good timing and the Target toy sale + giveaway

good timing and the Target toy sale + giveaway

This is a sponsored post.

The girls’ birthdays fall a week apart in July.  The timing is educationally fortuitous according to the Big Sister’s Kindy teacher.  I tend to view it as having unknowingly committed myself to an extra year at home with the girls.  There’s another upside to mid year birthdays – they fall around the time of the annual Target Toy Sale.

The year the Little Sister was born, the sale started while we were still in hospital.  Unable to attend in person – the exploding boobs, stitches and spontaneous crying rendered me not yet ready for a public outing – I deputised my friend Kate, who is no stranger to a good sale.

My emotional state left Kate in no doubt about the importance of her mission.  The perfect present would reassure the Big Sister that Mummy and Daddy still loved her in equal quantity as prior to the small noisy pink arrival.  In my considered opinion, a Leapstar would adequately demonstrate our love and amuse her while I fed the Little Sister, with the added benefit of being reduced by some $50.  During my hours looking at the walls of our hospital room, I became convinced that every other mother in Australia would have the same idea.  I called Kate and gave her a pep talk; suggesting elbowing techniques and sensible shoes.  My personal shopper assured me she was no rookie and I spent the morning looking anxiously at my phone, awaiting an update.

Kate came through with the goods.  There’d been no elbowing and certainly no sensible shoes.  The leapstar was secured and a few days later balance was restored to the Big Sisters universe*.

The Little Sister’s birthday is my cause for consternation this year.  We’ll be holidaying with Bearhands’ family and when the Little Sister’s second birthday dawns (and it’s all about dawn with the Little Sister) we’ll be in Cobbold Gorge.

So I need a present that is small, portable, easily wrapped to avoid early detection and unlikely to make any maddening sounds that will make the long drive back from Georgetown any less pleasant that I already expect it will be.  I’ll be off to Target on Tuesday night to try to find the perfect (preferably waterproof) gift.

Photo credit: Cobbold Gorge Tours

Photo credit: Cobbold Gorge Tours

To celebrate the start of their famous and fortuitously timed Toy Sale this week, Target have given me a $50 voucher to share with my readers.  To win tell me:

what’s the most exotic location in which you’ve celebrated a birthday?


This competition has now closed.

Congratulations to Wendy Parks – haggis tacos were unbeatable.

Fine Print:

  • Competition closes at 11.59pm on Saturday 29 June 2013.
  • This is a game of skill – best answer wins.
  • Open to Australian residents only.
  • Winner will be notified by email.
  • If you’d like a copy of the full Ts & Cs you’ve got too much time on your handsemail me and I’ll send you a copy.
  • As stated above, this is a sponsored post for Target Australia.  They’re also supplying the prize for this giveaway.   All opinions, witty anecdotes and bad post-partum stories are my own!

*Not really.  The leapstar story has an unhappy ending – a few weeks back the Little Sister dropped it into the bath.  Turns out you can’t balance the universe once you’ve been immersed in water. Older siblings around the world will sympathise with the Big Sister.



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  1. 1
    Mary Preston says:

    The Emergency Room, not exotic, though it had it’s moments. It practically took until the next birthday to reclaim my sanity. Not even a cake!!!

  2. 2
    Karen.E says:

    Nothing exotic here :-( My last birthday was spent over the toilet bowl with all day morning sickness yuck!! My next birthday is coming up very soon and we have a precious baby girl so the all day horrid morning sickness was all worth it :-)

  3. 3

    My partner took me to the Taj Mahal for my birthday – and our guide jumped out of the rickshaw and bought me flowers. So sweet and memorable!

  4. 4
    Heather Hopley says:

    Travelling the Silk Road across China with my husband for my 50th. On the actual day we took a camel ride on the Gobi desert.

  5. 5
    Dean Brandt says:

    Sitting at the back of a chuck wagon in a western themed restaurant in Canada called Buffalo Bills.The restaurant was like walking into a real western saloon.Cowboys,guns,indians,showgirls.Yeehaaa.and oh yeah all the sasparilla I can drink.hic

  6. 6

    On the most extraordinary trip down to Antarctica, I was fortunate enough to celebrate my 50th birthday at Scott Base, with icebergs and penguins all around – breathtaking!

