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Book Review – Feed Your Brain The Cookbook

I have been an advocate for eating for excellence for many years, so, I was delighted when Exisle publishing asked me to review Feed Your Brain – The Cookbook, by Delia McCabe.

What we eat impacts our physical health and fitness, as well as our brain health. Delia’s comprehensive cookbook guides the reader through:

  • Why it is important to feed your brain
  • How to use the book (easily for busy people)
  • What you will gain (and lose)
  • Tips, advice, getting started, and
  • An abundance of delicious uncomplicated recipes

Delia’s guidance throughout the book expands your understanding and enthusiasm for food.  The pictures make your mouth water, the colours inspire, and every time I open the book I learn something new; from a food’s origins to what it contains.

The main benefits I enjoy from being mindful of what eat are more focus and energy, and I am calmer.  To top this off, emotionally, using Delia’s cookbook has been like having a ‘Mum’ in the kitchen. Each section caringly shares ideas and things to remember, like a mother or grandmother whispering in your ear as you prepare the food.

RRP: $34.99 Get your copy here

Kirsty 🙂



Posted in: Mindfulness, Resilience

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Book review – Finn and Puss

Exisle Publishing recently asked me review a delightful children’s story, Finn and Puss, featuring a young boy, Finn, who is feeling lonely and a cat called Puss who is lost.

They meet in town one day and loneliness and fear seems to be forgotten as they become friends, for a short time anyway.

Finn must make a tough choice.

The illustrations are soft and gentle which compliment a relatable story, that can be read independently by young readers.

What I liked most about this book was that it provided opportunities for discussion around situations where children may be feeling alone, what ethical behaviour is and different types of friendship.

RRP $19.99 – For more information or to buy CLICK HERE

Posted in: Mindfulness, Parenting, Resilience

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Book Review: PUG (Philosophical Universal Guidance)

When Exisle Publishing asked me to review PUG I wondered whether it was a children’s book, a book for Pug owners (the dog breed) or, something else.

What I found was it was something else entirely!

The author (apparently, no ordinary Pug) hopes that through sharing his or her thoughts with the reader, they are inspired to be happier, more optimistic and live a more fulfilling life.  Did I find this to be true as I turned the pages and read on?

Yes, I did!  PUG’s message – translated through the wise words and delightful illustrations of Helen James – opens possibilities for the reader to take positive action in 29 encouraging and insightful short teachings.

This colourful book is perfect for a central location in your home, on the lunchroom table at work or a gift for someone who needs a boost. And, the most wonderful realisation is that this book will be enjoyed by all age groups.

If you are looking for a daily or weekly focus, know you could be doing something different or better and don’t know what that is or you want to benefit from the wisdom of one of the world’s oldest dog breeds, this book is certain to inspire and delight.

Buy Book | More Information – RRP $19.99 – Due for release October 2017 so pre-order your copy now.


Posted in: Mindfulness, Parenting, Resilience

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Book Review – The Adriatic Kitchen

When Exisle Publishing asked me to review this cookbook I did wonder how I would evaluate a book filled with recipes.  Cooking is not my favourite thing to do, however, I do adore fresh ingredients and eating wholesome and delicious food!

When I received The Adriatic Kitchen, and began to thumb through the pages it became apparent why Barbara Unkovic is a multiple award winner.  The look of this book invokes feelings of a well-loved must have in any kitchen. I felt drawn into the Adriatic as she expertly shared her passion for writing, her love of her father’s homeland, short stories about each recipe, and the delightful recipes inspired by Croatian cuisine and local produce. The book’s sections are by season, and with each recipe I was taken to the place or people it was inspired by – like foraging for wild grapes for the grape jelly or the kind man who bought along a rotary hoe to till the potato plot so there were home grown potatoes for the leek and potato soup.

Thankyou Barbara for a cookbook that is easy for busy people to use and inspires cooking with fresh seasonal and local food.  After trying a few recipes, I was surprised how much I enjoyed preparing the food, (remembering cooking is not my favourite thing to do!) The walnut coffee slice was amazing.  The Almond Biscuits and pancakes with chocolate sauce are so easy and delicious.  The Gnocchi and apple and cinnamon cake are to die for!

