how important she is, that she matters.
…But I second guess if it is ever – enough.


I’ve been Single Parenting for a really long time, first becoming a Single Parent some 13 years ago now.

For 6+ years of this time I was in a Relationship/we then Married – Single Parent, but then for the last 7+ years it’s been just me completely on my own.

Doing this without backup, without that sounding board, without that support, without that encouragement, without that load share-er and without that ‘hey you are doing ok’ and without that ‘I’ve got your back’.  Let alone the Love part and sharing your life with someone (that’s another post).

Today though, my Shower was my Sounding Board, my Supporter, my Encourager, my Load Share-er and my Back stop.

Sounds cheesy I know, but it was.

It didn’t talk back to me, except to say “awwwwhhhh, here you go, have some more nice warm caccoooney water”.




Staying in there for 20 mins right until the water ran out was the best thing for me today.

After getting dressed and ready, my Shower let me go down stairs and curl up behind my daughter and give her a hug.

To which she snuggled into me and said, I’m sorry Mom.

…..scratch that…reality is…..no she didn’t, she shrugged me off, pushed my hand off and grumped something at me!

But, it didn’t matter, I hugged her for a brief moment anyway, let it be and was able to pick up and carry on knowing that as much as I was second guessing myself earlier:

* This to shall pass

* It will be OK

* Tomorrow is yet another day

Today this is Single Parenting :-)


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Morning chaos makes way for moments of still

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You know how you read about ‘those’ people who Love mornings and get up ‘on purpose’ at like 5am (or before) to seize the day!


Sun flare - Christchurch


Yeah, well…that’s not me, I LOVE my bed…love love love it and I LOVE sleep!

My bed is so comfortable, so cozy, each day it is incredibly hard to get up out of it as it’s just so damn good and sleeping is so much more awesome in the mornings – am I right?

I sleep in whenever I get the chance!

That coupled with the fact that I am a serial ‘Snoozer’ doesn’t make for easy mornings and I still struggle daily with the opening of my eyes, sitting up and swinging my legs out of bed.

But, once I’m up, fortunately from then on it’s all ok, I’m off and going.  I’m then wide awake and it’s all on from there.

I also am quite happy to be up and out early…once I’m actually up and out.  But its the getting there that’s tough.  (#FirstWorldProblem I know)

Because we leave for School and Work fairly early, each weekday see’s Miss 14 and I begrudgingly up at what I call ‘Ridiculous O’Clock’ (or seize the day time in other people’s world).

This is so her and I can cycle through showers and still have plenty of time (for her) to get ready.

Because I like to use the bathroom before Miss 14 gets in there, it means then I am 100% ready at least 30 mins to 1 hour before she is.

Parenting for 14 years has taught me, that in our house, our mornings run 98% smoother and easier if I ensure to allow her plenty-plenty-plenty of time to get ready.
If I don’t have to ‘say’ anything to keep her moving and she can get done all of the things she wants to do, it makes such a difference to the ‘feel’ of the day.
(It’s a whole other thing on early morning Winter Sports training days though when it feels like we are leaving the house in the middle of the night!).

So I have learnt, give her plenty of time, even though it means getting up at ridiculous o’clock, but its a compromise I’m ‘usually’ willing to take.

The plus is, I’ve come to really enjoy that extra time I then get in the morning once I’m all ready.

I have found in amongst the Morning chaos, moments of still.

Time to just sit for a bit.

Have some quiet time with God and read my ‘The Word for Today’ and my bible.

Then I aim to work on some writing for a little while.

Have a little calm before the storm of the day.

Last term I found myself leaving more and more chores to “Oh, I’ll just do that in the morning” and when I got to the morning being really annoyed with myself, that I had left those jobs til the morning, as it was eating up all my ‘morning’ time.

It does mean we always need to be completely organised the night before.  Lunch is packed (minus fridge items), bags are packed and by the door, sports bags, extra bags and rubbish is ready to pick up and go.

But today is a new day, the first day back of the School Term and I sit here early once again to do some writing with 45 mins up my sleeve.

I like it :-)

I really hope I can be disciplined again throughout this term to keep ensuring I have this ‘still’ time in the mornings.

Have you found some little pockets of time throughout your day, that give you time to just take some breaths, some moments of still?
How do you make it work?

Update: It’s tomorrow now as I publish this, I didn’t give us quite as much time this morning as I should have, but it wasn’t too bad :-)

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