Guest Blog: Alice in Healthyland

Recently the Olly's Box team sat down with Brisbane-based blogger, Alice Balcon - creator of the popular and award winning health and wellness blog Alice in Healthyland. Alice is an amazing entrepreneurial chick – kicking butt at everything she does. She wears many hats - mum to fifteen-month-old Cruz and fur-baby Evie, wife, sister, nurse, blogger - just to name a few! Enjoy our chat with Alice as she shares her experiences and tips as a young mum and pet-parent.

Welcome Alice to the Olly’s Box blog! Taking inspiration from your #showtherealyou blog series, can you tell us who the REAL Alice Balcon is?

Well it's now Alice Bingham, hmmm, I need to start changing my name in the legal world to make it real - ha-ha! I am the eldest of eight, so I believe I was born to help, nurture and care. I love being a wife to my husband, Dave. I love being a mumma to my son Cruz, I love taking care of my gorgeous girl Evie (my doggie), I love being a nurse and caring for patients. I love looking out for my close friends. I feel it's in my blood, as soon as I was old enough to pick up a bottle and feed my brother's and sisters I did. I love being active and living my best life possible. I also have a passion for delicious healthy food, which I love to share with the world, as you know on Alice In Healthyland. I am also a woman that enjoys to be on her own too. Me time is super important to me and I am forever grateful that I get it.

Now as we are all crazy pet parents, tell us all about your pup Evie?

Arggghhhh Evie. She was my first baby! Her mumma is a Kelpie cross Staffy and we're not sure what her dad was. I have a family dog Penny as well, I love them both dearly, they play together and are just nuts. I believe Evie keeps Penny, who is 10, young ha-ha. Evie is part of the family, she is Cruz's best friend to, which makes me so happy. I love how she is my motivation to get up in the morning and walk. Also, she is great at snuggling when Dave leaves the bed in the morning to go to work, but only for five minutes then it's walk time.

What do you love most about Evie?

Her energy, she is always up for a walk or a game of catch (but never return ha-ha). She is so clever as well, also a bit cheeky.

Tell us about a time when you acted like a crazy pet-parent? I.e. Threw Evie a Barkday Pawty, etc.

We pretty much gave her our brand new lounge suite to sleep on, as it's her favourite spot. We used to say she would always sleep outside - pffft yeah right, she has never ever done that.

Sleep ins and then bush walkies with Evie this morning #lifeisgood

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Before your gorgeous little boy Cruz was born, you were a pet-parent to Evie. Did being a pet-parent prepare you for Cruz or was it a whole newball game?

I think it teaches you to love and care. We had her from a pup so we were waking through the night and toilet training, etc. Having a baby is a whole new ball game though. Totally worth it!

I’ve read on your blog that each morning you and Cruz take Evie for a walk – I’m sure Evie loves this special time with you both. How was Evie when Cruz was born? What advice would you share with families who are introducing a baby to their pup/s?

I love starting my day this way! So does Evie. She walks right next to the pram too, looks out for Cruzie. Bit off topic but did you know that Cruz said EVIE months before he said MUM?

Introducing Evie to Cruz was magical. Evie of course had the shits with me, but instantly loved Cruz. She treats Cruz like her owner. David brought a little blanket home from the hospital so that Evie could first smell Cruz before he came home. Evie would never grab food off Cruz too only if I say so. I am strict with her, but she has just adjusted really well. We're very lucky!

Cannot believe you got us up early to go for a walk on a public holiday mum!! 😂..

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You maintain a really healthy lifestyle, taking the time to research and create healthy meals for your family. What do you feed Evie?

Besides Cruzie's leftovers on the floor, ha-ha. We have always fed Evie a grain free dry dog food by Wellness Core. As for treats she gets Savourlife Australian Beef or Chicken Strips. It's all Australian and 50% of the profits goes towards helping rescue dogs. She certainly loves a cooked vegetable meal too.

You are seriously busy – there’s your husband Dave, Cruz, baby number two due in July (congrats BTW), Evie, part-time work as a nurse, you love keeping fit & living a healthy lifestyle, you manage a thriving blog and numerous social media channels – how do you fit everything in! What lessons have you learnt over your journey and what tips can you share with our readers on being a young mum, raising your son and being a pet-parent?

