Kylie Bartlett, our Holistic Living Contributor, she’ passionate about living a life where the small moments are savoured, simple food is celebrated and family are treasured.



My daughter Lily woke up bright and early on a Sunday morning, complaining she was bored – at 7am! Usually I would have responded with something about going to make her own fun. But I had recently attended Anna Campbell’s Big Picture Parenting talk, and it made me more mindful of my response.

Campbell is the author of ‘Honeycomb Kids – Big Picture Parenting’, a book about increasing the capability and resilience of our children.

So armed with my new information I instead suggested Lily make a list of things she’d like to do. I told her to ‘think about the freedom you have today, we don’t have chores or errands to run – maybe you could make something, or go exploring?’.

After a few more suggestions she decided she would make pancakes, and in my role as ‘Chef’s Assistant’, I helped her with the quantities while she cooked.

Before long my son Harper had joined us in the kitchen so we gathered teapots, china cups and saucers, for a tea party style breakfast.

White eating we made a list of all the things we could do together. It was so much fun – we were brainstorming all sorts of things, sharing ideas and building on what the last person had suggested.

Next on their list was making marshmallow Easter bunnies for family and friends – a family tradition passed down from my own Nana and great Aunt. While we waited for the marshmallow to whip the children set about making Lego creatures and for some strange reason, rearranging the magazine and DVD collection!

This started them thinking about other ways they could be helpful and before I knew it they were tidying their rooms and pulling out clothes that no longer fitted to be taken to the Women’s Shelter.

I was amazed at their cooperation with one another. It was a truly remarkable day – a day without competition or disagreements, a day without TV or Wii, a day filled with a sense of accomplishment and fun.

So ‘Slow Down Sundays’ have now become a ritual to nurture and celebrate in our home. I recently read ‘The Happiness Project’ by Gretchen Rubin which talks about the importance of family traditions and the impact they have on our children…

“Family traditions make occasions feel special and exciting. They mark the passage of time in a happy way. They provide a sense of anticipation, security and continuity. Studies show that family traditions support children’s social development and strengthen family cohesiveness. They provide connection and predictability, which people – especially children – crave.”

So while we make the effort to celebrate the small things in life and to make each moment joyous, it is wonderful to know that it also has life long benefits for ourselves and our children.

May your weeks be filled with many Slow Down Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays…

Kylie xo