  7. 7

    Going camping at Chillagoe
    Was a big no-no
    Mozzies, a sore back, no reception
    How could I let this happen?

  8. 8

    Exotic still awaits me, but unusual seems to be an annual thing. My most recent birthday spent at a crematorium, receiving a warts and all tour of the place!

  9. 9

    Ha! Ha! My 40th birthday at the Wahgunyah Pub!! That’s as exotic as is gets for me!

  10. 10
    Narelle Rock says:

    Unfortunately I have never experienced a birthday in any exotic location, other than at home, smothered in my 4 kids, handmade cards and gifts and loads of hugs and kisses!

  11. 11
    Rebecca says:

    Yerp in the lock up cell,
    As my best friend under the alcohol spell
    Was a bit outrageous and to loud,
    In the winery crowd.
    The loyal friend that I am,
    I went with her in a wham!
    lets just say….. Never again!

  12. 12
    Kylie B says:

    In outback Australia while wild pig hunting with my dad and uncle. Riding 3 wheel motorbikes and swimming in a river and cooking marshmallows on the open fire.

  13. 13

    Princess Margaret Hospital!!! My daughter and i share a birthday-and this was the date scheduled for her Tonsilectomy:-9

  14. 14

    On a family trip to Florida a few years back, we spent my Husbands birthday at Disney World, and were lucky enough to have a very Disney send off when pulling out of the “Its a Small World” ride, as the gorgeous young man loading up the boats serenaded our boat with “Happy Birthday to you”

  15. 15
    Amanda Gorton says:

    The middle of the Pacific Ocean, on a Qantas jumbo, but due to the time lapse my birthday was missed completely!

  16. 16
    Wendy_C says:

    I surprised my husband with a trip to Uluru for his 50th Birthday.It was freezing cold as his birthday is in June but watching the sunrise above the great rock was amazing and something we will never ever forget!

  17. 17
    Angie Boylan says:

    I spent a very different and slightly exotic birthday in Canada trying to attempt a pub crawl in a snow blizzard one January a few years ago – that’s been hard to beat!

  18. 18

    Kissing the Blarney Stone in Ireland! Totally unplanned, we took a long detour on a family trip….memorable though!

  19. 19
    kerry santillo says:

    When my husband and I were first married we didnt have alot of money, My birthday came up and my husband surprised with a picnic on the roof ( the flat side :) of our house. Complete with champagne and nibbles and an old radio playing tunes. Nothing has beaten this birthday surprise to date ♥

  20. 20
    Graham Buckingham says:

    I once had a birthday in the northern territory at Ayres Rock and It was very memorable.

  21. 21

    I celebrated my 30th birthday on the beach with a picnic with my family at a Caloundra beach in Qld, it was relaxing, beautiful and perfect and about as exotic as my life gets!

  22. 22
    Roberto Colombi says:

    In an 800-year-old Italian hillside town, with a bottle of chianti, bread and cheese, sitting on the ramparts, watching the sun set over the Tuscan Plains – couldn’t get any better!

  23. 23
    Marie Pohnetalova says:

    My partner surprised me with a sun kissed holiday to the Maldives – a week on pristine beaches, swimming in placid warm water, and a tan to die for…. happy 30th all right!

  24. 24

    My husband and twins surprised me with a wonderful set up on the beach for my birthday, flowers, candles, and music for us to dance too!

  25. 25
    Charmaine Campbell says:

    Might sound sad, but my most exotic birthday would have been my 18th which was spent getting waxed and learning how to do bikini waxing on my fellow beauty students. But my parents did take me to dine in at Pizza Hut for dinner afterwards.

  26. 26
    nicole larsen says:

    Port Douglas warm, sunny and so romantic

  27. 27

    Nothing fancy here – I have always celebrated birthdays at my sweet home.

  28. 28
    Emily Ellwood says:

    The most exotic birthday was my dad’s 37th birthday. It was during our travels around Australia and we spent it somewhere near Derby in WA at Ngumban lookout. We were the only ones there on what felt like the top of the world, sitting around our fire and watching the sunset! Definitely a birthday we wont forget!