The Adriatic Kitchen won’t end up at the back of a cupboard or draw – my copy will take pride of place on my benchtop, and will be used often. I highly recommend you get a copy for your benchtop too – only $14.99.

Kirsty 🙂



Posted in: Parenting, Resilience

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I Don’t Have Time

As I am surrounded by paper drafting out my first semester assessments due in a week, I realise that I promised Exisle Publishing a book review for I Don’t Have Time, by Emma Grey and Audrey Thomas. 

How timely. Here I am wondering how I will ‘fit it all in’ and the first page I flicked to was page 18, a story of one of their friends, in her forties, who was going to University and was considering whether to keep going!

As I continue to turn the pages I am blown away by three things –

  • How relatable, real and motivating their stories are
  • The quality of humour (who doesn’t like a book that makes you laugh out loud?)
  • The simple, yet effective, 15 minute strategies, experiments and tasks

After reading about all the mindset gremlins (and nodding through most of it) I came away with a renewed sense of I am good enough, I don’t have to be perfect and there are 250 ways to wash dishes – so maybe my way isn’t always the right way!

Thank you, Emma, and Audrey for a book that reminds us we are good enough, we are not on our own, we don’t have to always be right and it is never too late!

I highly recommend this book, over many other life and time managing books, as it will gently, systematically and encouragingly direct you to ditch the overwhelm, get unstuck and begin living the life you love.

Get your copy now or want to know more – RRP $29.99

Kirsty 🙂


Posted in: Mindfulness, Parenting, Resilience

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Book Review – Mindfulness on the Run


Mindfulness on the Run – Dr Chantal Hofstee

The power of mindfulness is something I have lived, learnt and taught over the past two decades – so when the opportunity presented itself from Exisle Publishing to review this book I jumped at the chance. My first thought was, “what a brilliant title, promising to allow even more people to feel the benefits of living a mindful life.”

I opened the book and by page 10 I was hooked. The way Dr Hofstee relates key topics like understanding your brain, processing emotions, changing stressful thoughts, the mind-body connection and overcoming blocks is outstanding.

As the pages flowed and an understanding and practice was established for your own life, she then moved onto showing how you could expand into Mindful communication, relationships and conflict resolution.

Each chapter is supported by very real examples and exercises that are explained simply to encourage the reader to practice immediately. My personal favourites were the on-the-run tips. As the book progressed learning’s flowed from previous section and expanded into the next.

I will definitely be recommending this well written and researched practical handbook to others who are seeking a resource that is easy to read, informative and supports their busy lifestyles.

Kirsty 🙂

Posted in: Mindfulness

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Speak Easy – Book Review

Speak Easy 3 Ebook CoverThis week I reviewed Speak Easy by Maggie Eyre for Exisle Publishing.

From the first page of the introduction I felt like I was there, being supported by Maggie, and taken through her proven program step by step.

This book is written in a warm and encouraging way, thoroughly explaining each skill and concept. Whilst reading I really felt how generous Maggie is with sharing her knowledge and was convinced she really wanted me to succeed.

I have been professionally speaking since 2009, and have done a lot of ‘learn as I go’ in that time – so I wish I had of read this book many years ago. Speak Easy will set you up for success and covers all you will need to know to be an excellent speaker – not just a good one.

Thanks Maggie Eyre.

Kirsty 🙂

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Book Review – An Aussie Year

An Aussie YearI recently had the pleasure to review another delightful children’s book by Exisle Publishing.

As soon as I saw it was a picture book for 6 – 10 year olds I engaged the expert services of my own eight-year-old son. He said the best thing about An Aussie Year was the pictures – I was pleased to note that Tina Snerling, the illustrator, is a Brisbane local. Tina has created a wonderful collection of drawings that bring the content to life that children can easily relate to.

My son was surprised to realise after reading An Aussie Year that there were a lot more celebrations and festivals throughout the year than he was aware of. He said, “I know people are sometimes different, but everyone likes to have fun.” His favourite part of the book was at the end – Our Country page – that showed him Australia really does have it all.

An Aussie Year, and the author Tania McCartney, take the young reader along a journey, month by month, that will initiate conversations, encourage children to want to know more, and open up opportunities for understanding that it is our differences that make us truly Australian.