Yes life is crazy, but I do write everything in my diary. This helps me a lot otherwise I would forget things. I pencil in my shifts, I work out with Dave when he can have Cruz so I can train. I schedule in Alice In Healthyland hours while Cruz sleeps. I have family that help out a lot too. As I said earlier I am the eldest of 8, plus Dave has 2 sisters that are also egger to hang with Cruz, so I am very blessed for all the help. Honestly, sometimes it can get all too much, but that is life. I stop, take a breath and I go - okay me time for just an hour. Plus my family comes first with everything!! Evie just rolls with the family too. She currently loves coming swimming with us. She watches Cruz like a hawk when he is in the pool. Plus having our morning walk together I feel she knows she is part of the family.

Now let’s talk about your amazing blog. Last May you were named the 2016 Rising Social Star for the Wellbeing category – congratulations, what a fantastic achievement! What I loved most about your blog is how refreshingly honest your content is, you show yourself in your everyday life – the good days and the bad. I get the feeling you’re a pretty down-to-earth chick - was this the plan from day one of the blog?

Awww thank you, that is so kind! To be honest I didn't really have a plan for the blog to begin with. I started my account as a journey for my health and fitness, something I could be accountable for with my weight loss journey. It has just turned into so much more than that. I try and share all aspects of my life because that is what health is right? It's overall wellbeing, not just eating clean and fitness. That's why I like to share the bad times too. I wouldn't be where I am today without the support of my gorgeous followers. They are so supportive and truly bring me up when I am having a down day.

Celebrating last Friday with the other winners from @risingsocialstarau competition. Thank you @lorraineremarks from the @theremarksgroup for hosting such a great event. I have had the biggest smile on my face all week. This past week has given me the confidence to set some big goals and get out there and chase them. I have always been a little shy when people approach me about Alice In Healthyland in person, but I think this competition has given me the kick up the bottom I needed to be proud and do something with it. I have enrolled in some courses to help with my public speaking and written up some ideas to help me achieve my goals. Thank you again to all my followers and friends for your continued support. Huge congrats to the other winners @misterweekender - Travel, @nikkiajoy - Beauty & @sophieluxe - Fashion. Photo by @aristoris . #showmehowyouhealthy #aliceinhealthyland #wellbeing #rssau #pricelineau

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#showtherealyou blog series is an amazing feature on your blog where you interview some very inspiring ladies. Whether they are answering questions about their children, their business or just how they juggle everyday life – it’s so nice to see an honest dialogue and one that’s focused on empowering and supporting each another. In a world where there is so much negativity, Alice is Healthyland is a positive and honest space – a positive mindset is obviously very important for you personally and also for the blog?

Yes, this is extremely important for me. I see so much pain, loss and illness in my nursing career. I think it's what makes me so grateful. Even on a bad day I have to remind myself their is always someone worse off, however it's not a bad thing to have a cry and then move on. I think it's a great way to look at life. I want to create a space on my social media accounts for all people to to share their stories, be supported if needed and hopefully get inspired to keep themselves and their family healthy, including their fur babies.

You were recently quoted in The Collective discussing how as a nurse you see people suffering from not looking after themselves, and you’d like to see more of a focus on healthy living education and literature - is this a direction you would like to explore on the blog?

Absolutely yes!! I mean there is literature out there, but it is not always advocated in the correct way. Plus sometimes there is too much information. People need to be taught the basics, then once they share a passion for their newly gained knowledge, then they can learn all the details.

What’s your dream for Alice in Healthyland?

To continue to inspire and help as many people I can find their own balanced "healthyland". I love sharing and promoting other peoples dreams and ideas too.

Thanks so much for your time and sharing your story Alice. Give Evie a tummy tickle and Cruz a massive cuddle from us!

Thank you so much for having me. Evie sends her love to Olly too, ha-ha. xx

Follow Alice's journey:

Blog: Alice in Healthyland

Facebook: @aliceinhealthyland

Instagram: aliceinhealthyland
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