  29. 29
    Kristina S says:

    Not exotic but the hospital. I gave birth to my first born a beautiful baby girl and the best gift I will ever received

  30. 30

    Birthday at my parent’s house last year. No screaming baby, no dirty dishes, no yucky toilet to deal with all day, good enough for me!

  31. 31

    The Dominican Republic! Beats having a birthday party any day!

  32. 32

    Well, it was in the Macdonnell Ranges in central Australia, and would have been lovely and romantic and exotic had my wife remembered it was birthday!!!

  33. 33

    in my wifes arms

  34. 34

    Well we’re low income so unfortunately I’ve NEVER been anywhere exotic.

  35. 35
    Linda Courtney says:

    I was lucky enough to spend my 21st in Bali.

  36. 36
    EDen matthews says:

    Two of my birthdays were spent in hospital! One in labour and the other 2 years later having just had a baby! I sleep in a different room to my husband in the month of April now lol

  37. 37
    Melissa O says:

    My 23rd birthday celebrating in style in Las Vegas with great friends, the best food and an hypnotist

  38. 38

    The most exotic location? The AFL grand final at the MCG for my 21st birthday, not that I remember much from that day or afterwards (I was in my own exotic location in my mind as it was that day!!!)

  39. 39
    Stacey Shailer says:

    Port Douglas for my 21st! My boyfriend (now husband) took me away for the weekend to celebrate, and it was the first time I’d ever been there (pretty bad considering I’ve lived in FNQ for my entire life!).

  40. 40
    Beck Andrew says:

    I don’t have one :-(
    My mum died 2 days before my birthday :-( but this year Im 30 and having a party

  41. 41
    RITA PELLE says:

    Our daughter was lucky enough to spend her 11th birthday in Disneyland California. Not exotic, but lots of fun.

  42. 42

    Hahaha, what funny answers… I can’t think of a single interesting place… this is no good!! But enjoyed reading the others very much!

  43. 43

    Who needs 5 star accommodation, when I had 5 million stars! I spent my 30th in a tent with my family overlooking a beautiful river with a roaring fire nearby… Simple pleasures :)

  44. 44
    eliz a buf says:

    on my 28th birthday, The Foreigner (as he was fondly known back then) proposed to me at the foot of the Eiger Glacier in Switzerland………… xoxo, buf

  45. 45

    I had my 30th in Disneyland any my 35th in The Bahamas, without the kids!!

  46. 46
    Siobhan says:

    My last birthday was spent flying over Helsinki and spending a few hours in an airport that spoke no English and I couldn’t even buy a drink as I had no local currency!

  47. 47

    I was just looking into these leapstar things myself! Are they good or are you better off with an Ipad? Aah decisions! Sorry to hear it ended up in the bath!
    I did once spend 2 & 1/2 hours in a toy sale line up with a baby!
    The last few years have seen some very ordinary birthdays for me so nowhere interesting just at home and even baking my own cake no less! :) XX

  48. 49

    That is SOO funny (sorry) that is was dropped in the bath. Great giveaway but I don’t like my chances – so just reading, loving your work and giveaways and saying that pic of your 4 is perfect! (2 kids are enuff!!!) xxx

  49. 51
    Gemma Westacott says:

    Supping far too much delicious Italian wine in Tuscany for my 30th, pre-kids.
    Nowadays it’s more likely lemonade at the local park!

  50. 52

    Birthday always near Mothers day- I love being at home to celebrate. I even plan my holidays around it! Most exotic place therefore…the park!

  51. 53

    Out bush with the family!
    Camping and fishing
    The kids are roaming
    then when the kids are in bed and stars about
    some casual drinks and laughs are afloat
    Memories are shared and some more made
    the tales for weeks and history to be remade!

    We now do it yearly with no other plans made
    history is told and experiences remade!

  52. 54
    Ermelinda Porter says:

    At the nThambo Tree Camp in the Kruger National Park, where I was privileged to see the most beautiful animals in their natural habitat

  53. 55
    Becky S says:

    A motel room shower, after too many drinks ive fallen asleep sitiing down over the plug hole and flooded our room and the ones either side of us. I dont think we will be visiting that place again.

  54. 56
    One of My Own says:

    I celebrated a birthday in Scotland! I had to got to Edinburgh for work, so some colleagues took me out to a Mexican restaurant for dinner in honour of my birthday, and I got to eat haggis tacos!