Note for schools from publisher – “An Aussie Year is a book that will be as at home in the classroom as it is in the living room, as it is supported by extensive teaching notes and is relevant to many modules of the new school curriculum including; humanity and social sciences, history and citizenship, geography, the arts, languages, and design and technology.”
For more information visit

Kirsty 🙂

Posted in: Parenting

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Understanding Autism



I was asked by Exisle Publishing to review Understanding Autism, by Prof Williams and Prof Roberts.  After reviewing this guide, I was so excited, I wanted to share it with you.

Katrina Williams and Jacqueline Roberts have definitely, in my opinion, put together the essential guide for parents. This book is written in a way that is easy to understand, that was not overwhelming. The the mix of case studies, tables, strategies and considerations for parents self care, left me impressed.

I asked a close friend, who is a parent of two Autistic boys, to tell me what she thought. After reading it, she excitedly informed me that it covered everything that you needed to know in raising an Autistic child. She found that this book was very informative on all the areas and issues that parents face, and that the case studies were great as they provided the practical examples of how other parents have dealt with situations and you got the feeling that you are not alone in the issues you deal with on a daily basis. The resources that are provided at the end of each chapter were particularly helpful.

My friend said that this book is the best parents guide to Autism that she had ever read. The authors projected an environment where the parent or caregiver felt supported, confident and reassured that they could help their children.

This book is a must have resource for all parents who have children with Autism, especially for those parents that have just received their diagnoses, as it covers all the main topics –  from toddlers and schooling, right through to mental health issues and leaving high school.

If you have friends or family that would benefit, I highly recommend passing on this information to them.

Posted in: Parenting

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Change the Way You Eat

Change the Way You Eat_final cover 150dpiI recently did another book review for Exisle Publishing and wanted to share this new publication with you.

Leanne Cooper hands back to you control over the way you eat and why. This book clearly outlines factors, physically, mentally, emotionally, psychologically as well as habit and upbringing, contributing to food choices you make now. What I liked most about this book is the interactive way it is written, calling you to action in each chapter to examine and get task orientated getting you on track to where you would like to be. I have no doubt that readers of this book will change the way they think and feel about food. It really does support you in creating new habits and goals and give you the best opportunity to change the way you eat. I will definitely be recommending this book to many of my clients.  If you are interested in getting your copy now CLICK HERE.

RRP $29.99 or E-Book $9.99

More about book:

Leanne Cooper BA (Psych/Ed), GCertHumNutr

The Sydney Morning Herald feature story on – How To Change Your Bad Eating Habits (16 Oct 2014) is all about Change The Way You Eat

For many people, food is no longer something to ‘enjoy’ as the stuff that nurtures us, keeps us healthy. It’s something to ‘control’, ‘do battle with’, all in a warped quest to ‘be thin’ and live up to society’s photoshopped ideals. Plus there’s the obesity epidemic where we’ve trained our tastebuds to crave the fat, salt and sugar that so much junk food is saturated with.

By examining the pyschological factors that encourage us to eat more than we know we should, as well as the tricks used by marketers to influence what and how much we eat, Change the Way You Eat provides the tools for readers to take ownership of their eating choices so that lifelong change can take place.

Discover how:

• our stage of life, gender, financial resources and values all influence our food choices

• branding, packaging and labelling combine to manipulate our shopping habits

• our inbuilt taste preferences can determine the food we’re drawn to, and how to reprogram them

• our environment — from the type of music playing while we eat to the number of people we eat with — can all affect our eating habits

• our personality and emotions can determine our food choices and habits, and

• we can implement our newfound knowledge to take back control of our plate, become conscious eaters and gain real enjoyment from nourishing ourselves in a way that promotes long-term health and happiness.

Specifications: 234 x 151 mm | paperback | 224 pages

About the author:

Leanne Cooper is an author, educator, nutrition consultant and advisor. A registered nutritionist, she is the founder and director of Cadence Health (Australia, NZ, UK), dedicated to the improvement of community health through the provision of training, resources, books and information. Leanne initially trained to be a childhood psychologist but gradually shifted her focus to health. Change the Way You Eat combines both areas of expertise — psychology and nutrition — as Leanne delivers her message that by understanding the psychology of food we can take back control of our health.

Enjoy, Kirsty 🙂



Posted in: Mindfulness, Resilience

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