  55. 57

    My Hubby did around the world meal for my birthday with different music and dishes for each course,

  56. 58

    Bali! It was my first and last time overseas and I thoroughly loved it. Especially the bar tender giving me free drinks all day!

  57. 59

    A Birthday surprise getaway planned!
    Asking to take my hand,
    In Mauritius; overlooking the picturesque Indian Ocean,
    Said “Yes”! NOW 10 years of marital devotion!

  58. 60
    Kirsten W says:

    On a beach in Hawaii saying our vows. No family, no friends. Just me and my beau and lots of love!

  59. 61
    Catherine Tuckey says:

    I spent one birthday in a very, uh, “exotic” location. I was moving house, except I got stuck down the dark narrow hallway and had to call in a professional to remove me! I was born later that day via C-section 😀

  60. 62

    Not exactly exotic, but during our wedding reception, at the strike of midnight it was my 25th birthday. I guess it was my biggest birthday party!

  61. 63

    Hmmm…most exotic location…There were several spent in Tokyo and maybe one diving in Okinawa. Oh my…you know you’re getting old when you don’t remember birthdays gone past! :)

  62. 64
    Tabatha Robinson says:

    One time My hubby took me to Queensland to celebrate my birthday. We stayed for a week kid free!

  63. 65
    Karina W says:

    In Granada, Spain over plates of jamon and suckling pork!

  64. 66

    I became a teenager when holidaying in Malta…13yrs old, with 3 months of blues seas, hot days, lots of swimming, no school and extended family spoiling! Bliss!

  65. 67
    She'll B says:

    I spent a birthday in ‘limbo’! Getting on a flight from the USA on Dec 6 and arriving back in Australia on Dec 8 … Completely missing my birthday! Avoiding getting another year older – more exotic than a week at a Tahitian spa!

  66. 68

    Being surprised with a trip to Paris for my 40th birthday would have to be the most exotic location I’ve ever celebrated a birthday. Although there was the time, a couple of years ago, when we celebrated our wedding anniversary in the transit lounge at LAX airport. Not a birthday celebration and definitely NOT exotic but probably still worth a mention :)

  67. 69
    Belinda Smetioukh says:

    Most exotic place I’ve spent my birthday was the French Alps….in hospital after a skiing accident! My friends all still went out for dinner to celebrate, whilst I ‘enjoyed’ delightful hospital food!

  68. 70

    South Africa, for my 20th birthday. We left South Africa bound for home on my birthday, stopped in Kuala Lumpur for a layover where it was still my birthday and arrived home on my birthday. Three continents, three days…best birthday ever.

  69. 71

    Estonia in 1996. I was backpacking alone through Europe and treated myself to a night in a hotel in a seaside spa resort town. The next morning on my birthday, there was a knock at the door and a hotel worker was there with a long stemmed red rose for me! At first I thought it was from my boyfriend back home in Australia, but realised he didn’t know where I was…slight blonde moment aside I remembered they had taken a copy of my passport when I checked in and were just being thoughtful, it was lovely!

  70. 72
    Tabatha says:

    I join all those not fortune enough to have had an interesting,exciting or exotic birthday.Mine have all been spent working or in hospital

  71. 73
    Barbara Fehmel says:

    What a bummer, I hate to have dirty dishes and washing after a while they start to smell. “PHEW”

  72. 74

    I spent my 21st birthday in Samoa on a tropical island, very exotic and oh so beautiful.

  73. 75

    Mine: the beautiful Queenscliff Hotel and on a vintage party bus, driving past dozens of hot rods and 60s cars along the bay.

  74. 76

    We celebrated Miss H’s second birthday at Australia Zoo! Might not so exotic to the local Aussies’s but to us – straight out of Blighty it was mighty exotic! And all she said all day was “Crikey, it’s my birthday!”

  75. 77

    Does getting a free birthday viche shower at the local spa count as exotic? I think so as I had to strip down and lie there in the buff!

  76. 78

    Toucans and Leopards for my 21st! Sounds exotic. Reality – Boyfriend got drunk, fell asleep with stuffed Toucans. I wore Leopard print, it was the 80’s.


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